Recently I’ve noticed I’m not looking as fresh-faced as I’d like. It’s partly age, partly the time of year. Lack of sunlight and fresh air; central heating and comfort food – they all take their toll. I’ve never been one for lots of make-up. I prefer the simple look. But these days simple basically just means looking tired. I need a little helping hand.
I don’t have the budget for a dream-like splurge. I’ve always found it difficult to justify spending lots of money on cosmetics. I invest in good quality skincare from Liz Earle, but I don’t have much left for make-up.
So on a grey, rainy Sunday I went for a little mini-splurge in Boots. The Seventeen section caught my eye for the first time in years. I don’t think I’ve bought anything from there since I was, well, about seventeen.
Anyway, the thing that first caught my eye was a highlighter stick that struck an uncanny resemblance to a YSL Touche Éclat. I had one of those once and loved using it under my eyes, but I hadn’t been able to justify the price tag (about £25) for a while. This one was only £4.99. Worth a try.
How did it compare to the expensive stuff? I have to be honest: it doesn’t feel as nice – the texture is a bit heavier and less silky. But, it did do a good job of covering up the dark circles under my eyes. The packaging is so nice, I could almost kid myself I was using the real thing.
I also bought one of their mascaras in dark brown. I usually wear black, but thought I’d try this for a more subtle brightening effect. It didn’t do much to lengthen or thicken my lashes, but it did create a pretty and subtle look. It also didn’t smudge at all during the day. I usually wear Maybellene, which probably looks better but always give me panda eyes. Good for a subtle, barely-there look, but not so good if you prefer a dramatic eye.
Excitingly, there was a free lip palette when you spent £6 (or £4.99 when purchased). I love the idea of bold red lips – but they always make me feel ridiculous and self-conscious. These lip stains are a much more subtle and pretty way to wear colour. They are pretty, flattering shades which are really brightening my look and making me feel happier.
Buying something new has reminded me to make more of an effort with my appearance. I’m finding the time each morning to apply highlighter, blusher, concealer, mascara and lip gloss. My Seventeen budget buys are never going to feel as luxurious as the expensive stuff, but I’m really pleasantly surprised by them. It’s perked me up and it cost less than a tenner.
What are your favourite budget beauty buys? I’d love to add more to my collection.