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Putting On My Face

2014 April 8



I’m in my 30s and I still have no idea what I’m doing when it comes to makeup. I wear it almost every day, but mostly I feel like I’m just blindly smearing stuff on my face and hoping that I don’t leave my house looking like a Picasso painting. Or a clown.

Despite my ignorance, I still like to treat myself to pretty makeup, so when I have the opportunity, I cash in my credit card rewards and get a Sephora gift card. It’s like getting free makeup! For this particular shopping trip, I had enough for a $100 gift card. I went to the Sephora in the Prudential Center after work on Friday evening and found that it was surprisingly not too crazy busy. In fact, I think it’s the only time in recent memory where I’ve gone into a Sephora and was helped, willingly, by the salespeople there. In most cases, I’ve had to walk around the store looking like a lost puppy (in need of eyeliner) for a good fifteen minutes before I could get anyone to notice me, but not this time, which was a nice change.

I went in thinking maybe I would buy a new hair dryer, but it turns out that the nice ones are significantly more than the ones they sell in CVS–who knew? I decided to stick with the good old Conair I’ve had for the last seven years for the time being and buy some fun new products instead.

First thing I needed was new eyeshadow. I knew I wanted a palette of browns with some shimmer, and I ended up choosing a TooFaced palette. For $36, it seemed like a pretty good deal, but so far, I haven’t liked it as much as the Urban Decay Naked palette I’d been using before. I also needed some new eyeshadow brushes, so I bought a cute kit of 5 for $22. 

Once I’d chosen those (and some makeup remover since I was out), I still had some money left to spend. I didn’t need foundation (I’ve been using the Garnier BB cream and it’s pretty good) or lip gloss (I’m a diehard fan of the Revlon lip butter) so I wandered around for a while, picking things up and putting them back down, totally unsure of what else to buy.

I’ve heard a lot of good things about Philosophy’s Hope in a Jar, and I’ve been meaning to invest in some new moisturizer, so I bought a small jar to see how I like it ($15). So far, it’s been okay. Next, I decided I wanted some fun new eyeliner. I ended up going with the same Clinique eyeliner I’ve been using, but in a pretty purple shade ($16).

Finally, I wandered back to the hair care section and tried to decide which Living Proof product I wanted to try. The hair mask I mentioned last week was too expensive, so I went with a daily blowdry treatment. ($26) I have used it a couple of times and haven’t really noticed a huge difference. Has anyone used any other Living Proof products?

They were having a 15% off sale, so I ended up only spending $10 out of pocket for all that stuff, which I think is a pretty good deal.

What are your favorite makeup products? Do you feel as inept as I do when it comes to makeup, or am I just challenged?

3 Responses Post a comment
  1. Rebekah permalink
    April 8, 2014

    I am also clueless about make-up matters with the exception of how to wear black eyeliner. however, I have tried to lend my expertise to others and put black eyeliner on them and it always looks terrible so I fear my expertise might be limited to my own self. that said, I can at least try to give you some tips next time we hang out.

  2. April 9, 2014

    I highly recommend YouTube tutorials for make-up! I find a lot of them through Pinterest, and there are pallet-specific ones that are super helpful. If you need hands-on help, I’ve heard that the best place to go is Bobbi Brown. They have events where you can make an appointment and they’ll teach you how to do your make-up. I’ve never done it myself, but I’ve heard secondhand that it’s great. (I also love Bobbi Brown long wear liquid gel eyeliner, which you apply with a brush rather than as a pencil, which I find much easier.) I spent a lot of time in college just doing my make-up for fun–party animal, I know–but practice really helps, and if you’re not in a rush, you can work with it until you get it right. And maybe wash it off when you accidentally look like a Kardashian.

    In terms of products, I live and die by the UD Naked Pallet. Some of my other favourites are Benefit High Beam and Benefit Benetint, both of which take roughly five seconds to apply, and the bottles last for MONTHS. On days when I’m in a rush, I just use some BB Cream, both Benefit liquids, and some mascara. And if I’m ever in a not-so-Sephora place budget-wise (which is quite often), I usually stick to Sonia Kashuk for Target products. They are fairly high quality at a price that’s not too bad.


  3. April 9, 2014

    Oh, I’ll also say that there are a couple of things I discovered that really make a difference when it comes to looking, uh, “polished,” although I can’t stand that word. I could never figure out why my eyeshadow didn’t look as perfect as the tutorial, or why by the end of the night I looked exactly the same as I always do. The answer: primers and finishers. MAKE UP FOREVER (annoying caps lock) HD Microperfecting Primer is my jam (see also: Microfinish powder), and their Mist & Fix makes make-up last, well, forever. UD also has an eyeshadow primer that works well, but sometimes I just cheat and put some concealer on my lids to make the shadow stick better.

    OK, I’m done now. Sorry to hijack.

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