Saturday, 13 October 2012

Makeup On-the-Go 101

Hello lovelies!

Alright, raise your hand if you keep a makeup bag in your purse. Now raise the other one if you remember the last time you organized it.

Not a whole lot of second hands just went up, did they?

But no worries! There's no shame in forgetting to go through that little travel makeup bag you keep stashed away in your purse. Or, maybe you are like how I used to be and (Gasp!) keep a handful of products roaming around loose in the bottom of your bag. Yes, yes, we've all had our dark days, but we're all here today to improve our on-the-go makeup styles. It might seem silly, but having a well-organized, well thought-out makeup bag can make all the difference in both your style and your sanity.

Trust me.

Before we get started, I'd just like to remind you that everyone has different taste and needs when it comes to makeup and skincare, so each person's individual travel bag might require some tweaking to get it just right. This 101 guide is just that-- a guide. Take from it what is useful to you and leave behind what is not.

Now, onto the learning!

What is on-the-go makeup?

Exactly what it sounds like! It can be either the makeup you want to carry with you in your bag at all times, or the collection of items that you can just grab-and-go whenever you travel- whether that means spending the night at a girlfriend's house or a last-minute road-trip to another state. We're looking for convenience, practicality, and a little bit of fun.

Where do I start?

The bag. Please, please keep your cosmetics inside of a cosmetic bag. Having them roll around loose in your purse is both messy and unsanitary.

If you're looking for something to keep in your purse, you might want a bag that's a little bit smaller and just big enough to hold a few essential items(which we'll cover later). On the other side, if it's a bag you want to travel with, go with something a bit bigger so that you can hold the essentials plus some extra goodies.

Here are three common makeup bag sizes:

 The Pencil Case:
Obviously not a real pencil case(thought I suppose you could use it as one), this style of bag is usually the smallest available. It is a long bag with a zippered top, which is especially useful if you want to carry a makeup brush or a pencil cosmetic, like eyeliner. The pencil case bag is great for tucking away in your purse as an every-day travel bag. (I have one just like this in my own purse!)
Allegro Baroque Pencil Case- 5.99,

The Standard:

While there really is no "official" name for this type of makeup bag, it is what I consider to be the standard size. A great in-between bag that is big enough to hold several items, but not so large that you can't fit it in your purse. This size makes a great travel bag to take with you on trips, but you can also use it as your every-day bag if you wish to have more items available to you.

Allegro Baroque Triple-Zip Organizer- 16.99,

The Weekender:
As the name suggests, this bag is designed for weekend trips. To Vegas, your friend's house a couple blocks over, wherever you please. The size is obviously not for stashing this bag in your purse(unless you have a really big purse, I guess), but for carrying an assortment of cosmetics, along with some skincare/haircare items. If you have a larger beauty regimen, this size bag would be perfect for you as your travel bag that you can just grab-and-go with.
Allegro Baroque Weekender-- 24.99,

What goes in the bag? 

This the part where things can get a little bit tricky, since there are so many variations of travel bags. Are you going out at night? During the day? Do you wear eye makeup? Foundation?

So in order to cover as much ground as I can, I will be dividing this  section into a few sub-categories. Feel free to skip over to whatever category fits you the best.

The Essentials:

These are items that I think can easily fit into any bag and any makeup routine, and are considered to be the "important" items.

1. Pressed Powder
Pressed powder is a great product to keep with you throughout the day. Use it to touch up your foundation, or gently blot it under your eyes to help ensure that your eye makeup stays in place. Bonus: It usually comes in a compact with a mirror to make touch-ups easy.

Covergirl Smoothers Pressed Powder

2. Neutral-Colored Eyeliner
I always try to have either a dark brown or medium brown eyeliner in my bag. Aside from the obvious use of touching up the eyeliner around your eyes, it can also be useful for filling in any thin patches in your eyebrows or adding a bit of definition to them throughout the day.

e.l.f Studio Eyeshadow "C" Brush
3. "C" Eyeshadow Brush
 If you wear eye makeup, this can be an incredibly useful tool to keep with you. I use mine to blend out any creases that may have developed in my eyeshadow, and to just generally clean up any imperfections. I would recommend the e.l.f version of this brush because it is a pleasant mixture of soft and stiff bristles, so you can apply eyeshadow and also use it to do a bit of blending. (It's also very affordable!)

4. Lip Balm
This is something I think everyone should keep with them, even if they don't keep a makeup bag. There's nothing worse than getting a case of severely-chapped lips in the middle of the day with nothing to help soothe them. For this item, you can go as fancy or as simple as you like. On the higher end of things, I like the Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Balms($10,, but you can never go wrong with a simple classic: Carmex Original Lip Balm(1.69,

NYX Sheer Tube Gloss
 5. Neutral or Light Pink Lip Gloss
You can really polish off a look with a bit of lip gloss. Keeping a small tube of a lightly colored gloss inside your travel bag gives you a way to refresh your look throughout a busy day. Keep the color neutral or light pink-- a shade that can easily work with whatever makeup look you wear.

   6. Skin Tone Matte Eyeshadow
This one might seem a bit strange, but having a matte eyeshadow that is close to your own skin color can be very handy. In the event that your eye makeup gets to be a little bit past repair, you can wipe it off and then simply swipe a layer of the matte eyeshadow over the whole eyelid, smudge a bit of that eyeliner we listed earlier, and you instantly have a polished look. This exact method has gotten me out of some nightmareish makeup situations before.

7. Makeup Remover Swabs
These are brilliant little tools to have with you. They look like regular cotton swabs, but each one is filled with gentle makeup remover. Simple bend the stick and the remover fills the end of the swab. They make last-minute cleanup very simple, and will prove to be super useful in a pinch.

bareMinerals "On the Spot" Makeup Remover Swabs-- $5,

Night Out Essentials:

These are the items to add to your bag if you frequently go out at night. On a date or out dancing-- these items will make great additions to keep you looking fantastic all night.

1. Oil-blotting Sheets
These will come in handy if you like to go out partying or dancing at night. They come in small packages that are easy to carry in a small bag, and you simply dab them on any spots that get a little sweaty or oily during the night. The nice thing about these is that many brands make sheets that don't do any damage to your makeup when you use them, like the Essential Shine Eraser sheets from e.l.f($1,

e.l.f Matte Lip Color
2. Matte Lip Color
A matte lip color is a great product for touching up in the evening. The reason I recommend a matte color instead of a shimmery color is because it works with any makeup look, whether you're wearing dark smokey  eyes or a subtle shadow. The shade is up to you, but I would suggest sticking with something that isn't too bright or too dark. A warm shade of peach or light pink is a good option.

Neutrogena SkinClearing Blemish Concealer

3. Concealer
Having a bit of extra coverage is always a good thing when you're out for the night. Keep any redness or blemishes at bay with a small layer of concealer topped with your pressed powder.

Fun Extras:

These are things that are not necessarily essential to keep with you, but can come in handy and are just fun little extras to add to your bag.

1. Perfume in a Vial
The kind of vial I'm talking about is the kind you can get as a sample with most beauty website orders, and if you go into a shop like Sephora, you can ask for a sample of most perfumes they have in stock. The sample will come in a small vial that is perfect for adding to your makeup bag for a bit of freshness.
e.l.f Studio Glossy Gloss

2. Bright Lip Gloss
For a fun pop of color during the day, you can add a tube of brightly colored gloss. A sheer hot pink or deep plum are great options to keep with you.

3. Mascara 
Not an essential item to keep with you, but nice to have around in case you feel like re-applying as the day goes on. Just make sure that you don't pack on unnecessary layers, or you'll end up with clumpy lashes-- never a good look!

Ending Thoughts?

Once you have all of your travel makeup picked out, spend a little bit of time finding the best way to organize it in your makeup bag. You can just toss everything in, or you can work out if you want eyeliner to go on top of the pile or on bottom, or maybe you want a multi-zippered pouch so you can separate things by color. Whatever floats your boat and works for you. Remember, the idea of an on-the-go makeup bag is that it can be convenient for you, so touching up your makeup isn't a hassle. After all, makeup should be a fun, not a bore!

Let me know in the comments what you keep in your makeup bag, or if you have any questions for me about  makeup on-the-go. Also, let me know if you'd like me to elaborate on traveling with makeup in a future post. I love hearing from you!



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