I get asked a lot about what are the must-have items for a makeup kit so I thought that I would round up the 10 things you need in your makeup collection. From brushes to my must-have products, I’m addressing the top ten items you need to buy first and foremost. I’ve tried by best to include various price points as well as my personal favorites and I hope that you enjoy it. If you have any questions or have an opinion about a “must-have” that should be added to the list then leave it in the comments! Also, today on my instagram account I’m partnering with GLAMboxes to give away a GLAMboard! GLAMboxes is also giving all readers of The Southern Style Guide 20% off of their purchase with code SOUTHERNSTYLE.
A GREAT PRIMER – Primers fill in and therefore, smooth out your pores. It is a crucial first step in makeup application! My go-to primer is this moisturizer and sunscreen combo which is great for combination and acne-prone skin. I wear it daily and apply after my Vitamin C serum and before my foundation. One common question is if you should wear a primer with a CC cream. You should wear a primer under everything! I would even say you could wear only a primer, like this one by Charlotte Tilbury because at the very least it will smooth out the appearance of pores and fine lines. The “CC” in CC Cream stands for “color correcting” so it only evens out your skin tone and doesn’t necessarily act to improve the texture of your skin. If you wear CC Cream you still need a primer!
QUALITY BRUSHES – I am by no means a brush expert but I do know that you need good ones! In all of my researching and online reading I’ve arrived at the conclusion that there are 5 quality brush brands that lead the pack. Sigma on the high end, Morphe & Sephora brand in the middle and Sonya Kashuk and Elf on the low end. I truthfully don’t think that you could go wrong with any of them! Morphe is a brand highly respected by Makeup Artists so I think your best bet would be this Morphe set. I just ordered it so I can give you a full review so stay tuned! I do know that if you want a complete set of brushes you need these brushes in your arsenal: a foundation brush, kabuki brush, powder brush, blush brush, concealer brush, all over eye shadow brush, flat eye shadow brush, eye shadow crease brush, blending brush and a fan brush!
THE RIGHT COVERAGE FOUNDATION – There are literally millions of types of foundation. If you are on the hunt for a great foundation my suggestion would be to head into your nearest Sephora and consult with an employee. Before you go think about how thick you want the product to be. Do you want to not really look like you have on any makeup? Do you need more full coverage? Also you need to think about any skin concerns that you have. Maybe it’s acne or dryness or oiliness. It’s important to know what you would like your foundation to achieve. And lastly think about your lifestyle. Do you need something that will last all day long while you work a 12 hour shift? Or are you wanting something more for date night?
Go in and tell the Sephora employee those three things and ask for them to suggest 3-4 different products for you at different price points. Once you have decided on those ask them for samples. Yes, they will give you samples. If you don’t want to ask for samples I would still get on the Sephora app on your phone and read the product reviews before you purchase. The employees can help you match your shade and the best part is that you can take it back, even if you have used up to 25% of it. Just make sure that you have your reciept and that it’s within 60 days of purchasing.
My personal favorite foundations are products that hydrate and blur imperfections like the itCosmetics CC Cream in light, Make Up For Ever HD in 125 & Shape Tape Hydrating Foundation in light/medium. I recently started using Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter in light/medium and it might be making it’s way into the top 3.
A VERSATILE EYE PALETTE – A great eye palette is a crucial addition. My ultimate favorite eye shadow palette is this one by Tarte. If you are looking for a drugstore version you cannot go wrong with this Maybelline palette. If you want to see everything I have tried head on over to my makeup section and brows through the posts.
A NATURAL BLUSH – Call me a grandma but I think your face just isn’t finished without some blush. Think about it. You put an all over color on your face like a foundation or a cc cream and it conceals your natural pigment and flush in your cheeks. In order to look alive and youthful again you have to have some blush! Pro tip: put your blush on the apples of your cheeks & swipe backwards a smidge towards your ear. When you are dabbing on the apples of your cheeks put it a tiny bit higher than you would think. This makes you look younger and gives your cheeks a lifted look. The days of putting blush from your ear to the apples of your cheeks are over. This is my favorite blush in color flowerchild.
SETTING POWDER AND/OR SPRAY – So very important. A primer starts off your makeup looking good and a setting powder or spray keeps it that way. You could use one or the other or if you’re intense like me you use both. For setting powder I love Laura Mercier and this Becca one. I apply all over my face after my foundation and concealer and before my bronzer, blush & highlighting. Then I like to finish with a setting spray. No matter what you would always do the setting spray last.
NO-FAIL MASCARA – If you aren’t wearing mascara I don’t know how you look awake. If I was only going to put three things on my face it would be an eyebrow pencil, mascara and lip gloss. My favorite mascara is this two-in-one by L’Oreal. You seriously can’t get a better mascara and I would know because I have tried a TON of them. If I am using something else then I always, always use this drugstore primer. My two favorite fancy mascaras are this one by itCosmetics and this one by Tarte.
EYEBROW PENCIL – Again, fill in those brows!! If you just put a little color or shape your brows and wear mascara it will give your eyes so much more dimension! I love this brow liner in taupe and this one as a drugstore dupe. If you already have the perfect brows then I love this brow gel to smooth them out.
LIPGLOSS – My obsession with lipgloss goes way back. I cannot stand anything that is drying or that is sticky. I want it to not taste or smell weird, have a beautiful natural color and stay on well. My favorites are this $5 one (Vanilla Cream Pie & Creme Brulee), this one by Bare Minerals (Forbidden and Groovy) these by Laura Mercier (Bare Pink). I always opt for natural, dusty pink, mauve colors. Corals & pinks but never orange or red. If you want your teeth to look whiter never get anything with a yellow or warm undertone! Always cool pinks and corals.
A GREAT ORGANIZER – As my favorite organizer’s slogan states… “if you don’t see it, you won’t use it”! I love GLAMboxes and think that they are incredible organizers. The company was started by the sweetest girl & the quality is impeccable. They are a high-end luxury product that will last which also means that they are not the cheapest option. For those of you that want one you can save 20% off right now with code SOUTHERNSTYLE. The GLAMboard is a great place to start and would be $48 with the discount. If the price tag isn’t in your budget head to your nearest Home Goods because sometimes you can get lucky and find great organizers there!
Hope that you have enjoyed this post! You can see more of my beauty favorites here and my makeup favorites here. What are some of the makeup items you can’t live without? Leave me a comment because I would love to hear!