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7 Tried & True Must-Have Products

By Dustin Hunter, Makeup Artist

Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Dustin Hunter has been designing various media since his early teen years. Studying several different art forms, Hunter’s creative background ranges from illustration and photography to fashion and interior design to music production and makeup artistry. He has worked for over a decade as a professional illustrator and his retail interior design concepts have been featured in nation-wide publications, receiving recognition for their uniqueness and creativity.  Check out his blog and YouTube channel!

MAC Reflects Transparent Teal Glitter

7 Tried & True Must-Have Products

I’m a sucker for multi-purpose products: pigments, cream and liquid paints, mixing mediums, etc. I like to custom-blend just about everything! Not everyone feels the same way, though, and sometimes, it’s nice to have one product that does a job and does it well. These are some of my tried-and-true favorites from a few different companies (hopefully some that you haven’t heard of before)!

Estée Lauder Pure Color Lipstick | Their Long Lasting Cream finishes are some of the best lipsticks I own. They cover well and feel luxurious on the lips. The BEST ones are almost always limited edition. Favorites in the Permanent Range: Cherry Passion, Melon and Rose Tea.

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tars | I’m actually not a huge fan of these on the lips, but, OH, the blushes these make! They last forever and blend like a dream (they DO have mint in them though so avoid the eye area). Favorites: Cha-Cha and Divine.

Face Atelier Ultra Sheer | I love these liquid luminizers because you can mix them with foundation, cream blush or bronzer for glowing skin or apply them on their own (I use a fluffy blush brush) for a natural highlighting effect. Favorites: Champagne.

Terra Firma Gel Mineral Matte Finish Bronzer | I use this on myself all the time. It’s highly pigmented (I dilute it with body lotion), long-wearing, won’t rub off on clothes and looks SO amazingly natural – If most bronzers are too orange for you, look no further! (There’s also a shimmering version if you like to twinkle.)

MAC Reflects Glitters | A MAC PRO exclusive (but anyone can buy from MAC PRO). I’ve used these in a multitude of ways: mixing custom lip gloss, over mascara for sparkling lashes, on top of just any eye look, pressed over lipstick for a metallic foil effect, as a face and body highlight, worked into a hairstyle, etc. Not many things are THIS pretty! (Be aware that MAC lists these products as “not for use in the eye area.”) Favorites: Reflects Bronze, Reflects Gold and Reflects Transparent Teal.

MAC Blot Powder and Purely Cosmetics Diamond Perfect Finish Powder | My two favorite setting powders! Blot Powder by MAC is perfect for mattifying a look without adding any color or texture. Diamond Perfect Finish Powder by Purely Cosmetics is a transparent loose powder that easily outperforms the transparent powders I have from MAC and MUFE (smoother application, better line diffusing AND it doesn’t bounce light back in photography).

See more photos & swatches!

MAC Reflects Transparent Teal Glitter

MAC Reflects Transparent Teal Glitter

MAC Reflects in Bronze, Gold, Teal

OCC Lip Tars

OCC Lip Tars in Cha Cha, Divine

Purely Cosmetics Diamond Perfect & MAC Blot Powder

Estee Lauder Lipsticks

Estee Lauder Lipsticks in Cherry Passion, Melon, Rose Tea

Terra Firma Matte Gel Bronzer

Terra Firma Matte Gel Bronzer

Face Atelier Ultra Sheer

Face Atelier in Bronze, Champagne, Opal, Peach

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Thanks for the tips! I have always wanted to try liquid illuminator, what other brands would you suggest? For reference in MAC I wear NW45 foundation.

I use MAC’s Strobe Liquid all the time as an illuminator. It’s different than Ultra Sheer… Not better or worse just different. I use both of those products as highlighters after the rest of the makeup is done (either pressed or swirled onto the skin with a blush brush) and they both work great on any skintone beacuse they’re really just adding shine, not color.

Hi Dustin,

Huge fan of your work, I’m subscribed to your channel! Thanks for this post, it’s giving me a ton of great ideas!

One thing I have to ask: how do you use lip tars as a blush? This makes me very curious because as much as I love OCC Lip Tars, my lips do not like them b/c they just get so dry and the application of the product then becomes finicky. At the moment I only have one in Strumpet. What would be a better use of this? It’s an intense red, so I don’t think blush would work for that, but what do you think?

Any advice is much appreciated! Thanks!

A very small amount tapped onto the cheeks then blended in with the fingers works best. Do this BEFORE powder. If you’ve got a color that’s too intense, mix it with something else (foundation, moisturizer, MAC’s Strobe Liquid, etc.) as long as what you’re mixing it with dries down well you should be fine.

I’d love to use these around the eyes because they are SO intense and come in beautiful colors, but the peppermint oil makes them a little to “cool” for the eye area 🙂 I don’t recommend it (and OCC doesn’t either).

I’m surprise how much we think alike. haha

But my favorite liquid foundation comes from Face Atelier (the Ultra Sheer always get my jaw dropping but I just don’t like to add to much glow), Purely Cosmetics Diamond Perfect is also my favorite setting powder, Estee Lauder Lipsticks are the nicest formula I have in a lipstick next to MAC Cremesheen, OCC Lip Tars I use on the lips for something bold and a blush at times.

I have a few MAC Reflects not in Teal yet because I have Lumi from Sugarpill. 😉

I have a strange relationship with Face Atelier’s foundation. Sometimes I’m kinda iffy on it, other times I think it’s the best thing I’ve ever used! If MUFE’s HD Foundation had an older sister that was smarter, dressed better and got more dates it would probably be Face Atelier’s foundation.

Thank you!! 🙂 For me I find the formula on these is too thin and watery. It feathers too quickly no matter how small of an amount I use. If I’m using them on the lips then I’m usually mixing them with something else like: a matte liptick to alter the color and finish or a clear gloss to make my own lipgloss. Either way, I usually reach for a MAC Lipmix before I reach for an OCC Lip Tar on the lips.

Dusty! I’ve been anxious to see what you write for Temptalia. I have been a subscriber of your youtube channel for awhile as well as follow your website. I haven’t tried any of these products, but heard you talk about many of them before. I have been very interested in getting a Estee Lauder Lipstick some day.

omg FINALLY I’ve found someone else who doesn’t like liptars (on the lips)! They always get rave reviews, and I purchased a few recently, and they look dry and awful on my lips. I was so disappointed. But now I’ll just try them as blushes! Thank you for the awesome idea!

Just a heads up about the reflects glitter. The reason MAC doesn’t recommend for use in the eye area is that they can actually cause a corneal laceration. If they get under a contact lens the reflects glitter can do serious damage. With that being said I do use them on my eyes, but only with a good adhesive and never with my lenses in.

This isn’t theoretical, as a RN I have seen at least 2 serious corneal abrasions in the last year from reflects glitter.

There are several other companies who make glitter that’s very similar, if not the same (Make Up For Ever for example), that say their glitter is fine for use on the eyes. I always found that strange but it’s up to the company to label their products however they’d like. I’m curious, were the corneal abrasions you saw specifically from MAC glitter or just cosmetic glitter?

I love MAC’s reflects transparent teal! I got it when it came out with one of their collection (can’t remember which one!!) and I STILL have it. It’ll probably outlive me haha I think I might get another glitter this year.

thank you for the tips on the OCC lip tars! 🙂 i’ve always used them just for the lips and some are mintier than the others. the clear lip tar is definitely the mintiest out of the lot. i currently own NSFW, strumpet and a beige one (can’t remember the name) but i reckon i could use that with NSFW to lighten it up into a nice pink.

I would have never given it a second look but I got it in a gift with purchase offer a long time ago and fell in love! One of those lipsticks that just looks flattering on so many people 🙂

Thanks! I did several of them using different glitters. I just set the camera on the ground and set the timer. It was late at night, completely dark and shot outside. I used the flash and just threw glitter in the air. If you try it I recommend covering as much of your camera as you can… Unless you want it to be forever glittery 🙂 LOL

This is just amazinggg and coming from you Dustin it has to be isnt it ?? I have to try all the things listed here and did i mentioned earlier how much I loveeee you ?? your work shows how much dedicated you are to your passion 😀 …. you are the biggest inspiration to all of us here , May God Bless you

@ Christine .. this is it 😀 …. I so wanted to read him here and cant thank you enough for this honey …..
you rock 😀 ….

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