On Tuesday I had some stuff to do in town (more info coming soon...!) and while I was wandering through I went to Debenham's to take a look at the beauty counters. After swatching a few Bare Escentuals Ready shadows - which are beautiful - I noticed a brand new Calvin Klein cosmetics counter. I asked the MUA if there was a price list and was told that whilst no price list was available, they were offering absolutely free makeovers that day. So I sat down on one of those silly little stools and got my make up done for free! What a nice surprise. As I took a couple of snaps and had a really brilliant chat to Lauren, who did my make up, I thought I'd write up a little blog post about it. I think beauty counters are what put a lot of people off really loving make-up: between the uppity staff and the array of products with little explanation, as well as pushy women on commission, it can be a bit of a nightmare. Luckily CK One was definitely an exception.
The first product we talked about was foundation: I am a very fussy girl when it comes to base. I told Lauren I needed to start using products that weren't as heavy as I'd used in the past. She told me to try ck one's 3in1 face makeup in shade 200, fair. I was more than a little skeptical about a product offering sheer-to-medium coverage and built-in serum and primer. I have fairly oily skin and a very uneven skintone and didn't think this would do much for me. However, buffed in with a foundation brush I found this to be really comfortable on the skin and giving enough coverage so that my natural skin shone through - but only where we wanted it to! I really liked this and even better, it was still firmly in place that night after being fixed with airlight pressed powder. Got this applied at 11am, and when I went to remove it at 11pm, it was definitely still going strong.
Eyes we left alone as I had done them that morning - Urban Decay Roach, Smog and Baked - but my brows were refreshed somewhat with brow pencil & gel duo in 'wily brunette'. This was a brilliant product with a wedge-shaped waxy pencil on one end, and a sheer gel with a spoolie applicator at the other.
Face was given some serious warmth and shimmer which I love. The cream & powder blusher duo in 700 happiness - a lovely coral pink with a golden brown shimmer side - was applied and blended liberally all over the apples of my cheeks and up the cheekbones. I would never have a) used a cream product here or b) used so much of it so it was brilliant to have someone test out something new. I told Lauren I totally trusted her and let her do whatever she felt best. I definitely had a lot more dewiness and 'life' to my face than usual and as I've said it lasted very well. Some skin illuminator in 200 warm was also applied for a gold highlight on the tops of my cheekbones, browbones and cupid's bow.
Finally the lips - Lauren layered pure color lipstick in 310 apology underneath lipgloss in 500 mad for a really vampy lip.
A final word on the products: we used a small sample of the line on my face for this look, but Lauren was kind enough to talk me through the other products. Pricing was pretty much on a par with MAC, with some products coming up a lot cheaper - the eyeshadow bases which come in several shades are only £11, and the nail polishes only £9. CK One aren't selling brushes, as they feel it would be difficult for them to really innovate in this area within their price range. I totally respect this: brushes are a difficult market that is basically dominated by a few brands and it seems pretty pointless to me for lines to keep bringing out the same basic seven brushes time and time again. The focus for CK One is on multi-functional, space-saving and efficient products, and I think that really shows. Products like the blusher duos could work all over the face, and the eyeshadows came mostly in duos, trios and quads, making it easy to create a look with only one pan. Packaging is sleek and tidy for all products. The items that impressed me the most were definitely the double-ended brow product - why nobody has created that pencil before is a mystery to me - and the 3in1 face make-up, which incorporates serum and primer to give a long-lasting finish.
All in all a brilliant experience, and a brand that I will definitely be looking to in the future.