If I’m given the chance to visit the local beauty store when I’m in a foreign country, I take it! I think it’s interesting to see what the trends are and what types of products are offered, since beauty is different worldwide.
On my recent trip to Italy I visited the Kiko Milano store, which is an Italian cosmetics store. Nothing at Kiko was too expensive and it was all one brand, so it reminded me a bit of the NYX stores we have in Canada.
I bought a brush, a highlighter and a lipstick and I think I paid around €28 (I have since thrown away my receipts and the pricing on the website is more than what I paid).
Face 08 Precision Powder Brush ($20 or €16,95)
I wanted to buy a brush because it’s something that would last a lot longer than other products, like mascara or lipstick. While I do have other fluffy brushes and smaller ones with the same shape, I don’t have one quite like this, so I know it will be put to good use. I’ve used it for setting under my eyes and for an all-over bronze, and it worked well for both. It also extremely soft, so that’s a plus!
Colour Correction Face Fixing Powder ($21 or €13,95)
Even though I don’t think this is intended to be a highlighter, that’s what I bought it for. In the pan it’s got so many different colors, but once you put it on it on or swatch it you would never know! This is honestly so pretty and has no visible specks of glitter, just a nice shimmer. It’s a very light, white highlight so it will be nicer when my tan fades a bit. The only problem is that it fades throughout the day, so it’s better for short-term wear.
Velvet Passion Matte Lipstick in the shade 326 Natural Rose ($12 or €6,95)
This lipstick was a total miss for me. The pigmentation was okay, but it was super patchy and looked extremely cheap. I tried putting on more layers to offset the patchiness, but it just got worse. It made my lips look super dry and gross. The color was also too light for me, but I could have saved it for the winter. The packaging was really cute, but unfortunately I will be getting rid of this.
One of the first things I noticed was the finish of all the products. Everything was very glowy, glossy and dewy and not too many products had a matte finish. I was a little surprised by that, as the Italian summer heat is no joke, so you get naturally glowy really quick!
Contouring and highlighting are not on trend and I’m not sure if they ever were. Kiko only had one or two contouring palettes and a maybe three or four highlighters. Following the trend above, most of the bronzers were shimmery, so you wouldn’t really contour with them. I contoured every day and I got so many compliments from locals. Most people said they had never really seen anyone do their make-up like that and they had no idea this was even a thing.
When buy face products (foundation, powder, etc.) I am usually one of the lighter shades, if not the lightest. So when I was looking at the foundation at Kiko, I noticed a lot of it was too dark for me. Even with my tan, the lightest shade was often just right or a little too dark. I have a pretty neutral undertone, sometimes a bit pink. Most of the products were for people with a more olive skintone. Needless to say, I did not purchase any foundation!
In terms of lipsticks, eyeshadows, nail polish, etc. I found the colors to be really bright and vibrant. There were very few options for more neutral shades and everything was really in your face bright and had a lot of glitter in it. I much prefer matte, neutral make-up (I’m so boring!) so this didn’t really appeal to me.
I noticed one similar beauty trend – eyebrows! Kiko had a really good selection of different eyebrow products and a lot of people had their brows done. I think we’ve moved away from the “instragram brows” and towards a natural brow here, and that is what I noticed they did in Italy.
Overall, they did have a lot of similar products to American/Canadian make-up and it was cool to see what is considered “on trend” in another country!