My Minimal Make-Up Bag

(#nofilter ?)

If you’ve been a reader for a while, then you know – I’m not a makeup person. My eyebrows are never “done” and I like watching Kylie on KUWTK, but I’ve never coveted one of her lip kits.

I haven’t always been this way. In fact, I joke that I am plagued with “make-up burn out”. Starting around 8th grade and all the way up until my first couple months of college, I got up before the sun to apply a full face of product. It started innocently with some mascara and bright shadow, but by the ripe age of 16, I was sitting on the living room floor where the light from the overhead ceiling fan was my best bet at 5:30 in the morning, concealing, bronzing, patting, highlighting, blushing, and tweezing.

I’m not hating on you if you love a good contour or bold brow. I love the way makeup looks and admire those that apply it flawlessly! I just stopped wearing so much makeup for a few reasons that benefitted me personally:

  • my skin was a WRECK. Mainly due to hormones, but adding product to my face every day (and sweating in it because my skin was so horrid I couldn’t take it off for even a sweaty gym sesh) did not help my skin at all
  • when I went to college and started budgeting, I realized that a $40 foundation and $50 eye shadow pallet really hurt my wallet
  • being an adult meant more responsibilities throughout the day including early classes, so if I could skip my 40-minute make-over in the morning, I could sleep in, workout before class, eat a healthy breakfast, etc. Those became my priorities over make-up.

I don’t wear makeup every day for these reasons. And when I do wear makeup, it’s minimal.

But that’s just me. If you feel your best with a full face, then GO FOR IT. You look great!

So today I wanted to share what’s in my minimal makeup bag, but with a quick note.

*I’m really wanting to invest in more quality products. I want cruelty-free products and ones with great ingredients that don’t contain any weird toxins. (Anything you put on your face/skin is absorbed by your body, so it’s important to have clean ingredients in all your bath and body stuff.) Since I’ll be working this summer, I’m allowing myself to set aside a special “allowance” to purchase a few new items. So I’ll be sharing what I’m using now, but what is on my wish list as a replacement! 


Elf Clear Lash and Eyebrow Gel 

It’s only $2 and it’s awesome. I use clear eyebrow gel almost every day because I want my brows to keep their shape, but I personally don’t like filling them in with color because I feel my brows are already dark enough and I don’t like the shade it brings to my face when I color them in.

Wishlist: Glossier Boy Brow (Clear) 

I’ve heard great things about this product and the ingredients are super clean! It’s $16 compared to my $2, but it is 2x larger in terms of size, so it should last me about 2-3 months. I can deal with that!


NYX: Love in Paris Palette

TBH, my sister was cleaning out her make-up kit and gave this to me. I like neutral shadows, and the only thing I don’t like about this pallet is it has too many shimmers. (I’m a matte girl. Go-figure.) When I wear it, I put the lightest color in my crease and under my brow bone and just do a natural beige/brown for my lid.

Lately, I’ve been taking my Mary Kay lip balm that is glossy and just putting that on my lid for the glossy-lid look. Loving that!


I’m not sure of a great neutral eyeshadow palette that’s cruelty free and not too expensive! Let me know in the comments!


Elf Clear Lash Gel OR Maybelline The Falsies Volume Express

I love long lashes! That’s the thing I can’t go without. On a no-makeup day, I just curl them with my Elf eyelash curler and then set them with the Elf clear lash gel I mentioned. But when I am wearing a bit more make-up, I love the Maybelleine NAME. You guys actually recommended this to me once when I asked on Twitter and it’s amazing.

Wishlist: Lilly Lolo Black Organic Natural Mascara

I’m almost out of the one I’m currently using, so I’d love this! Due to the all-natural, cruelty-free ingredients, the consistency is much smoother and the color lasts longer. No clumps and no re-applying after a long day before going out!


Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in “Partaaay” (Summer) / Mary Kay Citrus Bloom (Winter)

I love both of these! And I only intend to repurchase because both of these are cruelty-free products and have great ingredients that don’t irritate my skin. The Tarte one was my free-birthday gift from Sephora, and I love the coral-pink for summer with my skin tone. When I’m a bit paler and tend to wear darker shades in the fall and winter, the Mary Kay blush suits me best.


Benefit High Beam 

The one trend I am about is highlighting! I love a good glow. I love the color of this Benefit highlighter, but I’ve noticed when I use it, my skin gets a little bumpy.

Wishlist: ILIA Illuminator

The color “Polka Dots and Moonbeams” is gorgeous, and since I don’t use this every day, it should last a long time, and it’s under $35!


Kat Von D Lipstick in “Lolita” / Marc Jacobs “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” (free sample) 

I’m definitely keeping Lolita. It was $22 and I’ll never forget that I spent that much, but I do think it is a good “signature color” for me. It looks good all year round!

I would replace the Marc Jacobs with something a bit more moisturizing. It’s a great pink-mauve shade which can bring a good pop of color when I need it.

Wishlist: Glossier Generation G in “Zip” 

My friend (and fellow blogger) Karla has this one and I think it would be so fun! I don’t have a red-pinky color like this, and for $18 that’s a steal compared to the full-sized Marc Jacobs.

You’ll notice I don’t wear any face-makeup or concealer. Thankfully over the past couple years, I’ve healed my acne and acne scarring. I think it’s mainly due to not wearing so much makeup! But also a healthy diet, utilizing herbs, and drinking plenty of water. So I just do some Cera-Ve with sunscreen every day. (But I want to switch to a natural-zinc one.)


Let me know if you have any recommendations for me!