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Simone Gannon: Great beauty products don’t have to be expensive. Here are six standouts under €20

There are plenty of affordable options to help you achieve a flawless base, a defined brow or a glossy lip

Great beauty products don’t have to be expensive. There are plenty of affordable options out there to help you achieve a flawless base, a defined brow or a glossy lip. Here are six recent standouts that rival their high-end counterparts.

Catrice Instant Awake Under Eye Brightener

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

For days when you don’t want to wear much make-up or indeed any at all but still want to look rested, say hello to Catrice Instant Awake Under Eye Brightener (€4.95 from mccormackspharmacy.ie). Don’t let the implausibly affordable price and cute packaging deceive you; this little pink pot is the nemesis of an exhausted-looking under-eye. It cuts through dark shadows, masks hollowness and leaves you looking bright and refreshed. A little goes a long way, so apply sparingly to start and then build up as needed. Available in two shades: Light Rose and Warm Nude.

Revolution Skin Silk Luminous Serum Foundation

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

An impressive make-up-meets-skincare launch from Revolution, Skin Silk Luminous Serum (€15.49 from Boots) delivers coverage and comfort in quite a nice glass bottle. Available in 20 shades, I feel this foundation deserves a “great for every day” tagline. It’s snug on the skin thanks to plumping, hydrating ingredients, including hyaluronic acid and peptides, and its light, fluid formula can be whacked on in seconds – medium coverage, smooth with a radiant finish and a pretty decent wear time. After a 14-hour day, I noticed only minimal patchiness on my chin. Not bad for less than €16.

L’Oreal Lash Paradise Mascara

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

My go-to mascara for more than seven years, my love for L’Oreal Lash Paradise (€16.99 from Boots) runs deep. Many colour options and formulas have hit shelves over the years, including waterproof, but nothing comes close to the original. Expect dramatically dark, lengthened, fluttery lashes every single time. Moreover, it doesn’t clump or flake as it wears throughout the day (or night). It’s buildable, too. I like to wear one to two coats during the day, and three to four at night (the latter gently nudges your lashes into are-they-real-or-are-they-fake territory, but in the best possible way). One of the greatest mascaras ever created.

Maybelline Build A Brow Pencil and Gel

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

If there are 100 brow pens on the market, I have tried 99 of them. It’s a product category I am very invested in as I use one daily to disguise blobs of pigment left behind from old microblading. To create natural-looking hair strokes, a good brow pen must have two things: a firm, sharp pen and a consistent flow of pigment. Maybelline Build A Brow Pencil and Gel (€13.95 from lookfantastic.ie) ticks both boxes (and the affordability box, too). A pen and brow gel in one, it helps to create shape, definition and surprisingly good hold. Available in four shades.

Kash Beauty Sweet Dreams Lip Oil

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

Lip oils are having a moment, and so is one of our home-grown brands. Kash Beauty Sweet Dreams Lip Oil (€14.95 from kashbeauty.com) delivers more than just pretty pout thanks to a who’s who of plumping, hydrating ingredients, including collagen, vitamin E, ceramides, hyaluronic acid, rosehip oil and shea butter. This is next-level nourishment and hydration in a buttery, glossy, super chic finish. Available in a range of shades, my personal favourite is Candy Kiss, a cool-toned, rosy pink.

Sculpted by Aimee’s Complexion Duo Brush

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

Not a product but rather an excellent high-quality make-up brush that solves a number of problems and looks chic doing it. Sculpted by Aimee’s Complexion Duo Brush (€19 from sculptedbyaimee.com) is a super soft, dual-ended synthetic make-up brush that deftly applies both foundation and concealer without dragging on the skin or soaking up too much product. It’s ideal for travel or just minimising space in your make-up bag.

I love it so much that I purchased a second for cream eyeshadow and cream blush.

This week I’m loving . . . Bumble and Bumble Dryspun Texture Spray Light

Simone Gannon's March 16th beauty coolumn

If you want undone, effortless texture, I highly recommend Bumble and Bumble Dryspun Texture Spray Light (€35 from zolobeauty.com). The latest addition to the brand’s Thickening range, this airy mist instantly refreshes the hair and adds volume and texture without weight or crunchiness. It’s lightweight with no grit, meaning you can apply it liberally while maintaining a natural look.

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