I’m an extremely low-maintenance person when it comes to makeup.
One reason is I value a few more hours’ sleep rather than a clean line of cat eyeliner. I barely have enough time to throw on decent clothes when I wake up in the morning, so how am I supposed to contour and highlight my face in the process?
Another reason is I don’t really know what I’m doing. Although I’m usually good at hands-on creative stuff, I find myself staring blankly at department store make-up counters, unsure of where to start while struggling to keep up with the gibberish the saleslady is spewing.
But even as I have a minimal approach to cosmetics, my kit is overflowing with eyeshadows, foundations, eyeliners and other knickknacks. I’ve spent so much effort and money over the years trying to find the perfect products for myself that I end up with stuff I don’t use after the second application.
As time passes, new products from makeup companies get more diverse and complicated that the search seems to be as pointless and difficult as finding some lost civilization.
I wish there was a magic cream that you could wipe on to have a bright, fresh-
looking face. If genies existed, I know where one of my wishes would go. (Although cosmetic bottles are sometimes so expensive and fancy, I wouldn’t be surprised if genies actually came in them.)
I don’t understand why the word “basic” may imply that you’re baduy or uncool. I think basic is something I look for in everything—essential, easy to use, versatile.
Like a needle in a haystack, somewhere, lost in a sea of shimmery and dewy chaos, are the flexible, go-to products perfect for a makeup dummy like me.
Don’t be afraid
Clinique Chubby Stick Baby Tint Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm. I’m an absolute sucker for a good lip gloss, and this one does not disappoint. I also don’t like having dark lips, so what I really look for is a moisturizing and natural product that’s neither sticky nor tastes funky. The Chubby Stick comes in a nice rosy, light pink perfect for everyday use.
OPI You’re So Vain-illa Nail Lacquer. I may not be a major makeup enthusiast, but I have to (shamelessly) admit that nail polish is my weakness. I have over 100 bottles of it! But despite the variety of colors and textures, one thing I absolutely couldn’t get enough of is a good neutral tone. This one is clean, formal and good for any occasion.
NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation. What good is makeup without the right foundation? I have mixed feelings about its powdered form, but NARS gives us a product that doesn’t feel clumpy and thick. It’s good for someone like me whose face tends to get both oily and dry at the same time.
Chanel Les 4 Ombres Eyeshadow. Forget perfecting the smokey eye; all I care about right now is learning to find and apply the right shades of eyeshadow for my skin tone without looking like I had a fairy vomit in my eye. I love bronzes, browns and neutral tones. The Chanel Les 4 Ombres palette comes with four shades that complement each other
Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate. I have my problem areas and moments, but so far my skin has (thankfully) been pretty easy to maintain. I want it to stay that way. I’m out in the sun often, and when it’s exposed to the elements without any defense, things will definitely go bad. This serum doesn’t have the icky feeling other face creams do, and it’s nice to know there’s an extra layer of protection and maintenance for my skin.
Don’t be afraid to love the basics. They say beauty is pain, but it doesn’t have to be that way forever. Find yourself a routine that suits your abilities and schedule, and products that are effortless and trouble-free to apply.
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