A handful of lipsticks, some pressed powder stacked alongside each other, half empty foundation bottles, makeup brushes and what not, all arrayed on the shelf or probably cramped in a too small makeup organizer is a scene not a few of us are familiar with. Every millennial girl loves makeup and although for some it may not be an everyday thing, undeniably it is a thing necessitated now and then by important events. So whether you may be the makeup crazy kinda gal or the transformer (only wears makeup for big events), we all realize that at some point in our lives, we will be spending money on makeup. And since money doesn’t grow on trees, it is a must that the makeup we buy will be makeup we will actually use. Unlike that lipstick you have used just once and since then has been lying on your shelf slowly fading into oblivion. So here my friends, are the top 20 things we must keep in mind when choosing makeup.
1. Recognize your skin tone
I know you probably must have read this already somewhere. The reason though why it is still number one is because it is the most important. What’s ironic though is that fair-skinned women love to go tan and darker-skinned ones love to be fairer. That is why although naturally fair or dark, women would go for a much lighter or darker shade of foundation or powder in the hopes of appearing the color they want themselves to be. However, the truth of the matter is, a wrong shade of foundation, especially one that is three or four shades darker or lighter is nothing but a tragic horror story. In order to nail your makeup game, one must learn to recognize, accept and love the skin you are in and once and for all go for the shade nearest to your skin tone.
2. Find your undertone
As if recognizing your skin tone is not enough, here comes another less known but all too important beauty secret: knowing your undertone. So what is technically an undertone? Well, in the simplest sense, it is that shade of the spectrum where you belong. It is like the color of your skin underneath your actual skin. It is the general hue your skin gives. Typically, undertones are classified into three: cool, warm or neutral. Women with cool undertones are those who are on the pale side of things and who when out in the sun for some time, do not tan easily. This type of women look more flattering in cool colors such as blue, purple and mauve. On the other side, women with warm undertones are those who have a yellowish hue and who tend to get sunburns easily. These gals would look best in earthy tones such as gold, bronze, and brown. Women with neutral undertones simply sport the real color of their skin and may pick just about any color they want and well, must be the lucky bunch!
3. Know your pigmentation
Well, this is number three already and we still haven’t left the issue of skin. I’m sorry ladies but you really just have to bear with the basics first because getting to know your skin is the key to flawless makeup. Pigmentation is the amount of melanin found on certain body parts but this topic is more particularly focused on the lips.
4. Identify your flaws
This perhaps should be the most unforgiving idea here but hey, isn’t this what makeup is for? Unless you are endowed with porcelain skin, each of us probably has a flaw or two when it comes to the skin on our face. From the annoying dark circles under the eyes that never seem to go away despite having the prescribed number of hours of sleep to the redness around the nose and mouth even when you are not suffering from flu, flaws are really just a part of life. So go ahead, be brave. Take a long look in the mirror under natural light and identify which parts of your face need some extra attention. This way, you would know which makeup products to buy to address these areas of concern.
5. Splurge or save
Now that you have identified your flaws, it would be easier to decide on which products you should splurge and which ones you should save on. It has been a long standing fact that in the world of makeup, more expensive products usually perform better than their less expensive versions. By knowing which part of your face needs extra TLC, you would be able to prioritize where to spend your dough.
6. How’s the weather?
With the increasing globalization and the popularity of makeup, we are often bombarded with all sorts of products from different countries. Asian, European and of course, more specifically, Korean cosmetic products are taking the world by storm. And although this may sound fun and exciting seeing the mirage of products to choose from, one must remember that these products are manufactured mainly for the people of its origin. Some makeup are designed for cooler weather and may look gorgeous during winter but will cake and worse, “melt” in hot, humid weather. So, when buying make up, especially for your base see to it that it can withstand the temperature and humidity of the season.
Now that we have mentioned weather, allow me to give you another cool tip when buying make up: look for one that has sunscreen. With the increasing damage in our ozone, there is really no escape to the sun’s scorching heat especially when you’re rushing to and from work or school. Finding a product with built in UV protection is like hitting two birds with one stone. It allows you to look fabulous and at the same time keeps your skin protected. Harmful UV rays from the sun is among the top causes for premature skin aging. Products with sunscreen also allows you to save time since you no longer need to put on those sticky sunblock creams and wait for it them to settle before applying make up. You will thank me for this 10 years from now.
8. Matte or dewy?
Thankfully, because of the increasing variety in makeup products, each of us with different skin types can find our skin’s soulmate. This is actually very basic but hey, it makes a huge difference. If your skin is oily like those fried chicken nuggets you love, you should opt for mattifying products. On the other hand, if your face is drier than the Sahara, then dewy finish makeup base is what you should aim for.
9. Wardrobe check
If you’re a busy body and barely have time for anything but still want to look on point every day, maybe it’s high time you take five to ten minutes visiting your closet. Take a close look at that collection of clothes you own. Study them out, their style, textures and most importantly colors. Whatever group of clothes seem to be the most numerous, try buying makeup that will go well with these clothes. Remember, it is the whole package people look at. You could be slaying the makeup game all you want but if your makeup doesn’t match your clothes, then that would be a worse tragedy than your love story with your ex.
It can be the sales lady at the store, a classmate, a colleague or even a stranger who was sporting a to die for lipstick shade but you never really found out what that lipstick was because you were just too bashful to ask. It is understandable to be hesitant about inquiring about products other people use but to let the opportunity pass is just adding another regret in your already long list of regrets. So what’s the trick? Well, it’s very simple really. Just sincerely commend the lady on her lipstick, mascara etc. and you will find out that she will be more than happy to tell you what product she is using.
If you are the kind that prefer to buy things online, there is no other way for you to truly know the makeup product but to study it out. After all, buying online robs you of opportunities to test the product first. However, don’t let this stop you from finding some golden items on the internet. I have several products with me that I swear by and all of them I bought online.
If there is one thing where comparison is a good thing, it is this: makeup shopping. You see, there are gazillions of makeup products out there for the same function. So what things should you be comparing? Of course, if you’re on a budget, price of the item is a must check. However, it is not all the time that the more expensive one is the better one. So check and compare, check and compare. You cannot go wrong with this.
13. Recos and Reviews
If after studying products out and comparing them you still have your hesitations, your next go to would be no other than customer reviews and recommendations. These are pretty accurate information about the products because they come from people who have no interest in sugar coating anything and who have actually tried the products themselves.
When you think of makeup and the only things that come to mind are lipsticks, palettes and the like, then you are missing out on a lot. Without the correct tools, an artist can never achieve her masterpiece. The same with make up, certain products need certain tools so be careful not to leave out proper makeup tools from your budget.
15. Match your makeup with your routine
If you are the kind of girl who barely has time for anything it would be sensible to look for makeup that need minimal time and effort to apply. A cushion base would take half the time you need than when you are using liquid foundation. A lip tint with a roller can be applied during those few seconds of red light compared to lip products on a palette. For the millennial woman, there is no excuse for looking haggard. Besides, Mr. Right might come any day, any time so you have to look your best all the time.
16. Daily wears
Do you get excited every time you see a new lipstick shade that is so bold it could be seen miles away? Well, I do too. These bold colored lipsticks, eye shadows and blushes are all too tempting to pass on. Unfortunately however, the truth of the matter is these kinds of colors are rarely appropriate (unless you work as a DJ in the club that is). So, when choosing makeup, it is safer and more practical to stock up on more neutral colors you could wear every day. Remember, cosmetic products have expiry so it’s really not very wise to hoard products you hardly have enough occasions to use for.
17. What’s the sitch?
Now that you have an ample storage of products you can wear daily, it’s time to explore and get a bit more creative. When buying makeup for these special occassions, you must have a clear idea in mind what look you want to have for that particular occassion. Do you want to look diva glam or simply elegant? If you choose the former, then you can go for the shimmery and sparkly products. If you choose the latter, smooth and matte colors will do the trick.
18. Plus or minus
Makeup is one of the best things about being a woman. However, if not done correctly it can be also one of the worst things as the wrong makeup can actually add years to your actual age. Generally speaking, dark and heavy makeup adds an average of 3-5 years to your age while light makeup keeps you looking fresh and young.
Thankfully there is now an increasing number of makeup products that can work double or even triple. Some blushes can work as eyeshadows and lippies all at the same time. Although you may think it weird or unusual but these multi-purpose products are actually just as good as the rest. Not to mention that it is also both economical and fun.
20. Last one – Assess
Whether your lips are very dark, neutral shade or if you are among the lucky ones blessed with natural pink lips, determines what kind of lip product is best for you. For example, those with minimal natural lip pigment should aim for at least a lipstick that is two shades darker than your natural lip. This would allow your lips to stand out from the rest of your face but at the same time would not be too bright or dark that would leave people wondering where’s the party.
So there you go ladies. The next time you treat yourselves by going on a much needed makeup shopping spree, be sure to remember these tips and finally get yourself your money’s worth.