About

The background

A beauty and lifestyle blog on beauty boxes, makeup and nail polish reviews and swatches, product and brand news, travel, collectibles, fashion, skin and hair care tips and nail art tutorials, Cosmetopia Digest went live on January 15, 2013. I hoped blogging would help me audit my makeup and skincare stash, and keep tabs on what I buy. It has not worked very well so far.

The name

 Cosmetopia is an amalgamation of the words cosmetics and utopia; for any makeup lover, utopia would involve high quality beauty products, beautiful lipsticks in a variety of colours, highly pigmented eyeshadows in well-packed palettes, foundations with long-staying, flawless results, hair products that result in glossy, frizz-free locks and skincare that actually works.

The difference

List of top 50 beauty blogsWhat sets this blog apart? I am not a professional makeup artiste. I do not have flawless skin, but am incredibly acne-prone. I have a wonky tooth and a slight snub-nose. This blog, as I said, was begun with the intent of helping me keep track of my stash, but ended up with my discovering something new about beauty and skin care every day and I share my experiences and excitement here. Cosmetopia Digest is your next-door makeup junkie's beauty blog.
Apart from beauty box unboxings, regular product reviews, news, campaigns, trends and makeup looks, Cosmetopia Digest deals with beauty in a historical context, showcasing vintage beauty advertisements, trends of yore, products our grandmothers and great-grandmothers used and loved, antique cosmetics and so on. My parents (and I) are antique collectors so I dig into their collection for beauty-related items.

This blog features many top international brands from around the world. Brutal honesty is Cosmetopia Digest's feature, as my monthly "Empties" posts and disclosure policies will show.
As of Q4 2016, almost all posts (save about 12 or so) feature products purchased by me. I consider review requests when I am approached. Provided the product is something I would consider buying.

The awards

Cosmetopia Digest was shortlisted among the top 5 blogs in the Makeup and Beauty category for the BlogAdda Awards in 2014, and in 2015. The only blog to be in the Top Five for two years in a row.
In 2015, Cosmetopia Digest was selected among the top 15 beauty blogs for the Baggout Blog Awards.
This blog is among Preen.me's 2015 list of 50 Blogs You Should Be Reading (worldwide).


The blogger

Tomboy-turned makeup addict, nerd, antique-collector, and history buff. Swot and scholarship-winner, who lived life up to my Masters' degree zealously guarding my books, marks, report cards and notes, without wearing foundation and eyeshadow even once or owning either, despite living next to Boots and House of Fraser at the time.
Was brought up by a makeup-junkie Mum but did not play with her stash despite her best efforts. I became addicted to makeup once I commenced professional life and there has been no looking back since then.
Apparently, the name "Renu" means atomic, which a lot of people translate as "tiny", but I prefer "capable of destroying large cities when in contact with neutrons".
I travel frequently and pick up brands from all over the world, and especially like discovering lesser-known brands from each country I visit. I also buy from various websites which I have mentioned in the blog in different posts. I may not always remember where I picked up what product for how much, but will tell you where you can get it. Please put up with my memory.
Apart from beauty and makeup, I love books (fiction/thrillers/dystopian/antiquarian first editions/school stories/classics), fountain pens, musical theatre, military history and antiques, in no particular order. 

The skin and hair

I have frizzy, dry hair from years of sulphate-shampoo washing and no conditioning (tomboy, remember?). I have oily, incredibly acne-prone skin that breaks out for no rhyme or reason. I have yellow/olive undertones.

I never buy, use or review fake or grey market products. Everything shown on this website is sourced from the brand's official website or from an authorised retailer. 

The colours

I prefer muted dusty-rose, mauve or similar neutral lipsticks, peach blushes, all bronzers, and I love playing with most eyeshadow colours except for the pale can-only-highlight shades.

Foundation shades



  • 7 Medium in Charlotte Tilbury Magic and Light Wonder Foundations 
  • Stromboli in NARS Luminous All-Day Weightless Foundation, pressed powder, and Radiant Creamy Compact
  • #8 in Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer
  • #4 Beige in Bourjois Air Mat Foundation   
  • Honey Beige in Cargo Cosmetics HD Foundation
  • Toasted Vanilla in By Terry Densiliss Compact
  • G50 in CoverFX Custom Cover Drops
  • Warm Sand in By Terry Densiliss Foundation
  • Medium in Too Faced Cocoa Powder Foundation
  • Tawny in Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Foundation
  • Warm Beige in Too Faced Born This Way Foundation
  • BD 55 Warm Praline in Yves St Laurent Fusion Ink Foundation
  • Intensity 3.0 in Estee Lauder Double Wear Light Foundation 
  • 33 Rose Beige in Bourjois 123 CC Cream 
  • 54 Beige Beige in Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation 
  • Honey in Benefit's Hello Flawless Foundation
  • Medium in Benefit Some Kinda Gorgeous
  • 56 in Kat von D Lock-It Foundation
  • Beige in Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation
  • 6 (or 6.5 depending on tan) in Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk and Maestro Fusion Foundations
  • Medium Neutral in Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Powder Foundation
  • 6.0 in Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Liquid Foundation 
  • Medium Sand in Tarte Amazonian Clay Full-Coverage Foundation

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