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Molten metallics

When it comes to beauty, forget about red, white and blue and take inspiration from the medal winners

Some beauty devotees may be obsessing over the red, white and blue nail art of the female contingent of Team GB. But for a more practical way to get inspired by those athletic endeavours, look to the medals that if not quite pouring forth, are at least beginning to trickle in.

A perennial favourite for their light reflecting (read good health faking) properties, molten metallics have cropped up all over beauty counters again this summer. And seeing as the sun has been rather coy of late, being able to add a subtle glow or dusting of shimmer in an instant is a relief – and that's just for starters.

Gold and bronze are the most obvious hues to choose at this time of year – their warmer tones helping to move things in a healthy-looking direction if you're not a fake tanner for whatever reason. Concentrating heavy metals on eyes is the traditional way to wear the trend, and the creamier and more blendable the eye shadow, the easier a bold look is to create. Building layers is the key to application, with a sheer wash of shadow for day being added to for an evening look.

Pleasingly for the clumsy among us, there's no need for precision here as a softly smudged look is more in keeping than sharply defined lines.

Highlighters, bronzers and even lip gloss come imbued with a metallic shimmer this season, and when applied with a lightness of touch will add an enviable glow to your complexion.

That isn't to say that silver should be relegated to the Christmas party make-up bag though. The cooler shade is flattering on most skintones and will work well as a counterbalance to bright eyeshadows and black eyeliner.