These might be the greatest thing since sliced bread – actually way better than sliced bread since they are perfect, shimmery molten eyeshadow sticks of exactly the colours that you want, and best of all, they’re gluten-free!
I’ve become obsessed with these of late. They are a lightweight cream eyeshadow that just has the most perfect texture. They’re in a thin stick form, so not only are they extremely lightweight (which you are SO GRATEFUL for when you have 40 kilograms of makeup to lug to work each day), but the shape of the tip is absolutely perfect for creating dreamy highlights around the eyes. There is a reason that all the top red carpet makeup artists are using them on their celeb clients you know! Mai Quynh used them on Chloe Moretz at Cannes, as well as Reese Witherspoon at the Golden Globes.
They also come in a great range of colours and are a lovely base for a smoky eye or perfect as a shimmering accent. You can use them as a shadow or as a liner as well, so they’re just right for everyday life as they do double-duty and are even small enough to fit in an evening bag, if you need a quick retouch.
There are now 23 shades available, and since Laura Mercier is, well Laura Mercier, they really are gorgeous, flattering colours for every skintone. These suckers are fast, also. For when you have literally two seconds to do your makeup (and a toddler may or may not be dragging themselves up your legs trying to get to your makeup because the best thing EVER is a toddlerin your makeup) they are literally just swipe, smoosh with brush or finger and go.
Because this is the site with no shame, and because I haven’t had any cheesily fabulous 80’s music on here for awhile, here’s some Spandau Ballet to ease you into this season’s hottest trend for holiday parties – Gold.
Now that I’ve blown your mind with some feathered hair and ostentatious guitar chord playing (check around the 1.23 mark if you’re into that sort of thing), it’s time to get down to business, how to shimmer like a star this Christmas.
The best way to wear golds is generally on the eyes – although this season there are some ace gold nailpolishes around too (but more on them later).
Gold suits every eye colour and in fact every skintone, and metallics in general are huge this season.
My fave way to wear gold on the eyes is to layer a cream with a powder, and for full-on Midas eyes you can’t really go past Illamasqua’s Solstice Liquid Metal with Pure Pigment in Marvel. This is what Alex Box used to create the Golden Goddess look for the Myer show in Sydney this year, and I can attest to its – well, golden-ness. I love these because the gold isn’t too yellow and fake looking, and they have a burnished quality when they catch the light (golds that are too fake and yellow looking make me feel, quite frankly, ill. So cheap and nasty!)
If you fancy something a little less full-on, Laura Mercier does a lovely gold metallic crème eyeshadow in, aptly enough, Gold, and Chanel do a beautiful gold powder eyeshadow. It’s also, funnily enough, called Gold.
There are a few tricks to making metallics work. Firstly you need to apply your shadow, then line your eyes right at the base of the top lashes with a black liquid liner or gel eyeliner. This defines the eye and makes it much more party-worthy. Black or brown pencil liner on the inner rims is optional, depending on whether you really want to get your sexy on. I like MAC’s Boot Black liquid and Bobbi Brown’s Black Ink gel liner for this purpose. You can either just do a wash of gold on the lids, or you can use a nice matte brown shadow to wash into the crease to give some good depth and definition (I’m currently loving NARS Bengali as a great all round chocolate brown eyeshadow). Two coats of your favourite mascara (my current fave mazzie is L’Oreal’s Volume Million Lashes mascara for a party lash), and false lashes are optional but always a winner for parties. MAC and Shu Uemura are great for expensive ones, Ardell if you’re saving your pennies.
You can keep the rest of the face simple by using the minimum of foundation and powder, some bronzer and keep the lip a delicious nude. I love YSL Rouge Pur in 132 a gorgeous golden pinky beige. Golden-beige gloss on top, something like Chanel’s Beige Guitare.
Nails are also a key place to go for gold. Myface L’il Bling is an amazing new range of metallic polish, and their gold polish is particularly lovely (it’s called Gilt-y). For the ultimate gold nail though you should check out Nail Rock. Nail Rock are individual nail wraps in different patterns, including metallics, that you heat up with a hair dryer onto the nail. They do take a bit of getting used to, but for a true Midas touch, you can’t go past these. They are the creation of London manicurist Zoe Pocock and they last up to 7 days on nails and 8 weeks on the toes, plus they are inexpensive (£6.50 per set), so there’s no excuse for not going for gold. (Feathered hair and ostentatious guitar playing are optional).
I am a big, big fan of Laura Mercier products as you might know from reading of my almost creepy love of her Translucent Powder and Secret Camouflage concealer. The Secret Brightener? Not so much.
The idea is that you use this under the eye before concealer in order to “brighten dark circles, reduce shadow and minimize discolorations”, according to the website. Which sounds great in theory except that this product is pearly pink. And I mean REALLY pearly pink. Even on my Mattel-doll complexion it shows up pink under the concealer. I believe it now comes in two shades, and to be fair I haven’t tried the second shade, so I can only comment on how Number 1 looks. Also I wouldn’t know how it reads on anyone else’s skin as it never made it near my kit.
However it could be used as a pretty highlighter on the cheekbones, just please, for the love of Mary, not under the eyes. It will give you that awful deer caught in the headlights look which you see when sometimes a celebrity is caught by flash photography with the paprazzi, and their makeup artist has been slightly too generous with the under eye highlighter. As a sweet highlighter pen it’s great as it can be tossed in your bag, and it’s easy for doing delicate spots like the tip of the Cupid’s bow.
For undereye highlighting I can safely recommend YSL Touche Eclat, Clinique Airbrush and Estee Lauder Ideal Light, but not this dude.
This one, I’m sorry to say, is going in the bin.
* Does not affect my love for the Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder, nor her genius concealer and powder, which I’m still evangelical about.
I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for well over a year now, and I haven’t mentioned this trusty little helper that comes on literally every job. It’s almost as if because it’s there, just when I need it for dark circles and nasty red spots, I don’t even think about it. All these other concealers step in and steal its limelight, when really, it’s the star of the show.
It’s super thick and dense (so great for spots and blemishes), and each colour has two pans of product, one more yellow-y skin coloured one and a peach, so it can be mixed up to just the right shade. The peachier tone is perfect for concealing under-eye darkness – let’s be honest, the scourge of women everywhere.
But the trick is, you need to know how to use it. You need a brush – the Laura Mercier concealer one is pretty good, and then use the brush to mix the colours up the right way on the back of your hand. Then apply with feathering motions (or dabbing motions if it’s a spot) onto the offending area. It can be sheered out or coverage built up until all imperfections just melt away under its tender ministrations.
For under eye circles it really is usually too thick, so I generally put a bit of basic moisturiser on the back of my hand (Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturiser is a favourite for this task), and dip a tiny bit on the brush, then onto the product. The moisturiser breaks it up slightly so you get sheerer coverage. Laura Mercier also makes a Secret Concealer which is more peach-y, and more emollient which I sometimes mix in too. And LM Secret Camo (for it is Secret Camo, and I am Australian, and I will abbreviate things even when it’s not appropriate) can be layered under other products too, for even more superior eyebag coverage.
It comes in 6 shades from really quite pale to reasonably deep tones, although if you are extremely pale or very dark I would stick with Becca as they have a wider selection of colours to choose from.
All in all it is my go-to concealer guy, and I owe it a major apology for not covering it sooner. I may even buy it a drink.
I’ve had this post kicking around in my head for a long time, and in the meantime I’ve tried at least four other tinted moisturizers, and not one of them has come close to beating the original and the best – Laura Mercier’s Tinted Moisturiser.
Calling a product The Best Ever is a big statement, but when I do it’s because I feel pretty confident that I’ve tried a lot in that category, and this is the best on the market. There is a reason why this turns up every single year in the Allure and Instyle Best of Beauty Awards!
Tinted Moisturiser was one of Laura Mercier’s first products in her eponymous line, and it’s wonderful for just giving a light touch of something for those who don’t really need full-on foundation. In Foundation Land, a very confusing place most women are obligated to visit at least a few times in their lifetime, a place filled with unhelpful sales assistants trying to take your money – it’s the lightest coverage, the first step on the foundation ladder. It’s for those with good skin naturally, and it’s particularly awesome when it’s hot (as it’s a lighter product and won’t slide off your face so much), and on holidays as you can just whack it on with your fingers and be out the door and off to the beach. Because it is such a light coverage, I like to go a shade darker in Tinted Moisturiser – it gives your skin a sun-kissed glow without being too much.
It has an SPF of 20, comes in 2 formulas (normal and oil-free), plus an Illuminating one for dull, dry skin (great in winter, although not for those with oily skin), and comes in 10 shades, from very pale to pretty dark. I’ve used it myself and I’ve used it at work for upwards of ten years, and no other brand comes close to getting the right creaminess, range of shades and lovely texture that evens your skintone and gives your face a much-needed lift in the morning.
Laura Mercier’s range specializes in products that make your skin look perfect, and of her foundations, this is my favourite. That’s why Laura Mercier’s Tinted Moisturiser is the best one ever.