I have recently come to realize that my makeup addiction is a very real thing. I constantly find myself buying new makeup when I know perfectly well that I’ll probably never be able to finish the stuff I already have. Honestly it can be quite overwhelming at the makeup counters, what with all the bright and shiny new products every other week.
Most of which is just the same old product, re-launched with shiny new packaging. But its so much fun to try out new makeup that I find it close to impossible to stop myself.
So I thought it might help to make a list of the basic makeup items that one really needs. It might take some time and experimenting to find the perfect product or shade, but these probably are the only things you will need for your basic everyday makeup needs.
A good foundation is a must have, and the most important to figure out. It must match your skin tone, as wearing a foundation that makes your face look three shades lighter than the rest of your body is never a good look. Its best to let the professionals match your shade for you the first time. I went to a MAC store and asked them for help. They helped me pick out my shade in both a liquid and a powder foundation.
If like me you don’t have the patience to wear makeup every single day, a power foundation is a great solution. It takes 2 seconds to put on, and feels like there is absolutely nothing on my skin, but it really does make a difference.
I tried a bunch of different foundations before I found one perfect for me, the MAC Studio Fix. I’m in the shade NC41. Another great one that I love is the L’Oreal Magic Nude Liquid Powder. It called a liquid powder and that’s exactly how it feels, like powder on your skin. Both of these have SPF, which is a bonus.
A lot of people think that a primer is only for people with large pores or imperfections on their skin, but that’s really not true. A primer forms a base between your skin and the makeup, helps it go on smoother and makes it last longer. I don’t wear a primer everyday, really only wear it when I know I’m going to wear a full face of makeup. And it really does make a huge difference. A good primer will help give that impression of flawless skin, as it stops the foundation from settling into the fine lines on your face.
My absolute favorite is the Smashbox Photo Finish primer. I tried the Benefit Pore fessional as well, but the Smashbox one is much better in my opinion. The Colorbar Perfect Match Primer is almost exactly like the Smashbox one and is a great dupe for it at one third the price.
A good blush is the thing that can make the difference between your makeup looking natural or over the top. And it’s really important, especially if you are wearing liquid foundation, which tends to take away all the color from your face. So if you skip the blush, it can sometimes look slightly unnatural. A light sweep of blush brings back the healthy flush of color to the face. I love the Cheeky Glow blushes from Maybelline. I really only ever wear one color, which I know is kinda strange, it’s called Creamy Cinnamon from that same range. MAC has the most amazing range of blushes ever, but for some reason they break me out. MAC Melba is another gorgeous color, and looks good on all complexions.
With this entire contouring craze going on, a bronzer is a must have. It can literally change the shape of your face, or give you a nice sun kissed glow, whichever you’re going for. I alternate between the Benefit Hoola bronzer and the MAC Bronzing powder in Matte Bronze. The Hoola has the benefit of being an universal shade for all skin tones (pun intended 🙂 ) , while the MAC one comes in a bunch of shades and you can pick out the one most suitable for you. The thing to remember while picking out a bronzer is to make sure it’s a matte powder or cream bronzer. Bronzers with glitter or shimmer tend to look slightly muddy on the skin, and are more suited to be used as highlighters in my opinion.
I’m usually too lazy to wear concealer, I feel like my foundation gives me sufficient coverage without it. But there are days when I wake up with raccoon eyes that make me really appreciate what an amazing invention the concealer actually is. Even it if is something you will only use once in a while, it’s a great thing to have in your makeup bag. You never know when you’ll need to conceal a blemish or dark circles after a late night. Its also great to use one in a shade lighter than your foundation to brighten up the under eye area.
I use the MAC Pro Longwear concealer in shade NC42. It’s slightly pricey, but a little goes a long way and one bottle of it has lasted me over a year and I’ve only used up about a third of it.
That amazing ‘glowing from within’ look we all envy on magazine covers, almost always is from strategically applied highlighter. It adds that perfect amount of shimmer to the high points of the face to make it look like you’re glowing. Though not something I would wear everyday, I’m on a mission to find the perfect one. Right now I’m using one called Diamonds Frost from MAC, which is a cream base. I found this other one online called Face Sheer from Lakme in the shade Sun Kissed, which literally is the exact same shade as the MAC one, but in powder form. I think the Lakme one comes in 3 different shades. Soft and Gentle from MAC is literally the perfect highlighter for lighter skin tones, while Gold Deposit from MAC looks absolutely amazing on slightly darker or an Indian skin tone.
- Lipstick/Lip liner
My obsession with collecting lipsticks is no secret. I feel like they are the most essential part of any look. I did a whole post on the only five shades of lipstick you need here.
Even on a day when you are wearing no other makeup, some eyeliner and a bright lip can instantly make you look well put together. I’m partial to matte lipsticks and MAC by far has the best range of matte shades. A lip liner in a nude shade will work for almost all shades of lipsticks. My go to currently would have to be Boldly Bare, which is a Pro Longwear lip liner from MAC that I’ve been wearing non-stop on its own.
Finding the perfect mascara is as everyone knows, a lifelong mission. The moment you find one you think is the one for you, you spot another one you simply must try!
I went the longest time without ever wearing mascara, but one fine day I decided I’d try one to see what the fuss was about and I was hooked. I’d never really noticed before how my eyelashes were all but invisible without mascara.
It just opens up your eyes and instantly makes you look wide awake, if that makes any sense. At the same time clumpy mascara can have the exact opposite effect, so its important to make sure to find one that doesn’t get all clumpy. I’m partial to waterproof mascara, as my eyes constantly tear up for no reason whatsoever. Maybelline Hyper Curl Volume Express Waterproof is what I’m using now.
So these are my basic makeup essentials. Apart from these a moisturizer preferably with some SPF is a must first, and a setting spray like the MAC Fix + also does wonders and helps the makeup not look too cakey. Hope this has helped, and do let me know what your makeup essentials would be!