I'm an inherently nosy person to begin with, but when it comes to beauty, my high-key curiosity reaches gargantuan, borderline-stalkerish levels. I follow makeup artists, fellow beauty editors, and digital content creators like it's a sport, and I always want, no, scratch that, need to know what everyone else in the beauty space is loving, using, and currently hoarding.
It's pretty much written in my job description to know (and be ahead of) what's trending in the U.S. in terms of beauty—be it trends, products, or brands—but my grasp on all of the above starts to slip where the other side of the pond is concerned. So, the other week while perusing my socials and stalking some of my favorite UK-based beauty peeps, I had a brilliant-beyond-brilliant idea: Why not ask some of the industry's coolest names what's trending and what they're loving on the UK front? With exposure to different types of trends and certain products and brands we might be less familiar with here in the States, it felt like the perfect opportunity to get some fresh inspiration in the beauty department—something I'm always craving at the start of the new year.
Keep scrolling to follow some of my favorite UK-based beauty experts and shop the best-of-the-best products sitting at the top of their radar right now.
"This pencil is so precise and the color matches my brows perfectly. I love the fullness it gives whilst still looking as if I grew them myself. The brush at the end helps blend my brows seamlessly with the natural hairs of my brows. I've been using Benefit brow products for over five years and still can't get enough of them"
"This shade of nude for myself and others with deeper skin tones is unmatched. Kiko lip glosses have the best shade range for almost any lip color you want. The formula and consistency sit so well and lasts all day!"
"You cannot go wrong with a sensitive-conscious product that makes you glow like no other! From using it as a baby to a full-grown adult, I can't recommend it enough. From daily use to being one of the final touches for glam prep. I couldn't go a day without it."
"The Dyson dryer has simply changed my life. The technology behind how it works for almost every hair type still doesn't make sense to me, but it really does work. I have type-4 hair and it's so efficient and effective every time. I can't say a bad thing about it!"
"This fragrance is a recent favorite of mine. Many will already have heard the hype behind Maison Francis Kurkdjian, but the Oud Satin Mood has simply eclipsed almost every other fragrance in my collection. The longevity, the smell, and the compliments I get? It's the absolute best fragrance for an ego boost. I don't wear it every day, but I'll never give it up!"
Ellise Ferguson, Makeup Artist and Digital Content Creator
"We all know by now that the fundamental step of great makeup is great skin prep. Hyaluronic acid is that magic ingredient the beauty community can't get enough of. Whether you're dry and are in need of some more moisture or on the oilier side and need to balance the oils your skin is producing due to dehydration, hyaluronic acid is a skincare ingredient that everyone can benefit from. This Vichy Mineral 89 serum leaves skin feeling [cool], refreshed, hydrated and plump with no tackiness. Perfect base for layering under makeup. A staple in my skincare routine and pro kit."
"Makeup artists and beauty lovers alike, we all love a multi-use product. Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter is one of those makeup bag essentials. Used as a glowy base, alone for healthy skin tint, or on top of foundation as a highlight to mimic that healthy glow all year round."
"This is another multiuse product. A beautiful rich cream texture with great staying power and chic shade range for all skin tones. You can apply it using your fingertips or a brush for use on cheeks, but I also like to use on lips and eyes for an easy monochromatic feel. Plus refillable equals less packaging waste!"
"An all-in-one palette that's high-performance and user friendly. It's the perfect palette for on-the-go use as it includes the brand's ground-breaking powder, blush, bronzer, and highlight formulas. The vegan and cruelty-free palette is part of the unlocked collection which also donates 5% of annual profits to the Nonhuman Rights Project!"
"This liquid lipstick/lip stain hybrid dries down to a comfortable, weightless, and demi-matte finish with no transfer or smudges. It's perfect for when you need a long-lasting reliable lip color that you won’t have to worry about topping up. It comes in a variety of bolder shades which I believe are here to stay for the spring/summer season."
Shannon Lawlor, Beauty Editor, Editorial Expert and Consultant
"Whenever a new Maybelline mascara launches in the UK it's big news. In fact, it's one of the few high-street (or drugstore) makeup brands that really gets beauty editors excited. As someone that leans towards luxury when it comes to my makeup routine, I can't believe that this little guy is so affordable. In fact, I'd go as far to say it's up there with my favorite mascaras of all time. It adds major length and curl without any weight or volume so that lashes look as naturally long as possible. Put the formula in a sleek black tube and it could go for five times the price."
"Face wipes are basically considered criminal in the UK and very few people use them due to their environmental pitfalls. Nowadays, it is much more common for women to just use a micellar water to ‘cleanse’ (we’re low-maintenance creatures, after all). As a beauty editor, I’m constantly drumming home the importance of a wash-off cleanser, but that’s not to say I don’t understand the appeal of one-swipe-and-you're-done micellar water. While so many formulas out there contain potentially drying ingredients, this stuff is filled with nourishing ceramides and soothing niacinamide to give skin as close to a real cleanse as possible."
"When Charlotte Tilbury launches a new foundation, you better believe it’s destined for greatness. In the UK, Charlotte Tilbury has long been deemed a brand for serious makeup lovers thanks to its ‘airbrushing’ full-coverage products. This new foundation, however, has opened the brand up to the masses. It has a much more buildable coverage and a natural finish on the skin. Plus, it’s filled with skin-loving ingredients like hyaluronic acid to plump and boost glow, making it the perfect everyday base. We crave products that can deliver a natural-looking, no-fuss glow because the sun rarely shines here, and this foundation delivers just that."
"Believe it or not, Nécessaire isn’t available to buy in the UK, however, it’s due to launch here at the end of this month—and it’s sure to be big news. We’re all familiar with the brand thanks to its Instagrammable aesthetic and rave reviews from the U.S., and now we can finally try it for ourselves. Drab weather means that, as a nation, we don’t take bodycare very seriously unless we’re going on holiday (although I will exclude myself from such a sweeping statement), but I have a really good feeling about this launch. I have been trying the formulas over the past week or so and I genuinely can’t say enough great things about them. The Body Lotion is unlike anything else we have over here. It takes skin-soothing nourishment to a whole new level and doesn’t leave a greasy film on the skin or require any effort to work in. I’m anticipating I’ll get through bottles of the stuff."
"What can I say about these lipsticks? I have been waiting for a new lipstick to blow me away and this is it. I love the comfortable feel of this lipstick and the fact that it's highly pigmented so you don't need to keep applying it. One of my celebrity clients said it's a game-changer and I totally agree with her. Vivid colors, the perfect reds, and even more importantly (to me that is) the perfect nudes. The color range is superb and excitingly Armani is launching more incredible shades in 2022. I am so excited for these new additions, all I can say is some of the new shades fit in perfectly with the '90s beauty trend I keep banging on about."
"Suqqu's famous Signature Colour Eyeshadow Palette now comes in Matte shades. 03 Hikarigue and 02 Youkouire are both earthy brown tones which I adore and also fit perfectly into the '90s beauty trend which is having a major comeback in 2022. What I particularly love about these quad palettes is you can build up and layer color for a multidimensional finish for an authentic '90s eye or for a more modern look."
"I am loving this foundation for these reasons. You can achieve glowing radiant skin in an instant with this lightweight foundation. It gives more or a translucent finish that is infused with water for major plumpness and hydration. I really want the skin to look as real as can be, to show off that skin texture with the most beautiful finish to the skin. It really is a second skin. Out with the cakey heavy foundation and in with skin that looks real."
"A little goes a long way with this concealer. I like to apply under the eyes and tap in with my fingertip for a seamless finish. It's crease-proof and waterproof and leaves the skin with a subtle glow, which I love. This is a must-have in the makeup kit this year."
"This product is so versatile. I particularly love shades 20 and 51—I use these the most in my kit. The matte finish of these balms is what I am looking for right now, yet again fitting in with the '90s beauty trend. I grew up in the '90s, so reliving this beauty trend is so exciting, especially when I am able to re-create authentic looks with super-blendable and easy-to-use products like these Melting Color Balms."
"When this product blew up on TikTok, I knew I had to get it. This is my go-to product for smooth, silky plump lips. Right before I put on lipstick, especially if it's matte, I apply this and it makes my lipstick go on effortlessly. Dior makeup for me always hits the spot. This has literally become a staple in my makeup bag now."
"I think bodycare is just as important as facial skincare—that’s why I've been using this product for months. The results from using this cream are insane. It makes my skin feel almost instantly softer and tighter. Not to mention it’s got an insane coconut-vanilla scent. Every time I use this, I feel like Adriana Lima."
"I used to be a brow pomade fanatic until I tried using E.l.f.’s brow pencil, and it's made such a difference. It’s so easy to apply and takes half the time! E.l.f. is my favorite brand when it comes to dupes for high-end makeup because their quality is never compromised by the price tag."
"Lately, I've been very into Korean skincare. Korean skincare is just on another level. CosRx Snail mucin essence is unlike any product I’ve used before. it gives me that beautiful porcelain glass skin and works so well as a primer. I know having snail extract may sound gross, but trust me. Give it a try because the glow you get after just a couple of uses is unreal."
"The gua sha technique has absolutely changed my skincare routine. I do this immediately after applying oils or serums on my face and it contours my face like no other. Doing this also relaxes you after a stressful day. It’s like face meditation."
"I am obsessed with every product Lisa Eldridge drops. The latest foundation is dreamy, and I’ve been an avid fan of her lipstick textures since they came out. You may never find a better classic red. Velvet Ribbon is a mainstay like RubyWoo was for MAC, and if you're looking for a vibrant rich modern textured long-lasting red, this one is at the top of my list and has been for a while."
"BFF cream by Trinny London is something I am loving right now. It has radiant, fresh, and subtle coverage with the addition of SPF. I love how I can whack this on and my skin instantly looks more even-toned and glowing—a subtle complexion perfector without weight or any visible makeup look! It's a great one-step base for those who love a natural glow with added protection."
"Another new drop that came to the beauty world last fall is the Phyto Cheek Twist by Sisley Paris in Berry. This is a new mainstay in the brand's collection, and it is in my kit permanently and suits every single skin tone. For that soft, subtle wintry flush. it gives you a natural soft berry cheek with barely there pigment which is why it is so easy to apply and so universal!"
"N°1 De Chanel launched recently and the skincare is wonderful but for me, the stand out is the lip and cheek balm in the shade Berry Boost. It's so easy to apply, adds an immediate natural warmth to the face, and has skincare ingredients to care for the lips and cheeks, too. I fell in love with it at the launch in Paris."
"L'Oréal Wonder Water Colour Protect is like magic! I actually couldn't believe it worked exactly how it said it would: I dye my hair darker and it gets dull after a few months, and this added back so much depth and shine to my hair in just 8 seconds."
"I thought Costa Brazil might be branding over substance, but the ingredients and the way they feel and transform the skin truly is something else. I've only been using them for a month or so but can already tell they're going to be cult."
"This mascara is literally game-changing for me. The way the fibers in the formula cling to my natural lashes to thicken and lengthen is incredible. It’s definitely the mascara I reach for to get the most fluttery-lash look."
"If you rounded up the majority of beauty writers and editors in a room and grilled them on the best brow gel, I have no doubt this will be the collective winner. Run it through each brow once and you can either press down for a laminated look or fluff up, and once the gel has dried, it literally doesn’t budge—with no crispness or flaking!"
"I'm obsessed with this range from Kérastase. If you have thick, curly, or coily hair, you'll love it too. The Refresh Absolu Spray is often my go-to to re-wet my hair and do a twist out with my natural texture. It leaves my hair feeling soft and smooth once dried and can be layered without buildup."