You can have all the make-up in the world but if you're not applying it properly, you're at a beauty disadvantage.
Whether it's maintenance or application, the right gadgets and gizmos can make all the difference to the results you achieve.
"Fingers and cotton buds just won't cut it," says Rae Morris, make-up artist and author of Express Makeup.
"Just a few essential tools will revolutionise the way you do your make-up, as well as reduce the time it takes."
Opt for budget basics or invest in uber-luxurious tools to boost your beauty regime.
Novice or expert, it's time to upgrade your tool kit.
Back to basics
Achieve the professional polish of a spa with the right set of no frills tool essentials. Get the beauty basics covered with neat nails, elegant eyebrows and pretty toes and you'll be surprised at the difference it makes.
Try: Champneys Spa Accessories Range, from £3 (Boots stores).
Enhance your peepers in the blink of an eye (quite literally!) with a good set of lash curlers. Aim to use before mascara to avoid clumps, placing around eyelashes before gradually squeezing down for five to 10 seconds. Release to reveal a fluttering set of lashes.
Try: Shu Uemura's limited edition 24K Gold Eyelash Curler, £20 (www.shuuemura.co.uk).
Transforming your face like nothing else, the power of wow brows should never be underestimated. A complete eyebrow kit will provide everything you need to pluck and preen your way to a beautiful pair. Always use tweezers at an angle, and never think 'less is more'.
Try: Beautiful Brows Kit, £38, with five colour variants (www.beautifulbrows.co.uk).
Think of make-up brushes as the unsung heroes in achieving a flawless finish. As the foundation for your make-up application, a good set of brushes should be at the heart of every kit. Use a range of shapes and sizes in order to blend, contour and conceal for a high-definition photo-ready finish.
Try: EcoTOOLS Fresh & Flawless Five Piece Complexion Set, £11.99 (Boots stores).
Ignore the British weather and transform a pasty complexion into an enviable sun-kissed glow with the help of a bronzing brush. With tightly packed, soft bristles, they provide more colour per swipe, so after dipping into bronzing powder be sure to tap off the excess.
Try: Marks & Spencer's Autograph Bronzing Brush, £11 (www.marksandspencer.com).
Even the biggest beauty buffs sometimes skip brush cleaning. Don't! A fortnightly deep clean will help prevent skin break-outs and improve application - without affecting the quality of the brushes. Avoid the tedious task with the help of a make-up brush cleaner, which you can spritz on to brushes and then remove residue with tissue.
Try: Clinique's Makeup Brush Cleanser, £13 (www.clinique.co.uk).
Cleansing fanatics can really get their glow on with a sonic brush that can cleanse up to six times better - and faster - than manual cleansing. The Clarisonic Plus is the Ferrari of cleansers with 300 movements per second to buff, brighten and polish your complexion.
Try: Clarisonic Plus Sonic Skin Cleansing System in Carnival, £179 (Selfridges).
Kit it out
Take pride in your products and preserve their upkeep with a good quality home. Look for a case that's roomy enough for all your beauty bits and bobs, and waterproof to prevent spills in transit. If you like order in your life, go for zipped compartments to divorce your lippies from your mascaras.
Try: Sew Lomax's Embroidered Mascara Makeup Box, £35 (www.sewlomax.com).
Tried & tested
Freshening up your palms just got pretty. Our testers put their hands together to try out three handbag-sized scented anti-bacterial gels:
Crabtree & Evelyn La Source Antibacterial Hand Gel, £4 for 50ml (www.crabtree-evelyn.co.uk)
Orla Kiely Geranium Hand Sanitiser, £5 for 50ml (John Lewis)
Cowshed Anti-bacterial Cow Pat Hand Gel, £7 for 50ml (www.cowshedonline.com)
Buy it now
Givenchy Very Irresistible celebrates 10 years with 10 roses. To mark the fragrant decade, the brand has released a collector's edition bottle adorned with a bouquet of 3D buds. Very Irresistible Collector Edition is £58.50, available at Givenchy stockists nationwide (01932 233 824).