Stylist's Best Beauty Apps

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Stylist Team
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You only have to flick through a few beauty pages in Stylist to know the beauty world is changing at a rapid pace.

Revolutionary research is being conducted on skincare, new make-up colours and effects are launched every week, and there are just as many hair trends as there are in clothes every season.

However, the one thing that hasn't quite kept up with beauty's soaring pace is the app world. It comes down to the fact that many beauty apps aren't realistically functional, useful or forward-thinking. Let's just say the beauty world hasn't had an Angry Birds moment yet.

Nonetheless, amongst the disappointing downloads there are some true gems you need to know about. These are the ones changing the way we shop, the make-up colours we pick, the way we look after our skin and the way we share ideas.

Here are the 10 very best beauty apps you should download now...

Let us know your best beauty app recommendations in the comments below or @Stylist Magazine.

Words: Sejal Kapadia, Image: Rex Features

  • The Color Genius by L'Oréal Paris

    Free, iTunes

    The geniuses at L'Oréal Paris have answered the question we ask ourselves every time we open an overflowing make-up bag. What colour should I wear? This brilliant app uses the colour of your outfit, time of day and location to suggest a lip, eye and nail colour that matches, blends or clashes with your clothes, depending on the look you're after. If that wasn't good enough, you can take a picture of your hand and try the nail varnish. Use this tool to break away from your failsafe colours and learn what make-up colours work well together.

  • Pretty in my pocket

    Free, iTunes

    We were torn picking the best app for beauty reviews, with Beauty Product Reviews by and Beautylish being highly commended. But Pretty in my Pocket (Primp) won us over as the ultimate shopping companion. You can scan the barcode or search for over 100,000 products and read honest reviews. Because it is an American app, if your product isn't in their catalogue it will direct you to a local supplier and there's plenty more to keep you gripped, from a live photo library of products tested by the Primp community to 'top product' lists.

  • iDrated

    £0.69, iTunes

    They say water is the best natural beauty elixir, but it's hard to keep on top of how much you're drinking. (Say, when was the last time you drank a full glass of water?). iDrated logs your water intake, prompts you to drink and collates the amount you've consumed over seven days in a handy graph. Your very own interactive infographic.

  • Two Magazine by Pixiwoo

    Free, iTunes

    Samantha and Nicola Chapman, the sisters behind beauty blog and Youtube channel phenomenon Pixiwoo are continuing to pave the way for innovative beauty content with their monthly mobile magazine about make-up artists, photographers, bloggers and artists. Beautifully designed and flawlessly interactive, the pages are filled with links to click and videos to watch in order to get closer to the subject.

  • My Own

    Free, iTunes

    Own is a San Francisco based skin-health company which launched with one goal in mind: creating clinically proven, quality, good-for-you, anti-aging treatments. Their app hopes to revolutionise how the ageing process is measured and tracked. It combines facial recognition and clinical research technology to determine your personal beauty numbers around fine lines, deep wrinkles, and hyper-pigmentation. It enables you to track them over time and measure yourself against your peer group.

  • Sleep by MotionX

    £1.99, iTunes

    According to, skin cell regeneration almost doubles at night, peaking between 11pm and 4am. This is one study out of hundreds that suggest 'beauty sleep' is a real thing. Therefore Sleep by MotionX (one of the most popular sleeping apps out there with seven years of research and development behind it) is a must on our beauty apps list. It will help improve your sleep in a natural and non-invasive manner.

  • World UV

    Free, iTunes

    Brought to you by the British Association of Dermatologists in partnership with the Met Office, this app forecasts UV rays for over 10,000 locations around the world. It also provides information about individual skin types (from very pale skin to naturally brown or black skin), top tips on sun protection, and what to look for in a sunscreen.

  • Virtual Makeover by ModiFace

    Free, iTunes, Google Play

    There are a lot of makeover apps out there, but Virtual Makeover by ModiFace is the most realistic and fun. Simply take a picture of yourself and try real-life beauty products and celebrity hairstyles. The downside is it's an American app, so you may not recognise some beauty brands and a premium upgrade is required to try the full product catalogue.

  • Pinterest

    Free, iTunes, Google Play

    Though some apps have tried, few can beat the large beauty community on Pinterest who flood pages with how-to's, inspirations and ideas for hair, make-up, nails and anything else you can think of. Just browse through the bottomless 'Hair & Beauty' section or use the search tool for specific topics, for example 'wedding hair'. Many 'pins' are linked to original articles on websites so it's a great search engine tool too.

  • Mirror

    Free, iTunes for @Mirror, Google Play for Mirror

    You would think your forward-facing camera would do the trick, but these mirror apps increase visibility by brightening the image, zooming in and giving you the option to freeze the image and check your make-up. Now you won't have to worry about packing a pocket mirror.

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Stylist Team