Back in December Kiko Milano opened a store at Glasgow Fort, a mere ten minutes drive from my house. Now, that was always going to wreak havoc with my bank account, but I seriously underestimated how much. Luckily, Kiko are insanely affordable so it's not been *too* bad, but I have managed to amass quite a considerable collection so far.
It often comes as a bit of a surprise to people when I say that I don't like buying make up online, and before December this was the only way I could really access Kiko. I'd read countless reviews of their products and spent many an hour debating if I should take the plunge and make an order, but my preference for seeing how things feel in person won me over and so I waited not-so-patiently for their first Scottish store to open. Now, I feel like I'm well and truly immersed in the brand and already have a few key favourites that I'd recommend to anyone and everyone!
So, let's take a look at my initial impressions of the products I've tried so far...
In terms of the face products on offer from Kiko I haven't tried all that much, however I have a very long list of products that caught my eye and I'll be trying to pick up on my next trip to the store - including the Radiant Fusion baked powder and the Second Skin liquid foundation.
I was recently introduced to the art of "baking" in terms of make up, and the Invisible Powder from the range is absolutely perfect for this. With it's finely milled particles and velvet soft finish this powder provides the mattifying effect I look for, whilst also setting my make up in place all day. I find loose powders a bit messy to use on the go, but this may just change my mind.
If you read this post then you'll know that highlighters are my "thing" right now so I was really excited to try the Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter which was my first foray in to trying the increasingly popular highlighter sticks. This highlighter is a beautiful golden peach shade and applies effortlessly, without dragging across the skin too much, which you'd expect from a product with "creamy" in its name, right?! I find it blends a lot better if you dab it on your hand first and let it warm up a bit before applying to my face with my fingers, however I think this is more personal preference/highlighting my own make up incompetence. Whilst I'm not quite sold on the concept of stick highlighters yet this is a stunning product and one I've been reaching for whenever I want a bit more of a "glow".
The only product that has really disappointed me from Kiko so far is the Perfect Base Corrector, which my skin just does not get on with at all. The lightweight texture suggests that it would be virtually undetectable on the skin, however I found the product clung to my dry patches, emphasising the skin that I would much rather hide, and left my face feeling a bit on the slippy side. I don't think this is suited to my skin type (dry/combination T-zone) so I'd be keen to try out one of the other primers available such as the City Filter, which has added SPF.
Before visiting the new shop at Glasgow Fort I wasn't even aware of the fact that Kiko also sell their own skincare range, so when I spotted the Purifying Pads (which don't appear to be stocked online) I decided to give them a try as they were down to something ridiculous like £2 for a tub of 60. I'm a big fan of the Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating pads so I was hoping for a similar experience with these. The Kiko offering isn't as intense as the Glycolic Fix, which would be good for more sensitive skin types, however I still find that they do a great job at purifying my skin and cleansing away any last spots of make up or leftover cleanser, in turn leaving my skin feeling super soft and clear. These also smell like sweets, which is quite nice in comparison to the strong chemical aroma of the Glycolic Fix!
Kiko's lip products have seriously impressed me so far, and a real highlight of their offerings has to be the Creamy Colour Comfort Lip Liners. I have three of these in my collection at the moment - 311 Rose Mauve, 301 Nude and 302 Warm Rose - and have been reaching for them pretty much every day. At first glance the packaging is very similar to that of the Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat, and that isn't where the similarities end. 301 Nude is the *perfect* dupe for the Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk, however in my eyes it is actually better. As the name would suggest, these liners are incredibly creamy and go as far as to feel nourishing on the lips instead of drying like the Charlotte Tilbury offering. These have some serious staying power, lasting all day with no bleeding and very little fading.
I hate to admit that I'm often totally sucked in by packaging, but when I spotted the pretty little rose gold pot that housed the Intensely Lavish Lipstick from the Rebel Romantic collection I just couldn't resist. Luckily, it wasn't the worst purchase and instead has left me pretty impressed! Much like the liners, this lipstick is both creamy and long lasting without drying out my lips or mysteriously ending up smeared all over my teeth. I'm definitely going to be picking up some more shades from the shop in the future, and I'm hoping the ease of application will encourage me to try some colours that would usually be out of my comfort zone.
So far, everything I've tried from their selection of lip products has left me pretty satisfied and the Lip Gloss Pencils are no exception. At the moment I only own one shade, 12 Wine Red, but I know the second I step foot in the store I'll be popping a few more in my basket. I didn't quite understand how a lip gloss could come in pencil form, but this crayon is the perfect combination of pigmentation and staying power with a little hint of gloss to finish. It's ridiculously easy to apply and not sticky like you might expect a lipgloss to be. I'm a massive fan of lip crayons and think these are my favourite that I've tried to date! It's also a massive bonus that they're currently on sale for £2.70, and even at full price they still only cost £3.90 a pop. Bargain.
I have a massive list of eye products that I want to try from Kiko, with their Ultimate Pen Longwear Eyeliner hovering somewhere near the top. I've also heard brilliant things about some of their brow products such as the Automatic Eyebrow Pencil and the Duo Highlighter pencil which are most definitely cemented on my to try list. Every time I visit the store I'm drawn in by the massive display of their eyeshadow collection, so will no doubt be adding more to my ever-growing collection on each visit.
I was first drawn to the Water Eyeshadows by their downright stunning appearance, but it was the pigmentation that kept me hooked. These shadows are perfect for wet or dry use and both methods pack a punch in terms of pigmentation and shine. The shade range on offer is just gorgeous, and their creamy finish makes them an absolute dream to blend. I never thought I'd see the day where I was drawn away from nude shadows, but Burgundy and Indigo Blue are new favourites in my line up. Next on the list are Champagne, Rosy Taupe and Golden Mauve because obviously I need some nudes in my stash too.
Finally, I think I've saved the best for last. The Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadows are by far my absolute favourite product that I've tried from Kiko so far, with a formula that is too easy to work with and a staying power to be proud of. These little sticks are brilliantly creamy, making them a dream to blend even for a novice like me. I didn't expect stick eyeshadows to be so opaque, but they are just incredible. Particular highlights of my growing collection include 02, an incredibly pigmented true silver, 25, a satin taupe shade that is perfect for an every day eye, and 33, which is a beautiful semi-matte smoky grey with hints of purple. It's love.
Do you have any Kiko recommendations? I'd love to know what else is worth checking out in the future!
Some of the products in this post are press samples,
but I did buy the majority of them myself.
Read my full disclaimer here.