Retro Beauty Buys It’s Definitely Worth Revisiting

We did. And they're stil ace. Sun-in not included.


by Lucy Williams |
Published on

With a new wonder product out each week, it’s easy to forget about those lotions and potions you couldn’t get enough of post-puberty. But, in the spirit of rediscovering my youth, I decided it was time to revisit the products I used, er, in my youth - to see if they're still any good. Bonus: they were. And they're still as cheap as you remember. Meaning that you'll have more pennies to justify on that silky YSL foundation you 'swear' you can't live without.

1. Maybelline Great Lash Mascara

No 90s makeup bag was complete without this pink and green staple. (Which FYI has a font that's almost identical to the Pretty Woman title credits - spot the super fan). After years of flaking, caking and pillow-staining, I picked up one of these on a whim when rushing around Boots after leaving all my war paint at home ahead of a night out. The result? Fat, long lashes and easy to shift with a face wipe at the end of the night. This totally deserves it’s cult-like status.


Maybelline Mascara Great Lash Waterproof Very Black, £4.99, Superdrug

2. Rimmel Black Kohl Pencil

It was thanks to this stuff that I was given the unfortunate doppleganger of Avril Lanvin in my teens – the poker straight hair and indecently low Miss Sixty jeans probably didn’t help. I cheated on it in my early twenties when I thought I was older, wiser and could afford the good stuff (I couldn’t). But have ended up doing a 360 and wouldn’t go anywhere else for a smudgy, smoky eye fix now.


Rimmel Soft Kohl Pencil, £2.99, Superdrug

3. V05 Hot Oil

On return from 6 months of sun, sea and sticky dancefloors aged 19, my long, blonde hair started breaking off in clumps, leaving me with ear-length, spiky layers (sexy). Hence begun a trichological mission; £300 protein treatments, £100 overnight conditioners, you name it, I spent it on my hair. And the really annoying thing? These little beauties from VO5, known for looking after 80s perms are just as good as their blow-the-budget contemporaries, for nourishing and adding shine to a seriously parched bit of hair.


VO5 Nourish My Shine Hot Oil Deep Nourishing 4 X 15ml,£4.29 Boots

4. Elnett Flexible Hair Spray

I used to associate hair spray with words like ‘chignon’ and ‘ringlets’ - words I basically hoped never to associate with myself. But it’s not just for solidifying bridal up-dos and crispy tonged curls; spray it on your finger tips and work through your roots for the clichéd but always coveted Mossy thing, or spray over palms and smooth over static flyaways. Go for the flexible one to guarantee zero crunchiness.


L'Oreal Paris Elnett Flexible Hold Hairspray - Extra Strength 75ml £2.99 Look Fantastic

**5. Quinoderm 10 cream **

The smell of this is an instant trip, taking me back to the days of tea-tree concealer sticks, clean & clear lotion and nose pore strips. Thankfully, I’ve outgrown my oily pores but when a really nasty spot decides to rear its ugly head (pun definitely intended), I inevitably end up reaching for the Quinoderm cream again. A tiny dot of the stuff should dry the beast right up overnight.


Quinoderm Cream 25g, £2.49 Chemist Direct

**6. Cetaphil Gentle Face Cleanser **

Don’t let the medicinal packaging put you off. This super-gentle, PH neutral face wash is an unassuming force (recommended to all teenage acne sufferers) to be reckoned with. Even better on a clarisonic too, if your bathroom is of the high tech variety. Oh and all the models swear by it, if you needed a more superficial (but totally valid) reason to get on board.


Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, £5.50 The Cosmetic Practice

**7. The Body Shop Cocoa Butter **

No coming of age was complete without regular trips to The Body Shop and feeling incredibly sophisticated buying some sort of musk-based body spray while there. But its the cocoa body butter that has stood the test of time. Not only does it make you smell like a Bounty advert, it’s still one of the best body moisturisers out there. Get the matching lip balm too and spend all day licking it off.


Body Shop Cocoa Butter Body Butter, £13 Body Shop

8. Exfoliating gloves

Remember these? You might feel like a QVC advert, but nothing gets rid of those scales we’ve all be hiding for the last 6 months quite as well as these industrial-strength gloves. Use in the shower, follow up with something oily (or better yet the aforementioned cocoa butter) and you’ll be thawed out in no time.


Boots Exfoliating Gloves, £2.69 Boots

Follow Lucy on Twitter @Fashion_Me_Now

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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