It’s been a high-street staple since 1904 and most of us have nipped into Marks & Sparks to stock up on briefs, tights, well-priced cashmere and a £10 Friday night meal deal. The company’s beauty buyers also have an eye for the practical yet luxurious, as the new-in beauty loot demonstrates. From budget lip balms to makeup brushes that give back, here’s your ‘fresh at M&S’ lowdown.
Don’t just stop by for pants and a meal deal - the M&S beauty hall offering also majors on affordable basics with the odd ‘treat-buy’ in between. Here’s what’s to shop
Great for: Flaky winter skin and frazzled minds
What this lacks in the glamorous packaging and lush bubble department, it makes up for in efficiency and skin smoothing after-effects. With a dermatologically developed formula originally designed to treat keratosis pilaris (the bumpy ‘chicken skin’ the most commonly appears on the back of the arms), the gently exfoliating lactic acid based hydrating complex helps to soften dry skin while colloidal oats and omega rich plant oils soothe inflammation and enhance skin barrier function . It claims to leave skin silky for up to eight hours after your bath, which is particularly welcome given the seasonal skin onslaught of central heating, biting winds and cold temperatures.
Great for: Sealing in the softness post-bath
Buttery and rich, this honey and botanical oil based lotion has been reformulated to be even more nourishing and fast-absorbing than previously. It feels particularly restorative when massaged in after a long day and is ideal for targeting chapped elbows, heels and knees. Lush stuff.
Great for: Doing what it says on the tin.
On the topic of chapped bits, this summery balm takes care of rough lips and the scent is reminiscent of an Aperol Spritz, which is most welcome in a dank and rainy November. It’s also cruelty-free and suitable for vegetarians.
Great for: The evening wind down.
It’s been shown that having a bath before you go to bed can improve sleep quality, and adding calming lavender and clary sage to the mix can’t hurt either. An aromatherapeutic blend created in partnership with spa therapists at Ragdale Hall, this bath essence offers a little mental and physical clarity at the end of a long day and it won’t break the bank either.
Great for: Sunsoaked highlighting.
Need some glowy morning light? This glossy, gleamy highlighting trio will turn it on exactly where you require it. The cream-to-powder formula is transparent so lets skin shine through while creating luminosity on the surface, and the bronze shade in particular looks beautiful on eyelids. There’s a bit of glitter so don’t go crazy across cheekbones, but used minimally it does ‘candlelit’ with aplomb.
Great for: Seamless blending and supporting those affected by cancer.
If you’ve not heard of Look Good Feel Better , it’s a fantastic charity that helps to restore confidence and a sense of community for women and teenagers in particular who are affected by cancer. LGFB provides professional skincare and makeup sessions alongside take-home kits to help cancer sufferers feel more ‘themselves’ during and after cancer treatment, with support groups all over the UK. For every brush sold, 10 per cent of profits go towards funding the charity’s work, and if you were in need of further incentive to add a new tool to your makeup kit, this brush really does turn its hand(le) to many cosmetic needs. It buffs in both powder and cream quickly and easily with no streaking, is the perfect size for picking up both blusher and foundation and the soft synthetic bristles feel smooth on skin. It’s feelgood in every sense really.