If you had to start your collection over, what would you do differently?

In general, I’d just be able to hone in on the types of products I really enjoy and not have to spend so much money (and time) experimenting. For me, one area would be tools as I’ve really found what I love, and it’s harder and harder to replace or declutter because they’re all great… I just don’t need (by even a stretch of the imagination) all that I have.

— Christine
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I would go get some help finding the right shade of foundation. I wasted so much money over the years always getting the wrong shade.

A little help could have gone a long way.

Probably nothing much at all. There may be a few items I wouldn’t have bought (a MAC 194, I think it is, a few shadows and palettes that I could happily do without, a very orange MAC blush, etc.) but I enjoy makeup so even though I’ve had a few less than idea purchases, I don’t begrudge them. I do wish I HAD bought a few things I missed out on – another MAC Jardin Aires pigment, Moth Brown shadow, a pink blush that was released with the orange one that was a flop for me, Modern Pewter and Soul Serenade eyeshadows (seems most of my regrets are MAC). So really, I wouldn’t change too much.

I would buy one set of good brushes and make do with that, except that I might buy an extra eyeshadow brush for switching between greens and everything else. I would not buy eye palettes and would build my shadow wardrobe with singles. And I would buy one medium to full coverage foundation that would avoid the need for color correctors and that I could sheer out instead of having several foundations of varying coverage levels plus a collection of correctors. I am on my way to the last one but it still will take another year plus a donation to Project Beauty Share to use up the foundations I own.

I think, if I was starting over, I would like to have personally curated palettes full of colors I would use. Right now, I have so many palettes on the go but I only use a couple of colors from each one. I am getting to the point where I am considering depotting and making up my own palettes just to avoid the hassle of shifting back and forth.

If I was to start my collection again I would definitely go the custom made palette from the start. I wasted too much time on pre-made palettes, when for me an optimized custom made palette makes more sense.

To not do when I was first beginning to build my most recent stash: don’t jump at every new product! Not everything will wind up fitting my taste or needs. In fact, some things will hardly ever wind up getting used. Yes, I ought to have been far more picky

If I were to start over again, I’d be a whole lot less into pre-made palettes -though actually, who am I kidding, I still love the ones I do buy now… So I don’t know. Part of me wants to say it would have saved me a lot of money to just have jumped right into single shadows and making my own z palettes but maybe it wouldn’t have haha. I’ve really enjoyed my makeup journey overall, and because I’ve always followed reviewers and customer raves online starting from livejournal, there’s been very few times I’ve bought a product and had a terrible time with it. I also feel I was lucky that my first makeup brushes were pretty good and mostly still ones I still own. I just own too many and I can’t really justify how it happened haha. So I guess if there was a way I could be a different kind of person and be more selective about things from the start, that might be better financially and space-wise (since now I’m totally running out of space) haha.

If I had to start my collection over again like Cynthia above, I would make sure I got my foundation shade right – because I did waste a lot of money purchasing the product and always being unhappy with the resutls.
Secondly, I would purchase a really good set of eyeshadow brushes to make sure I could apply the eyeshadows properly.
As for purchasing eyeshadow palettes – it was really hard back then because there wasn’t a lot available at the time and it’s only through experimentation that you find out what suits you and what doesn’t.
I wouldn’t bother purchasing half of the quads, quints that I did (and have since tossed).
I would purchase Nakeds 1, 2 & 3 – as I have used/use these a lot as a starting point.

Genevieve, I love the Naked 1, 2, 3 palettes too. Never bought into their more recent Naked palettes, but I love the first 3.

I’m definitely late to the handmade brush/fude thing. That’s the one thing I probably would have gone in on sooner. But if I’m being honest, I don’t think I would change anything else. I haven’t loved everything I’ve bought, but I enjoyed the “chase” of buying and using things. Not everything was perfect; hell, not everything was great. But the whole adventure of choosing, buying, and using so many different products has been FUN…and that alone made the purchases totally worth it. I don’t just wear makeup to look good. If that was all I wanted, I could pick a few basics and never bother with it again. I bought what I bought because I wanted it, and in that sense, I’ve never been disappointed. My purchases were all worth it, even when I didn’t wind up loving them. 🙂

Same, all of my purchases was worth it. Even though I wouldn’t repurchase some of it today. As humans we are always evolving, and for me so does my makeup esthetic and preferences

Not to buy things just because they’re a hyped up item, buy what I actually like. Don’t buy creme/liquid eye products that I won’t use up in a few months.

I would have gotten a palette earlier instead years of neutral singles – opposite of many here, so the grass is always greener? If I could have learned from a premade color story with a mix of neutrals and color instead of my comfort zone singles, I could experimented with color earlier and developed a taste for the tones and shade range that works for me. Even for always-recommended purple, there’s violet, cranberry, plum, lavender-blue duochrome, subtle mauve, bold fuchsia… and maybe purple wouldn’t suit me in the first place. It’s a lot to jump into when you could have just had a palette designer give you a decent purple with some coordinated shadows.

Palettes are better value if you just want some shadows. Once you understand yourself, though, singles are way more manageable and personalized.

I wouldn’t buy backup on my true love makeup items. I only have maybe 7 items but it’s makeup so will probably die before I use them
Need to put them on eBay.

For example I loved that Koh Ken doh finishing powder bought a backup and today they came out with one in pink.🙄

If I started over I would make smarter choice. Now knowing that there are levels of “good quality eye shadows”, some brands I wouldn’t have. I also wouldn’t “collect” a collection just because I “needed” to have it all(now they put out so much I just can’t& don’t want to). Also waiting on reviews (when I started I didn’t know there was such a thing, I think I just dated myself LOL) before purchasing has helped now thanks to YOU!

Because I mostly wear cool and olive based neutrals tones, in rethinking it, I would have done better not to buy palettes with a lot of warms just because the shadows were high quality– I’m looking at you ND and PML. Wait for the cool toned palettes– it’s worth it. The recent Trichrome and the old Green are my best ND palettes– it’s not worth have any others for a few wearable shades. Unlike others here, I don’t find I use my custom palettes all that much. I have several filled with Sidney Grace and Devinah, all those missing greens other formulators don’t do– and yet I rarely reach for them. When the formulator is designing for their own warm toned preferences– looking at Viseart here, get the message and don’t allow a few pops of a green or a cool tone to pull you into buying it. I also have too many blushes. Just use the favorites and don’t jump at it. My final reflection is: Don’t fall for the hype. This is the best beauty website bar none because it’s about reviews and quality, not PR and fancy language. On Instagram, there’s a culture of gushing and ooh-ing and aahing over brands or celebrities, and declaring that a formulator is your “best friend.” C’mon now. If you regard cosmetic formulators you don’t know personally as the most beloved people in your life, then I feel sorry for you. If your day is made by looking at a celebrity’s makeup, maybe you should look into doing some volunteering. This also creates a pressure towards buying stuff you don’t need. Whereas, on this site, there are real people with different beauty needs commenting whom one gets a feel for over time. I admit I am lucky because you, Christine, are close enough to my own skin tone that I can pretty much look at your lip swatch and know accurately if a product will look good on me.

I would try to find a sweet spot between a minimalistic stash and a fun collection. This is more or less what I have been doing over the years by decluttering and planning my purchases. So in practice, I guess I would have a very similar collection to what I have now, except for the discontinued items and some recent regrets that I haven’t decluttered yet. As I have recently moved into Japan, I am now focusing on fude brushes, which is a whole new world to me. As a matter of fact, I have a Hakuhodo package to arrive soon and I can hardly wait.

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