When it comes to makeup, the possibilities are endless. You can create a look for any occasion, and you can try out different application techniques, looks, and colors until you find one that really works for you.
But if you’re just getting started with your makeup collection and want to build a solid foundation, here are the main products that you’ll want to keep on deck. Note that you don’t need to purchase all of these products at once. This is just a guide for you to reference as you build your makeup collection.
1. The Skin Primers
After cleaning your face, primers are the first stop when it comes to makeup application. Not only do they keep your skin from being exposed to makeup ingredients (which aren’t always the best for your skin), but they also help your makeup stay put as you sashay throughout your day.
Let’s look at the main 3: Face, Eye, and Lip Primer.
A good primer can help you achieve a flawless, even makeup look. It will blur out any blemishes, reduce the appearance of pores, and make your foundation longer throughout the day–especially in the summer when heat and humidity can take a toll.
Eye primer goes on the lids and beneath the eyes. Eye primers can solve the problem of makeup smudges and dark-under eye circles from sliding mascara and foundation.
An eye primer can be applied under your eyes to prevent concealer from creasing. Simply put, they’ll help your eye-makeup last way longer.
Every woman on earth has experienced the frustrating problem of lipstick smudging at some point in her life. Lip primers can be helpful to prevent this–or at a minimum, delay it.
A lip primer serves two purposes: One, it nourishes your lips and provides a smooth surface for lipstick application. Two, it protects your lips from damage caused by the frequent use of moisturizing lip products.
2. Foundation Setting Sprays
Setting sprays are one of those sometimes overlooked makeup products–but makeup connoisseurs and professional makeup artists can attest to its benefits. It’ll prevent your makeup from getting smudged or creasing. A quick spray will keep your makeup looking fresh and intact all day–even on a hot and humid day.
Spot Remover/Blemish Cream
Every woman needs a good blemish cream for those days when the pimple simply won’t go away. Skin blemish creams were actually created initially to help patients after laser resurfacing treatment. They protect and moisturize the skin and have become a beauty standard.
These creams are great for those times when you don’t want to do a whole “full-face” of heavy makeup but still want to look flawless and bright.
A good “BB cream” is a combination of several makeup products such as foundation, concealer, and sunscreen. It can be used every day with ease. You can even use it as a replacement for heavier foundations.
Foundation is used to make a uniform complexion, conceal spots and improve skin tone. It can be purchased in many forms: liquid, powdered, cream, stick, mousse, and even as a concealer.
It’s always best to go with a foundation that’s one or two shades lighter than your natural skin tone and flatters your skin’s undertone. Also, consider the time of year when choosing a foundation shade, as you may have a darker tone due to the season.
If you’re looking for a flawless full-face makeup look, then full-coverage foundations will work well. Matte foundations can also be used to give your skin a natural look.
A concealer can cover dark circles, wrinkles, acne marks, and large pores. It’s a must-have for every makeup bag and an essential step in creating a “full-face” look. A good foundation will help you achieve a clean flawless finish.
Concealer is usually thicker than foundation and can be in various forms, including pencil, potted cream, and sticks. When using concealer be sure to apply it prior to your foundation base.
Ever feel like your makeup is a bit too light? Or that your facial tone is completely different from your neck? You can fix that with a bronzer.
Applying bronzer to your skin will give your skin a natural sun-tanned look. It can also warm up your makeup and make your face appear more radiant. A powder or cream bronzer can be used to give your skin a natural “glow”.
A blush product can be used to give your cheeks a natural flush. Just a tiny amount of blush can make skin appear healthier, brighter, and more radiant.
You really have a total of 3 options when it comes to blush: powder, cream, and liquid. And be aware that blush applied incorrectly or in the wrong way can make you look like a tomato.
Although highlighters can be used to contour the face, their main purpose is to highlight and add contour to your face (especially the jawbones, brow ridge, and nose). It also gives the skin a glowing glow. Some concealers contain shimmer that can make you look straight luminous.
This will create a very unnatural appearance. A lighter foundation or concealer is better for a “natural-looking” appearance.
To set the foundation, face powder (aka “setting powder”) is applied after it’s dried. The powder gives the skin a matte finish. You can also conceal small imperfections with the help of a bit of face powder.
To prevent your skin from becoming shiny, you can re-apply face powder throughout the day if you have oily skin.
There are two types of face powder: pressed powder and loose powder.
Compact or “pressed’ powder is an essential makeup product that you simply must-have in your arsenal. It helps to set your foundation and last longer, by covering up the sticky appearance that foundation can have.
It also makes it much easier to touch up your makeup, as you don’t have the luxury of re-doing your foundation every half an hour.
3. Eyelid & Brow Products
Having the minimum when it comes to eye and eyebrow products can give you a quick on-the-go look if you’re in a rush or a simple, casual appearance if aren’t trying to get too fancy.
Eyeliner can make your eyes appear larger, more prominent and draw attention to the area that people hone in on when they look at you. You have the option of liquid, pencil, gel, cream, felt-tip, and cream eyeliners.
Black eyeliner doesn’t have to be your only choice. A dazzling blue, dark brown, or electric green can enhance any makeup look and add a glam touch without the need for additional glam features–and don’t forget about artic white for a little waterline pizazz.
There are many eyeliner options, and a quick Youtube search will reveal dozens of tutorials. A basic, defined line and a cat-eye looks are a great place to start.
Be sure to get waterproof liners to ensure that you’re not looking like a raccoon on a humid day.
You will be able to pull off stunning eyeshadow looks if you’re a master at this skill. You have the option of choosing neutral or basic colors, as well as bold, vibrant hues. There are many eyeshadow techniques you can use, including smoky, cut-crease, and shimmer.
The first step in creating beautiful eyeshadow looks is perfecting your blending skills. And note that this can take some time. There are many options for shadow, including liquid, cream, crayons, glitter, loose powder, and pressed powder.
Try to purchase two types of eyeshadows if you’re just beginning your journey with eye products. One eyeshadow pack usually contains dark colors, and the other has a nude palette.
While eye shadow and liner can help your eyes stand out, your eyebrows just need a little more attention. Eyebrow pencils can help you fill in the gaps between your eyebrows and make your brows appear sharper and defined.
A good eyebrow product is essential, especially since the current makeup trends favor a bushy, full eyebrow. There are many options for eyebrow products, including pencils, powders, gels, pomades, and gels.
You’ll have to play with eyeshadow colors a bit to find the look that works best for you. And again, it’s all about the BLENDING. This technique will take time and effort to master. But when you do, you’ll see the difference in how your final look comes out (check out some Youtube vids to help you on your journey).
This makeup tool is easy to overlook, but an eyelash curler can make your lashes appear longer, curlier, and more voluminous.
You can achieve dramatic full lashes by curling your eyelashes once you have applied mascara and again after it has dried–make sure that it dries first!
While some people are blessed with beautiful lashes, others could benefit from a bit of mascara. You can improve your eyes by using good mascara. It can darken and lengthen your lashes, or volumize them to give you bigger and more youthful eyes.
Mascara is almost a must if you’re applying foundation and concealer. There are many mascara options available, including lengthening mascara and volumizing mascara.
You should avoid certain techniques when applying mascara. For example, you shouldn’t apply too many layers until your lashes become clumpy, or pump the mascara tube to dry your product. This is another area where it may take a few tries to master your technique.
4. Lip Products
Your lip products say a lot about your personal style and can make your eyes and lips pop. Let’s look at a few options.
A good lipstick is not only for highlighting your lips. It can also be used to add some blush to your cheeks, or even to apply some on your eyes for instant cream eyeshadow.
The lipstick department is the most diverse of all makeup products. You can find them in cream, matte, liquid, and satin varities.
They are also transfer-resistant, sheer, frosted, and transfer-resistant. A lipstick product’s formula may vary depending on its pigment strength.
The world is your playground when it comes to lipstick shades and techniques. You should always have 2 or 3 high-quality lipsticks and a bold red shade in your arsenal. And don’t forget lip gloss, tints, creams, and balms.
Liners sort of function as an assistant to lipstick. A good lip liner is almost like a primer for foundation. It can help you make your lipstick last longer and outline your lips. Lip liner is especially useful for filling in any uneven edges on your lips.
Lip liner is usually found in the form of a pencil, but there are gel-based products out there as well.
5. Make-up Applicator Brushes
A good application brush shouldn’t be hard to find. However, make sure that you only purchase high-quality brushes made by brands like Sephora, Bobbi Brown, Urban Decay, or Mac. They’ll last for a few years with proper storage and regular cleaning.
Here’s a list of essential makeup brushes to add to your collection.
Stop using your fingers to apply foundation and concealer. A beauty blender is a must-have for every makeup kit.
It blends your foundation to perfection, making it look natural and dewy, and it can also be used for other purposes. Because the texture of the beauty blender blends perfectly with your skin’s porousness, it is the best tool for creating a flawless, smooth face of makeup.
For example, this brush has fine bristles and a round head. It will allow you to apply blush to create rosey and even cheeks.
Flat Eyeshadow Brush
Apply a layer of eyeshadow to your entire lids. And don’t forget to blend!
This brush has long, flat bristles with a tapered tip that looks a lot like a paintbrush. It can be used to apply foundation seamlessly on your face.
A contour brush is a large, flat-structured, densely packed contour brush that can be used to contour the nose, cheekbones, jawline, forehead, and jawline.
This brush’s angled bristles help to fill in sparse eyebrows, making them appear more angular and sharper.
This brush is soft, full, and round with fluffy bristles. It’s used to dusty, fine powder products.
Fan brushes are great for applying delicate makeup and dusting products such as blush, bronzer, highlighter, blush, or contour powder. You can use them to remove any eyeshadow or makeup fallout.
A fan brush can also be used to apply bronzer, blushes, powder foundation, setting powder, and basically any other powder product. To create a smooth and streak-free look, lightly buff the powder on your face.
And there you have it. Remember, you don’t need every product listed in this post, but remember just get the basics which include primer foundation, eyeliner, mascara, and lipstick.
After that, you can just learn as you go–depending on the look that you want.
So, what products do you keep in your arsenal?