Hauled it: Make Up Store Carnaby Street Visit and Purchases

A good few months ago I was in London and visited Make Up Store in Carnaby Street. It sits a stones throw away from the MAC Pro store (which I find totally insufferable) but whenever I’ve been past it, it always looks quiet and a bit lonely.

Something about it just screams Make Up Student. Maybe it’s the packaging which I think a lot of normal women will find quite plain and uninspiring.

Anyway I had a mooch and came away with:


One eyeshadow, 2 hi tech lighters, 1 eye pencil and the blotting powder.

The prices were ok – I can’t really remember now but the powder was about £26 (not cheap), the liners about £10 and the hi tech lighters £18.

The blotting powder…well it just so happened I was on the market for one of these and this one was the first I saw. This looks like a block of chalk:


Amazingly enough, despite being so white, it applies lightly onto the skin absorbing excess sweat and oil, leaving a soft matte finish. I’m not sure a blotting powder should cost as much as £26 though…there’s no pigment in it, for god’s sake!

Still I prefer to to blotting sheets…Here is the powder on my tan skin:


Dust off and it’s invisible. Great! I would be wary about layering this too much for photography I am sure any residue of the white would leave the skin a little bright in flash photography.


Next up is the eyeliners. I thought the selection of eyeliners was great, and it was hard to pick so I went for….black. How dull!

But this is called Darkest Shadow (it’s not THAT dark) and it’s a soft matte formula. It definitely has that matte-velvet-sheen to it, but then again on the eyes, who can tell?

It works beautifully on the waterline, and smudge only a tiny bit. A bit of powder on top sets it. One day I will stop buying black eyeliners.


My favourite products are the Hi Tech Lighters – these gloopy super thick, super dense (no jokes please) cream highlighters are sort of sticky, a bit annoying, but really quite fun to use! I think they can work as a base and also – when selecting neutral shades – as a highlighter all over!

Less is more, less is more. I speak as one who had clumps of hair stuck to my mouth after using this as a top coat (my hair, thanks).


I only bought one eyeshadow, Masai because I wanted a simple contour shade. The packaging (which I find cheap anyway) BROKE! I haven’t even touched the damn thing and it’s broken!!! Annoying as I don’t live close enough to exchange it:


I have some kind of OCD, the fact this shadow has a broken lid will annoy me til the day I die. I think it’s because I don’t mind ruining stuff myself, I don’t like other people or external forces spoiling my stuff though. Only child syndrome.

The shade itself is ok – a matte mushroom taupe. In hindsight, not really worth it.

I am surprised NOTHING in this place is sealed!!!! What?! At least in the MAC store stuff is boxed up or in a cupboard so people can’t help themselves. I check everything I buy (bar rare occasions where I just can’t) and you MUST do this in Make Up Store to make sure no snotty fingers have been dipped into the product.

I’d recommend giving the hinge a little yank too to make sure you don’t have a loose one. Just sayin’.



Liner, shadow, and two highlighters.

I heard loads of horror stories about the sales assistants in Make Up Store so I was ready for a fight – but I can’t say they were bad, they were actually quite helpful on the day. They did yap a little bit too much for my liking (am I across as a bit of a dictator with OCD?) but in this occasion, they were more pleasant than the dancing idiots in MAC.


I will visit again, they have a stunning blue shadow I must have, and I might check out the lip products too. Nothing in there overwhelmed me however, everything just seemed ‘ok’.

P.S. They don’t do mail order in the UK at the moment and the only stores are in London.

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  1. Nazia says

    Hi Row.

    I don’t think your eyeshadow lid is broken – the lids are designed to come off to make for easier access to the product. I have a few MU Store eyeshadows and pigments and it’s the same for all of them.

    I’m quite suprised at the bad rep MU Store seems to get – I’ve also seen a few negative reviews of the place. Personally I’ve found their eyeshadows to be pretty great – smooth and well pigmented with a nice colour range. The pigments are nice too, but messy – the pots are quite difficult to open which screams ‘disaster’ when you’re in a bit of a rush!

    I’ve never had any problems with the assistants at all, they’ve actually been really lovely! But one thing I really do dislike is the lack of testers for their brushes. They aren’t exactly cheap, so I feel like they could really benefit from having testers out.

    Phew, sorry, I wrote my own review! I hope that’s ok!

    • Row says

      Hi Nazia

      Cool cool, phew I’m glad mine isn’t broken (will update review). I went to the store again this week and once again, the SA’s were friendly and helpful – I can’t be critical of them when they’ve been so helpful!

      I bought several items I REALLLYYYYYY like the stuff I bought. I do wish their stuff was sealed though :(

  2. sabrina says

    the Make-up Store assistants were nice, but then I’d come directly from the MAC Pro Store, so…

  3. says

    yeah second the not-broken comment, they’re meant to be like that for MUAs to get easy access to the product. I like this brand I must say but yeah, I don’t like the packaging much either, though the shadows and blushers are lovely. Lipsticks are quite nice too, and there’s maaaasssive choice shade-wise which I like as well.

    • Row says

      Hi Kirstie

      Oh yeah I was back in the store this week and asked and they confirmed the lid comes off. I still don’t like it though! I’m quite rough with the stuff in my day to day bag, and no doubt these would end up coming off and crushed over my Cle De Peau! They shud just make the pans removable like MAC for the professionals…