MJ’s Makeup Bag Essentials

I feel like every time I turn around I am purchasing something new to put in my makeup bag, but I am thinking of these products specifically that I take with me to special events or make sure I have with me on vacation.

Some of the brands of products may change depending on what I have at my disposal at the time but for the most part my makeup bag essentials stay pretty constant.

Now I also call this my “wedding bag” makeup, this is my normal routine when it comes to going to a wedding. There may be some variance when it comes to what eyeshadow palette I take because I am an eyeshadow palette hoarder and I have a problem. This is also true with lipstick because lipstick colors really depend on what season it is. Spring is light colors or subdued nudes, summer tends to be brighter colors or more pink nudes, fall tends to be deeper colors and a mix of metallic shades, as does winter but winter also tends to circle back to the more subdued nude shades. This is all for me, this is how my lipstick palette shifts through the seasons.

 

I am going to divide this into two sections; Section 1: Tools and Section 2: Productions.

Let’s dive right in, shall we!

Here is an overall shot of all of the products that are actually in my bag.:

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Section 1:

I don’t actually use many tools if we are honest because I don’t wear all that much makeup, granted when I have to go to an event I do wear a considerable amount of product on my face and I can’t wait to scrape it off at the end of the night.

 

Foundation Brushes: Now I have found recently (since I took this picture) I have been using a silicone beauty blender to put my foundation on. I purchased the applicator at Ulta and it was their brand so it wasn’t that expensive and I am not wasting any product when it comes to applying my foundation. I also tend to favor the paddle brush (I have also heard it called a mermaid brush) when it comes to applying my foundation because I find that it applies more evenly than it does with a flat brush.

 

Concealer Brushes: Again I started this post over a month ago and then I had some more products added to my arsenal, my normal go to for concealer is the ELF concealer brush but I got the Vasanti concealer buffer brush in my April ipsy Glam Bag and I have been using that exclusively since then. I do prefer a round tipped brush when it comes to concealer application because it provides a better blending ability.

 

Eyebrow Brush: Now I have only been filling my eyebrows in for about a two and a half years or so, I was watching a YouTube video and the person said that they didn’t understand why people didn’t fill in their eyebrows and I had never thought about that possibility before so I started to do it. I have gotten considerably better since then. I use the it cosmetics number 12 brush which can be either and eyeliner or eyebrow brush. (I don’t wear eyeliner anymore, I haven’t since I used to wear too much in middle school.) I find that it picks product up well and allows for precise movement through the eyebrow itself while still allowing it to be easily shaped. I have used the brush that comes provided in my eyebrow product and it’s just too small to handle so I prefer having a standard sized brush for application.

 

Cheek Brush: I didn’t really start my foray into cheek products (blush, bronzer, highlighter, etc.) until about a year ago because I prefer looking like I have never seen the sun in my life. Like if I go outside I am going to burst into flames or I will be so blindingly pale that people will have to look away from me for fear of burning out their retina’s. (Y’all can’t see me but I am laughing right now.) I bought this brush because I had purchased Real Techniques brushes in the past and they have never disappointed me. This instapop cheek brush was no different. Highlighter has become a standard in my makeup bag, I also carry blush to special events and since very recently bronzer as well. I like the angle on the brush for going over different contours of the cheek and it provides relatively even coverage where you need it.

 

Eyeshadow Brush: The eyeshadow palette in this post has a brush with it but some of my palettes didn’t come with a brush so I tend to carry an eyeshadow brush for that specific reason. I tend to reach for my Lorac Cosmetics double ended brush, one end has a very fluffy brush and the other a more densely packed smaller more circular brush. I use the fluffier end for most of my eyelid and use the smaller end for under the eye and the inner corner. I really like having a dual ended brush instead of carrying around a number of brushes because my makeup bag is already bulky enough.

 

Section 2:

This will be in order of application rather than just a list like the tools.

Primer: First and foremost, I always start with a primer, I have a red complexion because I have rosacea which is a dermatological condition that makes your skin complexion much more red so I have to wear a green tinted primer. I live in this primer whenever I have to look nice for something. I used Smashbox for years but I found that NYX for me also does the job even if the coverage isn’t as complete.

 

Foundation: Now my foundation rotates to be honest, sometimes I don’t want to spend $40 on foundation but I find that my skin also doesn’t react as adversely with more expensive foundation than it does with more inexpensive brands. I have sensitive skin so I have to be so careful with what I put on it. Currently I use the Urban Decay All-Nighter (Waterproof Longwear Liquid) Foundation in the shade 0.5 (That is the lightest color it comes in and I still think it’s still just a little too dark for my actual skin tone.) It covers really well though and I am in love with it.

 

Concealer: This is the only concealer that I have ever used and that is the Urban Decay Naked Skin (Weightless Complete Coverage Concealer) in the shade Fair Neutral. It provides enough color that I don’t use blush and stuff, which is not a good excuse not to use blush and bronzer because I look a little dead if I go without something on my cheeks. It’s easily blendable and it provides pretty solid coverage for long term wear.

 

Eyebrows: Again, this is the only product I have used on my brows in recent memory, when I first started filling in my eyebrows I used ELF’s eyebrow gel and I switched to Rimmel well over a year ago, pictured in the spread is my new one (which I still haven’t opened) because my other one is down to the pan in some places but I don’t want to throw away the rest of the product. I find that I prefer using the gel to the powder in my eyebrows so I have found that Rimmel’s Brow This Way in medium brown is perfect for my needs and my brow color.

 

Cheeks:

  • Highlighter: This is a staple in my normal routine because it provides just enough color that it does the job I want it to. I use the Urban Decay After Glow palette and I think this is the original After Glow and I almost bought the other palette but decided on this one and I haven’t looked back. Highlighter is a pretty new concept to me even though I have always liked how it looked.

 

  • Blush: So blush is something I wear rarely because I always have red cheeks and I don’t want to emphasis that when I am wearing a full face of makeup. I do use very light colored blush when I do wear it and I normally reach for my Too Faced Love Flush (long lasting 16-hour blush) in the shade Baby Love. It’s not a pigmented and for me that is something amazing because it still has a nice color and provides a rosy tint without being overbearing. Whenever I see overbearing blush all I can think of is a little one who gets into their mother’s makeup and has a grand old time.

 

  • Bronzer: Bronzer is something that I have worn only a few times but I tend to (and it’s not pictured here) to use the Hoola bronzer from benefit. This is a super recent thing for me, if you read my April Beauty Haul then you know that I got it last month and I have been using it ever since. It provides just enough color that I don’t shine in the light with how pale I am.

 

Eyes:

They are going to get their own section because this is where I spend most of my time when I do any makeup application.

  • Eyeshadow Primer: Now I only use eyeshadow primer when I have the need to wear eyeshadow in a long wear fashion but for the most part I use Lorac Cosmetics Behind the Scenes Eyeshadow Primer and I love it. I wore it to a wedding recently and my eyeshadow was on lock from about 1PM to midnight and I was very pleased with it. No smudging, no cracking, no nothing and I was very happy with it.

 

  • Eyeshadow: Now my palette changes depending on the season as well but there is a good chance that the palette I have in my bag is all neutral colors because normally to weddings you don’t want to look too crazy when it comes to makeup. The wedding I went to in late April I wore a Lilly Pulitzer outfit and it’s loud enough that I wanted to do a very understated makeup look and I was very pleased with it overall. The palette pictured is the Urban Decay Smoky palette which is one of my absolute staples when it comes to a look. My Tartist Pro palette is another, if you read my Top 5 Eyeshadow Palette’s post this is not news to you. When you are going to a formal event you don’t want to look like it is just a stop off before you go out to a club so neutral for me is a must when it comes to eyeshadow.

 

  • Mascara: Now When I travel and I don’t check a bag (aka I am driving, not flying) I bring two mascara’s I normally take my Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara and it is my absolute go to when it comes to mascara, I cannot tell you how many times I have reached for other mascara’s and I find myself coming back to this one. I always bring a second tube of mascara with me because it is habit and I tend to gravitate toward my Roller Lash from benefit. I also in recent memory have carried around NYX’s Worth the Hype because it is a much less expensive alternative to some of the other one’s that I have used. Both provide length and volume and they both came with me to the wedding.

 

Lips: Final thing, now like I said above my lipstick color palette changes with the seasons, normally in my bag (depending on the season) is a nude shade that goes with the feel of the season, a full color liquid lip that also goes with the season and normally a metallic shade. Because who doesn’t love a little bit of drama in the makeup bag and also allows some versatility in case you have to attend a second event or something that you didn’t plan in your original look, like going to an after party or club or bar.

What are the essentials in your makeup bag?

-MJ

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March Beauty Haul

There is a good chance that in any given month I am going to walk into Ulta a couple of times, wander around for ten minutes, and leave with makeup that I hadn’t planned on buying because everything in the store I look at and say, “I need this.” The voice in the back of my head disagrees but there is another, louder voice saying “yea you do!”

This month was no different in that department, I was really looking forward to a few items that I don’t have yet because my store was out of them and I refuse to order makeup online. (I have had things come broken and I am too socially anxious to complain.)

So my first haul happened about the beginning of the first full week of March because I have control issues when I walk into the store. I went in for a fan brush and came out with a fan brush and a few other items.

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The fan brush I bought was a Morphe M310 brush (1), I really like Morphe as a brand. (I have a few palettes as well.) The fan brush is really simple and I want to use it for highlighting, which in the last three months or so I have actually started to do when I do an actual full face of makeup.

Next was something that I actually needed, I have been living with the wrong shade of foundation for quite some time. I love the foundation that I have (Too Faced Born This Way) but it’s difficult to use because the shade is the wrong one for my skin tone. I spent a good 15 minutes looking between three or four different brands and I finally decided on Urban Decay’s All Nighter liquid foundation (2) in shade 0.5. (I am super pale.) I haven’t actually tried it yet but I am hopeful for it to be a much better match for my skin tone. I really like Urban Decay’s foundation products because the only concealer that I use is their concealer and I have loved it since the moment I started using it well over two years ago. I actually just had to replace my tube because I ran out.

In most cases it is the packaging that gets me and for sure Urban Decay always has some great packaging.

The next two things I saw in an email first and then I wanted to try them. Normally I am not a fan of glosses when it comes to lips because they stay sticky, I have been on the matte liquid lipstick train for quite some time now. NYX is normally my favorite brand for lipsticks so I decided to give the Strictly Vinyl lip gloss.

The deep purple is called Night Walker (3) and it actually looks pretty great.

The more mauve shade is called Baby Doll (4) and it also looks pretty great.

The final item I bought was the Lorac Pro 3 Palette (5). I feel like Lorac is a relatively newer brand to my makeup collection, I think the first palette I bought from Lorac was the California Dreaming palette and I love that palette so I have gone back and bought other things from the brand because I loved the quality of that item. I went with this specific palette because the shades are more attuned to my personal style when it comes to what I put on my eyelids. I am looking forward to using this product as well for more everyday looks.

 

Also in March I went into Sephora, which I do not do very often. Don’t get me wrong I love Sephora but it also has more designer makeup that I want but cannot afford so I avoid it and avoid the temptation as well (my wallet thanks me).

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I went in with the intention of purchasing, to try, the Dr. Jart Shake and Shot mask (1) because I had seen a lot of people trying it online and I wanted to see if it was worth the $12 price tag of a one-time use mask. (I’ll let you know) I feel like the reviews of it are already played out but you know what I want to do it anyway. Also the fact that the top is a baby’s face is a little off putting but I still think it is an interesting marketing technique because it makes you think about it and it is a conversation piece.

 

The second thing I purchased was something that I saw on Instagram. (shakes fist at Instagram for making me want things that I don’t need!) The Kristen Leanna and Urban Decay collaboration eyeshadow palette Kaleidoscope Dreams (2). I swatched the shades and I already love all of the shades, again I wanted something that was a bit more daring in my makeup collection and this was definitely a showstopper of a palette. I am absolutely in love with the Leo + Brixton shade because it is iridescent and it’s amazing. I am looking forward to actually using this palette in small quantities for nice pops of color in my eyeshadow looks.

 

Very late in the month I walked into Ulta with the intention of buying some skincare items (and a free sample of a highlighter), they did not have them in the store so I walked around and got myself into some trouble. Ulta is nearing the end of their 21 days of beauty event and those deals suck me straight into the store.

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I purchased the Urban Decay Naked Skin Shapeshifter highlight and contour palette in light/medium (1). It has four powder shades and five crème shades and I am terrible at contour I never got on the heavy contour train but I would like to be able to make myself look like I actually have cheekbones. It was half off so I decided that now was the time to purchase it and experiment with some contouring. Big fan of the two sided mirror in the packaging though.

I also got as a sample a Becca highlighter in the color Opal (2), it’s a beautiful golden color and I am looking forward to an event where I need to wear a highlighter so I can rock this color.

The last thing that I got at Ulta this month was a silicone beauty blender (3), I want to do a comparison of foundation application tools and I have seen this silicone applicator rolling around the internet for a while now so I’m going to give it a try. I will let you know how it goes.

 

Did you buy any new makeup or beauty items this month?

 

-MJ