This week, our top tried and tested picks include a limited edition chunky eyeliner that performs way above its £5 price tag (hurry!) and a no-whiteness mineral SPF that feels like your favourite body cream
With summer heading our way, we're waking up our pasty limbs with a new eco exfoliator, firming up with a body cream with a scent that's a dead ringer for £215 Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 , (yes, we're calling it) and the best £6.95 you can spend on your eyebrows.
The overnight hair tamer: Slip x Alice + Olivia Pure Silk Hair Wrap, £70
"A few weeks ago, I had the most bouncy blowout ever with KMS at the Kao Salon Academy in London, using KMS haircare’s new Conscious Style range which gave me smooth sleek curls. An unusual sight for my usually straightened afro-textured hair. In a desperate attempt to maintain my magical waves throughout the weekend and not undo all the hard work in my sleep, I tried this silk hair wrap, a collaboration between New York fashion label Alice + Olivia and Slip the masters of silk accessories.
"I've tried everything to keep my style from dropping out overnight, from hair wraps (albeit not silk ones) and turbans to silk pillowcases and even sleeping upright. None has ever been successful - I'm such a wriggler. I wrapped this beautiful boho reversible print (it’s pink on the other side) around my head like a headscarf and it stayed in place all night. You're not only getting a fashionable hair wrap that you'll be proud to wear outside (I will!) you also get the benefits of pure silk for your hair, which helps to prevent friction, tangles, and preserve curls." Jemma Thompson, GTG Design and Social Media Manager
The brilliant value shadow stick: Elf Cookies 'n' Dreams No Budge Shadow Stick Cookie Lover, £5
"E.L.F does makeup and skincare that always punches way above its price tag and at a time when most of us are strapped for cash, this affordable range never lets you down. This limited edition addition to the hero no-budge Shadow Stick collection comes in four colours including black and this soft brown. Curiously, these staple eyeliner colours are not part of the core E.L.F. Shadow Stick range, so I’ve bought a spare before they sell out. It's very slightly metallic and makes a smokey eye a cinch. It doesn't bleed or 'print' on my droopy upper eyelid. If you tend to sweat your makeup off in summer or at the gym, it really is budge-proof. I also blend it into the crease, a makeup artist trick to open up hooded eyes . There's just so much to love!" VW
The fragrant firming body butter: Sol de Janeiro Beija Flor Elasti-Cream, £46
"This is the newest fruity addition to the joyful Sol de Janeiro Brazilian body care family. It’s an elasticising all-over moisturiser that’s here to get dry and neglected winter limbs perked up for summer. The natural actives aim to make skin smoother, plump and ‘youthful’. It contains cacay oil, said to mimic the skin turnover function of retinol without causing sun sensitivity as well as moisturising plant collagen and squalane. It’s a luxe but light body cream that absorbs quickly - important when you need to get dressed quickly in the morning!
"The USP Sol de Janeiro is its moreish scents. Notes of pink dragonfruit, lychee, jasmine and vanilla might sound like a sweet overload, but the combination is in fact less heady than the brand’s original Bum Bum Cream. This fragrance is already being compared to the viral Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 , which costs a whopping £215. A great addition to your summer skincare regime." Amy Rostas, GTG Beauty and Social Media Assistant
The pore-refining organic mask: Seed to Skin The Black Magic Detoxifying Oxygen Therapy Mask, 50ml, £119
"The organic Seed to Skin range from Tuscany was completely new to me but I instantly understood the appeal of this sustainable and high performing science-backed range. The products are grown, formulated and hand filled at the Borgo San Pietro estate, an enchanting Italian countryside retreat that includes a five-star boutique hotel, spa and Michelin-starred restaurant (the dream, where do I sign up?).
"Over five years, Jeanette Throttup, the founder, along with cosmetic scientist, Dr Anna Buonocore worked to create products that blended nature with science, reaping the benefits from both. My top pick is the Black Magic Detoxifying Oxygen Therapy Mask. It might be a mouthful but this little pot is an all-in-one miracle worker. Formulated with volcanic clay and charcoal the mask smoothes out the skin, it deep cleans and promotes collagen production. As I’m forever in search of poreless plumped skin, this mask is a winner!" Catherine Fulwood, GTG Commercial Manager
The dry skin glow up: Mac Studio Radiance Moisturising + Illuminating Silky Primer, £28
"I’ve discovered a brilliant skin new pick-me-up that I know you will love. The Mac Studio Radiance Primer delivers an illuminating silk-smooth finish to your face and is wonderfully hydrating. Applied over moisturiser and under foundation, it gives an instant dewy glow. If you have dry skin as I do, your face can often ‘eat’ your makeup come 4pm. This nourishing combination of classic hydrators (hyaluronic acid and glycerin) locked in with a blend of olive oil, jojoba oil and vitamin E, keeps your skin supple while providing enough of a barrier for your foundation to stay where it's supposed to be for an all-over radiant, natural finish. The results are a lovely cushiony feel and a dewy glow. In summer, when you want something lighter, you can forego moisturiser and make this your staple skin product." Marie Louise Pumfrey, GTG contributor
The wash day delayer: Batiste Naturally Dry Shampoo Green Tea and Chamomile, £4.25
"I use dry shampoo at least every other day. Although it’s great for mopping up grease and dirt I often find that my hair feels quite product-heavy. So I was intrigued to try the new range from dry shampoo gurus Batiste, made using 100 per cent natural ingredients, in this case, it’s rice starch that soaks up excess oil. I’m impressed; the mist is super fine and totally invisible once on the hair. I've been trying the Green Tea and Chamomile fragrance which has a sweet herby scent that lingers past the first spritz." Verity Clark, GTG Writer
The silky all-over SPF: Dr Sam's Flawless Body Mineral UV, £33
"Body sun creams aren’t just for holidays and if you haven’t bought your all-over SPF yet, can I point you in the direction of this outstanding new mineral broad-spectrum cream from dermatologist Dr Sam Bunting. She formulated it to feel like your favourite silky body cream so that wearing it would be a pleasure and therefore a habit. After all, the best sun cream is the one you remember to use. It sinks in even better than her Flawless Body Therapy firming cream, in my view, and without a hint of whiteness or stickiness, making it particularly good for those everyday suntrap areas, the ‘neck and dec’ and hands. As with all Dr Sam’s products, it’s unscented (if you experience heat rash or prickly heat , this is less likely to irritate), plus it’s water-resistant for 40 minutes and suitable also for children over three. I know I’ll use this to the last drop.” Victoria Woodhall GTG Editorial Director
For microblade-effect brows: Lottie London Arch-Rival Microfine Brow Pen, £6.95
"A friend of mine was convinced that I’d had brows microbladed on the low; I haven’t. I’ve just been faking it with this brow pen from Lottie London. It’s a new addition to the excellent Arch Rival family - Arch Rival Microblade , £6.95 which draws on individual hairs won Gold in our Get the Gloss Beauty and Wellness awards in 2021. This one uses just one microfine brush to create easy and realistic hair strokes that don’t budge. If you’re nervous about the ‘caterpillar’ look that some brow pens can create, fear not. It only dispenses the tiniest amount of liquid so you can effortlessly add depth, dimension and shape while still looking natural. It’s just what you need to fill in sparse areas plus it doubles up as the perfect liner for a subtle cat-eye too. Not bad for under £7." JT
The fake tan prepper: Beauty Kin Exfoliating Body Bar, £11
"As summer approaches, my biggest skin concern is to sort out my dry flakey patchy fake-tanned body. This exfoliating bar uses ground olive stone which helps to gently remove the dead skin cells and fake tan, without me having to scrub aggressively leaving my skin touchably smooth and clear of patches. I gave my arms and legs a good once-over, with this in the shower and was ready to fake tan straight afterwards. Usually, I'd have to scrub a few days in a row before re-application. It’s infused with grapefruit and citrus adding a bright fresh smell to my exfoliating experience! Eco-friendly go to this for its fully recyclable cardboard packaging." AR
The spot banisher: Dermaolgica Clear Start Post-Breakout Fix, £19
"If, like me, you cannot resist popping pimples, even though we know we should leave them be, then this is a must-add to your basket. This little tube can be used to tackle red or dark marks, old or new or just general hyperpigmentation. Simply dab on the offending area until the mark starts to fade. I use it to tackle hormonal skin and in times of (spotty!) crisis. I find it’s easy to layer into my existing skincare routine, as the cream is light, absorbs well, is non-drying and doesn’t pill or feel sticky." CF
The splurge brow product: Westman Atelier Bonne Brow Defining Pencil, £35
"For me, good brow days are hard to come by. I’m either too heavy-handed with my gel or pencil, or I don’t put enough product in to get the feathery, natural effect that I’m after. Step forward Bonne Brow, a dual-ended pencil and spoolie from the queen of the no-makeup makeup look, MUA Gucci Westman. This is the Goldilocks of brow products. It’s just right. The retractable pencil has a slanted tip which makes it super easy to define brows, and the buttery formula helps to keep the effect looking fluffy, not harsh. The detachable spoolie is a little larger than your average brow groomer making it really easy to control and sweep brows into being on their best behaviour. The pencil is available in four shades to suit blondes and redheads to black hair." VC
The filler-effect gloss
"Some people can rock a bright red lipstick. I just manage to look like I'm in drag or panto. This new high gloss plumping balm from masters of pigment Hourglass, is truly different. It's wearable for everyone, even if you think you can't do bold colours. I picked out the classic red Thrill shade and was impressed at how glassy but natural it made my lips look. A more opaque red would have looked too try-hard. It comes in eight shades from nudes to reds and purples and has a pleasant minty plumping effect. If you have lip lines, this acts like Polyfilla. Doctors tell us too that a glossy lip is a filler cheat, as it reflects light and makes lips look fuller. I put it over my usual pink/nude lip liner and it instantly takes it up a level. Yes £34 is a lot for a lip gloss, but for me, this for me is entry into a previously uninhabited world!" VW