Many people are put off by makeup because they’re under the impression they need a lot of products and that it takes an age to apply them. Then comes the issue of what products should you actually buy? And how do you actually apply them? But in reality, you only really need a few basic products in your everyday makeup routine. These products are super simple to apply and you’ll be able to apply them in less than 5 minutes. Plus they’ll instantly make you look and feel utterly fabulous. Are you ready to find out what the ONLY 6 Basic Makeup Essentials you really need are?
Before I reveal the products, I’m first going to dispell 3 myths for you today.
- You DON’T need a lot of products to create a beautiful, natural look.
- It does NOT take a long time to apply makeup every day.
- The ONLY thing that makeup significantly changes is your self-confidence.
Makeup should make you look like you, only even more beautiful. It’s going to enhance your naturally beautiful features, not change them or cover them up. Think about a gorgeous piece of clothing you own that you LOVE to wear. You wear it because it enhances a particular part of your body and it makes you look and feel amazing. Perhaps it enhances your gorgeous figure or your lovely legs. Or maybe it really brings out the colour of your eyes. Either way, it makes you look and feel FABULOUS. And yet you still look like you. Makeup does the exact same thing.
So now that you know makeup still makes you look like you, that you can apply it in minutes, and that you really only need a few products, let’s get started with what those basic makeup essentials actually are.
1. Face Primer
Firstly, let’s address the question ‘What is Primer?’. I love to use the analogy of paint primer, in order to describe what face primer does. Before you put any paint on a wall, you need to first prepare that wall so that the paint will go on smoothly and so that it will last for a long time. Face primer works the same way.
Why do I really need it?
Let’s go back to my paint primer analogy for a second. You wouldn’t paint a wall before first prepping it. Why waste all your hard work, energy and your gorgeous (often expensive) paint, when you haven’t done the prep work first. The paint isn’t going to go on smoothly, which results in an uneven finish to your wall. Plus, the paint job isn’t going to last as long either. So you’ll have spent hours painting the wall, only to have to repaint it again very soon.
Whilst you’re not going to spend as long applying your makeup as you are painting a wall, it’s still important to prep your skin first. Otherwise, your foundation won’t go on smoothly, which can lead to a patchy looking finish. It also means your makeup application won’t last as long, which means you’ll need to touch up throughout the day. This means having to use even more product. Well, (1) who has time for that? and (2) you’re just wasting product unnecessarily.
So this leads me to the reasons why face primer is one of the basic makeup essentials you really need to have in your makeup kit. Firstly, it’s going to provide a smooth base for applying foundation, which leads to an even, natural looking application. Second, It will make your foundation last longer. Third, pores, fine lines and wrinkles will appear smaller. And as you’re using less product, you’ll also be saving money, as you won’t need to re-purchase your foundation so often. Now, who doesn’t want that!
How to apply primer
Primer is applied after moisturiser and before foundation. You only need a very small amount of primer. An amount about the size of a pea is more than enough. Using your fingers to apply it, begin by applying it on your T-zone area. The T-Zone area is your forehead, nose, cheeks. You can also apply a little on your chin too. That’s it. You do not need to apply it all over your face. Otherwise, you’re just wasting product.
The reason for only applying it to your T-Zone is because this is the area where most of your foundation will be concentrated. We tend to have redness, oil and other impurities around this area. As a result, this is where most of our foundation and concealer are needed. So it makes sense to only apply primer to this area, as this is where we need our foundation and concealer to last the longest.
I really love the face primers by natural beauty brand Couleur Caramel. If you have normal-dry skin, choose their Makeup-Base. If you have oily or combination skin, their Smoothing Velvet Primer is best for you as it has a mattifying effect which will counteract any shine on the t-zone area.
Apart from mascara, concealer is one of my can’t-live-without makeup products. I actually consider both of then my top two basic makeup essentials. Concealer is a little miracle worker to me. And it instantly does a great job of making me look and feel better. A lot of people get confused between concealer and foundation and what each one actually does. So I’ll break this down for you now. It’s actually concealer that’s really going to do all the hard work for you, not your foundation.
What is Concealer & What is its Purpose
Concealer is essentially a colour corrector. Its purpose is to counteract or neutralise discolouration such as redness or pigmentation marks, to lighten shadowed areas such as dark circles under the eye area or around the mouth, and to camouflage blemishes. Concealer is generally thicker in consistency than foundation, as just like face primer, it’s laying the groundwork for your foundation.
Now I’m not going to go into too much detail today about how to choose the correct shade of concealer, as this topic takes a little bit more explanation. So I’ve written a second post explaining the correct way to choose your perfect concealer shade. Make sure to check it out, as this is a vital step to know before wasting your money on buying the wrong concealer for your skin tone.
So many of my clients tell me that they’re afraid to wear foundation because they don’t want to look like they’re wearing a mask! Let me reassure you that wearing foundation is not going to make you look like you’re wearing a mask. Foundations have come a very long way over the past decade and when you choose the correct foundation it’s going to look and feel amazing. It will make your skin look refreshed, radiant, and like you had 10 hours sleep (when in reality you’ve only had 4!).
So what is the purpose of Foundation & how is it different to concealer?
Whilst the purpose of concealer is to colour correct, the purpose of foundation is to even out your skin tone. Your foundation is almost like a second skin. It should look like you’re not wearing makeup at all, but rather give your skin the appearance of an even skin tone.
Remember, LESS IS MORE when it comes to foundation. You don’t need to apply a lot of it. I actually prefer to apply concealer first, then foundation. That way, you won’t need to apply as much foundation, as you’re concealer will already have begun to even out your skin tone. Also, using less foundation gives a much more natural finish to the skin. It’s better to build up the product slowly. You can always apply a little more if you feel you need a bit more coverage.
Choosing the correct foundation
Like I said, a foundation should look like a second skin. It shouldn’t be noticeable that you’re wearing makeup. It should make you look like you, just much more awake and refreshed. I spoke in more detail here about how to choose the right foundation for your face.
Blusher is another one of those products that people often shy away from. One of the main reasons being that they don’t know how to apply it. But blusher is such an amazing little product. It can make you go from looking tired and pale to fresh and radiant in seconds. For this reason, blusher makes it onto my basic makeup essentials product list.
Perhaps you’re someone who’s put off by blusher. Maybe you’re scared that the shade of blusher is going look too dark on you. Or even worse, that it’s going to make you look like a clown! Don’t worry. It absolutely does not have to be like that. The key to applying blusher correctly is the amount you apply and where you apply it. Once you learn how to do those two things, you’ll wonder why you hadn’t been applying blush all your life!
I’ve explained here how to choose the best blusher for your face. So if need help deciding whether powder or cream blusher is best for you, or which shade to choose, make sure to read this guide. And in this post, I’ve explained how to apply blusher correctly. Trust me, it’s much easier than you think.
No basic makeup essentials list would be complete without mascara. I literally can’t overstate this enough – Mascara is my absolute favourite makeup product of all time! Simply applying just 1 coat of mascara makes you look INSTANTLY awake and refreshed. Even without applying any other eye makeup products, such as eyeshadow, it will enhance your eyes and will instantly give a more fresh-faced appearance.
There are many different types of mascara to choose from, which can seem overwhelming, especially if you’re new to mascara. The type of mascara you choose really just depends on the type of look you want to achieve. Make sure to check out my guide to choosing the perfect mascara for your eyes. In it, I’ve explained what the 4 main categories are and how to choose the best one for you.
How to apply mascara
Start at the base of your lashes, and work your way towards the ends of your lashes. Apply to your lashes using a sort of ‘wiggle’, or side to side motion. In other words, don’t just apply it in one, long stroke from base to ends. By applying it in this side to side motion, it will prevent any clumps from forming.
The easiest way to apply mascara to your top lashes is to look down into a mirror. That way, you can really see the base of your lashes. It also prevents you from poking yourself in the eye (which I may or may not have done in the past!!! 🙂 ).
My Top Tip
Applying mascara to your bottom lashes will really open up the eye area even further. It will make your eyes look bigger and it will make you look even more awake. So you can see why it’s my favourite product on my basic makeup essentials list. Start by holding a mirror at a slightly angled position and point it downwards. Using the pointed end of the mascara wand, coat each lash individually in a downward position. Make sure not to apply too much mascara to your bottom lashes. First, apply to your top lashes. Then using whatever is left over on your mascara wand, apply to your bottom lashes.
I really love this Volume Mascara by Dr.Hauschka. This mascara is free from parabens, synthetic fragrances, preservatives, mineral oils and silicone. It’s also not tested on animals. So not only is it a fantastic mascara that makes my lashes look long and full, but it’s also a 100% natural product that’s cruelty-free.
6. Lip product of your choice
And last but not least on the list of basic makeup essentials are lip products. Applying a lip product really finishes off the look perfectly. Choose your favourite lipstick or lipgloss in whatever shade you feel like wearing that day. As the look is quite natural, you could even play around a bit and opt for more of a bolder or brighter shade.
If lipstick or lipgloss isn’t your thing, why not try a tinted lip balm instead. These do the same job as a lip balm, but they have just a hint of a colour to them. They still look really natural, but the hint of colour will really add an extra touch of radiance to your face. And if you really don’t want to wear any of these, a regular lip balm will do just fine.
I’ve listed some of my absolute favourite lip products below. I use each of these on myself and my clients on a daily basis. So I know they work well. Plus, each of these are natural and/or organic products that have not been tested on animals.
I’ve never used makeup before. So which of these basic makeup essentials should I start with?
If you’re completely new to makeup, I suggest starting off slowly by introducing 1 to 2 of the basic makeup essentials at a time. So for example, you could start off with concealer and foundation. Then you could introduce mascara and primer into your routine, and lastly blusher and lip products. Use this method if it feels less overwhelming to you.
What if I only have a few minutes?
If you really truly don’t have much time at all, just applying even a little bit of concealer and mascara will instantly make you look fresher and more awake. Not only will applying just these few products make you look better, but they will also make you FEEL better. Which in turn is going to really allow your natural beauty to shine even more.
So what do I do now?
As you can see, these 6 basic makeup essentials are so easy to apply. And it literally only takes a few minutes to apply them. There are, of course, other products which are great add on’s to these. But these 6 basic makeup essentials are great to get you started. Or for those days when you really don’t have any time at all. Remember, it’s better to have only a few products that you actually use and know how to use than a lot of products that you’ve no idea how to use or if they even suit you.
Did you find this post helpful? I really hope this has helped take some of the overwhelm away. And if you need some help with choosing your perfect-for-you shades, I’d absolutely love to help you with this. Come and say hi at firstname.lastname@example.org or send me a message here and let’s chat about you. 🙂 xo