October 22nd 2021
Beauty empties: 28 makeup, skincare and hair heroes team GTG finished last month
November 4th 2021 / 0 comment
When we cut open the tube to get out the last drops, you know it's good
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It's our job to bring you the latest and greatest finds in the world of beauty and wellness which means we're using an ever-evolving lineup of products (check out our latest favourites in our weekly Glossy Picks edit of newness), but every so often we try something so good, we use it down to the very last drop. Here we reveal all of the beauty products our editors finished in the past month, from calming candles to signature scents and makeup must-haves.
Victoria Woodhall, GTG editorial director
"Tina Gaudoin is a long-time style writer and yogi; she co-founded London’s triyoga yoga centre, which has been a weekly pilgrimage for me for the past 20 years. She also had a very smelly car with dogs, teenagers and the usual family debris of chocolate wrappers and sweaty sports kit. She wanted her Mini Clubman to smell and look as nice as her home and Roadscents, a collection of haute perfumerie air fresheners for your car and candles for the home, is the result.
"There are four scents and as hanging air fresheners, £10, they work as well in your car as in your wardrobe. Of the two candles, Godsmell, had my yogic name on it, inspired by the Hindu god Ganesha, the remover of obstacles (and now odours).
"It burned down cleanly and felt fresh and uplifting despite its woody notes of patchouli, sandalwood and cedar suggesting something more earthy. The air fresheners were a little too strong for my tiny car but my bigger-vehicled dog-owning friend gleefully nabbed the Down Dog one for her Qashqai."
"This multi-tasking moisturiser only launched in the UK in May and has become a runaway hit especially with makeup artists, who love its priming qualities. Doctors rave about its ability to support, age-proof and repair. For me, it’s the perfect grab-and-go does-it-all product with a powerful copper peptide for collagen synthesis as well as hydrating squalane.
"When I’m travelling, this is all I take apart from cleanser and SPF. The packaging has award-winning eco creds. It empties rather too soon, however, as it’s only 30ml. But it does replace several of my other products, which goes some way to justify the higher price point."
Beauty Pie Uber Volume Boost Velvet Formula Mascara, members pay £7.54, typical price £25
"I could justify my £5 a month Beauty Pie membership for this mascara alone, which creates volume in lightning-quick application. The wand is fluffy and my lashes thicken before my eyes; for £7 it can’t be beaten. Other things in my Beauty Pie Basket on the regular are the scented candles; I’ve just emptied the Reves D’Eze, £19.85, which has a beautiful ‘green’ lemon, basil and eucalyptus scent, as well as eyeliners, which cost around £7. The Deluxe Precision Liquid Eyeliner in Cat Black, £8.02, is perfect for superfine lash-hugging. If you are not a member of Beauty Pie, you can sign up using our code GTGSENTME for £10 off."
"L’Occitane walk the walk when it comes to reducing plastic waste and were in on the act way before other high street brands. I was on holiday in Wales this summer and came across their touring beach clean-up van where they handed out bin bags and gloves and promised to safely dispose of whatever you brought back (in our case bottle tops and crisp packets and a few less savoury items).
"They also have Terracycle cycle points in many of their shops, which take hard-to-recycle beauty from any brand in return for money off in-store. Their wide range of refills represents good value for money – I’ve been decanting this gentle micellar water, which gets off eye makeup really well, into an old bottle and it’s lasted months."
"This is my 14-year-old son’s ‘empty’ and for a natural deodorant to withstand the (admittedly only mildly) smelly teen test is testament to its efficacy. It also worked really well for me. It smells fresh, although I dispute the need to say it’s for men. It has an invisible finish and absorbs sweat using bamboo. All hell was let loose when my husband borrowed it (eeuw, parent’s armpits!) and it’s something we as a family all love. As this won’t stop you sweating because it’s aluminium-free, we also have an antiperspirant handy to switch up for pongy days."
Melanie Macleod, GTG digital writer
"This moisturiser has an ever-so-slightly pearly finish and the most delicious scent of coconut, warm vanilla and sweet caramel. Both of these make it sound like a summer moisturiser but I used this all throughout September and October and loved every single application. It sinks in quickly and makes your skin feel velvety soft and the fragrance lasts long into the day. If you love the smell of Sol de Janeiro's Bum Bum Cream, this is similar with a more budget price point."
Yves Saint Laurent Libre Intense Eau De Parfum, from £49.99
"I finished two perfumes this month. This rich, sensual offering from YSL is one of the most grown-up fragrances in my collection. It smells warm and comforting and I exclusively wear it during the autumn months because it feels too decadent to be spritzed in summer. It has top notes of lavender and bergamot (though I can't smell them personally), heart notes of jasmine sambac and orange blossom and base notes (which very much make themselves known) of tonka bean, vanilla, amber and vetiver. They all come together to make an intoxicating scent that people always compliment me on."
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum, from £68
"I've been wearing this for longer than I can remember and have gone through countless bottles. It's my everyday scent and always makes me feel confident. If you've never had the pleasure of smelling this cult perfume, it's a floral scent with a sexy, naughty edge (I think) with notes of bergamot, patchouli, rose and amber. It's my birthday later this month, so fingers crossed a new bottle arrives. And if not, there's always Christmas!"
"I don't experience a lot of redness in my skin (no rosacea, for example) but I've found that after I've had spots recently it's taken a long time for the inflammation to go down, which caused redness in the area and this took that right down. It's ultra-lightweight and creamier than other serums I've used. It sinks in straight away and reduced any tightness in my skin as well as soothing angry areas. It's fragrance-free and unscented and I got quite addicted to applying a few pumps to my face every morning, hence why it ran out so quickly!"
"I used this as my bedtime moisturiser all last month and it was the perfect full stop to my nighttime routine. It's luxurious and soothing and sinks in nicely so there isn't any oil all over your sheets. It's got argan, sweet almond and jojoba seed oil in it to hydrate the skin and it smells of ylang-ylang and lavender, for calming vibes. I also like that it's in a pump bottle, which stops me from wasting loads like a pouring top might."
"For a no-nonsense exfoliant, you can't go wrong with this. It's gentle because it uses PHAs which have larger molecules than AHAs, meaning they don't go as deep into the skin, but they buff away what's on the surface for an easy-to-achieve glow. I use it both day and night so quickly got through this bottle. But because it's available as a refill I just switched the pump lid over to a new bottle to minimise plastic waste."
"This is the second bottle of these I've got through and I'm saving up to restock as we speak. I've never used a CBD drop that makes me sleep so well and all my friends who I've insisted try them say the same. It has a peppermint flavour which is very much preferable to that sometimes muddy CBD taste and I always sleep through the night when I've taken these. I don't use them every night, more as a treat when I'm feeling a bit worried so while they're expensive, they last a long time (this is my second bottle since May, when I first discovered Dreem Distillery"
Jemma Thompson, GTG Graphic Design and Social Media Manager
"There are very few concealers I reach for religiously, but for the past six months, this has been my reliable go-to. As someone with dark under eyes I can be pretty fussy, but I was quite surprised at how much I liked this. A little goes a long way, it has a very lightweight feel, yet good buildable crease-free coverage. I love the natural finish it gives which lets your skin shine through, yet you still have that extra coverage to feel confident. I’ve had so many compliments on how fresh-faced and awake I look when wearing this. I went a few shades lighter than normal and I think that’s the trick! There are 15 shades to choose from and considering it’s £12 and lasted me over half the year I would say this is stellar value for money."
"This is a strong contender for one of my favourite products of the year; it's a super silky cleanser that's ideal for dry, dehydrated skin and leaves your skin feeling soft and supple. The calming oil-free luxe texture never feels tight on your skin and is great for removing makeup, dirt, and pollution. It contains skin-loving ingredients like marine algae, hyaluronic acid, and vitamin C, which work together to improve the elasticity and moisture retention of your skin. I've noticed a significant improvement in the plumpness and hydration of my skin since using it, and it's earned a place in my hall of fame for sure."
"I've been battling with dry, brittle hair for a few months, but after discovering this, my locks are finally on the mend. This Redken hair-saving duo is infused with citric acid and a concentrated bonding complex designed to intensely condition and strengthen weaker bonds in the hair. Not only does it prevent colour fading, but it also reduces the appearance of damage and split ends (I was sold!). But it genuinely works; after using the set, my hair always looks healthier, glossier, and, most importantly for me, frizz-free."
"This lovely recyclable glass packaging not only brightens up my basin, but it also lifts me throughout the day. Soapsmith, a London-born bath and body brand, has created a signature scent inspired by a summer day at London's Hackney Marshes in this vegan hand and body lotion. This scent, with notes of bergamot, rosemary, geranium, and sandalwood, always puts me in a good mood. Furthermore, the moisture-rich ingredients keep my mitts feeling incredibly soft for hours."
"When it comes to styling my hair, whether it's blow-drying or straightening, I'm always careful to use a heat protector. However, I've found that spray formulas frequently leave the texture of my hair feeling a little straw-like. Enter Amika's lightweight serum, which protects my hair from heat styling and damage up to 450F (230C) while also keeping it soft, glossy, and nourished. It's yet another Amika product that I adore, and with a gold-star formula and 100 per cent recyclable packaging made from 90 per cent post-consumer recycled plastics, what's not to love?"
Amy Rostas, GTG beauty assistant
"I so rarely hit pan on my makeup that I get really upset when it happens and that was the case with this bronzer. It really does give the ultimate glow, with hints of sparkle. I mainly sweep this underneath my cheekbones, jaw and forehead to give a warm look to my face and sometimes I dust some on the sides of my nose to give the illusion that it's smaller than it is. It's so smooth to apply and doesn’t look powdery at all."
"For the past year, I have been really strict with applying SPF every day. This one is brilliant with my sensitive skin and doesn’t leave me feeling oily or tacky in the slightest. It dries relatively quickly so I can apply makeup over it afterwards and it doesn’t pill or flake either. It has a lovely scent which reminds me of being on holiday and knowing I’m being protected from the sun and other harmful pollutants is a real bonus. I'll be restocking this one ASAP."
"I used to be Bondi Sands' biggest advocate but I think I might have been converted to stray from the brand by this Bali Body tan. I've had three months of tanning from this one bottle, making it great value. It's such a dark but natural tan, someone even asked me how I'd held onto my summer tan… I had to break it to them that I get my colour from a bottle. This has an easy smooth application, is completely streak-free, has no gross scent and most importantly, doesn't stain my sheets! I've already added another bottle to my online basket ready for payday."
"I try to only wash my hair twice a week as I worry that over-washing it will do more harm than good, so I use dry shampoo fairly often. I was so addicted to this one that I finished it in less than two weeks. It smells amazing, doesn’t leave a white cast in my dark curly hair and doesn’t leave my scalp feeling dry or itchy. It completely refreshes my hair and adds a bit of volume too. I know it’s on the expensive side but I do think it’s worth the money for how much it delays wash day."
"This setting spray has been my go-to for years, I’m a creature of habit and probably should try new ones but it’s hard when you know something works so well. I mainly use powder makeup on my face (powder foundation, bronzer, blush and highlight) so I never leave the house without setting my face with a lovely douse of Fix+ and the coconut smell is to die for. I find this spray melts the makeup into my face making it look more natural and a part of me rather than just sitting on my face."
"This candle has been my godsend for the last few months. The fresh washing powder scent is such a comforting smell and makes my room feel so lovely and clean. I became stingy with myself when it started burning down a lot but now I’ve finished it I need another one, so it's a real shame that it's currently sold out everywhere. I'm eagerly awaiting a restock."
Marie-Louise Pumfrey, GTG Contributor
Perricone MD High Potency Classics Face Finishing & Firming Tinted Moisturiser Broad Spectrum SPF 30, £44.96
"I’ve been sharing this with my daughter and we are almost out! She's been using it instead of foundation and it gives her skin a gorgeous, natural-looking finish, while I use it under my foundation as I need full coverage. It gives my face a healthy glow and contains cleverly formulated microcapsules that slowly release their pigment as you blend it in. With winter drawing in, this is number one on my re-purchase list for November!"
"This is one of my favourite après bath body creams. It hydrates and tones simultaneously, is beautifully scented body cream and is fast absorbing with an easy pump-action applicator. It contains cellulite busting ingredients such as caffeine, carnitine (it helps the body turn fat into energy) and pink pepper extract. This me-treat is one for my Christmas gift wish list. "
"I recently had a hair colour crisis. The summer sun had turned my brunette blonde balayage brassy so I asked my stylist to tone it down. Unfortunately, it went wrong - it was too strong and all my golden highlights disappeared, leaving me with muddy brown locks. I was advised to try out the Christophe Robin Clarifying Shampoo which contains cornflower and camomile to naturally lighten the hair. After a few washes, it gently eliminated the toner and restored the sun-kissed glow. I need a new pot for future emergency hair colour crises."
"I love a night oil and one of my favourites is Amare Vita's which is deeply hydrating with a blend of essential oils including lavender, ylang-ylang, chamomile and rose geranium. I’ve been massaging it into my neck and décolletage every night for intensive treatment and am now running low. My skin has never felt better and with temperatures dropping, I’ll be buying myself a new bottle soon."
"The supersonic Icelandic skincare brand Bioeffect recently sent me their cult product, the EGF Power Cream, which has had an update. It's a potent blend of their new generation anti-ageing formula which contains a special plant-based epidermal growth factor, derived from barley. It’s instantly toning and targets fine lines and age spots. I’ve been sharing this with my husband and I’m now almost out."