High Street Beauty I Love You, But...

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Don't get me wrong I adore high street makeup and have been relying on it for over 15 years. However I do think it has it's flaws and with increasing prices I think it's possibly time for high street beauty stores to up their game and for cosmetic brands to give a little more value for money.

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Tidy up the tester
So, this is my no.1 bug bear when it comes to the high street. From unsanitary makeup testers to messy stands to no tissues or wipes being provided - it's all very substandard. My main issue has to be the poor state of a lot testers and the fact that a portion of customers think using/opening brand new products is totally fine. 

Can this be fixed? A few years ago a local Tesco Home store opened (it's sadly now closed down) and the standard of their makeup stands really was high and something I remember thinking all stores could benefit from looking at. All stands and testers were cleaned often, baby wipes and a bin were provided to remove makeup you had tried on and signs stating that opened makeup would have to be purchased and there was CCTV to monitoring it were dotted around. And it all worked! There was no buying makeup to only find it had been used once you got home and no awful bacteria filled testers! I really don't think this is much to ask from high street stores!

Provide coffee beans in fragrance departments
Ever heard of the coffee bean trick? It's simple, if you are smelling more than a few fragrances then you have a quick sniff of some coffee beans to stop you from going 'nose blind' and all the scents from smelling the same. I don't really know the science behind it (you can read more about it here if you're interested!) but what I do know is that it works and I've seen it in place in a few fragrance stores in Spain.

I don't know about you but I've often given up trying to find a nice fragrance when out shopping due to smelling too many scents and either develop a bit of a headache or just my nose seems to stop being able to distinguish different scents. Clearly the aim for brands and stores is for the consumer to make a purchase so coffee beans in sealed jars with small holes just makes sense!

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Sample sets
Why oh why have we yet to get anything remotely like the amazing value & sample sets that Sephora do?! Okay, Benefit offer mini bundles but that's it! I really feel the high street is missing a trick here because it clearly works well for Sephora and other U.S stores/brands, so why haven't we gotten on board with it.... at least for Christmas! I really would love to see mixed sample sets like the above ones from Sephora in the likes of Boots and Superdrug in the next few years.

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Misleading packaging sizes and small volumes 
On the whole most beauty brands are fair with their product volumes but occasionally you will come across a product with very little volume per £ or with misleading over sized packaging. The latter is referred to as slack fill which you find a lot with skincare items in plastic jars. The jar will appear quite large and weighty but the inner packaging holding the product will be much smaller. I've noticed this quite often with L'Oreal, No7 and even NYX products. Talking of NYX I recently mentioned in a blog post about my disappointment in the fairly new Liquid Suede and Lip Lingerie Lipsticks which appear larger in size to the original Soft Matte Lip Creams but contain half the product volume (Matte Lip Creams:8g Lip Lingerie:4g) and cost £1.50 more - pretty sneaky if you ask me. 

As for small product amounts it's absolutely gutting when you love a product but it contains so little. For me this is the Bourjois Liner Stylo which contains only 0.28g, such a small amount when other liners on the high street contain around 5g of product. Both product amounts and misleading packaging really needs to be addressed by trading standards I think!

The fake gel nail polish trend needs to stop

As I type this I'm currently sporting a gel manicure, it may be home done and not from a salon but with the same process my glossy nails should last me around 10 days wear time. This process is through the aid of a UV/LED lamp that cures and sets the polish solid. But can gel nails be achieved without a lamp? No. So why are we seeing 'gel' nail polishes on the high street that don't require the use of a lamp?! Surely, these are just improved nail polish formulas that are slightly more glossy and aim to last a day or so more on the nails. Having tried both gel nails and high street gel nail polishes they really are wildly different with 'gel' nail polish not offering that rock solid finish or that true extended wear time.

I'm totally fine with brands coming out with gel-style nail polishes such as the Everglaze lacquers from China Glaze that state extended wear but when brands actually say they're polishes are gel formula it all gets a bit confusing... especially if you're looking for actual gel polishes to use with a lamp! 

What are your own irks with the high street and beauty brands? 

Let me know! 

Fee xo.
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