I got into makeup pretty late (or maybe not, depending on whether you think 19-20 y/o is late). It took a couple tries and years to get it to look right but I finally got the hang of it. When I first started, I didn’t really have access to the kinds of resources that are available today so there was a lot of trial and error. Right now, we have YouTube and a lot of talented people, so hurrah! If you’re looking for a great teacher, try Dimma Umeh, she’s great at easing you into it. All my trials left me with a bunch of stuff tools and makeup that I didn’t really need. So, here is a list of makeup essentials I think every beginner needs:
Before I get into the makeup essentials, there are three things to note:
- Clean: Make sure your face is clean before you put any product on. Whatever facial wash you use, make sure it contains no harsh chemicals.
- Moisturize: Face washing can be a bit drying so it is important (VITAL!!!) to moisturize before you put anything on.
- Protect: SPF is your friend. If you shop wisely, your concealer and/or foundation should come with SPF to protect your skin. Otherwise, you should get one yourself especially if you live in regions with a lot of sunlight.
Now, after due diligence, here are the makeup essentials:
- Brushes/ Beauty Blender: How else will you apply your makeup? To start, you’ll need a foundation brush, blush brush, stippling brush, blending brush, and an eyeshadow brush. Also, a blending sponge is perfect for blending concealer and foundation. I use the Sonia Kashuk brush set and Real Techniques’ Sponge because they’re pretty affordable and get the job done.
- Primer: Primer is used as a base to help your foundation go on more smoothly and to help it last all day. It should go on AFTER your moisturizer of choice. I currently use Fenty Beauty’s Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, so I opted for their primer as well. Other options I’ve used are the Becca Cosmetics Evermatte Poreless Priming Perfector (a more high-end option) and the Black Radiance Shine Control Primer.
- Makeup Setting Spray: Helps to keep your makeup from looking caked on, and also helps it to last longer. I use two: the NYX Matte Makeup Setting Spray and the Urban Decay All Nighter Long-lasting Setting Spray.
- Full Coverage Foundation: There are so many to choose from. Too many in fact, but Sephora has this medium that helps you find the perfect shade for you in all products. They give you a number that matches you to your shade, so “Trial & Error” eliminated.
- Setting Powder: Sets your foundation for a long-lasting matte finish.
- Blush, Bronzer, and Highlighter: For blushes, look for a warm tone to add a pop of color to the apples of your cheeks. Add a highlighter or bronzer on the tops of your cheeks, for that extra something (you can absolutely skip this step depending on the look you’re going for).
- Eyebrow Pencil & Eyeliner: I don’t really bother with expensive ones, but for eyeliners, I think the felt tip ones are the best for both beginners and professionals.
- Eyeshadow base/ Primer: Just like the foundation base, this keeps your eyeshadow from creasing and helps it to stay in place all day. I’ve only used the Black Radiance Perfecting Eyeshadow Primer and it works perfectly. Plus it’s under $6.
- Neutral Eyeshadow Palette: For beginners, it’s always safe to go with more neutral tones. I also suggest that you put aside the $$ to be able to buy the high-end option on this one. A neutral beige or taupe is an instant brightener when swiped all over the lid. Use a light, neutral shade like a warm brown. Brush it in the eye crease, under the brow bone, to add some depth and you’re good.
- Mascara: Who doesn’t want longer and thicker lashes? Even on my no-makeup days, I put on some mascara! It’s one of the easiest ways to define your eyes.
- Lip balm: Vaseline works like a charm e-ve-ry-time. I’ve been using Vaseline Lip Therapy for about two years now, and there are no chappy lips here, only soft and lush LIPS. LOL!
- Lipstick/ Lipgloss: How about some color? These days I’m all about the red lipstick even on casual days. If you want a more casual, everyday look then lipgloss is perfect. Most girls are no stranger to lipgloss. It’s one of the first things we start with when puberty hits. 😂
- Lip liner: Whether you are into lipsticks or lipglosses, a liner is your friend when it comes to framing the lips.
Hopefully with this checklist, putting together your personal makeup bag won’t be overwhelming. Use this as a guide and you will have everything you need to get started.