I recently went on a weekend trip and had to scale down my makeup kit (normally a 3-foot-tall, multi-compartment wheeled kit). I only brought the essentials — the products I most often use on myself and constantly find myself suggesting to clients.
I’ve tried a lot of products, and these 10 are the ones that I think can’t be beat.
1. Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Eye primer is always the first step in my makeup process. Because most people like to draw attention to their eyes, it’s important that the shadow stays on and doesn’t crease. Too Faced Shadow Insurance ($17) eye primer does exactly that, and a little goes a long way.
2. Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils
Talk about smooth! Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils ($17 each) truly does glide on, and it’s easy to work with when you want a smudged liner look. It’s also great on the waterline, and comes in a variety of colors.
3. DiorShow Mascara
It’s a cult favorite for a reason — it works. I use it on myself and on my clients because it lengthens, thickens, and doesn’t clump. I use the original >DiorShow Mascara ($24) for an everyday look, but I like Diorshow Blackout ($24) for a more dramatic look.
4. Benefit Hoola Bronzing Powder
A truly matte bronzer is hard to find, but Benefit has done it. I apply Benefit Hoola Bronzing Powder ($28) all over the face after foundation and powder, and it really evens out the skin. It can also be used to contour lighter skin.
5. Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder
I use this after foundation, and it really helps set it. I work with a lot of brides, and Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder ($30) is the product that keeps their makeup on all day. It gives a flawless finish to the skin and doesn’t feel heavy at all.
6. NARS Blush in Orgasm
The perfect peachy pink. NARS Blush in Orgasm ($25) flatters most skin tones and builds and blends with ease. That, and the compact lasts for a while, so it’s also a good value.
7. Make Up For Ever Camouflage Cream in Golden Beige 15
This peach concealer is does an amazing job of canceling out dark undereye circles. Make Up For Ever Camouflage Cream in Golden Beige 15 ($18) is thick, so just prep the undereye area with a thin layer of moisturizer first, and warm the product on your hand before applying with a concealer brush.
8. MAC Lipstick in Blankety
MAC Blankety Lipstick ($14), a pinkish beige, goes well with a smokey eye because it’s light, but it still gives a “finished” look to the lips. I like to top it with a little gloss since it’s also very matte.
9. Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer
When I want sheer coverage that still looks polished, I use Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer ($42) alone. When I’m looking for heavier coverage, I mix it with MAC Select Coverup. It’s available in a variety of shades, which is rare for tinted moisturizers. For those who aren’t quite ready to use foundation yet, this is a great product.
10. MAC Select Cover-Up
I usually put MAC Select Cover-Up ($17) on top of the Makeup Forever corrector, to give the ultimate coverage for undereye circles. You can also mix it with moisturizer to get a heavy coverage foundation.
If they discontinued any of these products, first, I would cry; then, I’d run to Sephora, Ulta, and MAC to buy them out!
Let’s hope they stick around.