Halloween’s one of those holidays I love, but always seems to creep up on me out of nowhere. As my friends can attest, I’m not somebody who’s great at planning in advance and you’ll usually find me frantically tearing through Primark mere hours before a Halloween party — trying to pull together a cheap last minute outfit. This year though, ASOS has solved all my fancy dress woes as they’ve just released a set of all-in-one Halloween make-up kits I’m obsessed with.
The kits have just launched online and there’s three of them, depending on what kind of look you’re going for. For those who still can’t get over Pennywise in It, there’s a clown kit aptly named ‘foolish’ which will take the creepy look into cute AF territory with glitter and face gems.
Coco stans will also be sorted with the ‘haunted’ set, which includes a black and white face crayon for you to perfect any finnicky skeletal details. (Sometimes a make-up brush just doesn’t do the job.) And for an extra dash of glitz, they’ve also thrown in some amber face gems to bring a splash of colour to your look.
And finally if you just can’t wait for Game of Thrones series eight to drop next year, there’s a very White Walker ‘glacial’ set which is full of frosty blues and whites. I’m personally in love with the fact that the set includes white eyelashes, which will have you looking like you’ve just stepped in from a snowstorm and nails the look.
Also bear in mind, those are just my own suggestions for where those kits could take you. The ‘glacial’ set could veer very easily into Frozen territory, while the colour palette in the ‘foolish’ set has everything you need for a glam Princess Mononoke.
If you’re still stumped on ideas for October 31, we’ve put together a list of amazing Halloween makeup ideas and our team has also pulled together some Halloween makeup tutorials that are easy enough to master. And if you’re less of a makeup girl and want to commit to a major costume look, we’ve also compiled the best Halloween costume ideas from the celebs to sort you out.
ASOS’ makeup kits are priced at £15, which might sound steep at first but they’re made up of eight beauty products; including goodies from ASOS’ makeup line. Including face gems, liquid highlighter, face crayons, primer and glitter, you won’t have to go rooting around in your make-up bag or ruin your good stuff trying drawing on red lipstick noses and eyeliner skulls. It’s all there and it’s just easier TBH, plus it’s all vegan-friendly so extra props on that front ASOS.
Drunk Elephant – the brand that’s been on the radar of Brit beauty experts for the past couple of years has finally launched into the UK. From today you can get your hands on one of Sephora’s bestselling brands that amassed a huge waiting list on Cult Beauty. It has been one of the most anticipated launches in a long while. Probably since the UK launch of Glossier.
The Marula-infused brand is available at both Space NK and Cult Beauty.
If you’re new to the Drunk Elephant life, allow us to give you a little bit of background. Founded by Tiffany Masterson in New York, the products are all born and raised (that’s designed, tested and made) in the States.
The brand does not contain any of, what they refer to as, the ‘suspicious six’ – that’s essential oils, chemical sunscreens, fragrances or dyes, SLS, silicones, and drying alcohols. It calls itself a biocompatible brand, as it focuses on whether an ingredient is compatible with the skin rather than its natural or synthetic status. It doesn’t align itself with skintypes as Masterson believes that as long as a product is free from the suspicious six, it should work with everyone’s skin. Her ethos seems to be paying off – it’s won countless industry awards and everyone wants a piece of the Drunk Elephant.
Speaking of Drunk Elephants – where does the name come from? Legend has it that when elephant’s eat the fermented Marula fruit, they end up quite tipsy. ‘I wanted to have a little fun with the name,’ Masterson explains.
Not well-acquainted with the brand just yet? Keep scrolling for the best Drunk Elephant products we think you should snap up now…
Don’t fancy spending a ton of money on a new brand, or can’t afford to? We hear you. If you’re desperate to try the brand though, it’s worth saving up your pennies for The Littles, a set of travel minis that enable you to try the brand’s hero products in miniature form – Marula Oil, C-Firma, Framboos, the works.
Packed with Vitamin C, the C-Firma Day Serum is a seriously potent and active formula that’s loaded with antioxidants, fruit enzymes and essential nutrients for healthy skin. As with all good vitamin C formulae, it can help to reduce the visibility of skin pigmentation (like dark spots) and the signs of ageing.
Founder Tiffany believes that the virgin oil – ‘straight from the pip’ – is superior to any other she’s tried, which is why you’ll find it throughout the line. The oil itself is rich in fatty acids, antioxidants and has anti-microbial properties, making it great for minimsing fine lines, redness and improving elasticity to name but a few of its benefits.
The Framboos serum is formulated with the ‘dream team’ blend of lactic, tartaric, citric, salicylic and glycolic acid, at a concentrate of 12%. The clever gel formula refines your complexion while you sleep, banishing dead skin cells by dissolving the glue binding them to the surface of your skin. A one-way ticket to luminous skin come morning.
A silky formula that doesn’t have the heaviness of an eye cream, the Shaba Complex blends black tea and copper peptides to turn back the clock on your under-eye area – even working to slow the signs of ageing before they appear. If you suffer with puffy, tired-looking eyes, this is the skincare product for you.
Who says protein is just for shakes? Described as ‘the Megamino protein-powered get-sh*t-done cream’, this anti-ageing cream is packed with peptides, amino acids and pygmy waterlily to improve skin’s firmness, tone and texture. With continued use, skin is promised to look revived and more youthful.
Drunk Elephant – the products you can’t buy *SAD FACE*
For the brand’s biggest fans, you’ll be disappointed to hear that the below products have not made it over to UK shores. Mainly because of US v UK ingredient regulations.
TLC Sukari Baby Facial
Probably the brand’s most famous product – a resurfacing AHA/BHA facial, that’s like baby skin in a bottle, hence the name. It’s a potent cocktail of acids, blending tartaric, lactic, citric, glycolic AND salicylic acid to gently exfoliate pores and blitz dead skin cells, leaving a smoother, brighter skin finish. To quote Drunk Elephant themselves, ‘it’ll knock your cells off’.
Umbra Sheer Physical Sunscreen
A broad spectrum sunscreen (meaning it protects against UVA and UVB rays) should be an essential part of everybody’s skincare routine, and this clear SPF 30 formula also protects against oxidative and free radical damage. There’s also a tinted version, should you want a little coverage in your SPF, aptly named Umbre Tinte.
Even without the above, you’ll fall in love with the brand. So what are you waiting for? Ready? Set? Add to basket!
Well get excited, because there’s now a version for your body.
Just as the original cleanser can transform your face, this body cleanser will keep the skin on your bod moisturised for 48 hours because of the same high content of plant oils. ‘Rice bran oil, apricot kernel oil and sunflower seed oil are amazing for your skin,’ explains James Wong, Liz Earle’s in-house botanist.
Whilst some body washes can actually dry your skin out, this thick lather soothes and supports the skin’s natural barrier. Once you’ve worked it in all over, grab the mitt (which is super similar to the muslin that you get with the face cleanser) and work it in some more for a touch of gentle exfoliation.
During their testing, the brand found that 90% of people who used the body cleanser said that their skin felt soft straight away. 87% said that their skin looked smoother too.
As we make our way into winter, this will make the ideal shower companion. In the colder months, the skin on your body can look a little blue and a little meh, that’s because it needs TLC. Using this every day in the shower or bath will get rid of the top layers of dead skin that can give it that dull appearance. Using the mitt will bring blood flow to the top of skin as well making it look more pink and less grey.
How to go from fine to full in a matter of minutes
Our brow preferences couldn’t have changed more over the last decade. Gone are the super-sparse brows of the nineties; instead, we’re beefing them up using the best eyebrow makeup money can buy.
But not everyone was blessed with thick, full, Delevingne-esque eyebrows and, sadly, the majority of us have to fake it in the brow department.
While microblading treatments have rapidly gained popularity over the last few years, we wouldn’t blame you if you’re reluctant to spend a few hundred quid on getting your brows filled in. The best eyebrow makeup is a much cheaper solution when looking how to get thicker eyebrows.
From velvety soft pencils that’ll fill your eyebrows in stroke-by-stroke, to thickening pomades and growth-enhancing serums, the world’s your oyster when it comes to formulas and shades.
So where do you start when choosing the best brow makeup?
If you like a thick, dark and defined brow shape, choose a pomade like Anastasia Beverley Hills Dip Brow Pomade. It’s a bestseller for a reason, it’s long lasting and gives you perfectly shaped arches.
If you prefer a more natural look, try a clear brow gel (we, like the rest of the world, love Glossier). These will fix your brows in place without it looking like your wearing any product at all.
When choosing a colour, the key is to always go for a duskier, earthier shade of your hair colour – very warm or orange-toned brows look too ‘done’ and unnatural-looking. And ideally, stay within a two shade range – no more than one shade lighter or darker than your current hair colour.
Once you’re clued up on the best eyebrow shapes for your face shape, read on for the Marie Claire approved eyebrow products you can find on UK beauty shelves.
How to fill in eyebrows
Brow beginners may be unsure of how to fill in your eyebrows without them looking too obvious. ‘I map out the brows with three dots and then fill in to create the perfect shape,’ says Tonya Crookes, celebrity brow artist and founder of The Browgal. ‘To find the point at which your brows should start, draw an imaginary line from the corner of your nose, directly upwards.
Courtesy of The Browgal
‘Next, draw a line from the corner of the nose, through the pupil to find the highest point of the brow. The end of the brow should fall in line with the corner of the nose and the outside edge of the eye. Your pencil should be sharp to create hair-like strokes.’
This kit has everything you could need for perfectly perky brows – three different shades, so that the colour won’t look flat, a wax for shaping, a highlighting powder for the brow bone, a brush, a spoolie and that all important pair of mini tweezers.
There’s a reason so many people love this brow pencil – the formula is slightly waxy so not only does it fill in colour, but the angled tip shapes brows as you draw. Comes in four colours that suit all hair colours.
If you love bushy, bushy brows – think Cara Deleveigne and the Olsen twins – then you must introduce this into your arsenal immediately. The spoolie is super fine, meaning it attaches to every hair making the bushiness look really natural. It also stays in place in all day. Also, the shades (like most brand offerings) are done by hair colour, but this is the first brand we’ve seen do a proper redhead one
Benefit are the queens of the brow. When they saw a gap in the market – they didn’t just launch a brow product, they launched a whole collection dedicated to the little sliver of hair above our eyes. This eyebrow powder is exactly what it says on the tin – foolproof. Where do your apply the lighter shade? Well just take a look at the handy guide…
Whether you’re living and working in the city full time, or are need of a bit of downtime, the best facials in London are a must to have on your radar.
They’re a great way to take things up a gear from your best face masks for more intensive results, so we’ve scoured the city from east to west to bring you the definitive guide to the top facialists and treatment options in the city.
For several weeks I’ve made it my life’s mission to find the best facials in London, whether the end goal is clearer skin, a brighter and firmer complexion, or simply de-stressing the mind. But a girl only has one face and one skin type, so I enlisted the help of the most reliable guinea pigs I know – the MC digital team.
Getting monthly facials would be the dream, but in reality it’s a treat you save up for. So consider these the ones worth stashing your pennies away for when it’s time to treat yo-self. You deserve it.
‘The first thing you need to know about this seriously relaxing facial – and boy, is it a good one – is that included in the price is an an hour of chill in the ESPA Life at Corinthia facilities beforehand. That’s steam room, sauna, chill, the works. I had to double check that my booking confirmation email wasn’t too good to be true. As someone who really struggles to switch off, this alone makes it incredibly good value as you’re already significantly calmed going in to the facial. I could just pack up and end the review there, but I won’t.
‘What comes next in one of the treatment pods is a thorough skin analysis under a UV lamp, then a delicous-smelling combination of triple cleanse, steaming and extraction (that you barely even notice because you are too zen), followed by a treatment mask. It’s a facial, so there’s facial massage and lymphatic drainage involved, but you’re also treated a bit of massage on the head, neck, shoulders, arms and hands, as well as exfoliation of the latter two.
You know when you remember having the facial, but you were so relaxed that you sort of don’t at the same time, because you were off floating on a cloud somewhere? Yeah. That. I’m already experiencing ESPA Life withdrawal syndrome and I desperately need to go back for another fix.’ – Lucy Abbersteen, Digital Beauty Writer
How much is it?
£140 for 60 minutes, or £190 for 90 minutes, at Corinthia London
‘I had always heard excellent things about Sisley Paris, so when an opportunity arose to try out their signature facial at Claridge’s, I leapt at the chance. I’d recommend arriving a little early in order to make the most of the stunning changing room (it’s literally an Instagram gold mine) and to spend some time reclining with a coffee in your fluffy robe and plush slippers. But that was nothing compared to the 60 minutes of pure relaxation that followed. I’m generally quite an uptight person, but this treatment switched me off in seconds.
‘Sisley is renowned for its scientific approach, using only the finest natural ingredients, and after deciding that my treatment should focus on hydration, my facialist went about choosing the right plant extracts and essential oils for my skin. Then came my signature facial, catered specifically to my skin and its needs. Lavender, rosemary, sage, geranium – you name an essential oil, it went on my skin in the form of gentle cleansers, serums and scrubs.
‘The highlight was the nourishing mask – which was quite literally bandaged to my face – and while it sunk in, I was treated to a surprise foot massage. It was pure luxury and I left the spa considerably more relaxed, not to mention, my skin was GLOWING.
‘For me, this kind of facial is ideal. It wasn’t hugely informative and it wasn’t a skin consultation; but that’s not why I went, nor is it what I personally look for in a facial. I don’t need someone to tell me about my skin, I just need to relax and feel pampered, something it offers in spades. If you want to know the ins and the outs of your complexion or try off the wall methods and violent extractions, this isn’t the treatment for you. But if like me, you want to lie on a warm bed and switch off for an hour as an expert facialist calms your senses and nourishes your skin with the most luxurious oils, look no further. Can I go and have another one now?’ – Jenny Proudfoot, Junior Digital News Editor
How much is it?
£120 for 60 minutes, or £165 for 90 minutes, at Claridge’s
For the uninitiated, Omorovicza are skincare Dons. Conceived in Budapest, and harnessing the infamous ‘healing’ powers of Hungary’s thermal waters, Omorovicza’s products and facials (I’m looking at you Elemental Emulsion and your everlasting wait list…) have been a mainstay in my otherwise ever-evolving beauty routine. They look great, smell great, work great and never once have they made my unruly skin breakout.
Tucked away in the heart of the Liberty store, the Omorovicza Treatment Rooms act like little slices of Budapest; they’re peaceful, dimly lit (no one wants a facial with a side order of fluorescent strip lighting) and smell incredible thanks to the unique blends that subtly flood the air.
After an initial skin consultation (I wanted hydration and glow), I opted for the Illumination facial, which all sounded very Harry Potter so I was there for it. I was so thoroughly relaxed, that the many varied elements of the facial merged into one hour of facial bliss, but the signature element consists of a gentle copper peel (don’t be alarmed by the slight tingle, my skin showed no sign of redness after it finished) and an energising facial massage that I was convinced made my skin more buoyant. And of course, plentiful spritzes of the cult Queen of Hungary Mist in-between.
After a quick hit of SPF for the journey home, the facial was over. My skin looked dewy, plumped and yes, GLOWY. With no sign of irritation or redness, this facial is a goer for pre-event skin boosting. Omorovicza, I bow down. – Holly Rains, Digital Editor
How much is it?
£125 for 60 minutes at Liberty London, redeemable against Omorovicza products on the day
Facial legend Kate Kerr and her right-hand woman Michelle (who I met with) are based out of Mondrian London, overlooking the Thames. It should be noted from the get-go that this is a thorough skincare session, so if you are looking purely for relaxation there is much more to this facial than that. Michelle and I discussed my complexion in great depth, and then she got stuck in. After serious deep cleansing, she hand picked treatment masks to target my skin’s congestion and brighten the overall tone. She then got down to business, really paying attention to every area of my face when it came to extraction, not just the nose and chin.
‘The treatment rooms are very chic and minimal, and there’s zen music playing for the whole duration of your treatment – not too tinny, not too over the top and not too ‘pinky-plonky’ – which I find really helps me to zone out while someone is sorting out my face. If you want your skin thoroughly analysed, complexion cleaned up to look healthier and brighter, and a bespoke skincare routine at the end of it to boot, this one is for you. You’ll understand your skin so much more when you leave and I can’t recommend Michelle enough, both as a facialist and to chat to!’ – Lucy Abbersteen, Digital Beauty Writer
How much is it?
From £150, or £230 with Kate Kerr herself, Mondrian London
‘If blackheads are your biggest skin woe, this treatment is one of the big guns when it comes to giving skin a deep-clean. My now-husband’s nose REALLY needed clearing before our wedding day, so he was the perfect candidate to put Eve Lom’s Ultimate Cleanse to the test. It’s pretty unique as the treatment involves applying hot paraffin wax onto the skin to heat the skin, which in turn really opens up your pores, so that the therapist can get all of the built-up gunk out. And they really, really layer the wax on. At first, it feels pretty peculiar, unlike anything you’ve ever experienced before, but the warmth from is calming and therepeutic. The wax is essentially painted on with a brush in rhythmic motions and it feels like pure heaven.
‘Once your skin is ready (aka warmed to perfection) your pores are basically the most open they’ll ever be, which means the therapist has easy access to all the nastiness. If you think about how much pressure you usually have to apply to remove blackheads, it’s the opposite after the wax – next to no pressure is needed. To ensure the skin stays warm, the therapist rips the wax off bit by bit, only working on small areas at a time. It’s called the ultimate cleanse and it’s exactly that. If anyone needs a full on skin clean (and those men who don’t do anything to their skin really do), this is IT.’ – Katie Thomas, Digital Beauty Editor
‘As with all Decleor treatments, this facial started with a back diagnostic (bear with me). This involves the therapist looking at your back to reveal why your skin is behaving in a certain way, by gently stimulating pressure and reflex points. This revealed that I was stressed and hormonal, as my lower back was quite hot (I was in fact about to come on my period). I honestly found it fascinating as I believe the way to great skin is understanding how it behaves. This was followed by cleansing, a lymphatic drainage massage to remove toxins and pollution and replenish moisture. The rest is tailored to your skin concerns, and as mine was congested, I had a purifying mask and scrub to remove dead skin cells.
‘My skin obviously felt amazing afterwards – glowing and smooth – but what I loved is that it’s an overall super relaxing experience. Whilst Decleor products are working hard tonight the damaging effects of pollution, the therapist massages everything from my face to my shoulders and limbs, really releasing tension. Because how can your face glow if the rest of your body is strained?’ – Penny Goldstone, Digital Fashion Editor
How much is it?
£75 for 75 minutes at the Decléor Day Boutique and Day Spa, also nationwide
‘After chatting with my ELEMIS therapist about my skin woes over a piping hot cup of tea, she sat me down in front of a machine that scanned and analysed my face to discover what my problem issues were. Once she had a better idea of what my skin needed, she then told me that the Biotec Radiance Renew Facial was the ideal one as it was designed to even out your skin tone, restore radiance and reduce dark circles (all things that were issues I flagged in our consultation). It included a facial massage, ultrasonic peeling technology – this electronic spatula that weirdly feels like they’re shaving your face, but miraculously does away with any dead skin – and their radiance activator packed with anti-oxidants, hyaluronic acid and peptides that had me glowing for days afterwards. The entire session finished off with a cooling gel mask.
‘Although it was of course super relaxing, I really loved that the main focus was on helping me get the best skin I could – both during the session and in the future once I’d left. It really felt like a mixture between a pampering session and a consultation with a skin expert, so it’s perfect for those who want to get serious and nail their skincare routine. Also the ultrasonic peeling was kind of intimidating at first (it hums like crazy and stings a little) but it did absolute wonders.
‘I literally have never glowed like that in my life and I was coming off a pretty dark, hungover weekend. I really loved that they not only took my issues into consideration, my therapist really took the time to help me boost my at-home regimen – as I had relatively dry skin, she recommended I start oil cleansing and then gave me a small card at the end with a proposed skincare routine moving forwards. Just so great.’ – Megan C. Hills, Digital Lifestyle Writer
How much is it?
£110 for 60 minutes, or £160 for 90 minutes, at the House of Elemis
‘There are three reasons why you should go and get a Sunday Riley facial at Hershesons salon. 1) Because you walk out with skin so happy, bouncy and glowy that it’s practically singing. 2) Because this is the only place in the world (yah huh) where you can get a Sunday Riley treatment. 3) Because of Iris.
‘It’s not often that I tell people to go for a facial because of the therapist. Typically, my recommendations are results-based. Don’t get me wrong this facial gives good – no, GREAT – results, but I have to tell you that Iris had me at hello. She asked me about every product that I use, wanted to know the brand name, how often I use them and when. She does this because she wants to know what your skin is used to and what it can and can’t handle.
‘The facial itself is part relaxation – the cleansing, the mask, the lymphatic facial massage, the hilarious chatter with Iris, and part punch – a combination of red light LED and cryotherapy. Don’t worry at all about the LED, which boosts collagen – you can’t feel a thing, and while that’s going on Iris is at the bottom of the giant bed relieving all of the tension from your toes.
‘But the cryotherapy, the cryotherapy took my breath away. Not because it was painful, because it’s so damn cold and my body does this funny thing when it’s super cold – it’s like it’s confused and forgets how to work. I’ve done cryotherapy chambers before and the same thing happened then, I couldn’t regulate my breath. I had to close my eyes and tell myself to breathe in and breathe out. But don’t panic, because Iris is there the whole time making you laugh and making you feel so comfortable.
‘Once she’s finished blasting your face with sub–zero air, give your face a little touch, you won’t believe how cold it is. But that chilliness fights signs of inflammation, so it’s all good. Iris then applies your favourite Sunday Riley products and you’re good to go. When you sit up, you’ll notice the change. You’re a little pinker (in a good way) and a little tighter. And you’ll be smiling, because Iris is by your side.’ – Katie Thomas, Digital Beauty Editor
‘Su-Mans facial is legendary’ – that’s the opening line on the about section of Su-Man’s website. Punchy? Yes. Hyperbole? Absolutely not. In fact, it’s impossible not to verge on hyperbole territory when talking about this facial. ‘This was a life changing experience,’ ‘Su-Man has magical hands/is a wizard’ – all words that have left my mouth after having this treatment.
That’s it for me now. I keep thinking, ‘How will I ever go to a “normal” facial ever again?’ I’m truly done for. I now refer to time BS and AS (before Su-Man and after Su-Man). It’s 2018 AS, and I worship at the altar of Su-Man.
Su-Man’s background is in Shiatsu, dance and pilates. So as you’d imagine, the facial is peppered with targeted massage and relaxation tailored to your individual needs. After my neck and shoulders were worked on – all the tension builds up to your neck and jawline – my ears were massaged to stimulate lymphatic drainage, using the most beautiful products. From the watermelon-based gel cleanser to the mask that made me crave chocolate cake, it was all divine.
Su-Man gives you a mirror to marvel at the results yourself. It’s like time stops still. And, if you’re anything like me and hate looking in the mirror, you’ll take the mirror with reservation. But anyway, there you sit, mirror in hand and you really look at yourself. Like, REALLY look at yourself. Part of the Su-Man philosophy is not only looking good but FEELING good. Maybe it was her super calming and caring nature rubbing off on me, or maybe it was because she told me my skin is great, but looking in the mirror I think, okay, I look alright. Actually, scratch that, I look good.
On the day of my great awakening, I did a double take after walking past my bathroom mirror. Hang on, does my jaw look more defined? I stroke my jawline to make sure it’s real.
Later I’m sitting at the dinner table and my hand grazes my chin. ‘What has she done to my face?’, I think to myself. ‘Maybe she IS a wizard?’
Can a facial be a life changing experience? I think so… – Sunil Makan, Associate Editor
How much is it?
£250 at Agua Spa, Sanderson London; call 020 7300 1414 to book now
If you often feel out of balance, you’re not alone. This time of year during the changing of seasons, we can experience an imbalance when it comes to our mental state, emotional and physical wellbeing. We get it – life can feel stressful and overwhelming, and sometimes a simple session of ‘Netflix and chill’ isn’t enough to save us. But fear not, keep reading to discover the best ways to re-balance yourself using the age-old practice of Ayurveda.
What is Ayurveda?
Wellness and beauty have never been more connected, and one of the most talked-about trends of the moment is the Ayurvedic system.This ancient wisdom originates from India, and focuses on helping us to re-balance our lifestyle through improving health and well-being. The practice aims to cleanse and nourish your energy to make you feel better and less stressed. Ranges such as Rituals’ the Ritual of Ayurveda are committed to helping you live more of a balanced life and prove it’s possible to do so through your beauty routine.
Find your dosha
The first step in improving your lifestyle through Ayurvedic practices is to discover your dosha. It is essentially your mind-body type, and it’s important to find out which one you are in order to find out how to re-balance yourself and feel healthier and in tune with the world around you.
There are three doshas: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Although you will ultimately relate to one the most, we all have a little of each within us. Vatas are associated with the air element and tend to be creative and sensitive, yet when imbalanced they can be fearful or anxious. Pittas are most aligned with the element of fire and are usually intelligent, understanding people. However, if they are off-centre, they can act in frustration and anger. Kaphas are associated with water and earth as they are cohesive and level-headed. Imbalanced Kaphas suffer from greediness, possessiveness and stubbornness. Discover your mind-body type by taking this short Rituals’ test and take first steps towards a more balanced living.
Take time to re-balance your life
Once you’ve established which dosha you most relate to, it’s time to discover how to re-balance things (phew). Traditionally, the Ayurveda principle recommends reconnecting with the elements. If you are a Vata for example (who are air elements), get outside into nature and take a moment to just breathe and rest. Pittas are best to quite literally cool off if they get angry and fiery, either by being in water or eating and drinking cool, water-rich foods. Kaphas are encouraged to kick-start their routine and get active while also taking time to look after themselves.
Taking care of yourself is actually crucial for all doshas in order to reduce stress, stay balanced and feel better. Rituals’ the Ritual of Ayurveda acknowledges that in order to re-balance, we all need to take a second to chill out with a bit of self-care – and this is easily done through your beauty routine. Their Ayurveda-inspired range features luxurious, soothing products to help balance your dosha through relaxation.
Follow our 3-step pamper guide to feel more relaxed instantly:
Take an evening to yourself and start by brewing a cup of Rituals’ Rose Wisdom tea. The Indian rose and Himalaya honey in the blend help to re-balance and soothe from the offset.
After drinking your tea, pop on a candle (we like the Ritual of Ayurveda Scented Candle, which features sweet almond oil and smells AMAZING) hop into the shower and lather on the brand’s Foaming Shower Gel, or alternatively, the Body Scrub. Both contain Indian rose and sweet almond oil, so be sure to take in a few deep breaths before you wash away.
Step out of the shower and slowly massage in a layer of the Ritual of Ayurveda Dry Oil (choose the one that matches your dosha) before climbing into bed with a good book and some cosy pjs. We feel more balanced just thinking about it…
Nothing sends beauty fans into a frenzy quite like a new Huda Beauty drop – and it sounds as though we don’t have long to wait until the next one arrives.
Huda Kattan announced yesterday that a new palette called ‘New Nude’ would be on the way very soon.
The makeup mogul shared the following teaser video on her official Instagram page, which revealed the new palette’s outside and inner packaging:
She also enticed us even more with a black & white picture of the palette’s shades. Kind of agonising…
Speaking to Popsugar about the new palette, Huda commented:
“When we [were coming up with] the idea, I thought about how I feel when my makeup is done, I have my favourite outfit on, and I feel super confident,”
“I feel really sexy in that moment, but it’s not for anyone — it’s for me. Wearing makeup isn’t about impressing anyone or trying to be attractive for anyone but myself, and I really wanted to capture that feeling with this palette.”
Kattan also revealed to the publication that New Nude will feature a ‘colour-changing formula with shimmering pearl flecks’:
“It’s honestly game-changing,” she said. “The New Nude is one of my favourites yet – the colours are so beautiful and includes a never-before-seen formula, exclusive to Huda Beauty.”
Huda is set to release more info on 1 October, so hang on in there.
October is a pivotal month in the calendar – it marks the start of Autumn, the approach of Halloween, but more importantly it’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Breast cancer is still the most common cancer in the UK. 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed in their lifetime and around 11,500 of those will lose their lives to this devastating disease. So showing your support this October is as vital as ever. Getting a cancer diagnosis is hard, but this initiative is all in aid of raising money for vital scientific research and support for those affected.
From the familiar fuschia ribbon – the symbol of the campaign – to limited edition beauty products from some of the industry’s best-loved brands, October is all about the colour pink.
There are plenty of ways for you to get involved, show support and help raise funds. Want to do your bit? We’ve rounded up the (mostly pink) products that are donating to breast cancer charities during October.
Elemis Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm
The Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm is quite literally the best cleanser on the planet – the thick balm removes every trace of make-up from your face. The new rose scented one makes it even better. If that’s even possible?! And of course with rose, comes the colour pink. Sales from the pink-packaged pot will go towards a £25,000 target donation from ELEMIS to Breast Cancer Care – the charity they have supported for 18 years.
Philip Kingsley No Scent No Colour Shampoo and Conditioner
A little known fact is that Philip Kingsley first created the No Scent No Colour shampoo and conditioner for his wife, Joan, after she was diagnosed with cancer in 2006. The hair specialist saw first hand how difficult it was for those undergoing cancer treatment to find the right shampoo and conditioner; Joan couldn’t use any products containing perfumes or colours, but still wanted to use products that made her feel good about herself.
He then created No Scent No Colour specifically for her, and it’s now available others having chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
For every 75ml bottle sold, 25p will go to breast cancer charity Look Good Feel Better, who work to support the well-being and confidence of those undergoing cancer treatment. And 50p from sales of every 250ml bottle will also be donated to the charity. Going that one step further, these donations happen throughout the year, not just October.
This hair mask is pretty darn good. The combination of coconut and fig helps to restore dry, damaged, dyed (basically really sad hair) back to it’s virginal state – hence the name. 20% of the profits from sales of their hair mask in October go to Coppafeel – the charity that helps to educate females about the signs and symptoms of the disease and to encourage regular self-checking. Along with the mask, you get a Tangle Teaser, which is worth £11. Winning all around really.
‘I’m the Tits’ – the slogan that’s emblazoned on Sand & Sky’s slinky pink robe. Why? Because they believe every woman should feel like they’re the tits. *Orders one for every female friend* 30% of profits made on the robe, £24.95, or the robe and Sand & Sky Flash Perfection Exfoliating Treatment combo, £49.90 go towards Look Good Feel Better.
Invisibobble Slim Time To Pink Hair Tie – Limited Edition Breast Cancer Edition
You always need a hair tie. Always. So why not make it one that does good? Throughout September, Invisibobble fans have been voting for an initiative closest to their hearts (you still have until Sunday to have your say) that will receive 25% of the earnings made from the sales of the above hair ties.
Having watched his wife courageously battle with breast cancer, RevitaLash C.E.O Michael Brinkenhoff M.D honours his wife’s memory by raising money from sales of the lash kits for research initiatives, including City of Hope organisation.
Retinol has long been worshipped by beauty editors, dermatologists and skincare fanatics alike as the hero ingredient in the battle against fine lines and wrinkles.
However, it was thrust into the spotlight again after being featured on BBC documentary, The Truth About Looking Good, when consultant Dermatologist Anjali Mahato explained: ‘Retinoids are the only ingredient shown to meaningfully reduce fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation by boosting collagen production and improving cell turnover.’ High praise indeed, but it’s no surprise when the results of retinol have been clinically proven time and time again.
If you’ve never used retinol before and want to know the best way to use it, how to apply, dos and don’ts or, if you simply want to brush up on your skincare knowledge, keep scrolling to find out everything you need to know about the beauty industry’s favourite ingredient. As well as our pick of the best retinol products, creams and serums out there…
What is retinol?
‘Retinol is an excellent anti-ageing agent,’ says Dr Bernard Hayot, Medical Director and Aesthetic Surgeon at Epilium & Skin. ‘It’s the most effective ingredient, along with vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and fruits acids, against wrinkles and loss of firmness in the skin.’
Does retinol work?
In short – yes. Retinol is one of the most revered ingredients in the beauty industry and has been proven to be effective at tackling early signs of ageing such as pigmentation including sun damage, fine lines and wrinkles. As well as having ‘an exfoliating effect that smoothes skin texture and gives a natural glow, it also has antioxidant properties and reduces the appearance of brown spots,’ says Dr Bernard Hayot.
Dr Hayot explains that retinol ‘stimulates flexibility and elasticity of the skin, collagen and also helps to create a bright complexion as well as regenerating melanin to tackle pigmentation.’
Make sure you’re using a product that contains the right form of retinol, though. Check the ingredients list first to make sure it contains ‘retinol or retinaldeyhe rather than one of the less effective derivatives such as retintyplalmitate,’ recommends Dr Stefanie Williams.
Is retinol the same as vitamin A?
Retinol is a form of retinoid, which is a derivative of vitamin A. Dr Hayot adds: ‘retinol is a vitamin A acid, which is the natural precursor to retinoic acid. Then body transforms retinol into retonic acid.’ It’s in this form, as retonic acid, that the benefits of retinol are truly felt on the skin.
How to use retinol?
‘Start, at the latest, when you see the first signs of reduced skin elasticity, fine lines and also irregular pigmentation,’ advises Dr Stefanie Williams, dermatologist and Director of the Eudelo clinic.
When first using retinol you can experience some irritation such as dryness, redness and even flaky skin. So if it’s your first time using it, ease yourself in by applying a low percentage of retinol and only use twice per week at intervals, gradually increasing to daily use if your skin can tolerate it well. As your skin adapts and, if you don’t suffer from too much sensitivity, you can increase the percentage of retinol too. ‘Even if you can’t build up to anymore than two days per week it’s still effective and worth doing so don’t be put off,’ says Dr Stefanie.
When you first apply only use a pea-sized amount. Trust us – with retinol a little goes a long way.
When to use retinol in your regime?
Retinol can cause skin sensitivity an, after use, it’s important to be particularly careful in the sun and apply a high factor SPF 30 or 50, even if it looks cloudy or grey outside. It’s safe to apply it day and night, as long as you apply SPF afterwards. That said, most people prefer to use it at night, like Sunday Riley’s ever-popular Luna Sleeping Night Oil, as the chances of any sun damage or skin sensitivity are lower.
Where is it safe to apply?
Retinol is effective on all parts of the body. It is even included in some hand creams, though it is most commonly found in facial skincare products. A good routine is to start with something like Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Serum and apply to the forehead, then the nose, cheeks and chin. Be careful to avoid the eye area and around the nostrils as this area is prone to suffering from dryness. ‘Avoid using retinol around the eyes because the skin is thinner, more delicate and sensitive in that area,’ advises Dr Bernard Hayot.
What age should you use retinol?
‘When it comes to age it’s less important what the number is but more important to consider the biological age of your skin,’ explains Dr Stefanie Williams. ‘From your mid-thirties collagen production starts to deplete so in principle everybody could start using retinol then. However, if your skin has any signs of premature ageing or has been subjected to sun damage or other environmental or lifestyle factors you might start showing signs of ageing earlier. In which case you can start using retinol in your late 20s or early 30s.’
Is retinol good for acne?
‘Vitamin A acid or retinoic acid was first used to treat acne on young adults before it’s skincare benefits were fully realised,’ says Dr Bernard Hayot. Isotretinion, more commonly referred to as the brand name Roaccutane, is a form of vitamin A.
Be careful if you’re on any prescribed acne medication though. Certain ingredients commonly found in acne medication such as salicylic or glycolic acid can cause irritation and redness if combined with retinol, so be sure to check with your doctor before using.
How long does it take to see results?
Like all skincare products you should be patient with the results. ‘Skin is renewed after 28 days on average, which means the new cells migrate to the surface of the skin after which time you should start seeing results,’ says Dr Hayot.
Next up, getting your hands on the best retinol products on the market. Take a look at our edit of the best below.
Up the stakes this Christmas with our pick of the most luxurious beauty crackers to surprise guests and spruce up any festive table setting
By Charlotte Clark and Rebecca Fearn.
Crackers of old used to be cringe worthy. Packed full of awful Dad jokes and plastic toys destined to end up in the bin within the hour, but the new generation of crackers with a beauty twist bring a whole extra level of excitement to our Christmas celebrations.
Over the past couple of years we’ve seen a host of festive treats pop up in the beauty halls with everything from beauty advent calendars, beauty baubles and now, in what is probably our favourite incarnation of the merry theme – there are beauty crackers. Adding a touch of modern luxury to the tradition, these will be sure to set your dinner party off with a bang.
Take a browse through our pick of the best beauty crackers out there and stock up in time for party season…
Aveda Style On The Go Cracker
Perfect for touching up hair on-the-go or taking away for a weekend city break, this features some of Aveda’s bestselling styling essentials, from the Thickening Tonic to the new Blow Dry Accelerator.
How much is it?
When is it available?
1st November 2018
Birchbox Skincare & Makeup Crackers
This festive season Birchbox are selling not one, but two beauty crackers. With skincare and makeup options, each is packed with four mini treats from brands such as Benefit and Sand & Sky.
How much is it?
Each cost £15
When is it available?
2nd November 2018
Too Faced Limited Edition Beauty Cracker
Featuring everybody’s favourite mascara, Better Than Sex and a highly pigmented liquid lipstick, this is all you’ll need for a season of festive partying.
How much is it?
When is it available?
5th October 2018
Caudalie Christmas Beauty Cracker
Skincare addicts will go wild for this little trio of goodies, which will save your complexion from a season of over-indulging. Just look at that packaging, too!
How much is it?
When is it available?
Jo Malone Christmas Cracker
What’s better than a Christmas gift from Jo Malone’s always-amazing festive collection? We can’t think of a thing. This year the brand is offering a ready-made cracker for £32, as well as customisable options. Fancy.
How much is it?
When is it available?
BBB London Eye Wonder Collection
This is the ultimate little gift for the party girl in your life. It includes the brand’s lengthening and volumising Iconic Lash Mascara and an Eye Wonder Colour Stick.
How much is it?
When is it available?
Jo Loves Christmas Cracker
With a semi-customisable concept (you can choose to include a Fragrance Paint Brush or a Body Spray), these offer a personal twist. Also, we challenge you to find a cracker with more beautiful packaging.
How much is it?
When is it available?
Molton Brown Exquisite Treats Cracker
With four mini versions of Molton’s bestselling shower gels, this’ll have you smelling delicious and feeling fresh all festive season… and beyond.
How much is it?
When is it available?
This Works The Big Bang Cracker
There’s nothing quite like the OG This Works Pillow Spray, and this little beauty features the roller ball (perfect for festive travel) as well as the softest eye mask you will ever lay your hands on.
How much is it?
When is it available?
Christmas makeup tutorial:
Embrace old school glamour with a dark red lip and put a twist on the classic smokey eye by mixing an array of golds and bronzes.
1. Prep your skin with primer
Give your make-up an even base by applying primer. Spread it evenly over your hands and then pat and roll into your skin. Make sure you apply primer wherever your foundation will be going – so don’t forget places like your neck.
2. Apply your foundation
Use the back of your hand as a makeup palette and then dab your foundation where you need most coverage – so your nose, forehead, cheeks and chin.
3. Blend your foundation
Using a sponge or brush, blend your foundation from the centre outwards for a natural finish. Make sure you blend all the way up to your hairline and along your jaw line.
4. Shape your eyebrows
Using a brow pencil, draw short hair-like strokes to fill in sparse areas, focusing on your arch first. Work out whether you need to elongate your brows by placing your pencil on a diagonal angle from the outer corner of your eye. The end of your brow should stop at the tip of your pencil.
Now, fill in the centre of your brows, but go lightly. The start of your brow shouldn’t be as dark as the rest.
5. Prime your eyelids
Take a small amount of eyeshadow primer and apply over your whole lid – right up to your brow. This will stop your eyeshadow from dropping or fading throughout the night.
6. Apply your darkest shade of eyeshadow to the outer corner of your eyelids.
Using a small, fine eyeshadow brush, work the powder along the socket of your eye. Then, create a V by taking your brush down to your lash line on a 45 degree angle. This will give you a nice flick at the outer corners of your eyes. Keep blending until the edges are softened. Then, create definition on your lower lash line by brushing your eyeshadow underneath your eyes.
7. Apply your blending shade
When creating a smokey eye, you need to have a middle shade to bring the darkest and lightest shades together. Take your middle shade of eyeshadow – in this case, a rich gold – and blend it from the inner corner of your eye over your lid.
8. Add a pop of shimmer
Using a very small eyeshadow brush, apply your lightest shade of eyeshadow to the inner corner of your eye and blend outwards to the centre of your eyelid. This will really open up your eyes and make them sparkle.
9. Define your eyes
Using a liquid eyeliner, draw along your top lash line. Start from the centre of your lash line and draw outwards towards the outer corner of your eye, before filling in the inner corner. Follow the natural curve of your lash line to create a flick at the end.
10. Brighten up your eyes
Use a white or nude eye pencil to draw along your lower waterline.
11. Add mascara
Apply at least two coats of mascara to your top and bottom lashes.
12. Conceal under your eye
Using a concealer in a few shades lighter than your natural skin tone, draw a triangle under your eyes from the inner corner of your eye, down to your cheek and back up to the outer corner of your eye. This will brighten up the whole area. Then, blend with your brush or sponge.
13. Define your cheekbones and contour
Starting from your ear, lightly sweep your bronzer or blush back and forth, underneath your cheekbones. Then dust the excess powder along your hairline and jawline to create definition.
Using a cream or powder highlighter, gently dab the top of your cheekbones to give your skin a radiant glow. Also highlight the bridge of your nose and the tip of your nose for extra radiance.
15. Define your lips
Follow your natural lip line with pencil and fill in. This will stop your lipstick from smudging at the edges.
16. Finish with lipstick or lipgloss
Smooth your lipstick or lipgloss over your lips to add extra depth.
And there you have it. Christmas inspired red and gold festive make-up.