Perhaps no one cares, but I thought it would be fun to list out my favorite beauty must-haves. Yes, this is really girly, but I’m a girl, so that works. And while I like to pretend sometimes that I am a no-nonsense, easy-peasy kind of girl, that is far from the truth. My boyfriend and family members can vouch for that. I like makeup … a lot. One, again, I’m a girly-girl; and two, I’m a pasty-white ghost. Thank you to my very Irish heritage for that one. So makeup is kind of a must if I don’t want to look like the walking dead. Another disclaimer, I’m really, really picky in this category.
I wish I could give a list of my favorite makeup items that could just be picked up at Target or another box chain store, but no, I kind of have to go to other places (Sephora, cough, cough) to get all of my tools.
So here are a few things that Carrie must have at all times:
I’m a five-minute face gal. But that doesn’t mean I have three items in my disposal to work with. No, I do the whole enchilada every day. And when it’s a special occasion, I just make that enchilada extra loaded. I just complete the whole beauty routine super quickly – it’s down to a science.
First, face moisturizer. I don’t have a specific go-to, but I have been using Simple Vital Vitamin Day Cream. I have used Kiehl’s, Aveeno, and others – as long as it is light, not heavy and with an SPF of at least 15, I’m usually okay.
Primer. Yeah, I’m a huge fan of primer. There has been a big hoopla over BB cream (sunblock, moisturizer, foundation, serum, etc.), and I have tried it. But I have a better face result with separate products. I’ve used Sephora and Stila brands, but I have been happy with Tarte lately.
Sometimes I put on serum, eye primer, and foundation – but most of the time I just add a tinted moisturizer. Stila is my absolute favorite. I can get the right shade and I have more moisturized skin and SPF. (Yeah, I like to load it all on.) My skin isn’t super oily and I don’t have huge skin problems – so this works for me.
Concealer. If I have a zit, I’ll use some kind of light cream concealer. But my major problem is the dark black pits of despair known as my under-eye circles. With my porcelain yellow-white skin, they show like a mother. And there is only one concealer that I have been happy with. Cover Girl stick concealer. It’s heavy-duty, thick and stays put. It works, so I don’t have any reason to try something super expensive.
Then them there eyes. I love shadows from Benefit and Stila, but I like trying multiple colors – so again no preference. I usually try to work with my brows, but yeah, I’m not picky here either. And eyeliner is my big thing – and I have at least 10 liners in my stash constantly. Again, I try them all – department and chain store. But when it comes to mascara, there is only one that I deem worthy. Lancôme Hypnose. My eyelashes suck. They are light brown and need some thickness, and this is absolutely perfect. You can plump them up multiple times without feeling like your eyelashes have just become gobs of black goo. I will never, ever try another product ever. Seriously.
Blush, yeah I wear it sometimes. But I am much more into highlighters and cheek stains. Mary Kay Cheek Stain in Pomegranate is totally awesome, as is Benefit’s Fine One One (this is a brightening color for cheeks and lips). I’m not a fan of powdery substances, so both of these are winners in my book.
For the highlighter, I usually go with High Beam by Benefit, but I also have a shimmer stick in my purse from Pixi Beauty, which is pretty fab.
Lip gloss. Frick, I have loads of these. I really like any color of Stila Lip Glaze, as well as the new tinted lip gloss tubes by Burt’s Bees.
And because I’m so transparent in color, I love me some lipstick. Preferably of the red variety. My collection varies, but I love, love, love anything by NARS, Stila or MAC.
Afterwards, I usually put on some kind of powder (sparingly, because I hate it). Usually I have Clean and Clear blotting papers in my disposal. Which I find necessary (especially in the afternoon.)
Other things I love that are necessary to my beauty routine?
Aveeno Sunblock Spray. I never leave home without it. I have learned my lessons well to protect my fair skin. (There was a couple-year stint in high school where I tried to tan my skin to a different color, but only ended up with moles that needed removed because of it.) A dermatologist warned me about the effects of skin damage (shout out to Dr. Ernst-Woodhouse!), and I take her advice seriously. I love this formula because if I don’t have face sunblock on hand, I can spray this without fear of breakouts or super oily skin. The very light scent is another point in its favor.
Secret Clinical Strength deodorant. If you haven’t switched over, do it. Even if you don’t have seriously stinky armpits, I still recommend it. I bought it after learning that walking a mile to work each day is just not an odor-friendly activity. Still, I use it every day and notice how much better it is than the regular formula.
LUSH BIG shampoo. Amazing. So awesome. It smells like the beach, is gritty like the beach – basically its sand for your hair in a cup. The texture gave me pause when I first started using it, but man, it has become my favorite hair product. For fine hair, like mine, it’s also a great friend. The only must when using it is to apply conditioner as well, otherwise your hair may come out a bit dry feeling.
Origins Ginger Essence perfume. I love to smell like a clean hippy. That is why I use this. That is the only way I can describe it.
And my absolute must: Philosophy Miracle Worker Miraculous Anti-Aging Retinoid Eye Repair. This is a bit pricey, but it’s a bit of a necessity for me. Again, I’m pro-anything-that-keeps-your-skin-awesome, and was told by a skin doctor that retinoid can be pretty super spectacular (pretty sure they used other words, so I’m paraphrasing.) The first couple weeks can make you second guess the product (the skin under your eyes may get red and dry), but hold on. If you hold on for one more day, things’ll go your way. FO’ SURE!
And last but not least, if you don’t have tons of money to spend on makeup supplies, or you just like to be a cheap ass like me sometimes – try out Pixi Beauty Cosmetics. Ohmigod, these products are great. Seriously, I can only say great things about this line. Even before looking at Sephora or other brands of products, go to Target and give them a try. Totally worth it.
So there you go. Too many words on what I use. Now you can mock me and tell me that I’m doing it wrong or spending too much money or tell me that the routine is not working or blabbidy-blah-blah. Don’t care. But that is life.