* The best beauty products from an industry insider
* Makeup and hair artist Bree Collins shares her 10 holy grail cosmetics
* Spoiler alert: both high-end and drugstore products made the list
If you’ve ever wondered how it’s possible for models and celebrities to look so flawless every time they step out — despite hectic schedules and non-stop travel — look no further.
Makeup artists test new beauty and skincare products on a daily basis, and they work on a wide range of clients with different skin types. So when it comes to beauty advice, it’s always a good idea to turn to a seasoned expert, who can give a well-informed stamp of approval for products that work–time and time again.
We caught up with Los Angeles-based makeup and hair artist Bree Collins to find out her top ten “holy grail” beauty products that she reaches for over when working her magic on celebrity clients and models. Collins–a National Makeup Artist for L’Oreal Professional–boasts an impressive clientele roster, including the likes of Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, Jason Sudeikis, Maria Bello and Jayma Mays. She’s also worked with MAC Cosmetics, Sears, Project Runway, and of course, L’Oreal.
1. L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Mascara
This super affordable drugstore mascara is a trusted staple in many makeup artist’s kits. Collins explains why: “[It’s the] hands down best mascara. Never clumpy, never flaky and has great brush.” At under $10 a pop, there’s no reason not to make an investment in luscious lashes.
2. Bioderma Crealine H2O
Yet another trusted french pharmacy essential, Bioderma is arguably the original micellar water that kicked off the now rampant trend here in the states. Collins says this is one of her go-to products because it’s the “best cleanser to take off waterproof makeup in a snap.” The gentle formula won’t aggravate the sensitive area under the eyes, either unlike wipes and other cleansers.
3. Inglot AMC Eyeliner Gel
For a winged eye look, nothing works better than this long-lasting, hypoallergenic potted gel liner. Ideal for long days on set, Collins says this one ranks number one because of its high performing formula that doesn’t sacrifice a long wear time for intense pigmentation. “It’s highly pigmented and perfect for a precise cat eye that won’t smudge.”
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4. Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentrate
There’s a reason nearly every makeup artist keeps this French pharmacy cream in their kit at all times. When working with so many different skin types on any given day, there’s no time for selecting a different cream for each person, so a multi-functional product is essential. And like many makeup artists, Collins says Embryolisse’s Lait-creme concentrate is hands down the best. “It’s the most hydrating moisturizer out there, and it’s gentle enough for even the most sensitive faces,” she says of the cult classic. This non-greasy moisturizer also works as a skin primer, leaving the skin with plumped look.
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5. It Cosmetics “Bye Bye Undereye” Concealer
This full coverage concealer works magic on dark circles and puffy eyes on those days when your lack of sleep is really showing. And despite the tube, this concealer will last you a long time. “The tiniest amount goes a long way and it covers without creasing and looking heavy,” she says. Unlike many creamy, full coverage concealers, this one’s infused with anti-aging ingredients, like hydro-collagen and vitamin C and K to prevent it from settling into fine lines or drying out the delicate area. You’ll never hear the dreaded “you look so tired today,” comment ever again.
6. Marc Jacobs “Highliner” Gel Eyeliner
Every makeup artist needs a trusted, long lasting eye liner that’s non-fussy and portable for long days on location or events. Collins loves the Marc Jacobs “High Liner” pencil for this purpose. “[It] goes on so smooth and smudgy and will last till the cows come home,” she says. Plus, this eyeliner comes in an impressive range of shades–34 to be exact–in both matte and shimmer finishes.
7. Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick
The perfect lipstick for on and off set? Bite Beauty’s Amuse Bouche lipstick. “[This lipstick] goes on like butter and stays on without fading,” Collins says. As every lipstick lover knows, it’s hard to find lasting color that doesn’t leave your lips parched and flaky, and this one stays in place, while still feeling creamy and leaving lips feeling soft and moisturized. Another bonus? “It smells nice and it’s all natural,” adds Collins.
8. BECCA Cosmetics Shimmering Skin Perfector in “Opal”
This cult favorite is beloved by beauty gurus and professional makeup artists, alike. The pearly, cool-toned highlight powder is Collins’ “go-to highlighter.” Despite being a powder, this highlighter’s formula is impressively buttery and easy to blend, giving you a customizable level of glow that looks natural yet, defined. Plus, this shade will flatter a wide range of skin tones, without looking ashy or overly glittery.
9. It Cosmetics CC Cream
“IT cosmetics cc cream is the best [product] to use in the summer because [it’s got]–hello– SPF 50, which is incredible, and it feels lightweight but covers everything you need,” Collins tells us. BB and CC creams are usually grouped in with the sheer coverage canon, but IT cosmetics’ CC cream redefines the notion of a “your skin but better,” base. It delivers all of the skin-enhancing benefits of a conventional CC, but with the coverage of your favorite foundation.
10. Anastasia Beverly Hills “Modern Renaissance” Eyeshadow Palette
Anastasia Beverly Hills’s first permanent palette launch, “Modern Renaissance” includes 14 highly pigmented shadows in both matte and shimmer finishes, all in romantic warm tones, with a few highlighting options. “I just can’t get enough of these beautiful and unique colors,” Collins gushes. “You can go soft and pretty, or sexy and smoky for a night out,” she says. The velvety texture of each look allows for intense blendability, without losing color payoff.
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