A lot to conceal

9. August 2014

1 Comment

A lot to conceal

It’s probably having teenage daughters, or maybe just because I’m getting older, but these days I am increasingly enjoying buying and trying make-up. I’ve always been a complete sucker for the idea of ‘hope in a jar’ – the excitement of lovely packaging and extravagant promises ….usually followed inevitably by a remarkably unchanged (but poorer) me in the mirror.

But hope, in a jar or not, springs eternal. Somewhere out there is the perfect product for me. I don’t wear a lot of make-up – just a bit of concealer on the dodgy bits, plus mascara and eyeliner, blusher if I’m looking pale and eyeshadow on Big Nights Out. I am hugely fussy, though, which has meant that the search for the best has lasted thirty-odd years so far and will doubtless go on until I’m in my dotage and my mobility scooter runs out of batteries.

To save you the relentless search, here are some concealers I’ve tried and tested recently. To me, concealers seem one of the hardest things to get right. You tend to either get perfect packaging, like YSL’s Touche Eclat, with a product which, for me, just draws attention to flaws, or a cement-like uber-foundation that chips off in unattractive lumps. Here are three which are all perform above the average:

While we were in New York last month, the girls and I made regular pilgrimages to Sephora, a store dedicated to nothing but the latest make-up. We tried to find brands that weren’t available in the UK, and I chanced upon the Perricone MD range. I had no idea who Dr Perricone is (I’ve since looked him up – he’s a proper doctor and a weight loss/skin/diet guru, who believes that ageing is not inevitable but is caused by cellular inflammation) but just liked the look of his ‘no make-up make-up’ range and the fact that there is no colour choice – one shade of everything works for everyone, apparently. It’s always so difficult to get the right shade for my skin that this no-brainer solution seemed, well, a no-brainer. I bought the concealer for a whopping $36 dollars. It smells nice, and the packaging (a mascara-like tube, with a wand inside) was good, though not like the quasi-medical bottle you’ll see on the website. Unfortunately the very peachy shade just isn’t me and I’m a bit baffled, really, about how this could possibly suit everyone. I must be missing something.

Perricone MD No concealer concealer

The doctor prescribes …Perricone MD No concealer concealer

So, back in the UK, the hunt for a good concealer was still on. Next stop was good old Superdrug, which frankly lacks the glamour of Sephora or even a branch of Boots. However, it does stock a huge array of the cheap-to-reasonable end ranges of make-up, including things like Collection 2000 and Beauty UK, which I wouldn’t honestly look at if I didn’t have teenage daughters. The girls are not snobby at all about make-up ranges and will try anything. So I found myself with a Beauty UK conceal and correct tube, for all of £2.99. There are only three shades to choose from, and I took the middle ground. Ok, the packaging does not look high end (and Child Two’s concealer did leak in her make-up bag, which was not great) but the product is excellent – pasty enough to cover well but not too thick. It also lasts for ages and is pretty much a total bargain.

Cheap, cheerful and effective, Beauty UK's conceal and correct

Cheap, cheerful and effective, Beauty UK’s Conceal and Correct

Finally, I couldn’t resist trying the Bare Minerals Stroke of Light concealer. I used to have the Bare Minerals powder foundation and it was lovely, but putting it on was a pain and I always ended up with powder all over the bedroom carpet – not ideal for a Hooverphobic housewife. Back in New York’s Sephora, though, we came across a handy little bag of Bare Minerals translucent Touch Up Veil with a cute little brush for $20, and that rekindled my enthusiasm for the brand. It was absolutely brilliant for mopping up the shine in the 32 degree NY heat. So I invested in the Stroke of Light after a nice Bare Minerals lady at John Lewis in Oxford Street gave me a quick tutorial. It’s great. Yes, it’s reminiscent of Touche Eclat, but for me it works a lot better and just seems like a gentle beam of sunlight on the eye area.

Bare Minerals Stroke of Light - a stroke of genius?

Bare Minerals Stroke of Light – a stroke of genius?

 

 

Continue reading / leave comments

5. August 2014

2 Comments

Paint them black

Paint them black

What a tragic story this week about black cats being abandoned because they are less photogenic than other types. It’s true that sometimes, our own black cat can appear as an amorphous blob in pictures, but mostly that’s because of the quality of the photographer (ahem), not the subject, and does not make him one […]

Continue reading / leave comments

1. August 2014

Comments Off

Pram Glam

Pram Glam

Sponsored post Even now the girls are pretty much grown-ups and have a far more complex social life than me, there are still days during the summer holidays when they are milling around aimlessly. At just such a moment, an invite pinged into my inbox from those lovely folk at Persil. ‘Come and meet stylist […]

Continue reading / leave comments

29. July 2014

4 Comments

New York, New York

New York, New York

I loved New York as soon as I first stepped out of a yellow taxi in 1990. So it was a huge joy to take Child One and Child Two and share my passion. For me it’s all about the architecture, the huge wide avenues, the vertiginous cliff faces of the office blocks, and the […]

Continue reading / leave comments

16. July 2014

1 Comment

Washday blues

Just before I whisked the girls off to New York (and more of that another time), a nice PR asked me to try Comfort’s new ultra-swish scenty range of fabric conditioners. Of course I said yes, though I didn’t let on that I have a little secret these days about laundry. I make my own […]

Continue reading / leave comments

24. June 2014

2 Comments

Someone needs a holiday ….

Someone needs a holiday ….

Thank goodness, we are entering calmer waters. The exams are over, my stomach seems to have stopped burbling, and the summer unfolds. But, naturally, it’s complicated. As well as four adults who seldom agree on anything, we now have two trainee grown-ups in our midst who have Made Their Own Travel Plans. So, no sooner […]

Continue reading / leave comments

2. June 2014

2 Comments

Ouch

Ouch

Sorry, sorry. Every time I resolve to blog more often, something happens to prevent me. This time …. acute gastritis. My stomach has been misbehaving for a while, but I’ve put it down to the various horrors of the menopause. This time, though, a couple of handfuls of peanuts led to a sleepless night and […]

Continue reading / leave comments

22. May 2014

2 Comments

A View from the Bridge

A View from the Bridge

I was lucky enough to see a View from the Bridge last night at the Young Vic. What a play! I feel as though I am only just recovering. It was a frighteningly good production, pared down to the minimum. There was almost no set, the characters prowled an empty cube, clothes were drab, there […]

Continue reading / leave comments

12. May 2014

Comments Off

Open house

Open house

Great fun at the weekend at the Dulwich Open House. The idea is basically that artists throw open their homes and let you have a look at their artworks – and hope to sell you some. The reality is that a lot of nosy people (like me) potter around other people’s houses making loud comments […]

Continue reading / leave comments

7. May 2014

4 Comments

Walk the walk?

Walk the walk?

Child Two’s theme for her school’s muck-up day (the last day before the GCSE exams begin) was Fairy Tales. But, after a few hours of larking about in tutus draping fairy lights and loo paper all over the school, two of her friends found their own story growing decidedly darker. On the way home, they […]

Continue reading / leave comments