makeup starter kit

If you are either just starting to wear makeup or are a minimalist when it comes to your beauty routine, this post is for you. It’s all the bare necessities when it comes to creating a beginner or simple makeup look. When I was in junior high, I wish someone had come to me with this list so I wasn’t sporting the occasional turquoise blue glitter eyeliner…oh boy – those were the days. I have tested each of the items I chose below and have been going back to them for years. Additionally, each of these products can be used completely on their own so this makeup kit is completely customizable depending on what products you need or prefer.

mac concealer

Mac Studio Finish SPF 35 Concealer: This should be everyone’s first concealer. It is multi-functional since it can be used under the eyes, as well as on the face over blemishes. It holds up all day and can be applied with your finger or a brush. This little jar will last you quite some time because a little bit goes a long way and you won’t waste any product since it’s in a pot rather than a tube.


bareMinerals Original Foundation: This is the most underrated foundation out there in my opinion. I’m not usually a fan of powder foundations {I love stick foundations}, but this stuff is amazing – I wear the color Golden Medium. It’s full coverage and looks dewy all day! I dislike the matte version of this, so make sure you grab the original one. It will even out your skintone and leave you looking healthy. The best part is you can wear as little or as much as you like – keep adding additional powder for more coverage. A lot of the time I leave the house just wearing this and mascara.


Cover Girl Classic Color Blush in Rose Silk: A little flush of the cheeks is always a good look as long as it’s not overdone. It’s an easy way to get a warm, sun-kissed look if you pick the right blush. This particular blush is the prettiest rosy color and it has a touch of shimmer so it doubles as a highlighter. I’ve used this blush on tons of people and it flatters everyone!


L’oread Paris Telescopic Mascara, Carbon Black: Absolute. Necessity. Mascara is everything. It’s one product that completely makes you look awake and put together instantly. I always say skip the top eyeliner, and just layer on the mascara. If you put some mascara on the bottom lash line, it will double as eyeliner if you gently press the brush against the roots of your lashes.


Kiel’s Lip Balm #1: This stuff is always with me. It moisturizes the lips yet looks like you are wearing gloss – you will fool everyone.


a hint of edge










CARDIGAN // TOP // JEANS{similar here} // SHOES

Back with my outfit of the day and lighter hair! :) Trying to pep myself up through this horrid winter weather {note the indoor back drop :( }.

My favorite items in my closet are classic/simple pieces with a hint of edginess. Pieces that have some detail to add flair, but not so much that you have to simplify the rest of the outfit.

This bag is my favorite because it looks like a simple black bag, until you see the bottom {kind of like a mullet: business in the front, party in the back, ya know?} And this cardigan is a new favorite addition in my wardrobe. I recently talked about my love for cardigans and sweaters here, so when I saw the subtle leather lining, I was obsessed!



what’s in my travel beauty bag


I absolutely despise packing for trips. Every time I go on vacation I wait until the very last second and usually end up staying up all night {of course underestimating how long it will take me}. Very ideal when I have an early morning flight, ugh.

Surprisingly, the reason I hate it isn’t because I take time picking out multiple outfits to bring {which you may have expected}. It’s actually quite the opposite – I am a very light packer. It stresses me out having too many options while on vacation and if I can’t make a decision at home, then I likely won’t be able to make one there. So I try to limit myself at home so it requires no thought when I’m on vacation. But one thing that I never have a problem with is packing toiletries – I’ve become a pro at what I need, what I’ll want, and it really doesn’t vary based on where I’m going. Here’s a peak inside of my travel “beauty” bag.


Murad Suncreen: Most of my vacations include a lot of walking around and sunshine if it’s up to me :) However, whether it’s sunny or not, I always apply this sunscreen during the day. It’s the ONLY sunscreen I’ve tried that doesn’t break my {randomly sensitive} skin out. It’s a bit pricey, but I use the smallest amount {a little less than dime size all over my face and neck} and it lasts me Not in love with its citrus-y scent, but it doesn’t stick around.

Cerave PM: My new found favorite face lotion thanks to a recommendation from my friend Melanie {check out her guru feature here!} She has flawless skin so of course I took her advice. I’m starting to learn sometimes less is more when it comes to skincare. I’m always searching for a miracle product in higher-end brands when this has been next door at Walgreen’s the whole time…and my wallet says thank you! I use this on days where I’m not outside much or at night. Sidetone: it is a thinner consistency for a night cream, so if you are particular about that then be aware if you like a really thick and hydrating night cream.

Acure Organics Argan Oil: This is my multi-use product for vacations. If my skin is feeling extra dry due to the climate I’m traveling to, I mix it with my face moisturizer. If my hair is looking a little frizzy or dry then I dab a little on the ends for an easy fix. I have chronically dry cuticles, especially in the winter, so it comes in handy for them as well! The possibilities are endless.

Oscar Blandi Dry Shampoo: I really don’t need to say anything more about my obsession with dry shampoo {I said it all here and here}. I tend to wash my hair everyday when I’m on vacations {ouch} but still need it with me just in case I don’t or if I need some extra volume.

Mac Fix Plus: I normally have a travel size of this product, but just ran out so excuse the larger one for the sake of the photo! This stuff comes in handy after flights when you need a little spritz of hydration on your face. It is also great for holding your makeup in place if you’ll be out all day or to spray on your makeup after hours of wear to give it a fresh, just applied look.

Scrunchy: Need this with me. To put my hair up when I sleep;my hair’s too long to leave down while sleeping and a thinner hair-tie can leave your hair tangled and cause breakage.

Headband: One of my odd pet peeves is getting my hair around my face wet when I’m washing my face. This thing comes with me everywhere I go – it’s the best!

Purity Facewash: The best face wash for traveling. It comes in a cute little travel size bottle and it doubles as a makeup remover {even for eye makeup} so you only have to pack one item for your makeup removal/cleansing routine.

Clarisonic: I charge this before I go and bring it with me. Although my cosmetic bag doesn’t appear that large in the picture, it’s the one that came with my Clarisonic and it easily fits all of my necessary items! I could do without if that wasn’t the case, but I do love cleansing with it if I have the choice. Clarisonic+Purity=perfection.

Eye Mask: If I’m traveling to a new place or hotel, I never know what the curtains/natural lighting situation will be like. I wake up at the crack of dawn when a stream of light comes in the room, so it never hurts to be prepared to get beauty sleep. After all, I don’t want to be exhausted due to lack of sleep when I am trying to enjoy my vacation!

Hope my tips help – I’d love to hear what necessities you can’t live without while traveling!