Darlings, let's dive into the rose-gold world of Charlotte Tilbury
What do Penelipe Cruz, Charlotte Tilbury and a 18-year old have in common? Love for a "feline flick", of course. Before online tutorials were a huge hit, I would draw makeup inspiration from magazines and ads; my favourite piece being Penelope Cruz' look for Mango. I was absolutely in love with her Bardot-esque hair and mesmerizing cat-eye makeup in particular. Back then I had no idea how to apply makeup, but I still wanted to rock that look on my best friend's wedding day. So, I went to a "professional", showed the image and closed my eyes, imagining how gorgeous I would look (while "the makeup artist" kept on eye-rolling and unenthusiastically slapping on a smelly foundation). When I looked in the mirror, I did not just look like a bad carbon-copy, but I was also left with a wobbly-liner-mess on my eyes, detaching strip lash and hundreds of ugly photographs. That day I've decided that I would become my own makeup artist and little did I know who was the key source of my inspiration - Charlotte Tilbury, darling.
Charlotte's Magic Cream (100 USD for 50 ml/ 1.7 FL.OZ; Made in Switzerland) is certainly the most expensive product in her line, but it is indeed magical. This used to be Charlotte's secret backstage weapon for a long time. Fast-forward to 2013, the formula finally became available to us [mortals] and looking at the ingredients, I spot a lot of hydrating oils (various types of Rosehip Oil, Camellia Oil, Shea Butter, Michelia Alba Leaf Oil), multitasking anti-aging BioNymph Peptide Complex and Hyaluronic Acid (aka my bae). Texture is quite rich yet never greasy. Little goes a long way and it blends seamlessly, leaving you with instantly smooth/baby-soft skin. There is a faint floral scent here, but it never lingers.
Final Thoughts: I absolutely love this cream as it transforms my Sahara-skin into a perfectly hydrated, plump canvas in one step. I see it more as a skincare item and would totally use it without any additional moisturizer. It also has SPF 15, which is an extra bonus. I think it would be brilliant for those of you with normal, normal-dry, combination-dry, dry, very dry skin types. However, it might be a bit heavy for someone with oily skin. Now, whether you want to spend hundred dollars on a cream is totally up to you; personally, I will be waiting for the Sephora sale. A- (minus for the price).
Wonderglow Face Primer (55 USD for 40 ml/ 1.4 FL.OZ; Made in Switzerland). Sorry Backlight Priming Filter, a better rival has arrived. You guys know how much I love my hydrating, glowing primers - but this one takes the cake! It is not only full of amazing skincare/anti-ageing ingredients (Wild Pansy, Camellia, Rosehip Oils plus Hyaluronic Acid) but it also gives your skin a very subtle, lit-from-within kind of glow. Feels very balmy, almost gel-like and smooth. Absorbs in seconds and creates a perfect base for foundation. It sets very fast and despite microscopic golden particles in it, it is pretty much translucent and has a natural (non-greasy/sticky) skin finish; that being said - I believe it should work for all skin types.
Final Thoughts: I think this must be my new favourite primer. It doesn't just add glow, but it also improves skin's quality and I don't mind spending a few extra dollars on a product that actually lives up to its claims (I normally pay 38 USD for a 30 ml primer, which lasts a year; here you get more product and potent ingredients for extra 17 dollars). Again, little goes a long way and I believe this primer is seriously amazing for brides and busy girl-bosses on the go. On a good skin day you can wear it alone, without any foundation and still look fabulous. If you are 25+ and don't mind spending a bit more cash, I would highly recommend this A+ gem.
Filmstar Bronze & Glow (68 USD for 16g/ 0.56 oz; Made in Italy) has won a ton of awards and I can see why - it is fabulous. I regret not trying it earlier, mainly because I have only swatched it on the back of my hand and that, my dear friends, is not how you should judge a face product. It might look mweh on your hand, but it will look wow on your face. Trust me.
The packaging is so timeless and chic, but the formula is what matters the most: ultra smooth, blendable, long-lasting, finely milled powder with a subtle golden sheen that should brighten and illuminate the skin in the most flattering way possible. There are two colour versions of this duo; one for fair-medium and one for medium-deep skin tones. The latter version is what you see on the image above; it is not a perfect colour-match for me since I am on a light side. That being said, I apply bronzer with a light hand and can only use highlighter as a blush topper. Quality is impeccable though; I gave this compact to my mom, who has a medium skin tone and she absolutely loves how both powders warm up and enliven her complexion.
Final Thoughts: I will be getting a fair/medium version for sure, because I absolutely love how effortlessly chic my skin looks whenever I use a bit of bronzer from this palette. Great product here, totally worth every penny. A+
Cheek To Chic Blush (40 USD for 8g/ 0.28 OZ; Made in Italy) has quite an intriguing, certain lady-part-like design but! Sexy innuendos aside, this "swish and pop" technique is hands down one of the smartest, easiest ways to apply blush without running a risk of looking like a clown. The one I have is called Ecstasy and it is a perfect peachy/pink nude that will go with every single makeup look possible. If you are looking for a true multi-tasker, this is it!
Swish outer shade up your cheek bone and pop middle shade right on apple of your cheek - voila! You're ready to conquer the world and your blush will stay put for 6-8 hours minimum. Powder has micro-shimmer particles in it, is sheer/buildable and blends seamlessly; does have a bit of kick-up but I am not mad at that. I also love mixing two colours together. Again, try these on your face, not your hand (swatches don't really do them justice).
Final Thoughts: Ecstasy is a perfect all-round blush and I almost feel like I want to get my hands on Sex On Fire next, as it looks like such a wonderful, slightly deeper shade for winter (not going to lie, I am a huge Kings Of Leon fan, so that is also part of the reason). These little guys are 100% user-friendly and look uber-smooth on the skin. Are they the most revolutionary blushes ever created? No. But they are still pretty fantastic. In two words: solid A.
Eyes & Lips
Luxury Eyeshadow Palette in The Dolce Vita (53 USD for 5.2g/ 0.18 OZ; Made in Italy) takes me back to the time when I was working in advertising. I would secretly shadow makeup artists, trying to see how they would use this exact palette on models. I loved the look of this quad so much, I could recognize it from a mile away.
And, now that I have it, I can see why it was such a cult-favourite. I don't know about other palettes in the range, but if you want to invest in one - go for The Dolce Vita. These four shades will make any eye colour pop. They are smooth, pigmented and picture-perfect (believe me, this bad boy graced so many ads for a reason). I especially love the fact that you also get a delicious, bronze-copper pressed glitter here; these kind of shades are my absolute favourites because they add dimension and sophistication to even the most basic eye looks. Plus this formula had zero fall-out. The only colour, that is a bit powdery, is the dark brown "smoke" shade; I would make sure to tap off the excess with this one.
Final Thoughts: if you are on a hunt for that one, easy and versatile little eyeshadow quad - check this one out. I know bigger palettes cost the same and you would get a lot more colours, so the decision is totally yours. The Dolce Vita is exceptionally well made and great for those of you with a weakness for classy makeup products. A+
The Feline Flick (30 USD; Made in Germany) is a smudge-proof, "Panther" pitch-black, easy to use felt-tip liner that is worth the hype. I struggle with liners like this one, which is why there are barely any reviews on my site dedicated to this type of a product. However. The minute I started working on my flick, I had a déjà vu. If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I am a self-taught fashion illustrator and I create my sketches using various tools; markers included. The minute I held The Feline Flick, I felt like I was back to using my typical black marker, except this time I was drawing on my face and not a piece of paper. I got a perfectly sharp flick in one go and 10 hours later there was not a single smudge on my lids.
Final Thoughts: KVD who? A+
Full Fat Lashes Mascara (29 USD; Made in Germany) on the other hand was a total miss for me. It did absolutely nothing to my already long-sparse lashes, so I had to add a few individual ones for the look you are about to see. I think mascara is that one area, that the brand should focus on.
Final Thoughts: not to waste anyone's time - let's just say that I would not recommend it.
It all might have started with the universally flattering Lip Cheat Liner in Pillow Talk, which is amazing by the way, but it was the matching Matte Revolution Lipstick that just took my breath away. While I am not a huge fan of the brand's creamy K.I.S.S.I.N.G. formula, I do think that Charlotte's mattes are impeccable.
Unlike most matte lipsticks, these have a sheer-yet-buildable coverage. Depending on your mood, you can dial it down or add a few more layers for that statement pout that will survive cocktails and canapes (not the main course sadly, so do keep the rose-gold bullet in your purse). These have a delicious vanilla scent and are quite comfortable/weightless. Well, imagine covering your entire lip with a creamy matte lip pencil - this is what the formula feels like to me. Pillow Talk lipstick is the most perfect lady-like, mid-toned pinky nude one could ever ask for. It will be perfect for beauties of all ages and colours.
Final Thoughts: YES to both! A++
As always, my swatches are not edited (what you see is what you get). Please click to zoom in.
Here is my "The Dolce Vita" inspired makeup look with a few alterations. I have used every single Charlotte Tilbury piece mentioned in this review plus a couple of additional/missing items:
Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation (review here), NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone (high points of the face).
I am very happy with the result; makeup lasted incredibly well and looked perfect all day long.
Please let me know if you have tried any of these products and if so, what do you think about the line? I will be definitely getting more Charlotte Tilbury products in the future, so stay tuned!
P.S. don't these lipstick bullets look like something Holly Golightly would use?
You can now find Charlotte Tilbury on sephora.com and in stores!
PR Samples; full disclaimer here