Mirror, Mirror Posted on 16 May 10:00

What one beauty routine accessory can you absolutely NOT live without? Your blush brush? Your cleanser? Maybe your tweezers? How about your mirror? We often forget about the mirror we're using when creating our look and beautifying ourselves every morning, but it truly is an essential part of the entire process. 

And let's face it - everyone wants to look their best, whether you're preparing for a night out, have a big job interview, or you're just going through your everyday routine.

Finding the right mirror - one that lets you actually see what you're applying and where - can help you look your best every day. And not only that: it's key in determining if your makeup and hair products are offering the benefits you're seeking or are the right fit. 

You don't want to let your time and money go to waste for lack of a good mirror.

Whether you're investing in an upgrade or trying to find an elegant gift, there are a few things to keep in mind when searching for the perfect new makeup mirror. 

Location & Mounting Style

To make your life easier and help narrow down your options, the first thing you'll need to figure out is where the mirror is going and if it needs to be installed. There's no point in falling in love with a mirror that simply won't work in your space or that will be uncomfortable to use.

Makeup mirrors are usually offered in either wall-mounted or tabletop designs. Think about how you're going to use the mirror, and where it would be the most effective: If bathrooms are crowded in the mornings, it may be a good idea to have a mirror in the bedroom; if counter space in the bathroom is at a premium, a wall-mounted model could be a perfect fit; if kids or clumsy/rushing adults frequent the bathroom, wall-mounted mirrors are a lot harder to break than tabletop models.

Lighting

Once you've figured out your location and mounting, lighting is the next major concern. Generally, natural daylight light is best, but that is a luxury few of us have when applying makeup or doing our hair.

Personal taste can play into this decision to some degree, but the general consensus is that incandescent bulbs are too forgiving and too "warm" to be effective in makeup application (they're great for shaving, though). Natural light is the ideal, and the whiter light of LED and fluorescent come closest to it (the latter being on the "cool" side).

Some mirrors have variable lighting - usually using a fluorescent bulb - that can be switched between warmer and cooler light settings to replicate different settings (e.g. the office, outdoors/daytime, evening) helping to ensure a perfect look in any light.

Magnification

Now that you've decided on where the mirror will go and whether you need a lighted option or not, let's talk about magnification. When eyeglasses get in the way of eye makeup, magnifying mirrors are just the ticket! And even for those with perfect vision, magnification allows for exacting application of lip liner or eyeliner, subtle blending of colors, flawless tweezing, and crisp shaving.

Due to the nature of glass, distortion can sometimes be a problem. Higher quality mirrors are made using specialized processes that help to produce little to no distortion during normal use and provide you with an accurate, comfortable magnification instead of one that makes you feel like you're looking at yourself through a fish bowl.