“Hi Candice.
This might be a bit of an unfair question, but here goes. I really love the Lisa Eldrige videos that you post. However, I find that she uses so many products and many of them are not available in SA. Or should I rather say I feel overwhelmed by all the different products out there.

They are expensive so it’s hard to test and see what works. So my question is, do you have a no-fail make-up brand/s that you can recommend?

I really enjoy your posts, they have been very helpful. Susan”

[From The Pretty Blog]

Hi Susan,

Thanks for contacting me and I understand where you’re coming from! We’re promised amazing results and flawless makeup from products that just don’t deliver; it’s tough (and expensive) to go out there and find the perfect makeup for our individual needs.

It’s difficult, no impossible, for me to tell you which products are “no-fail” because everyone’s’ skin is unique and reacts differently….we all expect various things from our products too. Personally, I prefer a dewy, sheer finish to my foundation but someone else might like a matte finish.

The one thing I can say is….Ask for samples! Especially from the more expensive brands. Don’t let the “makeup consultant” apply it for you and then send you home. Test it yourself, feel the product, experience the application. You will also need a few days to test it to see how your skin reacts to the product. Also, ask for a sample and if they don’t have, ask them to decant some of the tester into a container for you. Brands that do this include: MAC, Chanel, Inglot and many others!

Know what you expect from a product before you go looking for it. For example; do you want your concealer to be sheer, matte, thick, with a yellow undertone etc? Then when you get into the store, you know exactly what to ask for.

Either way, it does take time and a lot of trial and error to find something perfect. I do a lot of research online, I take home tons of samples and I’m constantly talking to friends, makeup artists and the “makeup consultants” to find out what works for them.

Also remember that your makeup needs might change according to seasons, age, stress etc.

I’m sorry I couldn’t give you specific products Susan, but if there’s anything, in particular, you’re interested in buying, mail me first and I’ll let you know if I’ve used it and what I think.

Oh PS: Please don’t buy anything based purely on the advert. Cosmetic companies walk a very, very fine line between fantasy and reality in their advertising!

[editor’s note: I’ll post one Q & A each week. If you have a question or need advice, please use this form and I’ll be sure to answer as soon as possible!]