Makeup Essentials

We’re tightening the financial belt here in Kelly land. We’re not starving, mind you, but unnecessary expenses are being trimmed. Meals out, movies, lattes, golf — all done for the time being. And I’m trying to rein in my beauty budget. So I tapped some of my gals and beauty professionals for tips on makeup essentials.

“Your eyes are the window to your soul,” beamed Bernice. “Better have them look happy, open, and full of life. So when there’s no money, I just buy eyeliner.”

“I use concealer so I don’t look dead,” said MaryAnn. “And eyeliner and a blush bronzer for the same reason. I also don’t spend money on things people don’t see much, like my toenails.”

“No money for makeup, that’s my life right now,” added Meg. “Until I sell my house, I’m down to applying a capsule of vitamin E to my face before I shower, for moisturizing. And L’Oreal Lash Out mascara [$8.99 at CVS]. When I get money, I’m adding Aveeno Moisturizing Lotion with Sunscreen [$7.32 for 8 ounces at Walmart].”

“Well, the French say you only need a touch of mascara and a touch of lipstick,” offered Nancy. “I’m also a believer of less is more. I do eye and lip: the super-cheap pink Maybelline Great Lash mascara [$9.94 for a two-pack at Walmart] and whatever lipstick is on sale.”

“The blondies are in trouble without mascara,” said Deirdre. “My must-haves are eyeliner and mascara. I could go without foundation and powder but not eye makeup. With summer coming, I want waterproof makeup that won’t smudge, but I find the waterproof mascara doesn’t give length to the lashes.”

“Bare Minerals is a powder, base, concealer, and sunscreen all in one,” explained Cherie ($25 at Sephora). “It’s pricey but worth it for the flexibility. Moisturizer: L’Oreal Double Extend mascara [$8.97 at Walmart]. And Burt’s Bees lip gloss [$6.99 at Target].”

Margaret’s favorite beauty products are from the Jane Iredale line. “I use their Active Light Under-Eye concealer stick [$25 at janeiredale.com], the Dream Tint Moisture Tint SPF 15 Light [$36] for a dewy look, and their In Touch Cream Blush sticks [$26]. Good-looking skin is the most important, especially for aging broads like me.”

Sarah favors a moisturizer made by Mary Kay. “I’ve found no other moisturizer that works quite as well as the Mary Kay Formula 1 Enriched Moisturizer [$18 for four ounces at marykay.com]. It feels so nice, goes well under the eyes. I go cheap on the blush and powder, and I definitely use ChapStick.”

“Number one on your list should be skin care,” advised Sue, Macy’s Clinique salesperson. “If you don’t wash, tone, and moisturize, your makeup is not going to be perfect. Our 3-Step skin care is very popular. We sell our yellow moisturizer every four seconds throughout the world [Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion, $22.50 for 4.2 ounces at Macy’s].”

Sue’s other recommendation: sunscreen. “Sunscreen is the main thing that is going to stop you from lining.”

“Well, of course foundation,” said Craig, Macy’s Estée Lauder salesperson. “I recommend Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup [$33.50 for 1 ounce]. It’s 15 hours of coverage, so it’s long lasting, and it’s oil-free so it is for all skin types. It has an SPF of 10. Also if you’re on a really tight budget, at Estée Lauder we give out a foundation sample, so you’re welcome to stop by our counter and get a free ten-day supply.”

After applying foundation, Craig says the next step is up to you. “We want to go with lip and eye, or cheek and eye, or cheek and lip. Would you rather have more emphasis on your lips, or would you rather have more emphasis on your eyes?”

I’m with Bernice on this, so I answered eyes. “For eyes, I’d go with both eyeliner and mascara. If you wanted the bare essentials I would buy the foundation during one of our free-gift events, and that free gift usually gives you about seven pieces: lip, eye makeup, as well as skin care. Then I’d also pick up the free foundation sample and buy Double Wear Eye Pencil [$19] and Double Wear Zero Smudge Lengthening Mascara [$19.50].”

“Mascara is something you always want to have in your makeup bag,” said Jael, the Lancome saleslady at Macy’s. “It will give your eye a lift; it brings up the eye area. You put mascara on, your eyes automatically open up.”

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All this stuff sounds expensive to me. My foundation is still Cover Girl (2 bottles for $7 on sale).

Most of the rest of it is Wet-n-Wild (usually .99 - 1.99). In fact, I think their megalength mascara is some of the best mascara I've ever used. Their Brandy Wine creme lipliner pencil has been my favorite for perhaps 20 years.

(It doesn't hurt that it's #666 -- Lip pencil of the Antichrist!!! LOL.)

The only expensive cosmetics I've EVER indulged in are moisturizers. Some of those are just heavenly, and make your skin look like a million bucks. My alltime favorite was Estee Lauder's Fruition, now discontinued. The replacement product appears to be this one...


...but I've never tried it. Still pisses me off too much that they had to mess with a good thing.

I also like this: http://www.amazon.com/Hydroderm-Acting-Wrinkle-Reducer-Alternative/dp/B000M0GZBQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=hpc&qid=1273857671&sr=1-1

Very nice, but still too expensive.

A loooooong time ago when I still subscribed to Consumer Reports, a study on face creams found that despite all the claims, only one cream actually worked: Nivea. It happens that I have always used Nivea, and haven't found the need to make a change. On the other hand, there have been so many advances that I can't help but wonder if there are new products on the market that work like they claim to do. For example, the products with Retinol, surely they must have an effect.

Avon Anew products work magic. They can be a little pricey (but not even close to the cost of department store cosmetics), and you can order them on-line and find two for one deals, etc. I also love the Wet-n-Wild lip liners. Why spend twenty dollars at Nordstrom for a lip liner that is gone in a month? WnW lip-liners last a year!! Also, Great Lash mascara in the pink tube. Since high school. Neutrogena Healthy Skin cleanser and Clear Pore keep me zit free at a fraction of the cost of other cleansers and toners that did not work.

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