As the sun sets on another Spring Racing carnival and you get lulled in to a false sense of normality, the social diary erupts while you’re sleeping, and party season explodes. Social engagements can become quite the negotiation at this time of year, and you may find yourselves prioritising parties (on Facebook, at least). Many of us have to back up these social engagements with attendance at work. And, after a few consecutive nights on the sauce, we can not only start to feel run down, but we can end up looking a little ‘Merle Haggard’ (slang for haggard). So before your boss asks you if ‘everything’s ok at home?’, we’ve found some treats to keep you looking both joyful and triumphant in youth’s rear view this party season.
Rimmel London Kate Moss Nude Lipstick
We scored two beauties from the latest Kate Moss-branded collection: Lucky numbers 43 and 48 are from a sultry little swag of 5 different nude shades in total. Always a sucker for a nude lip, I am convinced it is the idea of them rather than the reality that ever does it for me. Having experimented over the years with beiges, baby pinks – even an amusing mix of concealer and lip balm at one stage – I always found that apart from making me look like some kind of Mediterranean mod, some formulas look chalky, uneven or (if they were still there by lunchtime) attach to any flakiness. Not this baby. No.43 is a peachy nude shade, containing enough warmth to ward off that morgue-ready look. It feels almost balm-like on application but isn’t too sheer. And it wears off a treat! 4 hours, 1 coffee, some porridge and an oversized strawberry later, sure it had worn a little but I still had clear signs of soft peachy-hued lips. New favourite alert. No.48 is a much darker rosy brown nude, and on first application I realised I hadn’t worn such a colour since the nineties. However, after a couple of wears I can definitely report it doesn’t look nineties (it only reminded me, ok?), in fact it only needs the accompaniment of a slick of mascara to look both simple and fresh. Well pigmented, creamy and long-lasting, these will provide all the nude you need this party season (behave yourselves, or don’t).
Glam Wire TIP: Don’t just save lighter shades for day and darker for night – a smoky eyed look is fantastic for party time when paired with paler lips. Equally, a statement lip for daytime can be played down by keeping the rest of the face pared down.
1000 Hour Softsole Express Exfoliating Foot Peel
Literally a revelation in the quest for soft feet, this peel works as a pair of plastic gooey booties you slip into for at least 90 minutes before going about your couch-based business. We’ll admit the ensuing feeling of sweaty, meat-wrapped plastic hardly conjures thoughts of a luxury spa day, but trust us on this. Give the potion a day or two to work its magic and you’ll find flakes of skin absolutely everywhere, from inside your shoes to all over the bathmat. Although not for the squeamish of hoof, this product does exactly what it says over the course of about two weeks. So, if you’re the type to sit and pick idly at peeling skin, this is right up your street.
The Glam Wire Tip: When those flakes start appearing, gently rub the soles of feet each day in the shower, to help speed up the shedding process. And use your hands – you don’t want wet skin flakes on the loofah, do you?
Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs Tube
Previous experiences of instant tan had us feeling a tad cautious. Gradual tan before a big event or holiday is pretty fool-proof, but the thought of going from pale to bronze in one hit (and without a professional present) felt as crazy as going straight to ink without tracing in pencil first. However, any orange-stained misgivings were totally unfounded – this stuff really is like an airbrush in a tube, the coverage is amazing for masking small imperfections (think a thin veil of hosiery in your perfect shade) and it wears well over the course of a day. Easy enough to apply, it’s also time-friendly if you’re used to moisturising after your morning shower anyway. In fact we didn’t just stop at the legs, we got a little carried away and continued honeying up the arms and décolleté, too.
Glam Wire Tip: For a smooth finish, skip the moisturiser and apply to freshly dried skin – the product will spread more evenly (and dry quicker). For best results use a kabuki brush to buff product in, as this will help give control over coverage and save your palms looking like cheezels.
Rimmel London Magnif’Eye Mono Eyeshadows
We had the pleasure of playing with two shades from this collection, which comes in cute flat, lidded single compacts for easy application. All About the Bass is a matte, silky taupe – not overly pigmented, however this was a good thing and assisted with non-scary application on my olive lids. This shade will come up darker on fairer skin tones, in fact it will give the first layer of a knock-out smoky eye to someone with green or blue peepers. For me however, it really was all about the base (geddit?). So I used it as a natural wash over the entire lid, before going in with a darker shade at the corners. Gold Record calls itself a “high glitter” shade although I beg to differ,
and in the best possible way. Wonderfully buildable, the formula does have a fine glitter through it, but translates to more of a glimmer once applied. Non-scratchy, it is a perfect golden shade and, unlike countless others I’ve tried, wears well throughout the day.
Glam Wire Tip: Neutrals like All About The Bass are best applied with a medium eyeshadow brush for even coverage and easier blendability. But for shimmers and glitters like Gold Record don’t underestimate a good old foam-tipped applicator for more delicate application to lower lids and inner-eye corners – this will open the eyes right up.
Rimmel London Supercurler Mascara
We’re prepared to go out on a limb here and deem this a product worthy of HG status. Simply because we’ve been around for a while and have used a lot of mascara. The equivalent of a body-building blow-dry for your lashes, this really does go on clump and smudge-free. From high-end to the high street, almost all mascaras make this claim but few live up to it. And I won’t lie, hyped-up talk of built-in lash-curling polymer agent ingredients (and then some) almost earned an eye roll, despite the sassy purple packaging and fine-bristled fluffy wand. So after expecting a normal result for my straight, fine lashes, ie. slightly more length and a temporary lift – this stuff comes along, claiming to push them up to 90-degrees! Well, I do declare… they are right. Camel lashes, right here.
Glam Wire Tip: Although it stands up damn fine on its own, try pairing this with a lengthening mascara such as L’Oreal Telescopic, for a ridiculously exciting falsie effect. Apply the lengthening formula first, go for a walk across the room and back then apply the Supercurler in a zig-zag motion from root to tip. This will further separate, fatten and absolutely bambi-fy your eyes.
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About the Reviewer: Although I consider myself to be an educated, creative and well-rounded person, I do also happen to have a fascination with making-up at the drop of a hat. A regularly painted lady, I have over the years had fingers in tester pots in places from Harvey Nicks and Boots in the UK to Priceline and Mecca Cosmetica at home. As a child I gave my dollies makeovers with permanent marker, then went through a phase of giving magazine models slicks of biro lipstick. My mother’s beloved Pupa compact was never safe. At age 11, once I discovered skin-coloured Clearasil and eyeliner, my world pretty much changed forever.