Every now and then, it feels good — like really good — to do a major makeup clean out and toss what you no longer wear or need and update them with the latest and greatest in the world of color. But while any time of the year is perfect for a makeup overhaul, there’s something special about doing it during the winter. Perhaps it’s the idea of incorporating warmer tones into your routine or swapping out one formula for another that’s more hydrating.
No matter the reason for a revamp, one thing is for sure: If any piece of makeup has taken up residence in your makeup bag or drawer for right around the 12-month mark (some products, like mascaras and eyeliners, should be replaced much sooner, while others can last a little longer than one year depending on their expiration date), it’s time to replace it with a fresh, updated version. Your products should either have an expiration date or a label that looks like an open jar with both a number and letter representing the “period after opening” or how long to use the product since first opening it, explains makeup artist Tonya Mann. “I put a little sticker on new products when opening them with the date to take the guesswork out of it,” she says. “It also gets you in the habit of replacing your products regularly.”
We took the guesswork out of what to buy and did the work for you, so you can press “add to cart” and be fully stocked to look your prettiest.
The Multi-Purpose Mascara
If you’re ready to swap out your regular mascara for something a little more supercharged, consider Wander Beauty’s Upgraded Lashes Treatment Mascara. Unlike most mascaras, this buildable one promotes lash growth thanks to a specially infused jet black formula that contains the copper peptide-based Widelash, the brand’s nourishing active that claims to grow fuller, longer lashes in just two weeks. Our favorite part: the water-resistant, vegan formula is thick enough that one or two coats are all you need to make your lashes look full and alive — there’s no need to double upon formulas here.
Every Color Under The Sun
Suppose you love creating many different looks, then you know that the quintessential eyeshadow palette with a multitude of colors and finishes is an absolute necessity. HAUS LABS recently released their limited edition LOVE FOR SALE palette, which features a variety of 18 different high-performance mattes, multidimensional metallics, and shimmery shades. So whether you like more of a nude look or full-out glam, each color offers mega-watt color payoff and staying power to carry your look from day to night.
For Nails That Scream Sophistication
A reliable, solid go-to nail color deserves a spot in every makeup bag, and anything from Hermès does not disappoint. The epitome of luxury fashion, the Parisian couture house’s line of nail polishes, aptly named Hermès Beauté Les Mains Hermès, is one to snatch up and quick. Pricey? Yes. But each of the 24 rich, mega-shiny lacquers are hues inspired by the classic colors of Hermès’ famous enamels (you’ve seen them in their famous Clic bracelets). In addition, the French formulated polishes contain superfine pigments that swathe nails in a thin yet impressive layer of color that screams the ultimate in sophistication.
The Perfect Skin Pick-Me-Up
Sometimes, all you need to refresh and revive your makeup is a face mist, which can help keep shiny skin at bay and recharge your makeup’s staying power. Ideal for midday touch-ups, a few light spritzes of Sunday Riley Pink Drink balance out the skin with a blend of skin-firming peptides and botanical extracts. The best part: This vitamin- and cucumber-rich mist adds a dose of moisture and protects the skin’s natural barrier, so all that’s left is healthy-looking skin and undisrupted makeup.
Up Your Brow Game
A strong brow is always in, and one of the best ways to achieve a well-defined, groomed brow is with brow gel. A modern take on the classic brow gel styler, Kimiko The Brow Sensei is a lock-’em-in-place formula that also harnesses the power of growth-stimulating peptides, vitamin E, amino acids, and ginger extract, which together coerces meek brow hairs into thicker, stronger ones. Super easy to apply — glide it up and over sparse areas, as well as throughout, for instant fluffiness and natural-looking lift — the clear, vegan formula dries down to look almost identical to natural hair so that no one will know your secret but you.
Instantly Longer Lashes In a Flash
Lash extensions are a mainstay beauty habit for thousands and thousands of women, but the time and the financial commitment can be off-putting to many. But, if you cannot part ways with the fluttery look of falsies but don’t want to be a slave to them, stash in your makeup bag a pair of long-lasting false lashes like Flutter Habit. These last up to five days and are adhered to the underside of the lashes — instead of on top of them — for a natural look.
A Lipstick Worth Every Penny
Come winter, shiny, glossy formulas swap places with matte and semi-matte versions. “Over the past few years, the trend has been the super matte lipstick look,” says Barry. “A matte lipstick is always going to give you the longest wear on your lips, which most people gravitate towards because of the longevity.” Straight from the makeup God Mario Dedivanovic himself comes his Makeup by Mario Ultra Suede Lipstick, the perfect combination of a matte lipstick with the comfort of a creamy formula. Plus, unlike other matte lipsticks, it doesn’t leave the lips looking or feeling dried out, so you’ll want to stock up on them in just about every shade.
A Concealer That Stays Put
Nothing is more annoying than a concealer that smears, shifts, and budges, leaving all your skin flaws for the world to see. So rather than swiping on any concealer, reach for a long-wear, waterproof one, like Catrice Cosmetics True Skin Longwear Concealer, which hides everything you want to keep a secret. As a bonus, the vegan formula contains hyaluronic acid, so your makeup fades into the skin for a seamless look.
The Ultimate Natural-Looking Skin Tint
As we get older, most of us opt for wearing less skin-suffocating makeup, which can also look like a heavy mask of sorts. Instead of sporting cakey foundations or heavy liquid makeup, lean into the idea of a skin tint, which is a lightweight, feels-good-on-the-skin category of makeup that offers natural-looking coverage and skin benefits, too. Beautyblender BOUNCE Always On Radiant Skin Tint provides the perfect amount of buildable coverage, lasts all day, and lets your natural skin show through.
The Quick Shader Switcher
While not technically a color makeup product, the Sigma Switch is a time saver and godsend for those who like to layer color upon the eyes and face when using just a few makeup brushes or tools. The double-sided silicone mat allows you to quickly deposit product from your brush directly onto the mat without the need for soap or water. Think of this as the ultimate way to use the same set of brushes without unwanted color transfer — sheer genius.
For The Perfect Nude Lip
Certain lipstick shades are non-negotiable must-haves like a bold red and that perfect nude shade. Lip Lab Las Vegas Store Manager and Color Expert Joshua Barry says a my-lips-but-better color should always have a home in your makeup bag. “Having something more for everyday wear that’s subtle is going to give you the ability to take your look from day to night, or from work to party,” he says. One to stock up on is Bite Beauty Power Move Creamy Matte Lip Crayon in Amaretto, a nude honey tone that is easy to apply and flatters every skin.
Double Up Your Efforts
When time is of the essence, and you don’t have 30 minutes or more to create a full face, reach for a multi-purpose makeup product like Rose Inc. Divine Radiant Lip & Cheek Color, which you can swipe onto the lips, cheeks, and even the eyelids. “Multi-use products save space in the makeup bag and are great for on-the-go and quick makeup looks,” says Kastuk. “Plus, finding products that you can use for both is a great way to upgrade your makeup bag,” she adds.
Go For The Cream
Cream blush, like Ritual de Fille Color Nectar Pigment Balm, is a makeup bag staple (as are powder-based ones) because, according to Irwin, it gives the skin a little bit of hydration in the fall and winter. Not only can cream blush double as color for the eyes and lips in addition to the cheeks, but Irwin says they are sheet yet pigmented to make blending a dream.
Take It All Off
Removing every last trace of makeup is as important as using good makeup and practicing flawless application techniques. When makeup residue sits on the skin, it can easily clog pores and instigate breakouts, redness, sensitivities, and other skin issues — and who wants that? According to makeup artist, Mary Irwin, look for a balm formula that thoroughly removes all types of makeup with added skin benefits. Fragrance-free versions, like Sunday Riley Blue Moon, is gentle enough to calm and soothe dry skin, thanks to therapeutic essential oils of Blue Tansy, tangerine oil, and German chamomile while melting away even the most stubborn of eye makeup.
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