Written by Lucy Partington
Freelance beauty editor Lucy Partington is obsessed with all things skincare, collecting eyeshadow palettes that she’ll probably never use, and is constantly on the hunt for the ultimate glowy foundation.
Freelance beauty journalist Lucy Partington shares the skincare and make-up products in her current routine, all fresh from the high street.
I’ve never been the sort of person to think that good beauty products have to be expensive. Instead, I’m all about mixing things up, and while I know some things are worth spending a little bit of extra cash on, there are others that aren’t – plus, the increase in quality and effectiveness from a lot of brands that you’ll find on the shelves of Boots or Superdrug is pretty incredible.
One thing I’ve always been a huge advocate of is affordable sunscreen. It’s something everybody should be wearing every day, so being able to use – and constantly recommend – products that don’t cost the earth is something I’m passionate about. There are already enough sunscreen barriers to put people off (that it’s too thick, greasy, oily, causes breakouts, none of which are true any more) without adding price into the mix.
I also love high street mascara: often, you don’t need to spend more than a tenner to get a decent formula that delivers on its promises, and the same goes for dry shampoo (I recently waxed lyrical about my favourite Batiste one here) and some eyeshadow.
But I also fully understand that there are a whole lot of different products available now, so it can be hard to know what’s worth buying and what’s not. So, to make things a little bit easier, I’ve rounded up the best high street products in my current hair, skin and make-up routines…
Maybelline Instant Anti Age Perfector 4-In-1 Glow Primer
I actually bought a bottle of this while I was in LA last year, so you can imagine how happy I was when I saw it had launched over here towards the end of 2022. I love it under foundation to add extra glow, or if I’m in more of a rush, I use it instead of, because it’s so quick and easy to blend with not much effort required.
Shop Maybelline Instant Anti Age Perfector 4-In-1 Glow Primer at Boots, £12.99
Simple Booster Serum 10% Niacinamide
Niacinamide is an ingredient that just works really well for me, and I recently finished my favourite £63 serum and started using this – and so far, I can’t really tell a difference. The hero ingredient is second on the INCI list (which is found on the back of all beauty products and tells you what’s in them), meaning I know it’s formulated well, and I like how lightweight it is and how quickly it absorbs into my skin.
Shop Simple Booster Serum 10% Niacinamide Vitamin B3 at Boots, £7.99
The Body Shop Freestyle Multi-Tasking Colour
The Body Shop is in the midst of relaunching all of its make-up, and these densely pigmented creams are one of my new favourite things. Available in 10 matte and shimmer shades, they can be used on eyes, lips and cheeks and are entirely buildable. This one is a matte shade called Born, and I like it as blusher and then dabbed on to add a little bit of colour to my lips.
Shop The Body Shop Freestyle Multi-Tasking Colour at The Body Shop, £12
Garnier Ambre Solaire SPF 50+ Super UV Invisible Face Serum
I’ve never met a Garnier SPF that I haven’t loved, and this new one is no exception. I’ve been using it since early December, and I really like how lightweight it is, that it’s truly invisible and that it barely leaves a trace on my skin yet still feels hydrating. It’s excellent under make-up, too, which is a must for me.
Shop Garnier Ambre Solaire SPF 50+ Super UV Invisible Face Serum at Boots, £14
Elf Bitesize Eyeshadow in Cream and Sugar
I’m a neutral eyeshadow girl through and through, and as a result I’ve tried so many different palettes and formulas. These mini quads by Elf are a winner every time: buttery soft pigment that’s impressive considering the price, they blend beautifully and last well throughout the day.
Shop Elf Bitesize Eyeshadow in Cream and Sugar at Superdrug, £4
L’Oréal Paris Elvive Bond Repair Pre-Shampoo Treatment
New in from L’Oréal Paris is this pre-shampoo treatment that works to strengthen damaged hair. It uses a citric acid complex that targets broken bonds, helping to restore it back to its original strength. There’s a shampoo and conditioner in the same range, too, but if you only buy one thing, make it this. I’ve found it to be just as effective as its higher-priced competitors.
Shop L’Oréal Paris Elvive Bond Repair Pre-Shampoo Treatment at Boots, £14.99
NYX Professional Makeup Micro Brow Pencil
A recent revelation for me is that I don’t need to spend a fortune on eyebrow pencils because they are all much of a muchness. This one, by NYX Professional Makeup, is on par with every other similar product that I’ve tried: the nib is nice and thin so I can be precise, and the pigment level is great so I don’t have to use loads.
Shop NYX Professional Makeup Micro Brow Pencil at Boots, £10
Images: courtesy of brands
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