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An extreme close up of the top part of a product with a model’s hands squeezing while a lightweight liquid is dripping down.

Whether you’re packing for a city break, freshening up on the morning commute or just seeking to streamline your routine, meet the latest trending innovation swiftly making its way into beauty buffs arsenals everywhere. Drumroll, please…

It’s built-in applicators! An all-in-one wonder, these handy heroes are perfect for cutting out the need for extra tools and sponges while keeping your hands free from formula on the go. How? Well, within the product, it features all you need to apply. Think: built-in brushes, clickable wands or metal rollers. Each work to seamlessly apply product with fuss-free (some may even say sensorial) application. What more could you ask for?

Reach for them on busy mornings when you press snooze one too many times, or if you’re off on holiday and want to pack light... just imagine your beauty bag sans any bulky brushes? Dreamy. Plus, we all know what it’s like when you realise you’ve brought your bronzer but forgotten the tool to top-up it up…


Now we know the stories around built-in applicators and whether they’re hygienic. However, we’re here to dispel these myths so you can enjoy these modernised must-haves without the fear of breaking out. It’s commonly known that applicators alone (read: sponges, brushes, the list goes on…) can harbour bacteria, however if your tools are made of the right material and you routinely wash them, you can wave a fond farewell to the fear of lingering dirt and debris.

And just because the applicator is then built-in to the product doesn’t mean the above doesn’t apply too! With many made of materials such as metal, silicone and ceramic, each are designed to enhance application *and* make it lightwork to clean after use.


So, we’re calling all commuters, the pack light-ers or the make up maestros who want to streamline their cosmetic kit – because we’ve selected our go-to built-in beauty applicators that make life *just* that little bit easier. From hydrating eye creams and sun-shielding SPFs to bronzing bestsellers, these beauty essentials are perfect for popping in your bag for a quick top up or if you’re seeking to streamline your skin care. Warning: you may want them all…

Already adored for its illuminating abilities, Caudalie’s Vinoperfect Brightening Eye Cream infuses a blend of caffeine, niacinamide and Viniferine (a patented complex extract from vine stalks) to brighten and perk up the skin around your peepers. What makes it so special, you ask? It features an in-built ceramic tip so you can apply this revitalising formula into hard-to-reach contours while instantly cooling and soothing tired, puffy eyes. We heard on the grapevine this is soon to be your new go-to skin saviour…

Here's what Rose, our PA and Office Manager, has to say:

“I'll gravitate towards any eye cream that comes with a cooling applicator – as I will keep it in my bedside table ready to help me feel refreshed come morning! Even my husband is obsessed with it.” Rose, PA and Office Manager


Prepare to restore, repair and rejuvenate your complexion with Kate Somerville’s SuperCell Rejuvenation Serum through not only the formula… but its cooling in-built applicator. Created to enhance your skin care routine, it features a metal roller which you can use to massage and contour your face as you apply the serum. The effects? Not only do you plump the skin with three unique stem cell growth factors, but it leaves your visage firm, soothed and hydrated.


Curious as to how to reapply SPF over make up while on the go? What’s your thoughts on a powder SPF? Hear us out… Supergoop!’s (Re)setting 100% Mineral Powder SPF30 is an invisible formula that can be used over make up to lock in your look, minimise shine *and* deliver that all-important defence against UV rays. Featuring – you guessed it – an in-built applicator, it means there is no faff searching for your make up brush lost in the bottom of your bag. Simply twist to unlock and gently sweep the powder across skin for a protected, matte finish.


What’s quick, convenient and handy for stowing in your bag when you need that instant ‘just stepped off the plane’ glow? NUDESTIX’s Nudies Matte Bronze, of course. This glow-giving bestseller grants skin instant warmth wherever you are thanks to the in-built tool that allows you to leave your bulky bronzing brush at home. Plus, did we mention you can simply twist to remove it for when it’s time for your monthly brush cleanse? Don’t just take our words of praise, Kimi, our Campaigns and Project Assistant, agrees…

“I love the convenience of the built-in brush; it's perfectly dense for blending the product and can be easily removed for washing.” Kimi, Campaigns and Projects Assistant


While we’re on the topic of tools, meet the complexion companion here to stay in your beauty regime: BY TERRY’s Light-Expert Click Brush Foundation. A multitasking marvel that not only features a radiance-revealing formula bursting with skin-loving ingredients, but it boasts an easy-to-use built-in buffing brush. As the name suggests, you simply click, and the foundation enters the brush and can be swept across the skin for a dewy, lit-from-within finish.


Lastly, offering a new, innovative and conveniently sized way to enjoy your go-to signature perfume is Jo Loves’ A Fragrance Paintbrush. Housed in the brand’s unique packaging, this staple features a built-in brush for you to sweep the scent’s sensual accords across your skin – plus it’s also formulated into a gel which means it dries down instantly for a more potent finish. Ideal for fuss-free application, it can be swiped along the pulse points (read: neck, wrists, ankles *and* behind the ears) for a quick on-the-go top up. Talk about a perfume upgrade…


And there you have it; if you weren’t sure these handy heroes were for you, you do now. It’s time to make space for your new streamlined staples…

Anya Elliman
Anya Elliman Writer and expert
Anya is one of Cult Beauty’s Junior Copywriters. A huge lover of all things skin and body care, time spent intently researching product ingredients has resulted in a mass of skin care know-how (which don’t worry, she’s more than happy to share). When Anya's not treating herself to a new Maison Margiela fragrance or Aesop hand cream, you'll find her at the latest natural wine bar with friends, buying a new book (even though there is already a stack waiting), or walking through Hampstead Heath with her regular order of an almond latte.

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