Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

Rachel Marie Walsh tries out a range of products, from cleansers, blushes and brow kits, to help you put on your best face for 2015.


Make Up For Ever HD Blush, €28

MUFE’s cream-to-powder blush performs well on all fronts. The formula glides on and there’s plenty of time for blending before it dries to a soft-matte finish. The colour is richly-pigmented and fade-resistant but still sheer enough to let skin shine through. Choose from 15 shades.

Laura Mercier Second Skin Cheek Colour, €30

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This is an excellent powder blush, if a little pricey for such a small amount of product. The silky grains are super-fine and require minimal blending to create soft, even results. The finish is almost matte with radiance suitable for daytime wear. The natural-look range of shades best suits those with fair-to-medium skin. A few strong shades for darker tones would make it perfect.

bareMinerals Ready Blush, €26

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

bareMinerals READY Blush is a pressed powder pan and brush. You should certainly discard the brush if you want a natural look. The powder applies easily and evenly with a full brush. The pigments provide long-wearing colour. The shade range is attractive and the finish can be matte, satin, or shimmer.

Becca Beach Tint Shimmer Soufflé, €30

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This is a satin blush marbleised with jewel-toned shimmers. Fig/Opal is the most natural shade, but this is still more of an evening product. Nonetheless, I love the silky, fine-milled powder, soft colours and glamorous finish. Dry, sun-damaged and mature skin-types may find that shimmer highlights creases and roughness.


Elemis Soothing Chamomile Cleanser, €29.50

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

Soothing Chamomile Cleanser is a water-based cleanser that contains far more thickener and corn and sunflower oils than chamomile. The emollient texture suits dry to very dry skin, though you should still keep a washcloth to hand for complete removal. The formula leaves skin comfortable and is safe for sensitive types.

Crème de la Mer The Cleansing Foam, €95

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This thick turquoise cream is emollient enough to really seize impurities and makeup. The cream produced so much foam when lathered that I felt certain my face would feel tight afterwards but, no, it was very comfy. The foam stings the eyes like crazy, so keep a cotton pad to hand to wipe around them before rinsing. The price is outrageous for something that is on your face so briefly.

Clinique Foaming Sonic Facial Soap, €22

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This wash was released as a (separately sold) partner to Clinique’s Purifying Cleansing Brush, €89. Brushing your face twice every day is inadvisable (and it is hard to imagine skin coarse enough to need it), so it is important that this soap is a competent, gentle cleanser in its own right. It is exactly that and leaves skin soft and residue-free.

La Roche-Posay Cicaplast Wash B5, €8

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This wash is such a great price for sensitive skincare that I was immediately intrigued. The base is water and a gentle detergent cleanser. The B5 of the name is panthenol, which a small amount of research shows can benefit acne and wound-healing. The tightness I felt after cleansing left me wondering whether the level of detergent in the formula is too high and the comforting extracts too few.


Urban Decay Brow Box, €25

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

Brow Box contains good essentials for blonde and brunette brows. Each kit comes with dark and light shades that you can blend to match your brows. The kit also contains a small pot of wax to tame stray hairs and give extra definition. The tweezers and brush are small but useful in a pinch.

Clarins Brow Kit Pro Palette, €41

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This palette looks great, but in practice contains a lot of useless elements. Clarins would do well to produce three smaller kits in natural shades instead of this cluster. The peachy under-brow powder suits few skin-tones and most of us will use two brow-powders at most. The tweezers are inconveniently small.

Too Faced Brow Envy Kit, €40

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

The Brow Envy Kit is a mix of average-to-good products. The sheer brow powders are matte and create a natural look. The brow pencil needs frequent sharpening to stay accurate. A gel would be handier than the wax provided and the stencils are too thin to create fashionably-natural shapes.

Anastasia Beverly Hills 5-Element Brow Kit, €59.20 

Tried and tested: best beauty products for 2015

This case has everything you need for gorgeous brows but the woman who created it, celebrity tweezer Anastasia Soare. Inside are flattering stencils, an angled brush, natural powders, brow gel, a spoolie and the best tweezers I have ever used. Factoring in these high-quality products, the kit’s price seems less excessive.



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