They've been around for years but still top the bestseller lists. Lisa Haynes reveals the must-have products with staying power.
Every week, new lines hit the beauty market. But often it's the products that have been sitting unassumingly on the shelves for years that are still causing a stir — the must-have items that outlive seasonal trends.
“In order for a product to become a cult classic, it has to be timeless, sophisticated and continually offer that feel-good factor which consumers seek,” explains Hannah Phillips, beauty buyer at Harvey Nichols. “Skincare is more of a loyalty product, so as long as it produces results, it will remain in a person's regime.” Whether you're an loyal aficionado to just one product or crave them all, these cult classics are standing the test of time.
YSL TOUCHE ECLAT
Brightening faces for 20 years, Touche Eclat is the magic gold pen that makes early mornings (and late nights) easier to bear. The go-anywhere highlighter launched in 1992 with just one colour. New shades are being introduced, celebrating two decades of business, taking the total to 10 subtle tones.
The original pen still dominates luxury top 10 lists, but a limited edition 20 Years Collector version is available from mid April. Both cost £25. (yslbeauty. co.uk).
ESTEE LAUDER ADVANCED NIGHT REPAIR
Thirty years ago nobody had heard of a face serum — and then Night Repair broke beauty boundaries.
The first skincare product to use Hyaluronic Acid, the container was designed to look like an old-fashioned pharmacy bottle, complete with an apothecary dropper to reinforce the product's serious skincare sentiment.
The word ‘Advanced' was added in 1991 when the solution was reformulated. Buy the Limited Edition 30th Anniversary Advanced Night Repair bottle, or the original ANR, from £41 (www.esteelauder.co.uk).
CHANEL COCO MADEMOISELLE
Big sister Chanel No.5 may have been a permanent fixture in the best seller lists, but Coco Mademoiselle is currently basking in the sweet smell of success.
Created by Chanel's in-house perfumer Jacques Polge, Coco
Mademoiselle first launched as an EDP in 2001, and out-ranked Chanel No.5 in Harvey Nichols' top five best-sellers list for the first time ever this year.
Its distinctive scent is down to the key notes of orange, rose absolute and patchouli. Available from £45 for 35ml EDP (020 7493 3836).
ELIZABETH ARDEN EIGHT HOUR CREAM
Every 30 seconds in the UK, a tube of this multi-tasking cream flies off the shelves and into a handbag.
But the successful formula is changing for the first time in 82 years, as some people aren't keen on its distinctive love-it-or-hate-it smell.
Alongside the original Cream Skin Protectant, a new Fragrance Free version has been launched, both £25, available at Elizabeth Arden counters nationwide.
Taking the prize for the oldest cult product, Vaseline Petroleum Jelly was first introduced in 1870. By 1874, it was being sold at the rate of a jar a minute. The foolproof formula is a mixture of mineral oils, paraffin and microcrystalline waxes. Proof that quality classics don't have to cost the earth, the Pocket Size tin is just £1.45, from supermarkets and chemists.
CLINIQUE DRAMATICALLY DIFFERENT moisturising LOTION
The hero of moisturising products, Dramatically Different was launched along with Clinique's now famous 3-Step System when the brand started in 1968. Today, one Dramatically Different moisturising Lotion is sold every four seconds somewhere in the world. Its popular formula helps duplicate moisture naturally occurring in the skin. Priced from £16.50, available at Clinique counters nationwide.
CLARINS BEAUTY FLASH BALM
Known in the industry as ‘Cinderella in a tube', Flash Balm is famed for its quick-fix transformative qualities. Olive and witch hazel extracts help smooth the skin's surface, minimising lines and wrinkles, while soothing bisabolol helps restore skin's youthful glow.
It's reached worldwide success despite rarely being advertised since its launch in 1980. Priced £28 (0800 036 3558/www.clarins.co.uk).
L'OREAL PARIS ELNETT
As far as hairsprays go, Elnett, nicknamed the ‘Golden Goddess', has a firm hold on the market. Its secret? A famous fragrance and unbeatable formula, unchanged since its UK launch in 1961. Elnett's 50th birthday was recently celebrated with a commemorative limited edition can and Cheryl Cole ad campaign. From £2.56 nationwide.
CREME DE LA MER moisturising CREAM
Despite the hefty price tag, Creme de la Mer has made quite an impression in just 12 years. The nutrient-rich ‘Miracle Broth' at the heart of the potion was pioneered by aerospace physicist Dr Max Huber, who wanted to improve the appearance of scars he'd suffered in a lab accident.
Today the range extends to serums, eye treatments and body products. Creme de la Mer The moisturising Cream is priced from £95 (0870 034 2566/www.cremedelamer.co.uk).
The Queen may be celebrating her Jubilee this year but Nivea recently toasted its centenary. Nivea Creme is now 101 years old and still a bathroom shelf staple with a formulation that has remained virtually unchanged. The famous blue pot was first sold in a yellow tin with Art Nouveau decor. Nivea's name derives from the Latin adjective “niveus/nivea/niveum”, meaning ‘snow white'. The 50ml Creme Pot is £1.99, available nationwide.