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For over a decade, I have been using a basic lighted makeup mirror from Conair. I believe it’s this one. Simple, elegant style, a bit of light so I can do my makeup while Karl is sleeping, it got the job done. But then when I cut my hair short, I went down a YouTube rabbit hole of hair styling videos that went into makeup videos and I came across one saying if you’re over 30 you need better lighting for your makeup because it’s easier for it to look cakey or not blended. I was wondering if my older eyes were the reason why I needed to practically kiss my mirror to apply makeup or if it was the insufficient (or dimmer over the years) lighting.
So I ended up researching makeup mirrors. I wanted something that wasn’t ugly; as soon as you walk in our bedroom you see my dressing table so I had no desire for something of electric blue plastic, with wings sticking out, or anything too teeny-bopper looking. I also didn’t want anything huge. I ended up choosing the Jerdon JS811W LED Makeup Mirror. Not only was it not huge and not too ugly, it was under $30!
Unlike my Conair mirror, this mirror doesn’t have a cord and instead runs on 4 AA batteries. I didn’t see this as a plus when ordering but now that I have one fewer cord on my dressing table and the ability to easily pick up and move the mirror I love this feature. The mirror is on a small plastic base with a tray in it, which I thought was silly but now I have the perfect place to hold my tweezers, which always get lost in my makeup brush cup. The mirror requires minor assembly – you screw the base to the mirror. The mirror can tilt; there is also a small round magnifying mirror that can swivel behind the big mirror out of view or you can pull forward if you need a close-up.
I didn’t realize how bad my old mirror was until I got this one. The reflection is extremely sharp. The LED lights are embedded in the mirror; they give a cool glow and light up at least three times brighter than my old mirror. While my old mirror may have been more flattering with its soft golden glow, this mirror helps me really see my face and I can see if I’m not blending well enough at the jawline, if I have makeup stuck in fine lines, and I can easily see that eyelash that fell into my eye. I don’t need the magnifying mirror any more to tweeze that random dark hair that sprung up below my brow overnight, and while the light is very bright, it doesn’t light up the whole room and it doesn’t blind me while working on my face.
It seemed wasteful to replace a perfectly good makeup mirror, but the improvements are so worth it. Now that I can really see everything so well, I find I wear less makeup yet look more polished. No more do I finish my face and think I look great and then catch my reflection in the car or the office bathroom and feel overdone or my shadow too light or my blush too dark. I think this mirror will save me in the long run with purchasing cosmetics and with not trying to rub blush off with a brown paper towel in a public bathroom.
I bought this mirror at the end of April and have been using it ever since. No need to replace the batteries yet, no issues with the lights burning out, and it’s easy to clean. Sometimes it’s worth it to go down a YouTube beauty guru rabbit hole, you may learn a new technique and you may end up with a budget-friendly tool that improves all aspects of your cosmetics application!