showcasing the best of the south west

Cult Cosmetics in Castle Cary

On Easter Sunday my 13 year old god-daughter appeared at lunch in the most perfect looking make up I've ever seen.  Nothing too brazen, just a skilful smudging of smoky grey eyeshadow, an almost natural lip tint and blusher that looked exactly like the bloom of extreme youth. She's self-taught, apparently, her expertise gleaned from hours poring over youtube make up videos.

Well, I may not have youth on my side but, after a recent trip to Light Green in Castle Cary, one of my favourite shops, I have a few new tricks of my own.

Light Green is run by Sarah Chapman and it is a treasure trove of vintage finds, incredible smelling eco candles and cult cosmetics, reflecting her personal passions from ethical clothing to organic skincare.

Recently Sarah invited me to an hour-long Jane Iredale make up session, the US cosmetics brand which is beloved of dermatologists, cosmetic surgeons, beauty editors, make up artists and anyone else in the know. It's not that easy to find - used in hospitals (for its flawless coverage and excellence in treating skin conditions) salons and some shops but it certainly hasn't hit the mainstream.

Jane Iredale is mineral based, chemical free make up which contains protection against UVA and UVB rays. This is high tech stuff, it is non-comedogenic (which means it doesn’t block pores) and the mineral particles form a protective barrier on your skin, allowing it to breathe normally but trapping environmental pollutants at the same time. In other words this is make up that is actually better for your skin than not wearing any.

First I was shown how to apply the brand's best-selling BB Cream, a medium shade that was an eery yellowy-brown in the bottle but after 20 minutes miraculously matches your own skin tone.  Have to say it's a phenomenal product: when you first apply it, you feel a little like a wax doll, but then you find people randomly commenting on how well you are looking. Age busting in a tube, basically.

The next thing I tried was a trio of blusher, bronzer and lipstick, in a trendily tiered compact, the kind of take-me-anywhere, covers-all-situations product that I have always envied but never been together enough to own. The shades were just right and the compact, so gold and magpie-shiny it was irresistible.

I also tested the concealer, pressed powder and a neutral lip tint which stains for 24 hours (just in case if you wanted to wake with no make up make up the morning after the night before).

So a successful shopping spree, an indulgent hour and some age-defying tips which have served me pretty well in the welcome, but unforgiving, light of spring. Sarah Chapman organises Jane Iredale make up sessions every couple of months, find more information here





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