I’ve got this odd relationship with makeup. I like it but I don’t like a lot of it – both on my skin and in the drawer. Sifting through a cluttered makeup drawer to find what you need is not a productive use of time. And while I believe in presenting your best self to the world (read: cover up my dark under eye circles), that doesn’t mean caking on a million and one different products on your face. Sometimes, the teenage tomboy overrules the Audrey Hepburn in me and I have days where I walk out of the house makeupless. What’s that called again? #freshfacefridays? You have those days too? Phew – glad I’m not alone.
Makeup is simply a tool. And it’s a choice in how we use that tool.
What’s my minimal makeup philosophy?
Look natural – I want my makeup to be minimal, feel barely there, and not have me breaking out in hives, bumps, or some other freaky red reaction.
Take a minimal amount of time – I want to have the least amount of items possible – both to reduce clutter and to keep my routine short and sweet.
Buy less so you can buy better quality – The most important point – I believe in the concept of quality versus quantity. I want to have fewer items that are better quality, more earth (and human) friendly, than the tons of cheap junk you have to throw out every few months.
How I achieve an effortless, natural look in 10-15 minutes
So how exactly do I achieve my au naturel look on my 40-year-old skin with 10 items or less in 10-15 minutes? Glad you asked. Here’s the list of products I use and in the exact order that I apply them:
Sephora Colour Corrector (Bright Future) – This goes on after my eye cream and is solely there to reduce the dark circles under my eyes. It’s a shade of orange that cancels out the purplish blue of dark circles. You only need a small amount of this, just enough to cover the darkest areas.
BareMinerals Bare Skin Concealer (Medium) – I’ve mostly used MAC concealers before this one and I have to say, it boggles my mind at how little of this stuff you need. I dab a small (I mean small) amount on the back of my hand and use my finger to tap it under my eye over the Sephora colour corrector. If necessary, I’ll apply a second layer.
Cover FX Powder Foundation (N25) – Angels playing magical harpy music descend from the sky, floating down on colorful unicorns and then there was Cover FX. I had a fellow blogger recommend Cover FX products and I have to say OMG, love, love, love! This product line is vegan, cruelty free, and free from the inflammatory 5 (parabens? Ick!). This product goes on smooth and you don’t even notice it’s there. I use it as a setting powder over my concealer and all over as a minimal foundation.
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush (risque) – It’s blush. Simple as that. I put a small amount on each cheek and there it stays for the rest of the day. No crazy reactions and IT STAYS PUT.
Cover FX The Perfect Light Highlighting Powder (Sunlight) – You know, this product is rather perfect. While I don’t use the fancy fan brush that the stylist at Sephora used, I find that even the random foundation brush I happen to have does the trick. And well, swiping some on using your fingers works wonderfully too. This product gives you that extra little something to highlight your cheekbones. If there’s one thing to remove from this routine, this could go.
Tarte Tartelette in bloom Amazonian Clay eyeshadow palette – Are angels allowed to descend from the sky again? Tarte where were you until now? How did I not know about you? This eyeshadow palette is perfect for the natural, minimalist type of gal I am. Neutral colors for both day and a smoky eye at night. Perfection.
Too Faced Shadow Insurance – I used to be a tomboy (in my teens and 20’s), which meant that not only did I use very little makeup (no makeup), I had never used eyeshadow primer before. Yep, I’m an eyeshadow primer virgin. Well, until now of course. For years, I’ve applied shadow directly to my eyelids and wondered why it disappeared in a few hours. Not any more! I can have a messy day at Starbucks and my eyeshadow is still going strong. What do I mean by messy? Well, splashing water in my face, having the steam from the dish sanitizer give me a facial, or – and my fave, have syrups and various other food items splash in my face. And guess what? My eye shadow stays! Wonders never cease.
Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes Mascara – This mascara is so wonderfully gentle. As a contact lens wearer, that is a blessing. I made the wonderful error of getting this mascara on my contact lens and with a few blinks it dissolved away. No pain, no screaming and no stinging. It also makes my long lashes look ah-mazing. No need for a lash curler.
Kat Von D Tattoo Liner (Trooper) – My fave eye liner of all time. Right here. Hands down. Now, I don’t always use this as I’ve found the Tarte eyeshadow palette works well as a liner too. I keep this on reserve for nights out when I want a more intense look.
Clarins Instant Light Lip Oil (Honey) – Hello moisturized lips! If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s dry, chapped lips. What’s worse? When my lips crack, bleed and otherwise cause me pain. This lip oil is perfect to add some shine to my lips, keep it natural, and maintain moisturized lips. Another neat trick? Apply over your lipstick for some extra shine!
There you have it. That’s my simple, minimal makeup routine. When I’m heading out with friends, working my part-time job, or otherwise presenting myself to the world, I apply makeup. At home? Not so much. And on the occasional grocery run, you’ll find me makeupless.
Makeup budget hack: Looking to spend less? Try out the Sephora lineup of products. 99% of the time they’re made by the same companies that make the mainstream products. They’re perfect as a lower cost alternative.
Are there drugstore brands that may be less expensive? Sure there are. Would I put them on my skin? HECK NO. Er, well, for years I did when I was younger (late 20’s). Until I realized they were the reason why I broke out into red bumps and hives on numerous occasions.
When it comes down to it, makeup shouldn’t take forever to apply, be harmful to your skin or the earth, and it shouldn’t take a Brinks truck in tow to afford. Don’t buy products to conform, don’t buy products that are trendy, you’ll use it for a month and in the garbage it’ll go. Use what makes you happy, what makes you feel comfortable. #keepitnatural
What are your beauty faves? What’s your minimal makeup routine look like?
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