In case you haven’t noticed, fashion is having something of a shiny moment. Part of the latest 1980s resurgence – and honestly, is there a more glamorous way to recycle? – this high octane look is, for the most part, best suited to those who just love to make a splash sartorially. Thankfully, the return of glossy makeup isn’t necessarily quite so dramatic, but is just as fabulous.



Embrace all of vinyl’s ‘wrong side of the tracks’ connotations and wear something outrageous with a knowing smile. Think a jet black midi skirt paired with mirror-like spiky pumps and a modern day Barbarella’s silver prism tote. If you’re ready to let your face share in some of that uber-flattering reflective light, you’ll be thrilled to know that Hourglass has released its Scattered Light Glitter Eyeshadows. The fact that the brand behind the heroes of the highlighting powder game have expanded to illuminating eyes goes to show what a natural talent they have for megawatt shine. If you’re just dipping your toes in, start with any powder shadow and add a reflective gloss on top for a textural take on a glassy lid. Or, if you’re ready to dive in the deep end, go full Grace Jones glam with Stila’s Magnificent Metals liquid shadow, which offers mess-free glistening all night long.


If you just can’t bring yourself to rock the sexy, sweaty look, you can still shine in a more subtle way. Picture a gleaming, structured bag teamed with a glossed leather skirt and a pair of perfectly polite, polished flats. Or make like a certain duo of Duchesses and inject your look with a subtle hint of lustre via some sleek stockings.

For the lazy among us, there are even easier ways to show you’ve got the sheen memo than whipping out the baby powder to get into latex pants (or facing the idea of pantyhose in an Aussie summer). Highlighters have been having their well-deserved moment in the sun for a while now and you can’t go past the cream versions for a quick and simple way to add glow to your getup.


Whether you’re diving head first into all latex everything, or are content with a glossy metallic bag, there is one lip product that pulls it all together: the new Full Vinyl Lip Lacquer from NARS. It’s the final nail in the coffin of the super matte lip (beloved by certain members of Calabasas high society and their legions of Instagram followers) which looks positively dull next to this drenched-in-shine look. The NARS naming department were dead serious when it came to this gloss – before using this, I’d never tried a lip product you could just about see your own reflection in. The effect is a little like wearing nothing but olive oil, though one that just happens to contain gorgeous, saturated pigment. My lips are truly in better condition after each time I wear it. The shade range is small but covers both the wearable (including Lips at First Sight, clear with a pearlescent shimmer) and the dramatic (Everglades is a raspberry-kissed dark chocolate). My pick for everyday is the creamy pink-coral Conquest, but if you’re going bold, look no further than Valencia, a Caribbean punch bowl in gloss form.

The best part? While matte lips are almost unexceptionally unforgiving – either turning a tiny dry patch into flake city or reminding everyone over 19 that, like sands through the hourglass, so go our collagen levels – slick, reflective lips are flattering on all of us.

Story by Zoe Briggs.

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