Since I have no travel plans for the month of February, I decided to test out a few high-end primers and try a self tanning body milk. February can be a cold, grey month although the days are getting lighter little by little and spring is not far away. It's time to get the body fit and looking healthy in preparation for that day when you get to peel off the layers and expose your sun starved skin to the elements.
Here's the results ...
Biotherm Autobronzant Tonique Self Tanning Bi-Phase £28/$38 200ml
I discovered this little beauty at the airport last year when I was flying out to Ibiza. It is dry oil based product that you tip unside down and shake lightly to blend the two liquids together before spraying on. It feels very lightweight and the oil melts into the skin and does not streak or feel greasy at all. You're left soft and smooth and looking beautifully sunkissed. Perfect for that pre-holiday prep but remember that it does not protect you from the sun. You will still need to apply a good SPF.
Decleor Gradual Glow Hydrating Body Milk - £25/$48 for 250ml
This is my newest find and because my skin hasn't felt the sun's rays for a while, it's a great way to introduce some healthy colour before spring arrives.
I am off to warmer climes in less than a month and I don't want to hit that beach with winter pale skin! After showering and exfoliating, slather this on - it's moisturising, smells great and gives a hint of tan which can be built up over time. Non streaking and paraben free it's the best self tan lotion I've used in a while.
Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer - £96/$75 for 60ml
This is a beautifully soft, water resistant primer which smooths fine lines, diminishes pores and extends the wear of your foundation. It is expensive but a little goes a long way. I bought the travel size to try and it has lasted a long time so go for that first if you're reluctant to spend the big bucks. It contains no parabens, sulphates, oil or gluten and is fragrance free. A winner in my opinion.
YSL Touche Éclat Blur Primer £29.50/$52 for 30ml
This is a transparent gel formula with tiny gold flecks that once applied completely disappear into the skin. I love the feel of this and have been using it everyday under my normal foundation. It can be applied with a brush or fingertips - the latter being my preference. Wait a few seconds before applying your foundation or not if you prefer - it can be worn alone. The result is a super smooth, soft look which can then be set with a dusting of loose powder if needed. Buy a travel size first if you're unsure.
Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Water - £20/$32 for 116ml
This is a multi-tasking primer which can be used in 3 ways .. as a primer for a sheer canvas to apply your foundation .. a setting spray, or a refresher later in the day. It's silicone, alcohol and oil free and hydrating. It does contain some fragrance so if your skin is at all sensitive there could be a risk of irritation .. maybe test it first before buying. Personally I'm not a fan of spraying my face but some people like the refreshing sensation.
Becca Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector £28/$36 for 40ml
This is supposedly the perfect primer for oily skins. The instructions for application of the product is very specific - Primer can be worn alone or under foundation. To apply, warm a pea-sized amount in hands and pat onto specific areas of concern like the T-zone. Allow product to dry before following with makeup application. For touch-ups throughout the day, warm primer in hands and pat over makeup to target oily areas. If you rub it in it will not be as effective - you have been warned! With no silicone, oil or fragrance it is sweat and humidity resistant making it a good choice for make ups in hot climates and on location. I will test this properly when I am next in that environment.
Hourglass Ambient Light Corrective Primer £36/$44 for 30ml
This primer comes in 3 shades - Dim, Luminous and Mood. It has a smooth weightless feel and is easy to blend. Once again worn alone or under foundation the skin appears smoother and gives a soft matte glow. I have used this on a few clients and it really does give the skin a beautiful creamy finish with very little need for touch ups.
No 7 Instant Illusions Airbrush Away Primer £16.50 for 30 ml
This is a good primer at the lower priced end of the market. It creates a good base for foundation application, is easy to apply and non greasy. If you've never used a primer before this may be a good one to start with as your outlay will be small in comparison to the brands I have presented above.