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In this fortnight’s round-up of the best launches, we have a whole host of new skincare as well as two destinations for speedy beauty treatments that even the busiest women will have time for. From the mattifying mist that keeps makeup in place to the sun screens that have a primer-like texture for everyday use, we’ve been testing and assessing the latest products and services to bring you our edit of what’s worth parting cash for. Read on for our new-found favourites…
Why we love it: “A satisfying but gentle deep clean ritual.”
Review: “This twice-weekly treatment cleverly piques all your senses so that it had me at hello. I love the pink packaging with its simple jargon-free tagline: “no-bits exfoliant and mask in one”. Then comes a subtle whiff of uplifting mint and bergamot. The texture is surprisingly fine to the touch, midway between a mousse and a clay. When I massage it onto dry skin, it imparts a pleasant mild tingle, giving you the feeling that it’s busy doing what it says on the tin. In about a minute, it dries to a fine white powder without leaving my skin uncomfortably tight. Then comes the good bit - you rub it off, taking any dead skin and debris with you and watch it all fall into the basin – a satisfaction you just don’t get with an acid toner.
“It also works as a chemical exfoliant via keratolytic enzymes, which break down the keratin of dead skin cells that can block and enlarge pores. The soothing white clay then draws out impurities. It suggests that, in the tradition of the French facial, you can then perform any extractions more gently without any stress on the skin, a claim which I have yet to test. You can apply it again as a wash-off five-minute mask to allow the enzymes to brighten your skin even more. Oily skins will like the fact that it mops up excess sebum. My dry skin loved it too and felt supremely clean without feeling stripped. It’s a ritual I now look forward to.”
Reviewer: Victoria Woodhall, Editor
Why we love it: "The perfect shine-free finishing touch to a makeup routine."
Review: “The original Fix+ was one of the first ever MAC products I bought, but since then the line has expanded dramatically, which different versions of the formula now available depending on the finish you would like. I used to love using the original to prep the skin before makeup as well as to make the skin look less flat after my finishing powder, however this new matte formula has quickly become an everyday essential. As my skin has been subjected to the polluting effects of commuting to London over the years, it’s become a greasy, oily mess. For this reason, I have to have a host of mattifying products on hand to keep the dreaded oil at bay. This new version of Fix+ is a great all-rounder. I’ve been using it to set my makeup in the mornings as well as to freshen up my face throughout the day, all while leaving a natural, matte finish. The formula is a milkier tone compared to the original that needs a good shake before use, but the mist is so fine it won’t disturb your makeup at all. If you’re prone to feeling like an oil slick then I would definitely recommend giving this one a whirl - I can see I’ll be “back-to-mac’ing” quite a few of these empty bottles over time as it becomes a staple in my routine.”
Reviewer: Alexandra Harrison, Admin Assistant
Why we love it: “A pro skin pitstop that delivers speedy results.”
Review: "I may be a beauty journo by trade, but facials aren’t my forte- my skin breaks out one minute and suffers an allergic reaction the next, and I’ve had too many otherwise lovely facials that have unfortunately provoked adverse after effects (namely dermatitis). For those reasons I’m extremely picky about where I place my face, but in the hands of aesthetic specialist Dr David Jack and his team is one derma destination I’ll stick with.
"Dr Jack has recently launched The Facial Bar at Neville in London, offering condensed, effective facial treatments in a cheerfully decorated ‘mini clinic’ downstairs. I visited nurse Aminat, who after a thorough consultation and skin inspection, opted for a jade roller and lymphatic drainage style facial to cool and calm my hayfever head and get nutrients and oxygen pumping to the surface of my skin in the hope of healing some jawline breakouts. I left feeling and looking lifted, with that much coveted post-facial ‘glow’ that everyone harps on about, plus no suspect reactions in the aftermath. While the results temporary compared to more hardcore treatments, it’s just what the doctor ordered, and I’ll be back there sharpish.”
Reviewer: Anna Hunter, Senior Features feature
Why we love it: "The multi-purpose skin perfecter everyone needs this summer."
Review: "I will sing about Omorovicza from the rooftops - I absolutely love it, and my skin is pretty happy with it too. Their latest creation, the Complexion Perfector is the base for those of you who don't like anything heavy or greasy on the skin, plus it protects skin against damaging UVA/B rays with its SPF20. With a super lightweight texture, it blends easily into the skin, helping to both condition and moisturise, allowing for a more energised and glowy complexion. It also doesn't cake the skin in a layer of base, instead working to help correct tone while keeping the coverage very sheer and natural. Basically, a moisturiser, foundation, SPF and fine line diminisher all in one. Thanks to the power duo of vitamin C and hylauronic acid, skin is left brighter and deeply hydrated - the perfect summer base."
Reviewer: Sarah McGinnis, Art Editor
Why we love it: “A quick, neat way to wipe away mani mistakes.”
Review: “I really rate Nailberry as a nail brand thanks to their 12-free formulas and spot-on shades, but every nail painter needs the right tools for an at-home mani and this newly improved corrector pen is one of the best I’ve tried. Acetone-free and enriched with jojoba, it’s gentle enough for sensitive skin like mine and doesn’t leave skin feeling or looking dried out - and yet, it really works. Natural solvents instantly erase any polish from around or on the nail, and the perfectly angled tip allows for real precision; it’s especially good for tidying up toes if your brush has strayed onto the skin. Best of all, replacement tips are provided in the other end, so you’ll get far more use out of it than with other quick-fix pens. It even works on glittery polishes such as the brand’s beautiful new shimmer shade, the rose-gold Ring a Posie. Flawless.”
Reviewer: Judy Johnson, Digital Editor
Why we love it: "Perfect for a beginner's dip into vitamin C."
Review: "I've been looking for a vitamin C serum to add to my regime for a while now. Known for its skin brightening qualities, I was hoping it would be the pick-me-up that my dull and uneven skin is crying out for. Having never tried anything from Diego Dalla Palma, it's safe to say I was dubious at spreading a new brand all over my skin each morning, but I was pleasantly surprised. Its gel-like texture is incredibly lightweight on the skin, a little really spreads a long way and it doesn't feel clogging so you can easily layer your other products over the top. I've been using it religiously for a few weeks now and it evens out my skin making it appear smoother, brighter, and a lot healthier. It's also designed to work against external aggressors such as pollution... I don't know for certain whether it's doing its job in that respect, but my skin is loving its new vitamin C-infused life, and for me that's a winner."
Reviewer: Sarah McGinnis, Art Editor
Why we love it: “A silky, light, fast-absorbing facial sunscreen perfect for daily use."
Review: “I am fanatical about wearing a face sunscreen daily, no matter what the weather! It’s a totally obligatory item in my otherwise fairly basic beauty bag, however it can seem like a mission to find the right one for my skin type which is combination, erring on the oily side. This is Beauty Pie’s first SPF launch and I have to say I’m impressed. It’s broad-spectrum so it offers UVA and UVB protection and acts as a sunscreen, hydrating moisture lotion, and foundation primer all in one. Perfect for the less-is-more type of girl that I am! It’s beautifully light-weight and silky smooth in texture, so slides on easily and absorbs into my skin super quickly. There is no stickiness, no greasiness, and no shine (all pet hates of mine) plus it is free from fragrance, parabens, and peroxide (more ticks from me!). It comes in a hand sized 50ml so it's small enough to fit easily in my handbag, making it perfect to carry daily. I love it for using in London, however I'd look for a cream with a higher SPF if I was going abroad."
Reviewer: Kully Buhal, Head of Business Development
Why we love it: “A haven for beauty addicts who are short on time.”
Review: “Lash Perfect have been a leader in the lash extension game for as long as I can remember. They have recently relaunched their flagship salon just off Regent Street in London to offer a huge range of eyelash, eyebrow and general beauty treatments - all with the customer experience in mind. The new salon space has been designed to optimise client comfort and relaxation which I can say from first hand experience is a great success. The salon is bright and spacious, and the atmosphere is extremely calm and relaxing. I headed over to test out their classic individual lash extensions and after an in-depth chat with my friendly lash technician Jess the results were just as I asked - natural yet defined. The newest addition to the treatment line-up is the new combo option, which allows you to add on an OPI High Shine manicure or pedicure to any lash treatment without adding extra time to your appointment - which is a godsend for time-poor people in need of a lunch break or after work booking. With ever growing hectic schedules it can be hard to find the time for beauty treatments, but the speedy team at Lash Perfect have got you covered.”
Reviewer: Alexandra Harrison, Admin Assistant