Apart from people-watch, my second favorite thing to do when traveling is to browse for drugstore beauty. There’s no better way to get a sense of a country’s culture by looking at their beauty ideals (and to come back with a few secret products no one else will have!). Makeup artists like Pat McGrath are obsessed with French drugstores, which are more like beauty apothecaries than anything. When I visited the UK a few years ago, I was similarly enthused with Boots, their main pharmacy chain. It’s like a UK all-in-one combination of a 7-11, Target, and Duane Reade, where you can buy delicious sandwiches (with interesting fillings like roast beef with rocket) and an anti-wrinkle cream that rivals the luxury brands.
Rimmel, is one of those UK bestseller pharmacy secrets that I am so happy to see stateside because I am a HUGE Kate Moss fan. Yes, I have a Pinterest board exclusively devoted to her and Johnny Depp’s brief romance. Yes, that’s her, pinned all over my “90s nostalgia” board. I want one of those Supreme posters you see all over billboards in New York. And so naturally, I want the Rimmel x Kate lipsticks that have her signature emblazoned all over the packaging.
And the lipsticks are fantastic. They deliver bright slashes of color, in vibrant red and plums, with an emollience normally only found in expensive lippies. My favorite is 01, which is the classic blue-red that Kate wears in all the ads. And they cost $5, which is less than the price of a sandwich! Also great, are the Union Jack eyeshadows, which give you four-five complementary colors in the lines of the UK flag. Their True Union Jack color combo, complements my current navy eye color addiction. Fellow brown eyed girls: put down the black eyeshadow/liner and replace it with navy. Trust me. It will change your life. Something about the color simultaneously brings out the deeper browns of your eyes, while brightening the whites, so that your entire eye area looks fresher and more awake. There’s a sparkly navy sliver in the Rimmel compact that I like to apply in the outer corners of my eye that makes them look bigger and better in photographs. Navy and Kate! You can’t go wrong!