How do you figure out what makeup to wear?


How do you figure out what makeup to wear? Do you rotate products in and out of your go-to stash? Share!

For me, it is relatively easy, because I have a plastic bin of “things that need to be tested,” and I go from there. There are various reasons something is prioritized over something else, and it’ll be obvious for most things. There’s usually only one to two weeks where there’s more of a “lull” and nothing is super pressing to get tested.

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Like you,, if there’s new stuff to be reviewed, I try to wear what I can, as many as I can and a few times so I can get a feel of the product. When I don’t have much to review, I try to think about what I haven’t used in a long time. That’s what I’ve been doing for the past two months. I’ve used a palette I haven’t used in so long (Kat Von D Saint!) and it’s been nice!

I try to coordinate my makeup in some way to what I’m wearing. I also aim/sometimes force myself to use different makeup every day to make the most of my collection. Usually base my selections on lip colour choice first so it works together.

“Will it last long?” And “When was the last time I used this?” If I know for sure I can make a look out of it, I’ll use it.

Several methods I employ are:
– Play around with new acquisitions.
– Play around older/existing products
– Swatching old products alongside new products to determine what colors works together.
– Peruse upon the internet for make-up look inspiration and try to recreate them with products I own.
– Recreate looks I’ve worn before.
– Give up all hope and just recreate my go-to look, which is usually Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze, brown or black eyeliner with a tiny flick, coral cream blush, and semi-opaque red lipstick with a slightly glossy finish (a la Revlon Lip Butter in Cherry Tart or Candy Apple).

For “everyday”, I’ll either blindly grab a random eyeshadow palette and go from there, or if something is new(er), I may want to play around with it, and the rest of my makeup follows suit. I have a separate bin for more “wearable”, neutral shadows, and I typically reach for one of those. If I have time to “play”, or actually need to dress up, I’ll coordinate my eyeshadow with my jewelry and/or nail polish-whichever one I want to be the focal point of my look.

For me, it’s now more of a question of a need.. What do I need to wear today? And then I couple that with what seems interesting that I WANT to play with. If I don’t have to go anywhere, I don’t wear makeup. Simple. Where I’m going influences the inspiration for what I will feel best in. Mostly I keep in mind to nourish my skin however I go about it. For instance, I’m trying to only use Bite on lips, with exceptions, because if I’m going to accidentally consume any, I trust what’s in their lipstick. I still have formulations of theirs I look forward to trying during sale time so I can truly find out if they can replace all my go-tos. Even the same ones for over two decades.. I’m trying to be cautious, more so, and being my mind is always going, I think up many looks when just browsing products, they just come into my head like.. Yeah, that with this.. And I do a re-check of what I’d put on my face and make sure my skin, eyes, lips, are prepped to take it and not be offended. Hence, it’s also somewhat sticking to my safety products, a bit like in the way I incorporate them into everything.. Make sense? I tried 🙂 I also like to have fun with new makeup at night before I was my face. Getting to greet those products are sprouts to blooming ideas! 🙂 How I feel when I wake up and how I want to feel also get tossed in. Positivity & Love is a must. If I can use colors to help myself, I do, I will. Seeing ourselves differently in a literal way does help us see much differently in a figurative way. I want it to be easy, well intended, good for me, unobtrusive in any way, and to like it. As my skin heals, I’m itching to wear more makeup that’s sat while I pampered mid-life acne and everything else., As the holidays approach with energy of a new year, I’ll be back in the habit with distinct answers at last, I’m hoping. 🙂

Whatever I’m in the mood for that day. I usually stick to a neutral base so it might come down to what colour eyeliner I want to wear and I’ll create a look around that.

I factor in weather, humidity, what I’m wearing, and to where I’m wearing it. That helps me decide if I want to go with more powder or cream makeup types. Where I’m wearing it to helps me decide whether I need to be conservative, glam, or my usual colorful and experimental self.

As far as colors, I factor in the season and what I’m wearing. Often, I’ll pick out a color in my clothing to riff off of, but not always. If I have a new makeup item I want to try play with, I’ll build a look around that. Likewise, if I’ve seen a look online or in a magazine, or if I watch a good tutorial, I might try to recreate that look.

It doesn’t happen often, but occasionally I just don’t know what the heck I feel like wearing. So I’ll go with a neutral eye and a medium brownish-pink lip. It’s hard to go wrong with that.

I just kind of go with the flow and let fate decide 😉 Whatever catches my eye first I go with. And I usually pick my eyeshadow first. Then I just make sure that my blush and lipstick go with whatever eye colors I’m using.

I’m the same way. The actual product I decide to test depends on my mood and availability. Like I’ll do the limited edition stuff first and then test the perm stuff after. Sometimes it blows because I’ll have something that I love and want to use all the time but can’t because I have so many other things to review. The downside to being a blogger lol

Lately, it’s been relatively easy. I’ve made a conscious decision to try to use more of the stuff that I have in my collection. So of late, I’ve been choosing one eyeshadow palette or combo of 2 or 3 single shadows that have been ignored and forcing myself to use them for a whole week. It’s been great rediscovering stuff I haven’t used and it also helps me to be less overwhelmed by all the stuff I have (which, in past, has caused me to keep falling back on my standard “go to” shadows). I’m planning to do the same with blushes – pick one and use it for a week, every day. Lipstick….well, that sort of depends on what blush I’ll be wearing (and I always have a doe foot lipgloss in my bag for putting on quickly between classes, when I don’t have time to check a mirror; lately, it’s been IT CC gloss in Love but I just dug out some totally forgotten Pur Minerals glosses and figure I might as well use those as quick between class touch ups, since I really need to use the darned things up)

During the week is easy because I don’t have much time in the morning to get ready. I just do eyebrows and mascara and lip gloss most days, and will also do concealer if I have extra time. If it’s the weekend or a day off, I’ll do a much more fun, colorful or dark look that I wouldn’t get to wear at work.

I am pretty lucky. I am a chef, and most of the time, I can wear what I want. On days when I am teaching cooking classes, I need to wear something a little more neutral.

And now, confession time.

2-3 times a week, my husband has his friends over. One of them and I have had several clashes in the past. Several. Right now we are on truce, but I never know how this will last. So when she comes over, I take time to do my makeup in a way that both pleases me and radiates a whole “Don’t mess with me, poison tree frog” type vibe. Only my best friend in our circle knows why. These are nights I have fun and wear red smoky eyes, or blue lipstick, or something that makes me feel confident, and gives a lot of extra dimension to any ‘resting bitch face’ I need to conjure. LOL.

So, you’re saying that, sometimes, things get heated even when you’re not in the kitchen? 😉

I had to share your response with my daughter. She laughed, too! 😀 Now I need to practice my “resting bitch face”! LOL

I keep anything that’s new and I haven’t tried yet stacked on top of my palettes in plain sight. (Currently it’s 4 eyeshadow samples.) First priority always goes to new things!

Secondly, there’s nearly always a weekly makeup challenge on Ravelry. This week’s is “warm and sultry.” So today’s eyes are copper and purple smokey.

I also consider how much time I have an how long I’ll be out and about. Mornings where I have ten minutes to get ready and won’t be back for twelve hours tend to get simple, one or two color looks. Today I had an hour and would only be out for half the day, so I think I’m wearing five or six colors. Dramatic lip colors don’t happen on days when I’ll have three meals before I can touch up.

Those three things provide some pretty good parameters to work with each day. If I’m ever stuck I usually fall back to sparkly orange or copper eyeshadow and coral lip.

Most of the time I plan it out the night before/a few days in advance. Sometimes I have fandom themes in mind, or I just know ‘hey I want to do a green lip’ so I plan accordingly. I also love watching tutorials/finding pics on the internet and recreating them.

I usually create a look that will work with my outfit (I’m not one to wear a purple top and a red lip together) and will be appropriate for the occasion: mostly nude for work, more fun colors for a day off, bolder for a night out.
In terms of which products to use, I have this tendency to use the latest products I bought, and I leave out older stuff. That’s how palettes get used for a month or two after purchase, and then sleep in my drawer without being touched… That’s not a very efficient way to use my stash and I’m trying to organize it better so I’ll use existing products more.

I always like to start with a fresh, healthy looking base, and lately I’ve been going completely nude on the eyes most of the time. I’ve picked up my mascara once this week! Instead i’ve been all about the lips, so I normally i’ll pick the lipstick I want to wear first, and then i’ll coordinate my blush with that. Today I’m feeling kate winslet in titanic. The 90s lip trend that is going on right now reminded me how much I Iove her make up in that movie 🙂

I generally have some idea, after having seen a photo or watched a tutorial. Some days though I can stare down at my disorganized stash without any inspiration whatever, those days usually ends up with MAC neutrals or UD Naked 2 or 3 (I don’t have 1).

On a day to day basis I try to be relatively neutral for work: foundation, under eye brightener, blush (my fave thing to switch daily!), ambient lighting powder to set on my oily skin & mascara. If I have time/ feel like it, I may add a cream shadow and/ or a bit of liner (of which, I have way too many). Something quick and easy, and colours are dictated by what I’m wearing that day.

On the weekend or for special occasions, I really love taking my time getting ready & trying to use a lot of my makeup. I’ll usually have an outfit picked out & kind of go from there with colours I want to use. That’s when I really love to use a lot of different eye shadows & experiment! I have a big collection now, so no matter what I really try to use several different products rather than sticking to the same thing.

For me I’ve been in a rut. I have a look that is ok for day or interviews that can be vampy with a swipe of dark lipstick. Because it’s so good and so easy I just keep doing it.

Hmm…like my clothes, I typically know at least what lipstick or eyeshadow base I’d like to wear. The rest of the look revolves around that. It also depends on my mood, the season, where I’m going. Now that I have more space to place my make up in clear organizers (I am working on my vanity room), it is a bit easier to see what I have and rotate things. Some things are everyday staples: my Miss Manga, mascara, a Maybelline color tattoo (eyeshadow base) and a cream blush from theBalm’s How ‘Bout Them Apples palette (often layered with a powder blush).

I get a look in my mind to start with, then gravitate in my makeup collection (which I think of as “art supplies”) to what I think and feel will best create that look.

I think about the following first:

1) What’s the weather going to be like? (rainy? sunny? windy? hot? dry? humid?)
2) What’s the occasion? (do I have to be photo-ready for something formal or a party? interview? working?)
3) What am I going to wear?

And then I after that, I will think about makeup that will work with all those conditions. For example, if I have to be photo-ready for flash photography (like a wedding or some other special occasion), my makeup might be a bit different than say, if I’m out for a picnic on a hot sunny day. I can go for bright color with glitter for a night out–but I’ll stick to neutrals for a job interview. Things like that. But if I’m testing makeup–usually I wait til I’m around the house or when I’m out doing errands (I don’t blog but I do like to check for sensitivity reactions, the longevity, and how the product looks in different lighting).

What I’ve recently started doing is creating a “makeup basket” each Sunday. I pick what makeup products I want to use for the week for work and play. It helps me rotate my products and encourages me to use new and old products. I got the idea from watching YT vloggers. I give myself lots of options and it’s a really useful idea.

I usually co-ordinate my eyeshadows with what I am wearing eg greys for when I am wearing black and white etc. My foundation and blush is always the same. When wearing multi coloured tops I try to use other palettes in my stash so that I rotate them. My lipsticks usually work with my outfits too.

It’s rare that I plan what makeup to wear. Very rare. I let the season, the current state of my skin (moisturizer, primer, foundation), and my mood (eyeshadow, blush, lips, lashes) dictate what goes on my face. The eyeshadows I pick are what determine the rest of my look, including my clothing. =)

It’s not often that I will use a new product for the first time when I’m getting ready to go somewhere. I use new products around the house first to see how they preform and how they look on me. (I’ve had to wash off all of my makeup and start from scratch before when something new went horribly wrong!!)

I do have two go-to looks:
For a rushed, daytime look, I use the shadows, liners, and blush in the Tarte be MATTEnificent palette, Covergirl Clump Crusher mascara, and the Too Faced Lip Tint in Bee Sting on my lips with, maybe, a lighter shade of gloss over it.
For a quick evening look, I use the Givenchy Purple Show quad, YSL Babydoll mascara, NARS Sex Fantasy blush with a little Outspoken by Marc Jacobs layered over it, Anna Sui’s Rose Cheek Color in shade 100 as a highlighter, then stare blankly at my lip products for a few minutes before deciding on one of four of my usual combinations. I always use the Anastasia Contour Kit no matter what other products I decide to wear.

Question 1: Do you have a group meeting/lab time/meeting with supervisor today? If yes, something nearly invisible. If no, proceed to Q2.

Question 2: Are you going out for the evening or is it for day? If evening, bust out all the colours/glitter/smoky/whatever. If it’s for day, go for the more muted, shimmery, glowy stuff. Indulge in pops of bright eyeliner. 😀

Additional Question: what are you trying to use up? Wear that. 😀

Hi Christine! Off topic, but the new ads for Emirates / Dubai is SUPER annoying and randomly blasts loud music. Wasn’t sure if you were aware or not… 🙂

Ive been challenging myself to use my eyeshadow palettes by selecting a “palette of the week”. I put stickers w/ numbers on the back of all my palettes & draw a random number to pick which one I use M-F (allowing myself to supplement w/ singles if the palette is lacking – and I have Sat/Sun free to use whatever I want). That’s my starting point – from there I choose blush, liners, lip products, etc.

I’ve stuck with it 8 weeks so far & am finding its a good way for me to really use my collection; and keeps me out of a rut.

I take into account where I’m going (work? out with friends? babysitting children? a date?), what the weather is like (humid? dry? precipitous? sunny?), the condition of my skin (am I extra oily, dry, fighting acne, relatively clear, etc), and how much time do I have to both apply my makeup and maintain it throughout the day? Once all of that is ironed out, it’s just my mood- whether I saw a look I’d like to try on Pinterest or in a movie, or if I’m just down to invent something new or go with an old favorite! But those are my main factors.

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