In The Beauty Bag is a series at the Mancunion Fashion & Beauty section in which we look into a University of Manchester student’s makeup and skincare routine in order to get a glimpse into the beauty secrets of your peers.
Name: Alice Porter
Degree: English Literature
Degree year: 3
Is there a skincare routine that you stick to?
I’m not always strict with my beauty routine but I always cleanse. I wouldn’t leave the house without cleansing. My favourite product is the Glossier Milky Cleanser and I’ve been using it for three years now.
I’ve recently been trying the Beauty Pie “Japan Fusion Pure Transforming Cleanser”, but I will go back to the Glossier because it’s so much better and I miss it.
After cleansing, I use a facial spray which does absolutely nothing, I’m sure, but I just love it. It makes me feel like a bougie woman in the morning.
My moisturizer is Lush’s “Enzymion” which I love because it doesn’t feel too heavy on my skin. I’ve been using it for seven years now, although I recently tried Glossier’s Priming Moisturiser Rich but it was too rich for me. I also use self-tanning drops every other day for a bit of an added glow.
In the summer I wear the Missha “all-around safe block essence sun spf45+++” – when I remember.
In the evening I use the BeautyPie “Jeju Daily Multi-Phase Purifying Cleansing Milk”. There’s no specific reason as to why I use it in the evening other than that it’s in a black bottle, which means I associate it with the evening, but it’s very similar to the Glossier.
I recently started using a serum by Glossier called “Super Bounce”. It’s really moisturizing and makes my skin feel plumper, but I will probably try to find a less expensive version of it when I run out.
I also use the “Himalayan Charcoal Face Mask” from The Body Shop every now and then, which I apply with a mask brush, which is not necessary but it’s a lot less messy. I actually re-bought it and I don’t often re-buy products but it’s great. It can sting a little, but you definitely see the difference the next day.
If could only use three products, what would they be?
Probably my moisturizer from Lush, the Glossier cleanser and salicylic acid from The Ordinary. I could easily live with just these three skincare products.
Anything you’re guilty of doing?
I think I’m quite good when it comes to beauty apart from that I barely wash my brushes, which I know is disgusting, and I don’t change products as frequently as recommended.
Are there any skin issues you struggle with?
I have acne-prone skin so in the past I used really harsh products like tea tree oil, but I think switching to simple no-fuss products has worked better for me. I’ve also been more consistent with my skincare routine which definitely helps, although I might also just have grown out of my acne phase (or my contraceptive pill might have solved it).
I used to use the salicylic acid from The Ordinary and since I’ve stopped using it (they’ve annoyingly discontinued it) I noticed a significant difference. I definitely don’t have acne anymore but I do get the odd hormonal spot every now and then, which happened much less when I used the acid (this is a rallying cry for The Ordinary to bring it back).
Is there anything in particular you like to splurge on?
I definitely splurge on my perfume. I use“Another 13” from Le Labo and it’s so unique and distinctive. I think it’s worth spending more on perfume because it’s so nice to have a scent that is specific to you, although I got this one as a birthday gift and wouldn’t have been able to buy it myself.
How did you learn to do makeup?
I still don’t know how to do makeup, to be honest. I barely wear any, I’m so lazy.
What inspires you makeup-wise?
I love the classic French girl look. I’m inspired by their ‘no-makeup makeup’ look paired with a red lip.
What makeup products do you use?
I only wear makeup about twice a week, and by about Week 8 of the semester I’m almost definitely wearing none.
But when I do remember to use it, I try to use the oil based primer by Ren Clean Skincare “Perfect Canvas”, as it makes a huge difference in terms of giving my makeup staying power and adding a certain glow, but I often give this step up when I’m in a rush. For my base, I use the Laura Mercier Illuminating Tinted Moisturizer although I wish I went for the non-illuminating version as it’s a bit much.
I then use Glossier’s Stretch Concealer concealer followed by a Laura Mercier powder, if I’m a bit oily, and after that an Urban Decay Bronzer (which desperately needs replacing but I hate spending money on make-up). When I wear blush I use “Bumpy Ride” by NARS.
I like to use the Glossier Lidstar on my eyes. It’s really subtle but makes you look like you’re wearing more make-up than you are, although it doesn’t last very long. My favourite shade is “Cub”.
I have a dupe for the Anastasia Brow Wiz from Rimmel called the Brow Pro Macro in soft brown that I use to fill in any sparse sections of my eyebrows. And for mascara, I use whatever I was given for Christmas, because I always get given mascara for Christmas by someone or other, and have no real preference. They all seem to do the same thing.
What are you favourite hair products?
I don’t use any in winter, other than shampoo and conditioner, but in summer, I use the OUAI hair spray called Sun of a Beach which is kind of like a more legit version of ‘sun in’. This is another product I love that has been discontinued, which is so sad because it meant I could skip highlighting my hair for a few months. I also use the OUAI wave spray in summer.
My shampoo and conditioner are the Lavender Luminescent Platinum collection from OGX. They’re really great for blondes and inexpensive too.
Do you have a beauty secret?
I wouldn’t call it a secret, but I have a monthly £5 subscription at Beauty Pie which allows me to buy a certain amount of products a week. They sell products at the manufacturing price so, although you’re paying for a subscription, you can get luxury beauty products for drug store prices.