I’ve been making an effort, recently, to try and do before-and-after photos when I review makeup products. It’s hard to do this for everything that’s out there, but there are certain launches that end up catching my eye. In the press release for a new cosmetics line, Studio 10, there was a “before” shot of a lady wearing what could only be described as warpaint; huge streaks of brown and white across her face and little round blotches of red on her cheeks. In the “after”, her face was contoured and glowy and looking rather swish: my interest was piqued.
Studio 10 is a new range of makeup that’s designed to be a comprehensive selection of perfecting and correcting essentials rather than a full colour offering. It’s intended to be all about creating a brilliant base – eradicating shadows or discolouration, drawing the eye away from wrinkles or sagging or blemishes or whatever it is that you’re keen to play down. I like this idea and, although you could achieve many of the results using things you may already have in your cosmetics bag (a highlighter, a cream blush, a good foundation) it’s invaluable to have all of these bits and pieces in one place. It means that you actually use them – you actually spend the time correcting things and adding contour and making your eyes look brighter.
The compacts are a good size; not too cumbersome but with enough product inside to last a fair amount of time. I particularly like that the pans inside are “weighted” with more product in the ones that you will use most. So the contour powder in the Visible Lift Face Definer compact (above) is large, but the blush and the highlighter in the same compact are comparatively small. The undereye and blemish concealers in the Skin Perfector (pictured top) are far bigger than the colour correctors. With any luck, they’ll all run out at exactly the same time! Unless you have a penchant for incredibly rosy cheeks, or like to cover your entire face in highlighter…
Here are my before and after pics:
There’s no makeup whatsoever on the eyes and nothing on the lips; this is just my base after I’d worked in the contour powder, blush, highlighter and various coloured concealers. I think that the brightening effect is actually quite brilliant, now that I see the photographs side-by-side; there’s just the right amount of radiance, of healthy flush, and no obvious signs of there being lots of different products layered on. It’s stealth makeup at its best!
I did try to get some snaps of me with the different streaks on my face, but some showed up better than others and the best I managed was a bit of green colour corrector around my nose and chin! Sorry. I did follow the instructions, though; highlighter in all of the places where the sun hits, contour in the hollows beneath the cheekbones and at the temples, blush on the apples of the cheeks. All pretty straightforward but, as I said, it’s having all of these makeup elements in the one place, and forming a kind of ritual, that makes the difference.
A special mention must go to the foundation compact, the Age Reverse Perfect Canvas. I really like the texture of this foundation; it’s quite creamy and so you can really buff everything together. There’s a slightly darker shade, too, so you can do a bit of in-base contouring or mix together a custom shade. There are only three shade combinations available as the formulas are supposed to adapt to your skintone (and I suppose you can also customise with the dark and light shade) so I’ll be interested to see how many different tones are catered for. The “light” matched my skin perfectly but then so did the little darker foundation to the side, so I’m actually quite sold on the whole colour “adapting” business!
I’m going to stick my neck out and say that this range could do with some kind of setting powder to keep it all in place – especially within the concealer compact – because otherwise it can all get a bit slippery, especially if you have combination skin. I’m not usually a fuss-pot about powder, but I definitely needed it both times I wore the foundation out for the day, and the concealers absolutely need a bit of setting. I think that there’s an absence of powder because the dewy finish is considered to be more youthful, but something invisible that sets the makeup without leaving things looking “flat” would be really useful. (For now, I’m using the Vichy setting powder but I wait excitedly to see if Studio 10 will add something powdery-but-clever to their line.)
Studio 10 has just launched at Cult Beauty – the compacts are priced from £30 and there’s a free lip pencil worth £22 with every spend of £30 and over. You can browse the range here: cultbeauty.co.uk
If you buy a compact and want to see a demo on how to use it, the brand has a series of little Youtube videos (here). They’re not overly detailed, but they point you in the right direction…