A Few Italian Favorites

By Stefania, Italy Contributor

Born in a Southern Italian region on a clear morning of the Spring Equinox of 21 years ago, she lived your average middle class life there, up until she had to move to Naples at the young age of eight; in such a both infamous and famous city, she spent her adolescence, attending a Scientific High school, wisely and completely disregarding her disposition for words rather than Maths or Physics. After having graduated with flying colours in spite of adversity, with a choice just as sharp as the previous one, she then decided to study Modern Literature at University, granting herself a certain future of precarious, hard to find, low paid–if at all paid–jobs, which, for the sake of being politically correct, are usually referred to as ‘flexible’. Currently, about to graduate only to have at least two more years of classes to go through, writing is one of her few attempts at having a life on the side and keeping her sanity- or what’s left of it, rather.

Roma, Italy

A Few Italian Favorites

All good relationships are based on mutual knowledge and the ones that revolve around make up are no exception; it is exactly for this reason that today I am going to share with you all {or everyone who’s willing to go through my less than linear ramblings, rather} my favourite local beauty products. Keep on reading if you’d like to have a taste of me and Italy both, spending only what was given free to us and yet is the most precious gift of all: time. Without further ado, let the countdown begin!

My very first beauty crush, which actually turned out to be a serious relationship, since it has lasted for years, are Pupa Beauty Kits ($20 to $35.00). When I first became interested in makeup—back in middle school—they were my favourite Christmas gifts. They were colourful with fun shapes (angels, candy bags, Matryoshka dolls), and had an endless array of eyeshadows, glosses, blushes, and powders inside. Today, they’re still fun, creative gifts for anyone just starting out with makeup. The can be a bit of an indulgence for makeup connoisseurs rather than a necessity, but I wanted to mention them as an important item of the Italian market.

Picture every colour and texture you could possibly want in a nail polish and you’ll have the Essence nail polish ($0.99) range. All right, perhaps that was a hyperbole, but it serves to introduce you to one of the loves of my make up life. Small enough to throw in a purse for a weekend away, big enough to last you for a long time! They’re chip free for a week or so with crazy colours as well as office appropriate ones in an array of finishes: cream, metallic, shimmer, glitter. They also have a good, wide brush and come with an affordable price tag. What’s not to adore?

Usually, I am not one for tame things. I like for my metaphorical coffee to be strong, metaphorical heels to be high, and my literal lipgloss to be opaque. As always, there is one exception to the rule, which, in this case, happens to be the Collistar Supergloss (€15,50). They’re similar to your regular lipgloss in a squeeze tube with a slanted applicator and a medium to sheer color pay off; nothing new under the sun, right? Maybe but still I can’t help but stare at my lips every time I wear one of these for the incredible shine, volume, and fullness they provide. They also have amazing lasting power. Be warned though: these may hydrate your lips as much as applying honey would, but they’re almost as thick feeling. Yummy, if you ask me!

Deborah Eye Pencils (€5,90) are large, creamy pencils that can be used on the eye, though I strongly recommend applying a crease-proof eyeshadow base underneath them. The creamy consisistency makes for no tugging on the delicate skin around the eyey and easy blending, but they can crease without a proper base. They are similar in concept and performance to NYX Jumbo Eyeshadow Pencils.

Seasons may change from winter to spring, but my feelings for this mascara are built to last, aere perennius. It’s the Collistar Supermascara Tridimensionale (€21,50), which provides great volume and fullness to the lashes as well as medium length and decent definition. It’s not a product for the faint of heart, as it is really noticeable when applied; the aim here is definitely not a natural makeup look, but if you’re looking for a complete mascara and you have access to the brand, I’d strongly recommend this. No fancy applicator or extravagant formula; just a good, dramatic, and reliable mascara. And that’s no easy task to accomplish, in my book!