If you want a foolproof way to step up your makeup routine, then make sure you’re using the best makeup mirror. Finding a well-lit spot to apply your base, liner, blush and so on is key to achieving a flawless makeup look; after all, paint your face in dim lighting and you risk walking out with mismatched foundation or bronzer that looks ten times harsher in natural daylight.
This is the reason that finding the best mirror for makeup is essential for nailing your getting ready routine, ensuring you’ve applied everything correctly. Luckily for you, we’ve tested a wide range of makeup mirrors to suit every budget and all needs. From light-up mirrors to magnified, free-standing and wall-mounted options, scroll down for our top picks. And if you’re not quite sure which type of mirror is the best for you, read on for our buying advice. Mirror Switch
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There are different types of mirror available for applying makeup, and which type you choose will depend on your needs.
Magnified makeup mirror - Whilst most makeup mirrors will come with some kind of magnification, whether it’s built-in or an add-on, magnified mirrors are incredibly useful for applying makeup. They allow you to see closer into the skin, making them perfect for creating detailed eye looks and achieving a flawless base. Of course, it’s always best to be able to see your face from close up and far away, so you don’t want a magnified mirror to be the only mirror you have; but for perfecting your base and eyes, they’re great.
Lighted makeup mirror - If you struggle to find an area with good lighting for makeup application, then a lighted makeup mirror is a great solution. It ensures that your face will be brightly and evenly lit so that your make up goes on exactly as you want it to look in natural daylight. It’s likely that all light-up makeup mirrors will need to be recharged, but some also come with a range of features such as dimmable lights and different light shade options. These can be particularly useful if your night out will be somewhere with dim lighting, since it’s best to do your makeup in similar lighting to the place you’re going.
When it comes to makeup mirrors, size matters.This is because it’s always helpful to be able to see your whole face in the mirror at once, especially if you’re using the same mirror for your hair too. If you’re using a small magnified mirror, you won’t be able to sufficiently check out your completed look.
In particular, this is an issue if you’re using a mirror that has a magnification of 3X or above, since you’ll need to lean in to see yourself in focus. That means the higher the magnification of the mirror, the less of your face you’ll be able to see.
As such, magnified mirrors are better when they’re larger; the bigger the mirror, the more of your face you’ll be able to see at once.
The best lighted makeup mirrors will offer the longest battery life, since it means you won’t have to mess about charging the mirror every time you use it. This is especially true if your vanity table isn’t located near a charger. If you’re applying your makeup from somewhere that’s close to a plug point, then this won’t matter too much, since many such mirrors can be used while they’re charging.
Some mirrors are powered by batteries, but these are a less eco-friendly option since batteries will inevitably need replacing at some point. If you’re hoping to offset this, then you can take a look at our roundup of the best rechargeable batteries for some long-lasting alternatives.
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Price: £35 | Buy now from Currys
Those who are on the hunt for a makeup mirror that offers great light and crystal-clear magnification will love the HoMedics Touch and Glow mirror. At its highest setting, the light is bright enough to evenly illuminate your face for makeup application, and it can be dimmed by pressing and holding the touch-sensitive power button.
Battery life is 2.5 hours, with the light remaining bright even when the mirror is low on charge. And if the Touch and Glow runs out of charge mid-way through your makeup application, simply plug it in via the USB charging point and continue using it while it charges.
Helpfully, the mirror can be tilted, too, enabling you to evaluate your makeup from every angle, so you won’t miss any poor blending of foundation under your chin! The only issue with this mirror is that the whole thing is magnified, which means you won’t be able to see your makeup from far away. This won’t matter if you have access to a normal mirror elsewhere, but it’s something to keep in mind if you’re looking for a mirror for detailed makeup application as well as hair styling.
Key details – Mirror dimensions: 14.5cm; Full dimensions: 25x17x13cm; Features: lights, dimmable, magnified, rechargeable; Battery life: 2.5hrs
Price: £200 | Buy now from Amazon
If you’re willing to splash out on an all-singing, all-dancing makeup mirror, then you won’t find any better than the Simplehuman sensor mirror. Offering a range of options for lighting, it will be spot on for the task at hand. Using the sleek touch-sensitive slider on the side of the mirror, you can dim and brighten the Tru-lux white light and warm white options. And with Simplehuman’s Tru-lux light system closely mimicking natural light, you’ll be able to see the full colour spectrum of your face, for added clarity.
This mirror can be left plugged in all the time since it features a face sensor, which means it will light up every time you sit down in front of it to apply your makeup, automatically turning off when you move away. If you find that the sensor is too sensitive, it can be turned off via the button on its base to save some battery life, although one full charge should see it last around five weeks of use.
Offering 5X magnification, while it’s difficult to view your face from further away, the Simplehuman mirror is much bigger than the average freestanding magnified mirror, which means you can at least see your whole face. Clarity here is second to none, and if the magnification here isn’t strong enough for you, there’s also a 10X zoom mirror option available.
This Simplehuman mirror isn’t cheap, but when you consider its exceptional build quality, height-adjustable stainless steel stand, tilting functionality, and the fact that it’s available in four colour options (silver, rose gold, white and pink), then there’s no denying you’re getting a feature-packed mirror for your money.
Key details – Mirror dimensions: 20cm; Full dimensions: 39x23x12cm; Features: Tru-lux lights, colour change, dimmable, magnified, adjustable angle and height; Battery life: 6 hours
Price: £13 | Buy now from Amazon
We loved this affordable mirror from H&S. The LED lights around its edge are operated by a touch-sensitive switch, and while they can’t be adjusted for brightness or colour, they’re sufficiently bright to light up your face evenly, which makes applying your makeup a doddle.
The main mirror isn’t magnified, which actually makes it great for getting a view of both your makeup and hair, but if you do wish to zoom in on a particular area, then you’ll be pleased to learn that the H&S mirror comes with a smaller, removable 10x magnifying mirror that can be applied to the main unit using suckers. One small caveat of this is that it can leave sucker marks on the mirror, but these are easy enough to clean off with a microfibre cloth. As with all the mirrors on the roundup, its angle is also adjustable.
In terms of more technical details, the mirror is battery-powered, meaning it can’t be recharged via USB. Those who are concerned about the environmental impact of using batteries might want to consider investing in rechargeable batteries to avoid excess waste.
Key details – Mirror dimensions: 16 x 21cm; Dimensions: 27 x 17 x 12cm; Features: LED lights, dimmable, separate stick-on 10x magnified mirror; Battery life: Not stated
Price: £10 | Buy now from Amazon
This light-up compact mirror folds down to around the size of a smartphone, so it’s easy to carry around in a handbag. Weighing just 116g, it won’t take up much weight in a suitcase, so it’s perfect for taking away on all your travels, too, and you won’t have to compromise much in terms of functionality.
This is because the brightness of the mirror’s built-in lights can be adjusted using the small touch-sensitive button, allowing you to choose your preferred brightness. If you’re concerned about power drain, then helpfully the compact’s auto LED shutoff kicks in when the compact is closed.
Also, you can go hands-free with this mirror, since its 300-degree hinge allows you to stand the mirror up on a desk or vanity. Each side of the mirror offers a different magnification; but note that the highest magnification is only 2x, so if strong magnification is important to you, then you might be better looking for an alternative. Otherwise, this is a great option for slinging in your suitcase.
Key details – Mirror dimensions: 12 x 9cm; Dimensions: 13 x 9 x 1cm; Features: LED lights, dimmable, 2x magnification, auto LED shutoff; Battery life: Not stated
Price: £10 | Buy now from Wilko
This bamboo vanity mirror from Wilko may not come with built-in lights, but it’s ideal for use in bathrooms where you might not want electronic devices. It can be angled, and flipping it around reveals another full-sized mirror with 2x magnification for seeing up close. Sitting on a wide tray base, it even offers space for storing makeup, jewellery, or whichever trinkets your heart desires.
If you’re looking to add some cohesion to your vanity table, then you’ll be pleased to learn that Wilko also stocks a wide range of matching bamboo items, including storage pots, soap dispensers and hair brushes in a matching finish. In fact, the storage pots – ideal for storing makeup brushes – fit perfectly into the base of the bamboo mirror, allowing you to keep all your makeup bits in one place. It even comes in at an affordable price – what’s not to like?
Key details – Mirror dimensions: 13 x 17cm; Dimensions: 33 x 17 x 18cm; Features: 2x magnification, matching storage options
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