Friday, September 9, 2011

Ask Ink: Beauty Essentials

"What basic makeup do you need to use on a daily basis?"

With so many products out there, it’s totally understandable that people get confused when it comes to what to use. Lip stains, eyeshadow crayons, crème blush, primers, shimmer, glitter, matte, liquid, powder….agh! It’s enough to make a girl swear off make-up altogether.

The quick answer is that the bare minimum for this make-up junkie is concealer under my eyes for dark circles, powder to tame the oil slick that is my t-zone, lip liner/gloss, and mascara.

The realistic answer is that people have different skin types, different looks that they are trying to achieve, and most importantly, different amounts of time and makeup ability. Going forward I’m going to do a little makeup 101 series that will tackle each area of the face and explain the most common types of products out there and what each one is best suited for. We’ll start with concealers and foundations and go from there!

In the meantime, if you are looking for the basics I’d say focus on products that will camouflage your flaws and highlight your best assets. You may not need (or want) all of the stuff below, so pick and choose depending on what works best for your skin type; what you have time for in your beauty routine; what products fit in your budget; how comfortable you are applying it; and most of all: what you FEEL GORGEOUS IN!

A makeup bag would be well stocked if you had:
  • Foundation
  • Concealer
  • Face Powder
  • Eyeshadow primer
  • Eyeshadows: Lighter shade for highlight, darker shade to contour
  • Eyeliner
  • Eyebrow filler
  • Mascara
  • Blush
  • Lip Color
  • Eyelash Curler
  • Foundation Brush
  • Blush Brush
  • Flat Brush for Eyeshadow
  • Stiff Dome Brush for Eyeshadow

Remember, your basics may only include 3-4 of these products, or it might be the whole kit and caboodle. Great thing about make-up is that there is no right answer, only fun products. Beauty is subjective so as long as you feel good, work it!


  1. What I can't live without:

    • Moisturizer
    • Smashbox photo finish primer (keeps shine away and eye makeup set)
    • concealer
    • Smashbox liquid foundation (for when concealer won't do enough)
    • Bare Minerals powder foundation
    • Bare Minerals Mineral Veil
    • eyeshadow kit in neutrals or plums
    • mascara
    • eyebrow filler
    • Clinique Black Honey gloss


  2. Me: Pale, some freckles, chin that breaks out despite the fact that I'm supposed to be an adult now, green eyes

    Basic-basic stuff for me is concealer, foundation, a bit of blush (or sometimes I use those bronzing bead/powder things, but it doesn't look REALLY bronzy, if that makes any sense), mascara

    But most of the time, add on eyeliner (I'm a navy blue fan), and the eyeshadow is usually in the neutral territory or plums.

    Oddly enough, I've found that I like Almay's purple mascara. It's not bright purple, but I dig it. It stays put pretty well, but I kinda hate the rubbery brush it uses. Apart from that, I just buy the $3 Rimmel black mascara.

    If I'm feeling fancy, I might bother with lipstick, but I don't do anything with my eyebrows other than getting them waxed on occasion.

    But more importantly, it's the face wash I can't live without. My skin still tries to throw a fit even when I take care of it, so that feeling of waking up after falling asleep in make up is so gross.

    Thus concludes the most I think I've ever internet-discussed anything resembling a "beauty" routine.