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Wednesday 12 December 2018

Mutton's Beauty Maestros 2018 and Link Up

Drum roll - here it is, my list of top beauty products for the year! I've chosen the products that work wonders for the over-45s and our skin and hair needs. These are all products I've used extensively and would buy again when they run out. So without further ado:

Best Skincare Products

Best Moisturizer:  Look Fabulous Forever Smooth the Day Face Cream

I have been a die hard user of Charlotte Tilbury's Magic Cream since it came out, so I wasn't expecting it to be toppled by a newcomer. Last week I was travelling and needed a mini pot so I took my Magic Cream. But I realised it wasn't giving me such a good base for makeup as Look Fabulous Forever's Smooth the Day Face Cream.

This moisturizer is a game-changer for our age group,. chock full of vitamins and retinyl palmitate,  - a gentler way of formulating retinol. I love how it isn't too greasy but gives a comfortable moisturized feeling all day long.  Since I started using it in early October, my skin has a better texture.

Best Eye Cream: StriVectin Multi-Action R&R Eye Cream

I didn't seem very enthusiastic when I first wrote about this, in June. But since then, I have run out of eye cream, both the pot of StriVectin and the Clinique cream I was also using. And my choice for a replacement? Definitely StriVectin. It definitely blurs fine lines around the eyes and reduces puffiness and dark circles.

Best Cleanser: Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm

I know this is expensive (although the 200g pot lasts a very long time) but I consistently come back to it. It feels so luxurious and gentle on the skin with a heavenly scent. Afterwards my skin is cleansed but not stripped:  it looks dewy and ready for makeup, not red or dry. 

Best face mask:  no winner

I've reviewed a few this year, none of them gifted, but I still haven't found The One which restores my skin and makes it look plump and rosy, even if it's just temporary. Still looking!

Best Body Products

Luxury category: best body lotion - Clarins Eau Dynamisante Moisturizing Body Lotion

This isn't a new product by any means, but it's still one of the best.  The milk formula with smoothing honey and olive—hydrates and refreshes for more than eight hours. I love the fresh and aromatic scent, and combine mine with the shower gel and spray.

Bargain category: Flexitol Moisturizing Foot Cream for very dry feet and legs  (£5.99 for 85g at Boots)

My daily go-to product for relieving itchy, dry skin on my shins and feet is this, a foot cream containing vitamin E and 10% urea. It's suitable for people with eczema & psoriasis. 

Best Nail Product

Apothaka SOS Recovery Nail & Cuticle Oil, £14.95 

This magic nail oil has mystical status on Instagram among the beauty bloggers. Made in small batches by Natasha Dauncey and smelling wonderfully of lemon, lavender and myrrh, this oil has worked miracles for my crumbly fragile nails and ragged cuticles.I wouldn't be without it, which is why you can see four bottles in the picture! I buy in bulk and keep a bottle wherever I need a boost. Buy at Apothaka's website.

Best Make-Up Products

Best eye makeup primer: Look Fabulous Forever Smooth Out Eye Prime, £17.50

I use this everyday, even when I'm not wearing eye makeup.It provides a neutral base that removes the discoloration of darker skin on the eye lids.  When I am wearing eye makeup, this primer provides a smooth base which prevents eyeshadow from gathering in folds and fading away.  Buy it from the LFF website (global shipping). 

Best foundation primer:  Laura Mercier Foundation Primer, £30

I've never found a better base for foundation than this. Does what it says on the tube. It's a lightweight, creamy gel that leaves makeup looking fresh and colour-true the entire day. Vitamins A, C and E act as antioxidants that protect the skin from harmful, aging effects of the environment. Ideal for normal and combination skin types. Buy from John Lewis, Feel Unique, Asos and Space NK.

Best foundation: Darphin Melaperfect anti-dark spots correcting foundation, £32

I had a panic the other day when I was trying to buy this at the Darphin website. It was out of stock, and it was several weeks before they had notified me it was available again. In the meantime I had snapped up a few tubes from another site, fearful they were discontinuing it.

If you have areas of pigmentation, this is a fantastic foundation. It isn't heavy and doesn't give that dull, flat look that many full coverage foundations deliver.  Using a Beauty Blender, I tap it on and use more on the actual dark patches and on my under eye circles.  It is truly miraculous. It comes in just two shades, ivory and beige. The beige is perfect for me. Buy from Darphin (they often have some fantastic offers on their site), Feel Unique, Look Fantastic.

Best mascara: Yves St Laurent Volume Effet Faux Cils Mascara, £26

Regular readers will know that I've spent the last year looking for a fantastic mascara. It was a recommendation from a fellow blogger, Mary at The Pouting Pensioner, who led me to this YSL mascara. I am very demanding of mascaras. I want a product that doesn't clump, gives me volume and length, and no panda eyes. If it comes in colours other than black and brown, even better! The YSL mascara delivers on every parameter and comes in several colours, plus a beautiful gold case. Thanks Mary!

Best Haircare Product

Davines Your Hair Assistant Blowdry Primer  (£24.78) is a real multi-tasker, providing protection for hair, adding shine and adding oomph to a blowdry.  I have tried several products over the year to find something that gives my fine hair more volume, and the Davines product does this in spades, plus it lasts overnight for the next day. A winner in my book.

So that's my Mutton Maestros for 2018! I'd love to hear what some of your all-time favourites are. Please let me know in the comments.

Sharing this post with #WeekendBlogHop at Claire Justine and #ShareAllLinkUp at Not Dressed as Lamb

#WowOnWednesday Readers' Favourite:  Nancy's Fashion Style

Last week's favourite was Dutch blogger Nancy in her gorgeous Pied de Poule suit. I must confess I've never heard of this brand, but I love the jaunty little skirt suit and can understand why Nancy and her grandmother before her fell for its charms!

Now it's time to link up!



  1. My all time favourites? That's a difficult one - I'm always mixing it up! I have all time favourite brands though! I shall try the YSL mascara - thanks! xx Maria

  2. I haven't tried any of those products. I must in 2019 so will bookmark this post. Thank you Gail.
    I've linked a YouTube. Hope you don't mind. It's makeup putting on so Wow on Wednesday related:)

    1. Any beauty or fashion posts are welcome, whether they're from a blog, YouTube or Instagram!


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