The H&M Cosmetics Review

June 4, 2015

In a bid to continue my search for cosmetics that are not tested on animals, yet don’t break the bank, I started to look into high street brands and their own makeup lines. Knowing that H&M take matters like sustainability and environment issues seriously, I wondered what their views on animal testing would be. On their website, I found this:


So, with that in mind, I picked up a fairly considerable stash from their Portsmouth store last week. I thought I’d conduct a pretty varied test on a few different pieces, making sure I covered all bases.

I was drawn first and foremost to their Smokey Eyes palette, containing five shades ranging from a light base shadow to darker hues that can be used alone or blended to achieve that sultry smoked eye effect – one I myself tend to use on a daily basis. This palette wasn’t expensive, so for £3.99 I have to admit my expectations weren’t high. That meant I wasn’t overly disappointed that the pigment isn’t all that strong. Sure, it’s noticeable (and I may be biased towards my Urban Decay Naked 2 palette!) but it didn’t give quite the effect I was after. I used the lightest shade, combined with the light and dark brown. That’s not to say it isn’t good – I just think this will be one to take with me on my travels for touch ups instead, as the size is ideal in comparison to my larger palettes. 


Well, where to start? Admittedly, I didn’t do myself any favours by selecting a nude pink shade (which I don’t wear at all) but this one is a definite no-no. Again, the price wasn’t that painful (£2.99) but what I wasn’t expecting was flaking lips and a shade reminiscent of THAT awful primary school trend of coating your lips with concealer (which is only remotely acceptable if you’re hitting a 60s themed party). By all means, the red shade on offer might be better, but avoid the matte version which seems to dry out your lips straight away.


Now, choosing a bronzer was a bit of a strange experience for me. I’m deathly pale, so using anything tan on my face is a bit daunting. To ease myself in, I chose the lighter “Gorgeous Tan” shade with the hope of achieving a subtle shimmer. I wore this over the top of my NARS Tinted Moisturiser, which worked beautifully. Like I hoped, it wasn’t overbearing and looked – dare I say it? – nice. I can actually see this becoming a daily staple in my summer makeup routine to complete my base, or for a quick sweep over a bare face to give myself a natural looking glow. For £3.99, this is an absolute steal and I would highly recommend it for anyone seeking a bronzer for the first time, or for my fellow pale faced sceptics! 


This is another product by H&M that I instantly fell in love with upon use. It just gives me a slight shimmer that I blended along my cheekbones with the bronzer, giving me a more natural finish. The shade itself is one that would suit a diverse range of skin tones, whether you’re pale or darker skinned. Again, its such a good price for £2.99 and will be finding a new home in my makeup bag!


For blusher, I decided to go for H&M’s “Dazzling Peach,” as peach shades tend to suit my skin tone well. What I liked about this is that the pigment isn’t too strong, one trait I actually like in a blush. If my application is too heavy, I end up looking like a porcelain doll which – believe it or not – isn’t the look I go for! I’ve taken to applying a small amount of the apples of my cheeks to compliment the bronzer and highlighter, rather than apply it directly the cheekbones like I would do normally. The blush itself is quite long lasting and I’ve yet to encounter any need for top ups during the day. For £3.99 I can’t really complain!


In my ever hopeful state that summer will make an appearance this year, I chose this bright orange shade to give my nails a bit more colour. Usually, I tend to opt for staple colours like red or a nude pink, but I thought this would compliment some of the brighter pieces of clothing I’m planning to take on our trip to Malta at the end of the month (exciting!) There are quite a few colour choices too, so choosing one to suit your style shouldn’t be too difficult. Application is straight forward with a reasonably sized brush that was shaped to accommodate my entire nail in one coat. The consistency is quite thin, so two coats is necessary here, but the colour was bold and just as vibrant as I was hoping. Even though its a little on the small side, for £1.99 you really can’t go wrong and they’re a perfect size to take away on my travels!

So, overall what did I think? Well, whilst there are definitely some items I’ll be giving a miss in the future, I’m glad to find there are some really great products on offer at such a reasonable price without the need of unnecessary animal testing. 

I’ll be stocking up a few more nail varnishes for sure, and the bronzer and highlighter are going to be must haves for me over the summer months!

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