Not just a pretty face: beauty gems for February

I’ve recently come across a clutch of new beauty launches which fall into what I call the ‘intelligent beauty‘ camp. These are those must-have products that use premium ingredients, have a targeted expertise, specialist know-how and boast glam packaging to boot.



Take High Definition’s new make-up range, as an example. Formerly known as HD Brows, it was launched back in 2008 by Nilam Patel and Karen Betts, and offered a branded eyebrow shaping treatment and associated products.

Now rebranded, with Nilam Patel at the helm, it has relaunched and I’ve been trying out two of their hero products: Illuminator and Browtec.

Shown here is the light-diffusing Illuminator, ideal for adding instant glamour. It can be used as the last step in contouring to highlight the face and cheekbones. The pretty, multi-purpose, lightweight powder is enriched with pearlescent pigments and so it gives a subtle gleam to skin, catching the light as you move. Come summer, I’ll be brushing this on to highlight a tan on cheekbones, décolletage and arms.

Best of all, as well as giving a natural glow, it also works to absorb excess oils while delivering antioxidant benefits from Vitamins C and E. It’s a fab addition to your make-up kit and gives the perfect finishing touch to your look.  £23.50, from



Also from the range, is Browtec, an ultra-slim twist-up pencil available in three shades: Bombshell, Foxy and Vamp. Shown here in Foxy, a rich, dark brown, the pencil gives that all-important finishing touch to brows, filling them out for a polished look. I’m obsessed with brow make-up and it’s actually quite hard to find the perfect products that give an effective finish. This has a great, thin lead which gives a precise application, mimicking the appearance of eyebrow hairs to achieve a fuller looking brow and it also contains vitamins C and E for antioxidant benefits. I’ve been using it under my usual tinted, setting gel and they work together to give near-perfect brows. £16, from


While on the subject of eyes, my next find is this amazing eye kit from Blinc. The Amazing Eyes Discovery Collection contains four innovative products to enhance the eyes, with the USP that they do not smudge, run or flake (hence the brand’s ‘Life Proof’ promise). This ‘run-proof’ idea is a must for me as I seem to have permanently watering eyes at the moment, whether it’s cold, windy or sunny, so run-proof eye make-up is essential for any season and so I was really interested to try these out.


The kit includes four essential base products for achieving great eyes, all of which come in cute colour-coded tin-tubes. Mascara Amplified is a buildable mascara (build up the volume and length to your taste by adding layers). It gives long length by forming tiny water-resistant “tubes” around the lashes and these cannot run, smudge, clump or flake. Best of all, unlike some mascaras, it rubs off easily with just water – no need for special eye-make up remover or endless rubbing around the eye area. What’s more, there are no  tell-tale black patches the morning after. My mascara stayed put all day and genuinely seems to not budge even when eyes watered or  were rubbed, they were also naturally enhanced – rather than a clumpy effect that some mascaras give. A great find!


Next up is the Eyebrow Mousse. I love this – the unique mousse-formula gives a no-smudge colour to brows, filling in sparse areas. It also holds and sculpts like a gel so your brows and tint stay in place all day. What’s more, it also has a lovely moisturising effect so the brow area feel soft to touch – rather than a ‘crispy effect’ that some gels give.


Next is the Eye Shadow Primer. Use this as your base for crease-free shadow all day. In addition to keeping  your eye-make up set the primer contains anti-aging ingredients to decrease fine lines. This is great for a natural look and to even out pigmentation, giving a smooth base.


Finally is the Eyeliner Pencil. It gives long-lasting colour that is smudge-proof, water-proof and doesn’t fade. It glides onto lids effortlessly and gives a deep, intense colour. From



Finally, comes the genius product ReCover’s Correct & Conceal Red. It is a neutralising base that corrects and conceals redness and pigmentation. It’s extremely light in texture and uses yellow-toned pigments to give a velvety ‘no-make-up’ finish. Founded by makeup artist Annabel Jardella, the long-lasting base-concealer (much like a BB and CC cream combined) is long-lasting and easy to apply. The gold-plated applicator tip delivers a fine layer of product so it goes on evenly and lightly.

It comes in six shades (see below) and I’ve gone for the Beige tone which is for skins that are medium in colour. I’ve been using it on targeted areas, rather than all over, and it works to cover up blemishes and red areas like a dream. My new essential. £28,


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