Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and with it, lots of weird pressures and sadnesses about the state of current relationships (or lack thereof). But, like I always say, why think about difficult life questions when you can think about much more important things – like beauty products! Whether you want to drop a hint to a certain somebody, or bite the bullet and buy for your one true love (yourself) here are the best Valentine’s beauty bits.
A really cool and quite innovative product is the Jillian Dempsey Lid Tint. They’re a sort of hybrid between a cream shadow and an eye gloss, offering a sheer wash of sheeny pigment, perfect for a lived in, effortless vibe. The shade Lilac is a romantic cool-pink sheen that looks natural but noticeable, while Plum is a more dramatic, moody vibe. They’re also perfect for those low on skill or effort, because a quick smudge with fingers is the best way to apply.
Face-wise, there is truly no more Valentine-y product than the Too Faced Love Flush Blush and Love Light Highlighter. Looking like Polly Pockets for grown-ups in sheeny, heart shaped plastic packaging, what’s inside is also top notch. The Baby Love Blush is both sculpting and glow-giving, and the Ray Of Light Highlight gives immediate post-coital radiance. Fake it ‘til you make it.
A great gift for yourself is the Givenchy Le Rouge Perfecto. It’s one of those “adapts to your pH,” tint products, but the pink leather packaging and stunning shade make it a cut above the rest. If you fancy something more romantic, I point you towards the YSL Volupte Tint In Balms. They’re a lip balm with a lipstick core – and that core is shaped like lips. I think you’d be hard pressed to find anything cuter on the market, and the product is great too; delivering glossy, sheeny and juicy looking effects in a range of shades.
Another fun lip option are the Starskin Dreamkiss Lip Masks. They plump, hydrate and soothe, all while looking a great combination of hilarious and cute. And if you really want a treat, look no further than the By Terry Baume De Rose, which is quite simply the most luxe lip balm on the market. Smells amazing, looks amazing, does amazing. I rest my case.
If you want to go for perfume, nothing really says Valentine’s Day quite like rose. A twist on a classic is the Jo Loves White Rose & Lemon Leaves. It’s rosy, but also has a slight green sharpness which makes it more refreshing than cloying. For something more traditional, I am an oddly huge fan of the Yardley English Rose EDT, which errs very lightly on the side of granny, but in the same chic way that Chanel No. 5 does. It’s airy, powdery but has good longevity – plus it’s a total bargain if you want a guilt-free treat. If you want to go bold, though, go for Vera Wang Princess Of Hearts. From the graffiti print, cartoon-esque bottle to the notes of strawberry, melon and whipped cream, to the fact the cap is a tiara, it seems to me a modern day equivalent of what little girls are made of.
While smelling good is a pleasure, having your home smell good is, to me, an almost religious experience. It boosts my mood and makes me feel fancy, which are essentially the two most important things in life. Diptyque’s Valentine’s Day offering is called Rose Delight, and is decidedly Turkish delight-y. It’s rosy, with a hint of honey and incense and tiny twist of zest. Like all Diptyque candles, it has powerful sillage and throw – and the container will be a happy makeup brush holder for years to come. Bella Freud also has a special Valentine’s edition of their Loving candle, in an adorable millennial-pink jar. With notes of tuberose, sandalwood and amber, this is soft and sweet but with a warming, comforting twist. And again, although not really the point, it’s almost worth buying this just for the container.
A final self-gift that can equally be enjoyed with a partner is the Susanne Kaufmann Muscle Release Oil. It’s a potent blend of juniper and mountain pine, designed to warm skin surface and promote circulation, in a base of ultra-moisturizing avocado, jojoba and rose hip. Apply to damp skin after a shower for maximum relaxation, or use for a sensual massage session at an adult-sleepover. Either way, the product is good, and that’s all I’m really here to comment on, right?
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