I love makeup. I love makeup so much that for a very long time, I could not stop buying it. Worse, I bought the same shade of lipstick over and over. What is the point of that?
My collection grew so large that at one point, I had a full drawer of makeup, a counter case-full, a tray for my potted makeup and tools, a makeup bag dedicated to lip color, and an extra large makeup bag devoted to my less favorites (hint: those were the first to go). I started to feel overwhelmed by my options, and the fact that my bathroom/vanity had become so cluttered. As a result, I started to use my makeup less and less. Again, what’s the point then?
And so, a series of makeup purges began, each time bringing me closer to a refined but complete makeup collection of only the essentials and absolute favorites. As a rule, any product that was on the fence, had until the next purge to prove its usefulness.
After a few purges, my collection was still too dang big (See: Exhibit A), and I was ready to zero in on my makeup needs. This time I cut my collection in HALF. I’ll walk you through how I did it.
- First, I laid my makeup out in categories of use: Face, Eyes & Brows, Lips, Tools, Priming/Setting/Misc, and Samples.
- Scanning my collection as a whole, I immediately trashed makeup I knew was too old (dried out mascaras) and/or in a questionable condition (I’m looking at you, nasty bacteria-infested beauty blenders).
- Next, I analyzed each category separately and asked myself the following questions:
- Is this a quality product that is worth being in my collection?
- Have I used it in the past year? If no – gone. Past 6 months? If no – It’s in the danger zone for the next purge.
- Do I have more than one of the same thing? If yes, I would generally cut out the excess. However, makeup is expensive. If I had multiples of the same product that I knew I would use up (ex. concealer, mascara) I kept it for future use. This step was most useful for cutting out unnecessary tools. I only need one of each type of makeup brush or applicator. It helped to place each applicator by the product I would use it with. That way, I knew which tools I would use and which I could ditch.
- Do I love it? Having a minimalist makeup collection, doesn’t mean you have to get rid of everything fun or unusual. I personally love playing with lip color; I LOVE my green, gray, blue, and black lipsticks. Will I wear them every day? Of course not. But I love having them, and will bring them out on selective occasions. They’re my odd keepers.
At the end of this purge I was able to cut my makeup in HALF, and refine my collection to products that I love. There is something deeply satisfying in that – it almost feels like a mental breath of fresh air. And as a sweet bonus, I was able to make a little over $200 in Sephora store credit by returning some of my products. That bought me a quality hair curler – something that will be useful for years to come!
Here’s a look at what my makeup collection looks like now:
Here’s what I have in my collection:
- FACE: Full coverage liquid foundation, tinted moisturizer, 2 color liquid color correctors, 2 liquid concealers, brush and beauty blender for liquid blending, 2 pressed-powder foundations (medium-heavy coverage) and brush, loose-powder foundation (light coverage) and brush, 1 concealer pot (used only for cut-ceases because of thick full coverage) and brush, 1 mini powder concealer and brush, contour/blush set, 2 colors of blush with blush brush, pressed setting powder and brush, 2 loose setting powders and brush.
- EYES & BROWS: Anastasia palette (pinks, purples, golds, oranges, browns), Naked palette (warm neutrals), Bare Essentials palette (cool neutrals), Nars and Urban Decay high shimmer eyeshadow, 1 brown mini liquid eyeshadow, eyeliner pot and brush, tight-line and eyeliner brush, blending brush, large eyeshadow brush, crease brush, white eyeliner crayon, white liquid eyeliner, 3 black liquid eyeliners, 1 black gel eyeliner, 2 shades of brow pencils, 1 brow gel, 4 mascaras, set of magnetic reusable false lashes, brow highlighter pencil, lash curler, brow brush, tweezers, brow scissors.
- LIPS: 1 lip stain, 1 deep purple cream lipstick, 4 bare essentials lipsticks (they look similar in picture but are actually quite different on the lips), 3 l’bri lipsticks (bright red, bright pink, neutral mauve), 2 bite lipsticks (nourishing neutrals), 3 Kylie liquid lipsticks (for when I need to lock that color down to stay all day!), 1 black lipstick, 1 gray lipstick, 1 dark blue lipstick, 1 bright blue lipstick, 1 green lipstick.
- TOOLS/MISC/SAMPLES: 2 travel setting sprays, 1 oil control setting spray, 1 all night setting spray, 1 spray primer, 2 eyeshadow primers, 6 mini/travel primers, 1 makeup brush silicon scrubber, 1 makeup brush cleaner solution, 1 makeup remover.
And that’s it! Until next time..