I read an article recently about how the cosmetics industry is booming (isn't it always). Even mores than before. Especially the high end brands. More and more people are opting to buy makeup over clothes. Which is not surprising since it is the age of the selfie. And social media has proven to be a very effective marketing tool.
I myself was interested in makeup as early as 6th grade, when I got my very first lipstick and eyeshadow, both from the Jane brand. Ahhh, nostalgia. From there I branched out to foundation, mascara, and slowly everything else.
I've had a few friends interested in makeup, but when they ask for recommendations I freeze up. I never want to suggest anything that they would hate. And I never want to suggest anything I haven't tried myself ( I see this all the time and it's baffling!). Of course, these recommendations won't work for everyone, because we all have different interests as far as makeup. But I will try to do this post from the perspective of what I would recommend myself, if I were jut getting into makeup.
Foundation- I've had better luck with Drugstore foundation than high end. One of my favorite foundations is Revlon Colorstay. It has medium-full coverage and they make a formula for oily and dry skin. The oily skin one was my jam! But other good one's are L'oreal True Match (all skin types!) and the Covergirl Queen Collection Natural Hue Makeup (excellent brown girl shade selection!). One thing to keep in mind- don't overuse foundation! It's meant to even out the skin tone, not completely mask the skin. You probably need less foundation that you think and thin layers work best! Finding a match is the hardest part of picking foundations. I found that trying different foundation colors was how I figured my own skin tone out. And don't be afraid to purchase more than one and mix them! Sales such as Buy 1, Get 1 Free or Half Off help with that!
Eyeshadow- I tried many different cheap eyeshadows from the drugstore. Some are excellent. Some..not so much. I love the L'oreal HIP line and Wet N Wild and some NYX shadows are nice. But if I had it all to do again, I would go for a palette. An excellent everyday one is the Too Faced Chocolate Bar. It has an excellent selection of 16 matte/shimmer eyeshadows and it also has some fun colors in it too. It is a $49 palette BUT you can get it for $29 if you check out HSNs (Home Shopping Network) first time customer promotion. T's worth it at that price and you have some great basics. From there you can expand with other palettes, singles,etc. The Chocolate Bar is just a great beginner staple in my opinion. If you have oily lids I would recommend a good primer. I haven't tried a lot but so far my favorite is the Too Faced Shadow Insurance. The only downside is it is expensive!
Blush/Bronzer- Covergirl Queen Bronzers are all I have to say for Bronzers. Although I think a beginner could skip bronzer easily. As for blush, my favorite everyday blushes come from NARS (Lovejoy and Torrid). I had a lot of dud blushes from the drugstore but a lot of people have luck with Milani and NYX. So those may be worth looking into. Sorry I don't have any better recommendations!
Mascara- L'oreal Voluminous is a must have. I started with Great Lash myself. Classic but not great unless you already have amazing lashes! But when I got my tube of L'oreal Voluminous I figured out what mascara was for! Of course, there are a lot of great ones in all price ranges, but L'oreal Voluminous would be my recommendation to any and everybody!
Lipstick/Gloss- Lipstick is one of those things that you can get great shades in all price ranges. I find with lipstick it's more about application. Nowadays liquid lipsticks are all the rage, but I still love the old fashioned stick that comes in the tube. I feel like there is more versatility. You can wear it sheer or apply it boldly. I love the NYX Round lipsticks and the Revlon Super Lustrous lipsticks. But Maybelline, Rimmel, and Wet N Wild all get rave reviews too. I find it all boils down to application. Make sure you lips are in tip top shape, exfoliate and apply lip balm. Let it sink in for a little bit then blot it off. Then you are all set to apply your color. I find applying in thin layers and blotting between layers really helps prolong wear of lipstick and prevent it from bleeding all over the place. It think it's best to start off your collection with a nude, pink, burgundy, and a red. And I find a chestnut or deep purple liner makes some unwearable colors quite wearable so try that before you give up on a color! As for gloss, any gloss will do for me, I just pop a little in the center of my lip sometimes.
Brushes- One brush I can't live without (not really but you know!) is the MAC 217. For eyes, it's a must have. Make the investment, you won't regret it. Other than that you need an angled brush because you can use it with powder or gel to line or fill in brows. I prefer the 266. And a powder brush for blush and powder. To this day I love my Ecotools blush brush. I started out with their set and all the other brushes I've thrown out but not that one. It is well priced too! But if you don't mind spending the cash I think the MAC 168 is a great brush. I don't think a foundation or concealor brush is absolutely necessary. I find fingers work best because the warmth from the fingers helps melt the product into the skin better. Don't believe me? Check out legendary artist Mary Greenwell work her magic by using her fingers! But if you must use a brush I like the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush or Buffing Brush. Also Elf has some excellent brushes in their studio line of brushes and they are $3. I guess I would start with E.L.F than splurge on some of the other brushes I mentioned (except for the 217, get that!).
From there you can experiment with all kind of primers, liners, brow products, lashes, etc. Some of these I haven't mastered myself so I don't really want to recommend products in those categories. I prefer unlined eyes most of the time (because lashes pop more on unlined eyes!), and my brows still baffle me. They look nice filled in with MAC Mystery eye shadow after I get them done, but I can't shape them myself and I've yet to try out the popular brow pencils. But then again we are sticking to the basics!
What are some recommendation you would make to a beginner?