Friday, April 20, 2018

The makeup capsule collection

We’ve all heard about the capsule collection as it relates to your wardrobe (and if you’re like me, it becomes a mini-obsession) but I had the exciting – to me – thought to curate a makeup capsule as well.

I don’t have a huge amount of makeup, but I do have multiples of most items, especially colour products such as lipstick and gloss, blush and eyeshadows and eyeliners.

For my everyday neutral makeup look, I’d invariably gravitate towards the same pinky blush, MAC eyeshadow (still the warm neutral Kid, and I’ve added Quarry for a darker more taupey option), and a few favourite natural pinky-red lip-colours.  I use bronzing powder instead of blush and eyeshadow sometimes too (just a light touch!)

When I have a makeup cleaning session (which I love doing), I couldn’t remember which brushes I’d used, so I would wash them all.  I would also polish all my makeup containers inside and out, with a less favourite perfume and a clean t-shirt rag.

When I was doing this the most recent time, I decided to store all my makeup in our bathroom drawer (so it was still accessible), and put my everyday makeup in a small basket that I could store away or get out to sit on the bed and do my makeup where the light is good.

Not only does it save me lots of time each day, but it is also very satisfying when I have one blush that I’m using and it is almost finished up.  When I used a different shade each day that didn’t happen.  I only have one of everything in my capsule makeup collection, except for lipsticks, which I have made a little artists palette with.

There were favourite lipsticks which were worn down flat, and others that I only used occasionally.  With the almost used lipsticks I dug them out and squashed them into a small makeup sample container (which is a round flat shape with a screw-on lid) and also chopped the tops off other lipsticks.

I now can use either one colour, or swirl my lip brush across multiple colours to get a new shade.  A similar concept to the pressed powder version of Guerlain’s Les Meteorites or Bobbi Brown’s Shimmer Brick palette – except mine was free :)

As enticing as my makeup capsule collection is, I’d still sometimes not wear makeup, and I do feel better when I’ve made the miniscule effort.

I timed myself recently to see just how long it takes to do my everyday lightly made up look and it took nine and a half minutes (I wasn’t rushing it either).  Knowing this helps me not be lazy when I think ‘I won’t put makeup on today’.  It takes less than ten minutes; I feel good; plus I look more polished if I see anyone.

With my few other makeup items I can still dig through them if I feel like doing something a bit different for a night out, and I get to enjoy my curated daily neutral palette with ease.

Maybe you do this already, but for me, I am very happy with how my capsule collection idea turned out!

Are you a makeup minimalist?  In-between like me?  Or are you a makeup junkie?  What are your favourite products?  One of mine is Estee Lauder Double Wear which I put on with a damp Beauty Blender sponge.


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  1. Like you, I keep it minimal--a little mascara, a little filling in the brows (they're there, but turning gray and need a little assistance). Maybe a bit of foundation, but that's usually only for going to town. Always sun block.
    It's a difficult balance as I preach to my daughter that makeup isn't necessary yet I prefer to wear at least some almost all the time. That said, my lashes aren't what they used to be. I save blush, eyeliner and eyeshadow for big events.

    1. I have found a product ideal for my grey/white eyebrows (or non-existent in parts!) and that is L'Oréal Brow Artist Xpert in Cool Blonde. It's a pencil which doesn't need sharpening. It doesn't last long but it's not all that expensive so I buy three at a timed, but it works for me and might for you.
      Margaret P

  2. I'm a minimalist. One product/color will always look better on one than another product/color. So why keep the less than optimal product/color? I have figured out what looks best on me and wear that on a daily basis. For evening wear, I have a slightly darker shade of my daytime eye shadow and switch to a deeper shade of my daytime lipstick. Occasionally, I do like to experiment with other products/colors. I like shopping at Sephora, because they have all sorts of testers and samples. But even if a store doesn't, if they have a tester, you can always bring your own little container to put a dab of product in. (I use extra contact lens cases for this.) If there is no tester, and I try the product and don't like it, I take it back for a refund. I certainly don't let it take up valuable space in my makeup drawer.

  3. I do wear make-up and find as I've grown older that some under eye concealer, eye brow pencil and mascara are just a daily essential. On fancier days I will contour with some bronzer and have worked out a nice low make-up look that is very flattering and pulled together. I keep my make-up in a box with an envelope flap which closes with a magnet and complements the decor, sitting out so I can do a quick re-fresh on lipstick. Hey, gorgeous shot of you and your husband on Instagram!!

  4. I love makeup and truly see it as an art form. I consider myself a makeup collector and have quite a a large selection that I relish using. Most of it is out on display in my beauty room. I typically wear a full face of makeup 6 out of 7 days a week because, for me, putting on makeup, or playing in my beauty room as my husband calls it, is a joy! It truly is a pleasure for me to consider my day, what I'm wearing, the condition of my skin at the moment, and construct a makeup look around that, carefully choosing which blush, eye shadow look, lip shades, etc.

  5. I have a drawer full of makeup but mostly it's for nights out and is made up of things I thought looked nice but it just takes too long to do on a daily basis. I'm not a morning person.

    My day to day make up is super simple and takes me 5-10 mins depending on just what I choose to do. It consists of a CC cream with SPF (or tinted moisturizer of BB cream depending on what I have bought - skin care and tone evening all in one step), a swipe of beige eye shadow (which is actually the same as my skin tone so you don't really see it but it evens things out), a bit of eyeliner, mascara and a tinted lip balm. I love lipstick but as it wears off so quickly on me I don't wear it daily.

    I'm lucky enough not to really need blush most of the time as I have a fair bit of natural flush, but I do use it over foundation for evening looks or when I'm a bit under the weather.

    For evenings I like to go with a neutral semi-smokey eye. Even with dark brown eyes I find the full smokey eye look hard to pull off.

  6. Funny, I've been thinking about my makeup alot lately too and how I need to change to a softer palette as the harsher colors like jet black and reds can really age you. I really love the look of creamy peachy/beige colors that I see on some older women and it looks soft and pretty. Now I'm totally inspired to go through my makeup! Thanks, Fiona!

  7. Hi Fiona, I think I'm a minimalist too. I have a traditional Korean makeup box that is lacquerware made with decorative mother-of-pearl. It has a fold up standing mirror on top of it and a drawer below where I store my makeup. My mother gave this to me when I was in high school and it sits atop my dresser. As I child I loved to watch her sit down to her makeup box, fold up her mirror, open up her drawer of makeup and apply it step by step. It was a lovely and quiet mother/daughter bonding moment I realize now.

    My makeup is very spare and I don't have many items - only one of everything with the exception of two lip colors to choose from: a peachy/rose and red. Daily makeup consists of concealer for my under eye dark circles as well as covering any discoloration elsewhere if needed; then I curl my eyelashes and apply waterproof mascara (top lashes only); next comes a swipe of lip color and a quick brush of the eyebrows with a toothbrush. And that's it. I timed my makeup application (like you also did, not rushed) and it took me 4 minutes.

    I'm more interested in skincare rather than makeup, so most of my time is spent with that instead. I regret sunbathing as a teenager, slathering on baby oil and then getting sunburned. What was I thinking?! When I would get ready to head to the beach my mom would always try to get me to take an umbrella, but I thought it was embarrassing and uncool so I never did. Boy, do I wish I had listened to her now!


  8. I'm a minimalist. My usual routine is primer, moisturizer, tinted or otherwise, eyeliner and mascara, a touch of blush and lip balm or lipstick. I have an eyeshadow that I wear for dressing up, but for everyday I don't have time or energy to mess around. I don't keep much makeup on hand because I want to use what I've got, and you can't store it well. It'll go bad over time. Right now I need to replace my lipstick and blush because the cases are both broken and that's not pretty to have on my dresser.

  9. There must be something in the air :-) I got a gorgeous gold & white makeup case for Christmas that I put away because it's smaller than the one I use now & I didn't know what to do with it (thank goodness I didn't put it in a thrift box, as I usually do with things I think I have no need for!). Then last week I was putting on my day's "face" -- some concealer here & there, eye liner & shadow, mascara, a smear of lipstick I forget to renew throughout the day -- & realized I use about 1/10th of the products in my larger bag. And it hit me: why not put the things I use daily in the small case I'd gotten for Christmas, & cull the rest -- either get rid of them or just tuck them away for when I do want to go fancier.

    Miraculously I found the small bag (things go into my closets & are sometimes never seen again) & now my daily makeup "collection" is small & tidy & I love it. I also cleaned the cases/bottles & washed the brushes. It's spring here in Canada & what a perfect time for a fresh start.

  10. Last year I went grey.... yes - no more dying ! I have learnt that you need some colour on the lips and some blush.... but not alot !

    1. Even though I steadfastly refuse to go grey, I've noticed that just being... of a certain age now, I need to use color on my cheeks. Something that was optional when I was younger. I use my matte lipstick as blush, because it's a nice shade, without any shine or shimmer, and it lasts all day without a touch up.

    2. Ooooooo.......I am going to try my matte lippie for a blush!!! Great idea!!!

  11. I am a reformed makeup junkie. I love to try new makeup, but I keep my daily routine pretty simple, if I wear makeup at all. Curl my eyelashes, line my upper waterline with a black gel pencil (make lashes look so much more full), mascara (always Chanel Inimitable Intense in black). A bit of brow gel (love Glossier Boy Brow) to enhance and tame, concealer under the eyes (thank you allergies for my perpetual dark circles), and then maybe a swipe of blush (usually Nars Orgasm) and some lip color. I've got it down to 5 minutes or less on any given day. If I decide to wear eye shadow, I love a good cream stick (currently obsessed with Laura Mercier caviar sticks)that I can just swipe on. My one big indulgence is lipsticks, every shade and formulation you can think of. I tend to wear lip color even if I otherwise go without makeup. I make much more of an investment in my skincare, which thankfully makes it easy for me to go without makeup, and even if I do wear makeup, I almost always skip foundation.

  12. Great post as usual Fiona! I am a firm believer in moisturizer so I always use the Daywear and Nightwear from Estee Lauder. I love them! I also love the dark correcting spot serum! It works wonders for me and clears any scaring I have in 7 weeks!

  13. Hmmm I’m trying to figure out why I didn’t comment earlier! I am a total makeup junkie. Totally dumb when you consider I rarely wear a ton of it anymore but there you go! I also, as others have mentioned, spend more on skin care because with proper products you actually don’t need as much makeup! I’m not into the drag-queen look; more a natural (except during rendezvous time, smile. He likes a lot of makeup then)! I watch YouTube videos to find out better techniques and how-tos that have changed since I was REALLY into wearing makeup. Since I’m pale and now have white grey hair, I have to wear some eye makeup or I am washed out. And lipstick!! I just went through all my lipsticks (no, I won’t tell you how many but it was ridiculous) and wiped down with alcohol and gave away. Many were unused. Why no! I don’t have an addiction to lipstick and gloss. Why do you ask?? Hee hee!


Merci for your comment. Wishing you a chic day!

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