Today I am going to give you my list of makeup products that I think is well worth the money and complements most skin tones and makeup styles. There are a lot of products on the market and sometimes it is hard to determine what would work best for you. The list below is definitely worth checking out.
After I have compiled my list I noticed that there are no low-end drug store products on the list. I did not choose higher end products on purpose, I just seem to generally like them better. Although there are good lower end brands of make-up out there (e.l.f make-up, NYX) they did not make this list. If you want to save money on makeup, I suggest you buy at future because here in Canada (I’m sure US is the same) they have an amazing return policy: you can return anything, any time, even without receipt to get a store credit. In my experience, nothing wastes more money on make-up than getting something you do not need and can’t return.
1. Make-up Forever HD Foundation
this is an oil-free, SPF free formula that really leaves your skin looking like there is nothing on it. For people who need some coverage, this is the perfect foundation. The foundation coverage is medium and buildable to full coverage. This really gives you a flawless finish and stays put (especially with a primer) up to 8 hours easily. Because this foundation does not have SPF in it your face would not look white or pale when you take photographs using a flesh camera. Perfect for parties, weddings and when staying indoors most of the day.
$46 CAD at Sephora
2. MAC Satin Taupe Eyeshadow
Makeupalley.com has 1025 reviews for this eyeshadow with a 4.6/5 rating and for a good reason! This is a medium taupe pearlized colour that goes a long way. It is great as a daytime look and a nighttime look and overall, it is a fool proof eyeshadow. Satin top on the lid and crease, eyeliner and mascara and you are good to go anywhere you’d like. MAC describes this eyeshadow as taupe with silver shimmer which means it would work for almost any skin tone. It does not really look like much until you put it on, next time you are at the mall don’t forget to check our MAC store for some Satin Taupe Eyeshadow.
$18 CAN ($14.50 for refill) at MAC Cosmetics
3. NAKED Palette by Urban Decay (the original one)
The internet is boasting raves about this palette. When it first came (2011?) out it was sold our for months and months at a time and yes, this is also for a good reason. This Urban Decay Eyeshadow palette has 12 neutral super pigmented eyeshadows that blend like butter. It now comes with a brush and a small primer included. It is a universally flattering palette and you get a lot of value for your money. For the cost per eyeshadow lower than drugstore brands, you get one of the best brands of makeup in a palette where you are likely to use every day in a wide array of combinations. This is a staple in wedding makeup and wonderful for both office and nighttime looks. After buying this palette I regretted buying half of my MAC makeup because I wasn’t using it, I used the Urban Decay Naked Palette every day and I barely made a dent in it. Do not buy any eyeshadow until you check this palette out.
$60 CAD at Sephora
4. Painterly Paint Pot by MAC Cosmetics
To get your eyeshadow to last all day and look vibrant – you need a base. Some people swear by colourless eyeshadow primers like Urban Decay Primer Potion by I prefer MAC’s Painterly Paint Pot. Why? because in addition to doing all of the above it also brightens and lifts the eye and evens your complexion. What it does it creates a matte flesh tone canvas to work on. I noticed that when I use this underneath my eyeshadow my makeup looks so much more pulled together, especially when my eyes are red from allergies or lack of sleep. Before I used Painterly I used a concealer but I like this way better. It should work really well for fare-medium skin tones.
$22 CAD at MAC Cosmetics
5. Hoola Bronzer by Benefit
I was debating between this bronzer or NARS Laguna bronzer, which is also a very good product and I’ve repurchased it plenty. The reason why I chose Hoola by Benefit is that it is Matte and works not only as a bronzer but also as a contour to accentuate your cheekbones, narrow your nose, hide that double chin, etc. As Kim Kardashian’s makeup artist put it: you should NEVER contour with a shimmery bronzer. This shade is a perfect tan and does not look muddy. It would work well for most skin tones and you get a lot of product that is quite pigmented. I tried a lot of bronzers and always come back to this. I use this very often and I haven’t finished mine yet which I bought like 5 years ago. I bought mine at Shoppers Drug Mart, they should still carry it but I recommend Sephora in case you want to return it. The brush is useless, btw.
$36 CAD at Sephora
6. Coralista Blush by Benefit
This tops my list of favourite blushes due to the fact it compliments all skin tones and shades. It is a coral colour blush with tiny tiny gold shimmer that you almost do not see. The benefit of this blush over NARS Orgasm is that it blends in the skin to create a more natural look but it is buildable and overall more suitable for both day and night wear. Do you know how NARS tried to promote Orgasm as their universally flattering shade? Well, I am one of those people that Orgasm looks awful on – I look like I have inflamed skin or like a barbie doll. Coralista is kind of similar but more muted and I am yet to find someone who it doesn’t flatter.
$36 CAD at Sephora
7. Hidden Corrective Concealer by Hourglass
I have dark circles under my eyes and red acne. I hate it that concealers these days are formulated to tackle either or. I also hate to apply concealer with a brush and cannot do it with my finger due to long nails. I have owned a lot of concealers and this one is the one I love best. Hourglass describes it as A creamy, weightless moisturizing concealer that blends easily into the skin for an undetectable finish. Every word is true. Hidden Concealer contains Vitamin E to soften skin and provide a protective layer. Great for dry skin (most concealers tends to dry skin and accentuate fine lines) and the colour lasts a pretty long time, although I would set it with some powder just in case. They have only 6 shades so far, so if you find a shade that works for you it is definitely a quality concealer that is quick and easy to apply.
$37 CAD by Sephora
8. Colour Cream Base in Pearl by Mac Cosmetics
This colour base is a multi-use cream that could be worn under an eyeshadow to create intense shimmery look for photo shoots, however, most of us don’t really need that. What we do need it a dewy finish to our skin, highlighted cheekbones and that glowing celebrity healthy skin look without being too shimmery, white or iridescent. Put it on with your fingers where you would normally put on a highlighter and you are good to go.
$22 CAD by MAC Cosmetics
9. Creamsheen Lipstick in Cream Cup by Mac
I wasn’t sure if I should include lipsticks on this list or not, since they are rarely one-fits-all. However, MAC Cream Cup is the closest one I know of to a universal shade. It is a pale natural nude pink that is great alone or with a lipgloss on top. I used to be obsessed with this lipstick, this is the only lipstick that I would most definitely repurchase.
$18 CAD at Mac Cosmetics
10. Ample Pink Plushglass by MAC
As I grew older I started to shy away from glittery lip glosses. This lip gloss is glitter and shimmer fry and offer a full rosy colour that enhances the your natural lip colour shade. This is how MAC describes this lip gloss and I agree with every word:
“Sheer lip colour with a pearlised high-shine gloss finish. Formulated to make lips look and feel like more – instantly! Comfortable to wear: lush, multi-dimensional. Sensational in application: gives a cool-warm, vanilla buzz to the lips. Moisturises, soothes and visibly plumps the lips to make them look luxuriously healthy and well-conditioned. Contains vitamin E for added environmental protection. To keep lips looking full and lush, use it on an ongoing basis.
This works well with or without a lip liner, works very well on MAC Cream Cup Lipstick and it is simply wonderful for that sophisticated understated lip that is not too pale, too opaque, too iridescent or too much. Definitely try this one out or better buy if and if you don’t like it, I’ll take. Google it, people are obsessed with this lipgloss once they try it. Lasts well, complements most skin tones and lipsticks.
$23 CAD at Mac Cosmetics
11. Chromographic Pencil in flesh tone by MAC Pro
The world needs more flesh tone matte concealer type eye pencils but for whatever reason unknown to me only MAC makes them and they are available in 2 shades at MAC Pro only (online) or in limited edition collections. They are a lifesaver for red eyes and small blemish concealing. I put them in my waterline and I immediately look rested, pulled together and allergy-free. They come in light and medium tone. If you suffer from red eyes and a white pencil does work for you it’s worth investing in this one. How do you know if it would work? Try putting some concealer in your waterline and if it looks better, invest in this one.
$19 CAD by MAC Pro (only)
That’s all for my list for now. Mommies, what are some of your tried and true makeup products? Do share!