When it comes to beauty shopping, you can't keep a determined woman down. As the doors opened an hour and a half earlier for the press, makeup artists, brand representatives and invited guests, there was a flurry of excitement and a huge buzz. Among the highlights: A sushi conveyor belt at the Make Up For Ever counter where you can shop four seasonal looks, and Kat Von D Beauty, that was debuting in Singapore today, and boasts the brand's first shop-in-shop concept in the world.
Between shelves upon shelves of products and the feverish hubbub inside and outside — we see you, queueing fellow beauty addicts — our heads were spinning (and sweating) while we made a mad circuit around this cave of makeup wonders to grab the goodies on our wishlist before they get swiped. The fruits of our, albeit slightly manic, beauty run? We give you the dish on the good stuff you might just want to purchase when you pop into Sephora for round two (or three).
Renée Batchelor, Beauty Editor
1. Kat Von D Beauty Lock-It Concealer in Medium 26, $37
I was looking for a good, high-coverage concealer to properly hide spots and old acne scars, and this one won from the other options available. The reason — both the close match to my skin tone, and easy-to-use format. Just squeeze it out of the tiny tube and dab it on with your fingers, or spot apply precisely with a concealer brush. Another tip I learnt from the makeup artist on hand, mix it with some moisturiser to create a light, all-over base. Vegans will be glad to know its 100 per cent cruelty-free and even non-vegans will appreciate the matte finish and 24-hour long wear.
2. Clarins Double Serum Complete Age Control, $121 for 30ml
The basis of any great makeup look is a good complexion, and I swear by this anti-ageing serum that's like a daily vitamin boost for the skin. During my maternity break, I wore just this (and no moisturiser) and stayed out of the sun and air-conditioning completely, and my skin had never looked more luminous, even-toned and translucent. This global serum, that addresses multiple concerns from visible pores to wrinkles, has won many beauty awards for a good reason. My only gripe? I love this stuff so much I tend to go through each bottle super quick.
3. Make Up For Ever Pro Sculpting Palette in 20 Light
This contouring palette was originally a limited edition item, but flew off the shelves so fast, the pioneering French makeup brand introduced it in its permanent stable of offerings. What's unique about it? The cream formula blends like a dream and can be applied over liquid and powder foundations, for a natural, believable contour. Don't know how to contour or even use this? Pop by the brand's Sephora Ion counter and get a quickie 15-minute tutorial.
Angelyn Kwek, Writer
1.Becca x Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop Face Palette, $80
Packed with gorgeous, glowing goodness in three blush colours and two highlight shades — one of which is the coveted Champagne Pop and the other a palette exclusive shade — who doesn't want to nab a box for themselves? I certainly did. Once you're able to tear your eyes away from the hypnotic gleam, you'll do the math and work out that five shades for its price makes the palette a worthy buy, especially if the formula of Becca's Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed is your strobing kryptonite. Also, it doubles as a back up if your Champagne Pop compact is on its last legs.
2. Tarte x Grav3yardgirl limited-edition Swamp Queen Eye & Cheek palette with brush, $72
As if stamping limited edition on the label isn't enough of an incentive, the pretty packaging and to-die-for wearable colours make this a must-have for all the eyeshadow palette hoarders out there (yes, guilty as charged). You don't have to be a fan of beauty guru Grav3yardgirl to appreciate her taste as the set features pigmented, warm-toned shades that let you play with creating several looks. Generously including a blush, bronzer, highlight and mini-brush with densely packed bristles, this unashamed makeup junkie snatched it right off the shelf whilst shrieking in delight.
3. Kat Von D Beauty Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks in Damned and Echo, $31 each
I'm spoilt for choice when it comes to lipsticks, and may or may not have splurged on a bunch of Kylie Lip Kits, but Kat Von D Beauty holds a special place in my heart as I scored her limited edition Candelabra Tattoo Chronicles palette back in Christmas of 2011 — and I've been hooked on all things Kat ever since. Now that the brand is finally here, you bet your britches I was going to try the highly raved Everlasting lipsticks. After swatching the entire back of my hand, my picks went to Damned and Echo as these are rare hues I've yet to own. And with an awesome formula that is as matte as they come? To quote Buro 24/7: 'Heck yes'.
The new Sephora Ion is at #B2-09 Ion Orchard, 6509-8255. Products can also be purchased online