Beauty spotlight – Smashbox haul

After years of battling with tinted moisturisers and gradual face tanners, I have finally caved and decided I need some proper makeup. So, I grabbed my debit card, steeled myself, and delved into the makeup counters at the Metrocentre.

Plagued by good reviews from friends (and strangers!) I headed straight for the Smashbox counter. The (very helpful, very stylish) lady took me through their range. Here’s the lowdown on their foundations and bases, depending on preference and skin type.

Top of the class

Camera Ready BB Water (£29)

Blends well, with the perfect amount of coverage. Adheres to the skin and any contour or bronzer you put on afterwards, leaving you looking smooth and fresh (and camera ready).

BB water

The applicator is a bit fiddly, but not messy, and fair/light suits my skin perfectly. Although the first layer provides light coverage, it’s buildable to full, allowing more control over your complexion for big nights out.

Special mentions:


Photo Filter Powder Foundation (£29)

If you have oily skin or just prefer a matte look, this is the product for you. Personally I find that powder easily becomes caked around my skin as it’s quite dry, but this formula was one of the better ones I’ve tried.

Filter Powder


All-day wear:

Studio Skin 15-Hour Wear Hydrating Foundation (£29)

If you like a fuller coverage than the BB water every day, this is for you. Glides on easily and doesn’t budge all day (I asked her to try this one on last so I could test its staying power).

15 hour wear

I’ve heard from friends who are more daring with their makeup that this is one of the few foundations they’ve found that completely covers oily skin and doesn’t slip. I’d consider getting this too, for big nights out or self-conscious days!

Easy light coverage:

Camera Ready CC Cream (£29)

This one is really a lightly tinted moisturiser; do NOT buy if you need more coverage! However, for those of you who want to blend in dark spots without caking your skin, this is a great option.

CC cream

Inexpensive, SPF30 and smells great- this is a great product, although I’ve heard mixed reviews from my friends with oilier skin than me, saying it sits on their skin rather tan blending in.

The duds

Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream (£29)

This was supposed to replace their tinted moisturiser, but as far as I can see, it hasn’t lived up to standards. Heavy formula and extra shine makes this a non-favourite in the beauty crowd.

BB cream

Yes, it may have won an award, but no-one really seems to know why. The coverage isn’t great either, although at least this one reaches SPF35.

Liquid Halo HD Foundation (£29)

Again, another light coverage. This one’s unique selling point is the liquid light technology that is supposed to blend away colour differences and leave skin looking luminous.

liquid halo

However, compared to Smashbox’s previous ‘HD’ foundations, this one just doesn’t hit the bar. Very light coverage that wears off easily, the general consensus is that this one just isn’t worth the money. You’d be better off with the BB water or 15-hour wear.


And just in case you thought this post was going to be all about foundation, here’s a little something to get you excited.


The Smashbox ShapeMatters Pallette.


Comprising two eyebrow powders plus their wax, three contouring shades, a highlighter and nine of their best-selling eye shades, all for £60. If you bought these all separately, it would cost you over £100.


In most palettes, there’s at least one dud. Something you’d never wear because it was too garish or glittery. After a week’s use, I can proudly state that there are none. Every shade goes perfectly with my skin tone (fair/light) and the eyeshadows cover day and night looks, meaning you can tone your look up or down with a flick of the specially shaped brush that’s included.


It even comes with tutorial cards to show you how to shape your face properly, and videos you can access easily online using your phone. Just scan the card and off you go!

Perfect to go over my brand new BB water.


Only problem? They’re limited edition, so don’t count on them being around for long. Especially if I have anything to say about it!


Peace and powder,


The NCLinsider xx 


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