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I always have two eye creams in my kit. Firstly, REN’s Radiance Brightening suits all skin types. It brightens and smooths the skin immediately, prepping it for make-up. My second favourite is Sali Hughes’s Ringlight Creamy Illuminating Eye Balm. This was created to be used over and under make-up – I use it to give my skin a luminous glow, but also tapped over concealer to refresh it. I love the golden flecks, which work on all skin tones.
For a quick skin overhaul, I keep a handful of Shiseido face masks in my kit. Not only are they so relaxing, they cool the skin and reduce inflammation. The LiftDefine Radiance Mask is the best for the chin area – it hooks onto your ears like a sling and temporarily tightens skin – making it a great one pre-event.
Finally, I like to keep a tub of Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Cream nearby. It’s very rich and moisturising, and can breathe life back into the driest, dullest skin at speed. That said, I wouldn’t use it on those with combination or oily skin types as it can be too heavy.
For concealer, I love both high-street and high-end formulations. If I’m after more radiance and a creamy texture, I’ll look to NARS. The next best thing is Maybelline’s Instant Anti-Age Eraser – that’s a bestseller for a reason. When I want fuller coverage, it has to be Huda Beauty and Pat McGrath. As for foundation, Estée Lauder’s Double Wear formula is unrivalled for great coverage, but I also rate the Too Faced Born This Way foundation. It doesn’t get enough hype yet the long-lasting coverage never looks dry or cakey. Lastly, I love Makeup By Mario’s SurrealSkin Foundation for a little bit of glow. I did a masterclass with him and he really knows everything about technique, formulations and application.
For something lighter, I use both Bobbi Brown’s and Hourglass’s new skin tints. These types of formulas are ideal for fashion week as they allow you to focus more on the skin, putting in just a small amount of coverage where needed. As for powder foundations, I keep several shades of Maybelline’s SuperStay Powder in my kit. You can use this with a damp sponge for more of a glossy finish or use it as a touch-up powder when you’re on the move. It’s so affordable and a great dupe for some high-end ones.
Rokael of @RokaelBeauty raved about the ONE/SIZE Setting Spray recently, so I got one for my kit and I’ve been loving it. Rokael has been doing Beyoncé’s make-up on her Renaissance tour and he messaged the brand founder – Patrick – to say this kept her make-up going even in the heaviest rain. It really is amazing and seals everything in place. I love the ONE/SIZE Powder too for minimising any sheen or oiliness.
The Rhode Beauty Glazing Milk is my latest addition. It’s incredible for creating healthy, dewy-looking skin with a lovely – not sticky – finish. You apply it as you would a toner after cleansing and it immediately floods your complexion with a hefty dose of moisture. Make-up goes on so nicely afterwards. Another great glow-giver is the Danessa Myricks Yummy Skin Glow Serum. The name had me at hello but the texture is unlike anything else I’ve tried. It gives skin better bounce and a fresher, healthier appearance. Apply it before foundation and concealer, and trust me, you’ll never look back. Another radiance-booster I love is Glow Recipe’s Primer. It’s not like others as it doesn’t mattify with any silicones – the latter can really interrupt the look and feel of your foundation. Instead, it uses rice powders to absorb excess shine, while still boosting a little dewy, sheen. It’s a clever product and helps skin to look fresh and smooth.”
My brush collection is embarrassingly big, but it’s the only way to create flawless make-up. Pat McGrath’s will always be some of my favourites. I’ve used them on endless clients and at fashion week over the years, and they still look good as new. Katie Jane Hughes x Spectrum is always in my kit, too. There are so many amazing brushes in that collection and it comes with a roll-up towel that you can lay everything out on. You can’t beat the Hourglass brushes either or Joy Adenuga’s – I recently collaborated with her and the brushes we created are so soft and fluffy.
Every make-up artist needs a good hand sanitiser in their kit and this one from Jo Loves is the best. It has two compartments – on one side there is the sanitiser and on the other is a silky cream that smells incredible. I like my clients to be able to pick it up as I do their make-up.
My kit is always full of MUA Disposable Bamboo Mascara Wands. For eye-opening results, it all comes down to the brush, not the formula, so I like to have a selection of different-shaped wands that I can dip in and out of my favourite mascaras to create different effects.
Other tools I buy on repeat include my brush soap that I created with Joy Adenuga. It’s a tangy, orange formula that grips onto dirt and dissolves it. I recommend cleaning your brushes with something like this at least once a week. Another brush cleaning tool I rate is the spray by Cinema Secrets – you find it in most make-up artists’ kits as it’s so easy to use. Mist it onto brushes then dab against a towel or cloth. The dirt will come away immediately while the mist dries quickly so you can reuse your brushes straight away.
Less of a tool, but still a useful product nonetheless, is NUXE’s roll-on body oil. It’s just launched and contains lots of subtle, gold shimmer flecks that give skin a believable warmth and luminosity. I love rolling it over the body, chest and shins.
The other tools I swear by include a good set of lash curlers – Shu Uemura and Rose Inc do my favourites – and creaseless hair grips. I’m not bothered by brand for the latter, they all do the same, but Kitsch does fun prints.”
My kit is always home to several Pat McGrath palettes. They’re pricey, but the pigments are impressive and will last for years. I’ve never met anyone who’s gone through an entire palette. The quartz shadows are beautiful and look so expensive. Just one swipe delivers amazing colour payoff that catches the light nicely. I always keep a handful of eyeshadow crayons in my bag, too. The best are by Hourglass, Bobbi Brown and Rare Beauty. Each brand has formulas you can layer up nicely and build upon without any faff. I always recommend using one of these crayons, then layering up a powder on top to seal everything in.”
Blush & Bronze
“When it comes to blusher and bronzer, I always opt for creamy textures as you can work with them at speed. Rare Beauty has amazing blushers with beautiful colours for all skin tones. They are vivid and rich, so a little goes a long way. I keep lots of Danessa Myricks blushers on hand, too. The colours are endless and have been designed to give you radiant-looking skin, with natural pops of colour. For bronzer, right now I’m enjoying the REESON Beauty Bronzing Balm which hugs skin and gives it that back-from-holiday glow. The brand Tower28 is also brilliant for blushers and bronzers. They’re not easy to find, but if you can get your hands on them, I recommend stocking up.”
Brows & Mascara
“Out of all the brow products available, I love a pencil the most. I’ve mentioned the brand a lot, but I do love Rare Beauty’s Harmony Pencil for mimicking the appearance of hair and MILK’s Kush Brow Shadow Stick gives sparser brows more volume and definition without any ashy tones. You can’t beat Benefit’s Microfilling Brow Pen either. With a pronged comb, it latches onto brows and sweeps them into place. For mascara, I often have a few on rotation. Right now, it’s Maybelline’s Great Lash – a cult classic – and Lancôme’s Lash Idôle, which I always go back to. I always keep a brown mascara in my kit too – my favourite is YSL’s Lash Clash.”
“My stash of M·A·C lip liners is endless. They are so soft and easy to use. I love Charlotte Tilbury’s Pillow Talk lip products, too – they really do suit everyone. Lastly, I always keep a selection of Kiko and Beauty Pie lipsticks in my own make-up bag and kit. Kiko is so reasonably priced, while Beauty Pie’s shade range is seriously impressive.”
For more beauty tips & advice, follow @AdeolaGboyega on Instagram.