Makeup bag essentials

Nervous laughter and even slight looks of horror are the normal responses when I ask to see my clients’ makeup bags. Here’s the thing about your makeup bag; if you can organise it properly with the right products, you don’t need too much. Now, don’t get me wrong, we have all been there, in a makeup shop, a bit confused, lost and overwhelmed. But now is time to get those summer dresses out, retire our tracksuit bottoms (at last!) and have a makeup bag cleanout!

Simply put, primer creates a beautiful canvas for the face, filling in any lines and enabling the foundation to sit on the skin for longer. I’m loving the Catrice Ten!sational 10 in 1 Dream Primer, which I picked up in Wells Pharmacy. This 10 in 1 primer is a real game changer, priced at only €6.89. It hydrates, minimises pores, evens skin tone, and even has a SPF15. Sometimes I wear this on its own to give a pretty glow.

BB Cream
I feel like the older I’m getting the more I’m reaching for my BB cream rather than my foundation. It’s such a great all-in-one product. ‘BB’ stands for ‘Blemish Balm’. It offers buildable coverage, smooths and blurs imperfections. I love Trinny London BFF SPF30 Cream. It has precious extracts of antioxidant porcelain flower, tones down redness and wakes up tired-looking skin. €42 –

There are so many varieties out there, it’s far from a one-fits-all deal. From formula, coverage and finish, it really depends on your skin tone and the coverage you want. For my brides, I adore Armani’s Luminous Silk Foundation, Kim Kardashian’s foundation choice for her wedding. This award-winning foundation comes in 40 shades, is lightweight, oil-free and is suitable for all skin types.

Undereye concealer
Without this makeup gem, I look exhausted! It masks dark circles as well as brightens the eye area. I apply it after my foundation with my fingers in a gentle tapping motion. I love Maybelline’s Instant Age Rewind. This multi-award-winning concealer retails just under €10 and is infused with goji berry and haloxyl.

Finishing powder, bronzer, blush and highlighter:
Finishing powder locks your foundation in place – especially good for oily skin. Bronzer gives the appearance of a sun-kissed look while blusher adds a flush of colour to the cheeks, bringing the whole makeup look together.

I love the ambient Lighting Edit – Sculpture from the amazing brand Hourglass. It has all of the above in one palette, which also saves space in your makeup bag. €84 –

I’m a self-obsessed lipstick lover and have about 100 shades in my professional kit – crazy but true! Finding that right shade is like finding your lifelong partner in crime. MAC offers such an amazing colour range. Add a lip gloss in the evening and you’re good to go!

Mascara, eyeliner and brow pencil
They say the eyes are the window to the soul so a good quality mascara and eyeliner are a must. As it gets so hot here in Portugal, I recommend waterproof mascara and long-lasting eyeliner. I love Kiko’s Stand Out Volume Waterproof Mascara and Intense Colour Long-Lasting Eyeliner (16 shades). Kiko also has such an impressive range of good quality eyebrow pencils, gels and palettes.

Eyeshadow palettes are great as you can create different versatile looks. I love Dior Backstage Eye Palette. It’s super blendable and even has a primer. There are eight shades in mattes and shimmers and are available in four different colour palettes to complement any eye colour. €50.50 –

I recommend you have your eyelash curlers, tweezers and a setting spray in your makeup bag. Setting spray maintains your makeup. It is like a hairspray for the face. I like to spray on bare skin before my makeup application and straight after. Urban Decay’s All Nighter Long Lasting Setting Spray is a favourite of mine and has won so many beauty awards. It’s the Ferrari of setting sprays! €33.50 –

Until next time!

By Sharon Phillips
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Sharon Phillips is a well-known, fully qualified makeup artist from Ireland. She has been working in the makeup industry in Portugal for nearly a decade and specialises in bridal makeup, editorial photoshoots and film and television. Her passion is helping women feel and look fabulous through makeup.