Growing up I always bought my makeup from the drugstore (preferably CVS). It’s a bad thing, because there are still things I definitely get there, but I had no interest to explore anything above those prices. I didn’t know it could be better.
Oh, I’ve realized paying a bit more when you can has its benefits.
I started exploring new makeup about three ago after I become a part of a fabulous group of women. One of my friends named Jessica really inspired me to explore beyond the makeup aisle at my local drug store a year after we met and to start shopping at Ulta, Sephora, etc. We live far away from each other so we Skyped one evening and she walked me through some of her go-tos and really just taught me about makeup.
After she helped me with a list, I started shopping at Ulta (occasionally Sephora but I like my points at Ulta better).
Over time I’ve really started to develop some things that I really like and I wanted to share some of my favorites or current essentials in my makeup bag.
Forewarning, I have very fair and sensitive skin, but that doesn’t mean any of these things are better for it. It’s just a coincidence that my skin type and these products go together.
For the Face: Benefit Duo with a Rimmel Primer
Over the last year I started to use a primer. I’ve used many great primers, Smashbox Photo Finish being one of my favorites, but one day I didn’t have much to spend and picked up Rimmel’s Fix & Perfect. I have no complaints and the price is great.
In terms of foundation, I may have found my favorite foundation/BB cream and powder that I’m deeming the “Benefit Duo.”
First is the foundation (well, the “base”): Big Easy. It’s fairly new and actually more of a BB cream that does a little more than traditional BB creams. When you finish applying it on your face it has this really flawless powder-like finish. It also includes a bit of SPF (but you should always still be putting some sunscreen on if you’ll be out int he sun).
Many of the BB creams I used in the past I felt blended into my face but didn’t provide coverage. The Big Easy provides coverage but not cakey like a lot of foundations can be. Benefit also has the Hello Flawless Oxygen foundation that they recommend to pair with the powder I mention below. I bought it in the wrong shade and never returned it, so I haven’t used it much, but if you wanted more coverage than a BB or CC cream that is still light, that would be a great product to use.
Then try pairing the Big Easy with Benefit’s Hello Flawless powder. Hello Flawless is hands down my favorite powder of all time. It blends right into your face and fills in a lot of the trouble spots you might have. It goes on so smoothly and I love that I can put a light coat on during the day for work and can put it on a little heavier for going out at night.
Urban Decay for the Eyes
I’ve loved a few of Urban Decay’s face products but my favorite from them by far are the products for the eyes. I received the Naked 3 palette last Christmas and I love the colors. It’s a variety of pinks and nudes, and even though I prefer nudes, I’ve given the colors a chance and really love the mix. It’s perfect for my fair skin. One day I hope to add the original Naked and Naked 2 to my makeup bag.
Second, the piece of makeup that turned me on to “pricer” makeup in the first place is Urban Decay’s 24/7 Glide-On eye pencil. I’m sure I’m in the minority, but I put eyeliner on the insides of my lower inner eyelids. This eyeliner glides right on without problem and stays on all day. YES, all day. I absolutely love it. My favorite shade is Demolition, it’s a dark brown, but they have a wide variety of colors from black to light purple. I hear taking a white eyeliner and putting it on your lower lid will really make your eyes pop..maybe I’ll try it someday.
Third, for mascara, I’m currently testing out a new CK One mascara. It came free from Ulta for my birthday, so I’ll take it. I’m starting to really like it but it does clump easily. I have to put it on cautiously then sometimes use a eyebrow brush to break up the clumps. I’ve also really like Benefit’s They’re Real because it lengthens and also Tarte’s 4-in-1 too.
Lipwear that Doesn’t Break the Bank
Last but certainly not least: Lips. This is one piece of makeup I still can go to the drugstore for: long lasting lip wear. Covergirl makes a great one, Outlast All Day Lip Color, Maybelline’s Superstay or Revlon’s Color Stay. Anything along those line. What I love about those is they last most of the day and I just re-apply the balm that comes with it on and off throughout the day.
When it comes to makeup remover, my favorite by far are Neutrogena’s makeup remover cleansing towelettes. They just get it all, which is all I can really say about them! They do their job for sure.