More often than not, I find myself extolling the virtues of buys that are off the beaten track to my friends. I recently considered how remiss it was of me not to share them with you. To address this…
The Best Cotton Pads Ever / I happen to loathe cotton pads with a passion. I know that’s a very, well, passionate declaration, but truly: their texture sets my teeth on edge. I’ve overlooked this because they’re useful, though I still can’t use those fluffy multi-coloured balls of cotton wool from pharmacies that seem to separate and squeak when used. I’ve found the best pads that feel the least like cotton wool pads possible in the form of Muji Unbleached Cotton Pads. They’re about double the size of usual pads and really rather thrifty – £1.95 for a bag of 180.
Cotton Buds Are Pretty Important, Too / While I’ll occasionally ignore the doctor’s advice and shove cotton buds in my ear (surely everyone really does this?! SO satisfying!), I mostly use them to tidy up make-up. For this, My Kit Co is exemplary – they make teeny tiny cotton buds (and some ever-so-slightly bigger) with pointed heads that make perfecting a flick or tidying up the edges of lips easy. They also come in a cute see-through plastic wallet that I like to take when I travel or do someone’s make-up. Also good are Muji’s Thin Cotton Buds, which have a round head and that I use similarly.
… And When You’re Cleansing, You’ll Need / A Korean Fringe Stabiliser of course! Seriously – these things are brilliant if your hair falls in your face when you cleanse/do your make-up. Again, these won’t break the bank: two come in a pack for £3.50 and they last forever (or until you lose them – beware of undressing while these are in your hair as they stick to clothes something chronic).
A Silk Hair Cap Also Works Wonders / My husband likes to insult me when I’m wearing this Silke Hair Wrap by calling me a ‘Victorian bather’ or ‘character from a Marple’ – little does he know I consider both of those supposed slurs to be compliments of the highest order. Designed to be worn at night to minimise damage to hair through friction, this works on a similar principle to silk pillowcases (of which I’m also a fan). Though it’s hard to measure whether my hair’s more abundant, it certainly is silkier and looks healthier when I’ve slept with this on.
Beauty Sleep Is Imperative /… And if light is ruining yours, you need a good eye mask. The best are made by Holistic Silk – they’re big enough to block out light, tie up (so you can adjust how tight they are), are very pretty and – if you buy the anti-ageing one – will reduce creases around the eye while sleeping. As I’ve yet to get blackout blinds, I sleep with mine on throughout the summer.
For The Make-Up Fanatic / This won’t be one for everyone, but if you often find yourself mixing lipsticks/concealers/liquid eyeshadows, you need to get your hands on a My Kit Co My Play Palette. It comes with a spatula for scraping off make-up, 5 wells in which to mix and is therefore hugely handy if you’re a make-up artist/enthusiast.