In our minds we all have certain connotations of how budget beauty products should not only look but also preform. For too long, budget beauty has been associated with cheap, sub-par packaging and average formulations - all of which is just that, a connotation. One brand changing such attitude towards budget finds and the general landscape of affordable beauty brands is Kiko Cosmetics, the Italian company is quickly becoming a go-to destination for professionals and beauty junkies alike. If one collection will sway how you view pocket friendly beauty products forever, it will be the new Kiko Cosmetics Limited Edition Trend Collection - a huge 17 piece offering of rose gold, luxe casings and must-try beauty products for every taste and complexion.
We've seen the term Instagram-able thrown around recently and as much as I hate such term, I can't deny that the Kiko Cosmetics Limited Edition Trend is not the definition of such phrase. I mean would you just look at the beautiful, somewhat embossed, rose gold packaging. Doesn't it leave you a little weak in the knees? The Kiko Cosmetics Limited Edition Trend outer casings was designed by Ross Lovegrove - a designer renowned for his futuristic work and as such created an aesthetic essence of elegance, sensuality, femininity, and of course practicality.
For me the stand out piece has to be the Kiko Desert Dunes Baked Blush (£16.90) - a trio of soft satin blush shade stripes that can be combined or used as standalone blushes. The Kiko Desert Dunes Baked Blush is available in three different colourways; I have the slightly dusky pink-come-plum tones of Impulsive Mauve - a great cool toned blush for most complexions, especially medium to deep skin tones. The beauty of this blush is that not only is it soft, easy to blend and slightly shimmer based (great if you want to skip highlighting) but it is very easy to apply in layers should you want a more intense finish. Although not an outright dupe, the texture and overall finish of the new Kiko Desert Dunes Baked Blushes is comparable to MAC MSF Skinfinishes - lightweight, comfortable to wear and most importantly flattering. Yes the Kiko Desert Dunes Baked Blush does have a slightly shimmery finish but it does not settle into enlarged pores nor fine lines, rather it brightens the complexion and injects a healthy glow.
Lip oils are going to be huge this Summer and rightly so - you have all the sheen of a gloss but without any sticky, uncomfortable texture and perhaps most impressive the long lasting moisturising benefits of an oil based products. In my experience lip oils don't really offer a whole lot of pigment, they tend to be transparent or at the very most deliver a hint of a tint; the Kiko Heatwave Lip Oils (£10.90) are no different, three tropically scented, sheer moisturising lip treats that work with your natural lip colour rather than masking it. As Kiko Heatwave Lip Oils are of course oil based, they are somewhat waterproof and will survive a dip in the pool or sea; personally I think lip oils in general are by far cooler alternative option to lip balms. Watch this space.
Speaking of easy to wear and apply make-up, no Summer ready beauty bag is fully complete without one of the new Kiko In the Shadow Eyeshadow and Kajal Pencil (£9.90) - a duo ended, cream eyeshadow and liner pencil that allows you to create easy smoky looks in mere seconds. I've said it before and I'll say it again, no one within the budget sector comes close to Kiko when it comes to cream formulations - they are soft, easy to blend and super long wearing, even if you have oily skin. The Kiko In the Shadow Eyeshadow and Kajal Pencil will survive, heat, sweat and oil making it the ideal product to pack should you be jetting off somewhere warm. I have the Kiko In the Shadow Eyeshadow and Kajal Pencil in the shade Dark Brown and Gold - the dark brown kajal defines the eye and can be used to add a little drama to any look, where as the gold side is the perfect all round and multi-purpose cream highlighter.
Every person deserves a luxurious lipstick, a beautifully packaged product that you not only wear with pride but also one you pull out your handbag with pride - I realise this may seem a little shallow but we all need those little "look at me" moments. In my opinion there is no lipstick more beautiful than the Kiko Mirage Lip Stylo (£13.90) - a gorgeous, rose gold case that contains a beyond pigmented and comfortable, gel based lipstick, and all for less than £14. I have Kiko Mirage Lip Stylo in the shade Elderberry Spirit - a deep, vampy, brown tinged burgundy which I will saving for the colder seasons. I am so impressed with the formulation (and of course packaging) that once the new Glasgow store opens next week, I will be purchasing a few other shades.
Lastly we have the Kiko Endless Sky Volume Effect Mascara (£12.90), a great choice for anyone who has naturally long eyelashes that requires a little more volume opposed to length. As someone with straight, flimsy lashes this is not best suited to my needs (I found it to be a little too heavy) but I can vouch that it is blacker than black, not prone to smudging and smearing, and coupled with a great natural fibre brush that grips and grabs onto even the smallest lashes. A great all round mascara for those with fairly long and naturally curled lashes to begin with.
I really hope this is the future of affordable cosmetics, don't you?
You can shop the entire Kiko Cosmetics Limited Edition Trend Collection here - link.