8 long-lasting make-up products that will stay put through everything

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Jacqueline Kilikita
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Beauty products are working harder and longer than ever before. Stylist picks the heroes of the hour…

There’s nothing more vexing than looking in a mirror and seeing that the lipstick you painstakingly applied has smudged onto your chin like the remnants of a Pret lunch, or almost disappeared and left an unsightly tidemark along your bottom lip.

Not to mention that moment you glimpse your eyeliner before a business lunch and notice that it’s faded from black to a dubious-looking grey. Obviously there are things that are more annoying than this, but as far as beauty bugbears go, it’s high up there. Mintel reports that 43% of us say products not lasting is our biggest make-up frustration, something that’s especially infuriating when we’re working longer hours than anyone else in Europe. Research by Eurostat found that the UK has the longest working week – an exhausting 42.3 hours, compared to Denmark’s 37.8. We deserve make-up that puts in as much effort as we do.

“The main reason we’re after long-wear products is because we’re packing so much more into our days,” says NYX professional make-up artist, Dean Smith. “Spending over eight hours a day in the office then socialising in the evening is normal life. Plus, our commutes are getting longer as inner city housing prices soar, and we’re working out more, so our days are naturally extended.”

“Because of this, there’s a real demand for products that last the duration and eliminate the worry of looking unkempt come 3pm, or the need to touch up when we don’t have the time.” 

And it seems that companies are finally responding to the demands. From luxury to high street, more and more brands have made it their mission to develop make-up essentials that boast commute-friendly formulas that won’t slip or slide around, and clever pigments that cling to the skin from morning barrecore through to board meetings and after-work cocktails. Read on for our guide to the very best long-wear make-up.

The eyeshadow : Glossier Lidstar in Cub

Lasts for: 12 hours

Glossier’s cream eyeshadow promises 12-hour wear but it goes above and beyond that. The formula grasps onto skin, staying flexible and moving with your lids to prevent creasing. Available in six shades, one swipe yields a gauzy veil of colour, two dials up the intensity and three lends a mesmerising foil effect.


The concealer: Laura Mercier Flawless Fusion Ultra-Longwear Concealer in 2N

Lasts for: 12 hours

The ultimate concealer should be pigmented enough to erase blemishes, easy to blend and lend a radiant finish: this does all three and promises extensive wear in 12 shades, too.


The blusher: NARS Liquid Blush in Orgasm

Lasts for: 14 hours

Cast aside any notions of liquid blush being thin, flimsy and slippery – this is anything but. Just one drop of Nars’ highly pigmented formula, available in five shades, is enough to give cheeks a dash of believable colour that holds up against oiliness, humidity and sweaty train journeys.


The eyeliner: L’Oreal Paris Tattoo Signature 24hr Liquid Eyeliner in Xtra Black

Lasts for: 24 hours

The clue’s in the name here, and its promise of impressive 24-hour wear is upheld. The colour stays perfectly rich and intact (no smudging, flaking or turning grey) until you see fit to melt it away with an oil-based make-up remover at the end of the day.


The lipstick: Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink in Pioneer

Lasts for: 12 hours

One swipe of this liquid lipstick was enough to dress our lips in a blanket of intense, inky colour that lasted through emergency coffees, a sugared doughnut and a plateful of pasta (it was deadline day). Plus, the smooth formula, available in 18 shades, didn’t leave our lips dry.


The mascara: Fairydrops Scandal Queen Waterproof Mascara

Lasts for: 48 hours

Don’t let the unusual-shaped brush put you off. This clever Japanese mascara is filled to bursting with fibres and waterproof pigments that thicken even the scantest of lashes. On us, it lasted a 14-hour flight and beyond without crumbling. Squalene and jojoba seed oil mean lashes never feel dry or crispy. Sold.


The brow filler: Wunderbrow Fiber Filler in Brunette

Lasts for: 24 hours

Water-resistant fibres in this brow powder lock on to the skin and hair for a full-looking, natural effect in four shades. The next day, our brows still looked tinted, meaning no pencilling in sparse patches.


The foundation: Huda Beauty #FauxFilter Foundation in Amaretti

Lasts for: 16 hours 

This only launched four months ago but it’s already an Instagram sensation – and for good reason. Durable without feeling heavy, a single pump will erase everything from pigmentation to blemishes. The 30-strong shade spectrum is impressive, too.


Main Image: Unsplash