Makeup Essentials : Recommendations

(Psst! If you still haven’t figured out the whole skin type thing yet, just take a look at my post: Makeup: Figuring It Out)

This guide is based on my What do I need? post. Also, my recommendations are based on my own experience with my skin (which has had multiple identity crises), my experience with clients, as well as collected information. I tried to pick out products that should suit the widest range of skin types.

  1. Primer

The MAKE UP FOR EVER Step 1 Skin Equalizer Primers is the best place to start. They offer a wide variety of options based on different needs, from matte to hydrating to radiant finishes. They set in the skin and do not have that silicone feel where it feels like the product is just sitting on the face and your makeup is just gliding over it.

Essential Recommendations - Primer
Make Up For Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizer Smoothing Primer
  1. Foundation

The MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation seems to remain unmatched. This foundation will suit almost any skin type and offers an incredible range of shades. It offers great coverage while still looking natural and feeling lightweight on the skin.

Essential Recommendations - Foundation
This is the old packaging. This product has been reformulated and repackaged, and is now even better than it was. Though some might disagree.


  1. Concealer

The Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer has been so hyped and for a while, everyone and their mom (and dad? Why not) were using it. And with good reason. Though I’ve had an on-and-off-love-hate-relationship with this concealer, I keep returning to it, and wondering why I ever stopped using it every time I do. The doe tip applicator makes it easy to apply in safe quantities, plus the coverage is right, it blends beautifully and it brightens the under-eye area. What more could one ask of a concealer. Unless you have super dry skin around your eyes, this should suit pretty much any skin type.

Essential Recommendations - Concealer
Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer
  1. Blush

Mac blushes are my go to and it’s a great place to start. They offer so many shades, it’s impossible not to find one that suits your complexion. They also have a pro longwear formula that might better suit oilier skins, and creamblend formulas for dry skins.


Essential Recommendations - Blush
Tip! Buy them in pans, they are way less expensive! Same with the eye shadows. Just get a Z-palette and voilà!



  1. Brows

I was hesitating between the Anastasia Brow Wiz and the Anastasia Brow Definer on this one.  I’ve been using the Anastasia brow definer for a while now and I love it. It’s quick, easy and lasts longer than the Anastasia brow wiz does. However, I have pretty full and defined eyebrows, and all I do is fill in the sparse areas. If that is also the case for you, then the Brow Definer should be perfect. If, however, you have really sparse eyebrows and you need to fill and define them more, I think the Brow Wiz provides more of a natural effect since it is much thinner. Whichever you choose, Anastasia has a great range of shades and her products are amazing. Definitely a go to for brow products.

Essential Recommendations - Brows

  1. Mascara

As of right now, the one I’d recommend to everyone is the L’Oréal Voluminous Lash Paradise. Whatever your needs are, this mascara answers them. Volume, length, curl? It does it all. It’s affordable and even those who have a tendency to be heavy-handed should be able to achieve a clump free application.

Essential Recommendations - Mascara

  1. Setting Powder/Translucent Powder

Being oily, I’ve been around the mill with setting powders. Even when I find one that I like, I always return to the Laura Mercier translucent setting powder. This powder is simply beautiful. It mattifies without drying, it has a light bone colour to it, so no white cast, and other powders blend seamlessly into it.

Essential Recommendations - Setting Powder

  1. Eyeshadows

There are so many beautiful palettes out there with so many beautiful eye-catching colours. It’s easy to give into them, but unless you’re someone that loves to be very creative and bold with their makeup, I suggest you restrain. I’d recommend buying either a neutral very versatile palette like the Urban Decay Naked Basics or the Urban Decay Naked2 Basics, or opting for a few single eye shadows. My favourite single eye shadows are the Mac single eye shadow in pans, and the Makeup geek single eye shadows in pans. They are quite affordable and offer amazing quality.

Essential Recommendations - Eye Shadow Palettes
Urban Decay Naked2 Basics (right)/Urban Decay Naked Basics (left)

Essential Recommendations - Single Eye Shadows

  1. Eye shadow Primer

Unless you have magical eyelids, an eye shadow primer is an absolute must if you’re applying eye shadow. I’ve tried a few of them out there, and the only one that stands the test is the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer potion. This product remains unmatched in performance. It will make you eyeshadow last all day, even through hot weather and sweating.

Essential Recommendations - Eyeshadow Primer

So here you go 😊 If you have any suggestions, please share!

Thank you so much for reading, xo

Jamie A.

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