Some waterproof mascaras seem immovable but Helena Rubinstein's All Mascaras! (pounds 13.00) blasts through every Rambo mascara known to humankind. Easy on tender tissues and sensitive eyes, it looks like an executive toy in a bottle (two liquid layers until you shake) but you'll never need to call 999 to get mascara off again. Helena Rubinstein's Spectacular Mascara (pounds 14.50) is worth a test-drive. Launched in 1993, its wand design is unequaled for lifting lashes to movie star proportions.
Famous facialist Eve Lom's Cleanser is number one with those in the know. Now it is widely available (pounds 35 at all Space NK locations, Dickens & Jones, Frasers in Glasgow and mail order 0181-661-7991) her secret mix of cocoa butter and four essential oils massages off slimy city grime while a muslin face cloth (free with each pot) buffs tired skin. Crucial.
For 18 years, the French "lifestyle range" of L'Occitane products have been popular with those who can afford to buy whatever they want. It's not hype: L'Occitane's shea butter moisturisers do the business. Their Total Sun Screen Cream SPF 19 (pounds 11.95) is a non-greasy sun protection which smells great and looks even better in the L'Occitane trademark aluminium tube.
In every top make-up artist's bag you'll find Yves St Laurent's Touche Eclat. One neat click of this gold brush-pen supplies a line of superfine, blendable concealer that's very discreet. One shade for all skin tones. pounds 18.50. Mason Pearson brushes are luxurious, but trichologist to the stars Phillip Kingsly likes those plastic-bristled, soft-backed Denman brushes for healthy hair and scalp. They won't break your hair or the bank: if only they weren't so homely. (From pounds 2.50 to pounds 10.75). Mac Spice Lip Pencil (pounds 8.00) has nothing to do with the Spice Girls, except they probably use it too. This is the one pencil to own if you're only buying one because it's perfect for both day and evening. Outline a pink gloss lipstick and you're Pamela Anderson Lee in an instant. Well, her lips anyway.