A collage of Marie Reynolds and Daniel Sandler's Watercolour Gel

Pretty Damn Good: the gel blusher this skin expert relies on for a quick, healthy flush

Welcome to Stylist’s Pretty Damn Good, a weekly series in which different women share the one product – across hair care, skincare, make-up, body and fragrance – that remains a forever staple in their beauty routines.

When you pay a visit to Marie Reynolds, you’ll quickly realise her approach to skincare is unlike anybody elses.

Reynolds has over 35 years in the skincare and wellness industry but it’s her immense wealth of knowledge across a wide range of topics that makes her treatments so cutting-edge. She has studied beauty therapy, homeopathy, genetics, counselling, aromatherapy, oriental diagnosis, the Bowen technique, colonic hydrotherapy and energy medicine. And she has also launched her very own skincare brand, eponymously named Marie Reynolds London.

The range follows a three step routine: supplements, skincare and crystals and tools. Reynolds believes that skin therapy and advanced holistic wellbeing go hand-in-hand and so, she focuses on looking at skin with an internal and external perspective. Her treatments include intuitive touch therapies and she works to restore any energy imbalances while also searching for other factors that may result in skin issues or cause the body pain.

Reynolds practices in her Norfolk-based clinic and, pre-lockdown, split the rest of her time between travelling to clients globally and working as a guest therapist Fortnum & Mason and 58 St Molton Street, London. But as somebody who leads a busy lifestyle yet believes in the importance of energy balance, what are the products that Reynolds turns to for herself? Here, she tells us about the one beauty item she can’t go without.

Marie Reynolds
Marie Reynolds is a skin and wellness expert.

“I have been using Daniel Sandler’s Watercolour Gel, £16.50, since it launched a couple of years ago. I am lucky enough to be great friends with Daniel – we met through the industry and have stayed in touch over the years. He gifted me my first Watercolour Gel as I was obsessed with his original Watercolour blushers and creams. It has been a firm staple in my everyday make-up kit ever since. I don’t think a day has gone by when I haven’t worn it as it’s so versatile.

“Although the original is also amazing, the gel formulation of Watercolour Gel is so light and natural, so it doesn’t feel like you’re wearing make-up. Plus, it has particles within the formula which catch the light and give you that ‘glowing-from-within’ look. You can layer it over make-up or apply it directly to bare skin for a gentle flushed glow. Plus, it has added vitamin E and hyaluronic acid, so you really can wear it every day – your skin will thank you for it.

Daniel Sandler Watercolour Gel Nectar
Daniel Sandler's Watercolour Gel in Nectar.

“The first thing that drew me to it was the colour! I love natural hues and use Nectar, a pretty peach shade. But all of the shades are very subtle and beautiful. The consistency was also key for me (its a combination of the original Watercolour texture and cream) so it blends seamlessly into my skin and doesn’t feel heavy or cakey like some liquid blushes can. It sits perfectly on top of my skincare and feels like it’s working with my skin and enhancing it, rather than masking it. This blusher also lasts beautifully all day and night which is great, as I rarely have time to reapply.

“This area of my beauty routine is important to me as it makes me feel and look my best for myself and my clients. Even if you’re feeling tired or run down, adding a pop of colour to your cheeks really does make you feel more alive. I think blush is the one skin product which really enhances your natural skin effortlessly – most of the time people don’t even realise you’re wearing it because it looks so much like your natural flush – a good blush gives you the air of ‘looking well’.

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“It is so easy to use, it’s quick (I’ve been known to apply whilst on the go, which I mostly am), you don’t need any fancy tools to apply it and it leaves a beautiful and healthy glow to the skin. I always apply it with my fingers, I find the warmth melts the formula effortlessly into my skin. I apply a tiny amount to my ring finger and pat gently it onto the apples of the cheeks, blending outwards, if needed.

“You can layer the colour to intensify it and make it appear more pigmented on the skin – even after a few hours. If I’m going straight out in the evening, or I have an important meeting, I’ll just layer some over the top of my morning make-up and sometimes I use it as a lip stain, too.”

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Main image: Marie Reynolds/courtesy of brand