What are three tips you'd give to someone just starting to get into makeup?

1. Don’t be afraid to experiment! Makeup washes off, so there’s no reason not to give a new color/texture a chance if it’s piques your curiosity.
2. Don’t just buy to buy. A curated, thoughtful collection will serve you better than one filled with lots of products that are so-so. You will tend to reach for the products you love the most anyway!
3. Be skeptical of brand’s claims, hype built by brand/influencers, and false scarcity.

— Christine


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Ray Avatar

I’d say don’t feel pressured to wear the proper “complete” full face of makeup. If you can’t find a foundation you like within your budget, you don’t have to wear one. You don’t have to wear blush if you can’t figure out an application that you like.

Nancy T Avatar

1.) Research products BEFORE you buy them by reading objective, honest reviews as you will find on this site, and a few others. Ask family or friends whose look you admire, what products they use, too.
2.) Ask yourself what your personal aesthetic/ style is, colors you like, etc. vs your unique, individual coloring so that you can have some idea of where to begin your wishlist.
3.) Once you have your beginning essentials and framework of a kit; watch tutorials, practice and get familiar with how to use your brand new products to apply them to amplify and accentuate YOU! Most importantly: Have FUN, it comes off if you don’t like it!

Heather Avatar

1. Really think about how you’d feel wearing something before you buy it. I feel so happy when I look at swatches of sparkly highlighters, but I feel very weird wearing one–its just not me! Same goes for griege lipstick, neon eyeshadow, and contour. I’m happy just seeing it on others, and that doesn’t make me any less cool. πŸ™‚

2. Think hard about how much use you’ll really get out of a product. Yes, there are a million red lipsticks and yes, they’re all different (finish, opacity, undertones, formula). That doesn’t mean you need a shimmery neon red AND a cream neon red AND a liquid neon red… unless you genuinely wear a ton of neon red. You also don’t need a blue-red, a pink-red and an orange-red if you only wear red lipstick once a year, you know? (*Acknowledges her hypocrisy, hides her vast red lipstick collection)

3. If it’s an everyday product, one product with a very good formula is better than ten with mediocre formulas. Sure, you can get ten wet’n’wild eyeliner pencils for the price of one UD 24/7, but you’re probably not going to use them anyway if it feels like you’re scraping your eyelid with a dry pointy torture device! Plus (for most quality products), a little goes a looooong way. You can get five different drugstore UD Naked knockoffs for the price of one real one, but it will likely last you for years with daily use–and because it applies more easily and looks better on, you’re more likely to enjoy using it. πŸ™‚ Do you really need sixty mediocre nude shadows, or just twelve good ones?

As you can tell, I regret some of my previous buying habits. πŸ˜‰ Learn from my mistakes!

Erica Avatar

I would use those drugstore ones over UD any day. Spending more doesn’t equate quality. Hands down a wet n wild eyeshadow feels better, lasts longer, doesn’t fade and doesn’t have the dry , patchiness and fall out of that $54 Naked Palette. Yes buy quality but a lot people buy into hype and think spending more means they are getting better and they stick their nose up to products bc it is drugstore. I’d avoid that trap just as much buying 10 crappy eyeliners when you can get one good one advice. Js

Leah Avatar

Really? That’s so interesting. I don’t own Wet n’ Wild but I recently bought the Urban Decay Vault and am slowly trying them…..it’s eyeshadow. I don’t get the hype (yet).

Katherine T. Avatar

1) Read Temptalia for honest and detailed reviews
2) Check out Colour Pop -tons of high quality makeup at super affordable prices, quality is just as good and better than more expensive brands, huge color selection for many skintones
3) Buy quality over quantity

CeeBee Avatar

Not everything is going to look good on you and that’s OK. It doesn’t mean you aren’t beautiful.

Establish your core basics – whether it’s a great concealer or mascara (or both, probably!), a couple of “everything” eyeshadows, a MLBB lip colour and whatever other liner/powder you absolutely love and build from there.

Expensive doesn’t necessarily mean better – I have Jordana eyeshadow palettes I love more than my Dior and Guerlain and Chanel palettes. Paying big $$$ isn’t going to make you look better. But hey, if you have the cash and you want to splash it, go right ahead πŸ™‚

Ryou Avatar

1. Do not trust company swatches (if they offer any at all). Better find a reputable blogger that has similar skintone to yours.

2. Don’t believe in rules! You don’t HAVE to strive for a certain look deemed “best” for your age/gender/ethnicity/skintone/etc. Since you’d be judged no matter what you wear, might as well wear what you want. Oppressive beauty standards can burn in hell.

3. If you’re a spoonie make-up lover like myself, it’s absolutely worth to learn spoon-saving tricks. For example, I mainly wear cream products, because I can just apply them with my fingers, which means no brushes to wash. Cream-to-powder formulas also blend really easily and are usually pretty long-lasting. Plus, you’re less likely to get powder dropping onto your eyeballs (which inevitably leads to watery eyes that would ruin your make-up).

Bonus: You don’t have to apologize for looking the way you do. Which means, if you don’t feel like wearing a full face of make-up, or even any make-up, then go for it. Anyone who would judge you for that aren’t people worthy to be in your life. You’re not “vain” for wearing a lot of make-up and you’re not “lazy” for wearing little to no make-up.

Marie Avatar

1. Analyze your complexion for skin tone depth, undertone, texture. A lot of cosmetics (and skincare) will help make your skin look good once you know what type or ingredients you need. And sometimes the product is just wrong for you– it’s not a beauty flaw, just try something else!

2. A natural, well-balanced look is very pretty and versatile for beginners. Start off with colors that are just a little darker or brighter than your natural coloring. You can take some time to try dramatic colors or learn the harder techniques like winged eyeliner or eyebrows on fleek.

3. Use pics or Pinterest to choose looks that you want to try, and then take it to a makeup artist. The MUA can teach you how to duplicate the look at home! You don’t have to buy anything– just take good notes about the colors, products, and techniques that the MUA is using.

Fitz Avatar

I only have the one tip
1) Buy to meet an identified need rather than figuring out a need to justify a purchase. If you find yourself doing your makeup and wishing you had, for example, a matte purple shade. Go find a matte purple shade and enjoy! But if you’re in the store and a duo chrome lime green catches your eye, don’t stand there trying to figure out how you ‘could’ use it to justify the purchase. There are an infinite number of makeup items you could use, but a much smaller number that you find yourself wishing you owned.

ouineque Avatar

This is a very good one! I would like to add: and do not settle for anything less then the perfect matte purple shade FOR you. If you go for anything that is not completely satisfying you will dislike using it, regretting that it is just sitting in your makeup drawer and you will keep hunting for more.

Erica Avatar

1. Take care of your skin first. Makeup always looks best on skin that is in its best condition possible. That is not to say makeup cannot mask a pimple or other redness but makeup can only do so much and you’ll be happier with your makeup if you skin is under control.

2. Read ingredient lists and know what ingredients are problematic for your skin. If I had known to avoid SD Alcohol/alcohol denat, fragrance and irritating plant extracts as well as moisturizers in lotion form, I would not have had problems with acne growing up. In line with that, avoid most marketing claims. If it says it can do this and this and this but it doesn’t have the ingredients to back it up or those results are achieved through photoshop, then it is too good to be true. Buy based on ingredients in the product not based on marketing.

3. Have fun with makeup and understand that spending more doesn’t equate quality. There are ton of [email protected] products that are high end and there a wonderful products that are inexpensive. No one brand has good products across the board. Every brand has their specialities but they also have a lot of sub par ones throughout . Also know a brands parent company. Loreal owns Maybelline, Loreal, Lancome, YSL, Dior and they often pass around the same products with the same ingredients and charge you more for the same thing based on what they they put on it. Knowing these tips will help you determine if it worth splurging or saving. Why pay $45 for Bobbi Brown when you can get the same product, same ingredients from MAC for $27. You get the idea:)

Lucinda Callaway Avatar

Erica is right on about the importance of skincare and reading ingredient lists. Also thoroughly agree lines have hero products, then bring in mediocre items so they are indeed a “line.”

But the publicly traded giants like Loreal and Lauder do not make the same formulas for the brands they own with the only difference the price, packaging and name. Each brand has its own R&D and management. They operate independently (and competively) under the parent conglomerate.

A Avatar

1. Don’t expect to watch a tutorial and be an expert from day one. It usually takes some experimentation to learn what works for your features and skin, and some practice at different techniques.
2. It might help to concentrate on one feature/product at a time to improve on. It can be too overwhelming to try and do everything, and feel like you’re not getting anywhere if you don’t instantly get your perfect look.
3. Take guidance from rules and product recommendations, but don’t follow them blindly.
Different things work for different people – don’t be afraid to break rules if you think things look good on you. At the same time, a product everyone else seems to love could easily not work for you, be careful about what you buy until you know more about how different colours, textures and products perform on you.

Anne Avatar

Amen about the brushes. Better to save and buy the best brushes you can afford than to own 50 that you don’t want to use. Yes, brushes can make all the difference!!!

Lisa Avatar

1. Find the right foundation shade.

2. Learn how to conceal areas instead of applying a heavy layer of base.

3. Experiment to get to know your face and what you like and don’t like. (Angles, shape, coloring, etc).

Caroline Avatar

1. Get a really good set of brushes. All your efforts will be wasted if you don’t have the right equipment.
2. Ask for samples at the counter; that way you can ‘try before you buy’ the full size versions.
3. Start with the basics – a neutral eyeshadow palette, an everyday lipstick/gloss, blush, foundation/tinted moisturiser and of course mascara. Once you feel more confident you can branch out into more adventurous colours. Above all, have fun experimenting and remember – there are no ‘rules’!

Lauren Avatar

Great advice! Especially the last two bits. When I started out I fell into the holiday Set hype. Learned the hard way that those sets are usually subpar quality and have tons of things in dont need or use. Also I learned that I won’t use anything in bulky packaging. I also had to have the latest thing everyone was talking about on YouTube withoutreally thinking about (1) whether it made sense for me or (2) the fact that those people generally get things for free. Now that I am more expeienced I find that a lot of the most honest reviewers on YouTube get very few freebies and they love most things. I now won’t even considers purchasing something hyped without checking out reviews from people I consoder reliable – Temptalia, EmilyNoel83 and MakeupJunke101z. Really think about then piece of the hype. YouTube is a lot of PR designed to get us to buy stuff we don’t need. Finally, think about how something will fit into your life. By avoiding hype I miss out on limited edition items quite often. I really try to buy things only after thinking about it forma while and envisioning when I would used it. So, I know bulky packaging means in wont use something son won’t buy things with bulky packaging. I also know I need a good mix of matte and shimmer eyeshadow and I wont buy palettes that lack matte highlight and transition shades. I don’t do crazy eyeshadows colors. I prefer a mix of warm and cool tones, leaning more neutral. I wont wear certain shades of lipstick, realistically speaking, even if I like them.

Lauren Avatar

Ugh so many typos! On my phone… I’m trying to say that people needto think about the sources do the hype. Companies have these huge PR machines designed to created buzz and builds hype. Vloggers and bloggers get stuff for free and tend to rave about the latest. All of thise is designed to get a suckers to yout makeup we don’t need. So think carefully about who is trustworthy and dont buy things becaus everyone loves it on youtube. One more thing… If people still use a product 6 months or a year after then hype it is good. Usually, the hype dies

Leah Avatar

Lauren, great advice! You’re describing me when I discovered youtube a couple years ago. I trusted youtubers way too much. I thought holiday kits were the way to go. I bought SO. MUCH. STUFF. Now I only buy….stuff. But I still buy πŸ™‚

Lauren Avatar

Glad you understood with all the typos! I was trying to type my comment on my iphone and it was a fail! LOL. Yeah, now that I’ve been watching YouTube for a few years, I understand the hype a lot better.

I was reading comments on a recent video and all of these girls were like “how do you afford this stuff, so jealous” etc. Well, she can “afford” it because she is getting 90% of it for free. Her livelihood is also based on consumerism so while you are just getting yourself into debt buying crap you don’t need, she’s getting rich off of your shopping addiction.

Leah Avatar

Yes, I understood, don’t worry πŸ™‚ YES, exactly! It is so damaging for young girls! I’m in my 30s and didn’t understand how it worked at the beginning but my brain and self-control kicked in eventually (sort of πŸ™‚ ), how much harder it can be for young kids. I remember when I first started watching youtube being confused as to why they were mentioning specific products. I thought I was coming for makeup tutorials, aren’t all brown eyeshadows the same? πŸ™‚

And also…totally agree about bulky packaging. Packaging in general. I have talked myself out of getting Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palettes many times because I know the chocolate smell would drive me crazy and I would never use it.

Efrain Avatar

1) Try anything you want and if there’s a trend you don’t like feel free to avoid it, it doesn’t matter if everybody is doing it.

2) Experiment with color you’ll never realize if a color looks good on you until you use it in your face. For example I’m really yellow and for blush, purples look like a natural flush while I need to be careful when using reds or oranges because they can make me look sunburnt; any color theory would tell you I’ll look better on the latter.

3) Buy according to your budget, there are so many gems in all the price spectrum, and if you really want something high end, save for it.

Anne Avatar

Christine, your answer is so thoughtful and I agree wholeheartedly. The only thing I might add is to get samples of expensive items as much as possible: Loving it in the store is not the same as loving it at home.

Erica Avatar

Problem with that the quality of the sample is often better than the full item. It is a trick to get you to buy more. They pack the sample with the best ingredients and then skimp on those ingredients when you buy the full item. Then you lose interest in that item and you go out to buy something else. Js be weary of samples

Caroline Avatar

I recently tried a sample of Charlotte Tilbury’s Nude Kate lipstick …. and was not impressed at all. The colour and texture was rubbish. Good job i didn’t buy the full sized product first!

Pearl Avatar

Ack – I replied to the wrong comment! The below comment was meant for Anne:

I agree about the samples – it’s helped me dodge a few impulsive or just plain ole bad beauty buys.


Kiran Avatar

Completely agree with this.
1. Try before you buy. Swatch in stores, read around online, do your research and know what works for you.
2. DO I NEED THIS? Repeat.
3. Organise your makeup, so you know what you already have. That way you won’t have a bunch of lipsticks in a similar shade or 27 neutral eyeshadow palettes like me.

MissJae1908 Avatar

1. Don’t fall for the hype. Make sure to check your makeup collection before you buy a product.
2. Do your research before buying a product. That goes for the actual product its self and the purpose it would serve in your collection. Find your shade! And also, ask about the return policy prior to purchasing. I only found out a few years ago that you could return makeup to the drugstore. That could have saved me a lot of money when I first started out.
3. Don’t support a brand that doesn’t support women that look like you or your values. I refuse to support brands that refuse to make shades for WOC. When a brand creates a foundation and the darkest color is an NW20, I know that brand created that product without me (NW50) in mind. And if that’s the case, I won’t purchase anything from your brand. This logic also extends to social media. It’s even worse when a brand does create products for deeper shades or sends PR to WOC, but you never, if hardly ever, see the brand repost or promote that influencer on their social media accounts. But I digress. The bottom line is, there or way too many indie brands coming out with awesome products in a variety or shades for these large companies to play these games. Because guess what, we don’t have to buy from you. We have options now!

Susan Dowman Nevling Avatar

Please share those brands that don’t offer a full range of colors. Many women of all colors would support your boycott. Obviously few will match every tone but a full range of fair to deep is doable.

Eriu Avatar

Absolutely agree! If a brand says they’re inclusive, they need to prove it. We vote with our wallets in this consumerist culture.

chris Avatar

Alamay is the #1 offender. Neutrogena was a close 2nd until Kerry Washington and her campaign to expand their range. I don’t buy ELF cosmetics, Rimmel London, Hard Candy (available at Walmart). L”Oreal and Revlon could do better by offering some deeper shades. I have been pleased with Covergirl’s Queen Collection 3/1 Liquid Foundation. It is my drugstore go-to liquid foundation, matching pressed powder and bronzer used as a contour powder.

Clarins, Laura Mericer, Chanel, Dior could all do a better job in providing deeper shades.

MissJae1908 Avatar

And the fact that Almay has re-branded themselves as “The American Look”!? What look is that exactly? And it’s a shame because they actually have a great eye makeup remover. Oh well, I’ll use my Sephora brand.

Chris Avatar

I was trying to think of Alamay’s slogan. I think the same thing every time I see the commercial with Carrie Underwood. Truth be told – America’s brand would probably be IMAN (available in Target and Walmart), as she features Native American women in her advertisements.

chris Avatar

Skin care is priority #1
identify what you are interested in and start with a small purchase to address those concerns/features
Experiment with brands and textures to determine what “works” for you

Wednesday Avatar

1. Try products using different application techniques and tools before giving up on them entirely. Stash them for a bit and try again. Sometimes I will come back to a product after learning more about technique and find I love it, but didn’t when I initially tried it because I wasn’t edumacated enough to work it properly.
2. Go on youtube binges (pick vloggers with a look you love or with similar issues, e.g. hooded eyes, and similar colouring, etc..) then practice practice practice
3. Buy whatever you want within your budget. Not all products work similarly on all people. You only learn through experience on this one. There will still be spontaneous buys and even complete duds no matter what. Don’t feel bad about it. The thought that you can only make perfect purchases is ridiculous imo.

Erica Avatar

I wouldn’t say you only learn from experience about what works with you. Know your skin type , color match etc and you can avoid a lot of erroneous purchases. Reading oil free or for oily skin isn’t enough. The ingredient list will tell me if it will work for me or at least give me a heads up. I know if a product is loaded with mineral oil and lanolin it is too emolient for my oily skin for ex

Agona Avatar

I love your #3. I wouldn’t know that I didn’t like something or something didn’t work on me if I hadn’t bought it and tried it in the first place! I try to be very good about returning items I don’t love to the store. …I’m also trying to get better on returning even the I-like-but-not-love items too.

Wednesday Avatar

A good friend of mine works at the big ‘S’ and I used to feel guilty about returning items until I talked to her. I still rarely return, but no longer feel bad about it in the event of a product is not working the way I expected or I’ve made a miscalculation on shade for my skintone. Their matching system is not all that tight or accurate. πŸ™‚

Agona Avatar

I used to feel bad too and would gift gently used items to close girl friends. But my friends aren’t makeup junkies like me so they really don’t have much use for other than the occasional hand-me down so I was forced into being comfortable with returning items I didn’t love. For the items that are MORE than gently used, I just toss them. There have been a couple of items (not many) that I held onto for a year and tried really hard to make them “work” for me and then either gave up or found a similar (and better) item to replace them with!

Pearl Avatar

For #1, I just had this happen! I had bought quite a few MAC Foiled Eyeshadows online back in January. They arrived, I swatched, I sighed. Too sparkly for my taste and I figured I would just give them away to my nieces. They’ve been sitting in my display for months, unused. I’ve been hearing a lot of talk about using things as a topper, and I love layering so on a fluke, I pulled one of them down and used it as a topper to my lid shadow. Worked like a charm, the sparkly was tamped down but just the right amount and it added that extra subtle dimension I was looking for! I’m so pleased because that had been my one regret (for this year’s purchases so far), that I’d once again bought into the hype and/or that I’d bought a product that I’d aged out of. But I made it work and all is right in The Stash.

Nancy T Avatar

Wendy, everything you just said, I 2nd those points! Yes, we do only learn from experience what works for us. There is a ton of trial and error, particularly in the beginning, or after a period of change in ones skin. I say this as someone who has been wearing it and working with it for 44 years. Do ingredients matter? Sometimes. But not every oily or dry skin type, or every anyone is identical to the next!

Wednesday Avatar

Nancy: Reading your response made me laugh .. in a good way. I’ve mentioned this before: I’ve been struggling with products for the last two years with peri-menopause issues rendering former HG items in my stash to no longer worthy of my attention. Argh. Concealer, let me count the tubes… I can read the ingredients until the cows come home, but I won’t know until I try and wear and wear again and try with a different brush, and try with a sponge, and try with my fingers…. yadda!

It also occurred to me that time of year plays into the appropriateness of products for me as well. I can get away with powder foundations (I grabbed one to use today on the fly ’cause I had a ton of sh8t to do) and it works for me, but only in summer. No vlogger or product research is going to come to this conclusion for me.

Pearl Avatar

I also like your #3. I had a hard time staying within a budget at first and that’s because I didn’t set one, ha ha. I think you’re right too about not all products work similarly on all people and that you learn from experience and trial and error. There are a few products I have that if I were to go by my skin type or by reading the label alone or even the marketing, I should have steered clear of them, but I got samples anyway and not only love the product but my skin has had no adverse reactions.

Wednesday Avatar

Hey Pearl πŸ™‚ Agree! Skincare is a tough nut.. I leave most of my program up to my Dr.LookBetter and his team: 6 months of fighting horrible red patchy seriously peeling skin with the prescribed program only to finally came out on top. I almost gave up on it a couple of times. If it weren’t for them, I would be lost in the sea of product. Glad you found some good things for you!

Shana Avatar

1. Quality is more important than quantity. If the quality is not there, you just don’t want to use it again.
So check as much reviews as you can, but make your own opinion.
Temptalia is my favourite place to come for that. Then I’ll go to see other reviews to find more details.
For example if I’m looking for a specific product, and wish it to be satin, but if the brand was claiming it to be mate finish, it will loose some points with Christine, and not to be rated as an A+ product, and she’s SOOO right to do so to force brands to make more correct claims. But for my personal use, if other points are good, it would be fine for me. What’s great with temptalia is when I do t have the time, I just check the rate, when I have the time, there are so much useful details in here to help me to make my decision. <3

2. Begin with neutrals that embellish your everyday look. When you'll get more skill, you'll be more confident to try bold colours.

3. Think about how to store your stuff to reach for them easily. Otherwise you'll forget to use some of them.
I store my pallettes like books, instead to stack them. So I can reach for them more easily.

Rosie Avatar

Interesting post!
I’d say…
1. Do your research before purchasing. There are so many great resources online (blogs, YouTube, Sephora review comments, etc) that review products. Try to find bloggers/vloggers who have a similar skin type and taste in products. Nowadays, I won’t ever buy a product until I’ve heavily researched it. It’s saved me so much money!
2. Find a great base. In my opinion, if you have a great base any newbie makeup mishaps are slightly more forgiving. With this, mastering a natural makeup look is also a great skill to have in your pocket before moving on to more advanced looks like smoky eyes, for example. You learn so many great makeup basics in mastering the “no makeup makeup” look first.
3. Sheer it out. When I first got into makeup, I found myself feeling shy about how bold the colours were that I was putting on my face. I had to slowly ease myself into it and did so by sheering out everything from lipsticks to eyeshadows until I was comfortable with a full-on makeup look. That being said, if you’re not shy, go for it – experiment!

Linda Avatar

1. Invest in at least one good makeup brush and learn how to BLEND!
2. Get color matched for your foundation, match to your neck/chest, not your hand or face color
3. Wash your sponges/brushes regularly and periodically sanitize your powders to reduce break-outs, and use exfoliators or moisturizers to take care of skin texture. This makes a word of difference in your makeup application and how much product you need (or think you need) to cover

Nancy T Avatar

Linda, #2 is on point! Yes, chest/neck always. Which was something I didn’t realize fully until I was in my 40’s, because the “old” way of doing color matching was your inner arm or bare lower jaw, and neither of those are very useful! Especially if, like myself, your skin on your neck, chest, outer arms are quite a bit darker than ones inner arms or well protected/covered lower jaw! Now I always match to my chest/neck, and no longer have an oddly lighter face.

Erin Avatar

1. Figure out your undertones
2. Work on your skin more than makeup
3. Buy a few palettes to start you off along with a few other essentials
4. Try to find a drugstore mascara you love because it’s way cheaper for almost the same thing and you need to toss it every 3 to 6 months.
5. Don’t be afraid, you’re only wasting time and makeup but you learn as you go.

Anne Avatar

1) as others have said, good skin care is step one to good look; make up goes on top
2) know your tones — what makes you look great, what looks good on you, and what is a stretch/for if you want to play around to see.
3) stay current on what brands are doing what; this site is the best resource I’ve ever found.
2 & 3 will be key when you need to adapt when favorite products are discontinued, and of course to inspire and enable your efforts.

Eliz Avatar

There is already SO much excellent advice in this thread….even for make-up veterans :).

1. Buy a few quality things you adore and will use vs. bargains just because they are a good deal. This goes for all beauty-related items (skincare, cosmetics, brushes, etc.).

2. Never be afraid to ask someone what they’re wearing. If you see someone rocking a blush that’s amazing, simply tell them so and then politely ask them what they’re wearing. This is especially helpful if the person happens to have a similar skin tone to your own. They’ll also usually tell you what they love or dislike about that product. Blogs (especially this one, thank you, Christine) are also great sources of information.

3. Make a wish list. It may also be helpful to prioritize that wish list into categories such as “must have basics, nice to have items, and dream splurges.” Try to shop from that wish list as much as possible and also make sure to treat yourself to something nice/splurge-ish every once in a while as your budget allows.

4. Cosmetics make amazing gifts, so be sure to let your friends and family know if you have your heart set on something.

5. Above all, have fun and play with your make-up. As Christine beautifully stated, it washes right off, so don’t ever be afraid to experiment. And, value your own opinion above all others. If you love it and it makes you feel special, that’s the whole point.

Lulle Avatar

– Base is the most important part. Finding the right foundation is what will makeup the biggest difference in your makeup. It might not be as fun as buying lipstick and fun eyeshadows, but it’s called “base” for a reason!
– Makeup does not replace skincare. A good skincare regimen will make your makeup application easier and everything will look better on healthy skin.
– The “Instagram face” is not the ultimate goal of makeup. The purpose is to enhance your features, make you feel and look good, and have fun. If you have fun contouring and baking, then go for it. But don’t feel pressured to look like every Instagram influencer. In fact this type of makeup often doesn’t look too good in real life and natural light.

Brenda Lee Avatar

I completely agree with Instagram face. It only looks good on camera and has been filtered to make the model look perfect. Sets an unreal expectation on beauty and what can be achieved with makeup.

Pearl Avatar

These are the three I could have REALLY used back when I started getting into makeup.

1. Set aside a monthly allowance (no matter how small) for your beauty buys. I suppose if you are not really that into makeup or having a stash then this tip wouldn’t be useful, but if you’re a makeup enthusiast, this really helps. You can treat yourself to something each month without breaking the bank and compromising your other obligations. If you don’t use it, it can just roll over to the next month. This is especially useful for big launch periods (i.e. seasonal, Holidays, and MAC in general ha!).

2, Keep a wishlist – you can add to it, delete from it and (this sounds so corny) learn from it (maybe you can start to see a pattern i.e. you’ve been gravitating towards the same colors or products or brands and maybe you can or want to branch out?). It might also help to keep you from overspending.

3. Keep your stash organized so you can make good use of it.

Stephanie Avatar

1. Price is not necessarily an indicator of quality, but mid to high-end foundation, concealer, and eyeshadow tend to be far better than their drugstore counterparts. Spend on foundation if nothing else (and get color matched!).

2. Palettes are a good way to get several eyeshadows (and sometimes, other types of makeup) for less than you’d pay for singles. Start with one or two you know you’ll use. But be warned, eyeshadow palettes can be highly addictive…and trust me, even if you have a ton of palettes, you will only gravitate towards a few of them. (Not that I’d know anything at all about this! ? )

3. Practice different techniques, experiment, watch tutorials, and don’t be afraid to break the “rules” to get a feel for your makeup style. You do not have to wear all mattes or neutrals just because you’re a certain age, there’s nothing wrong with glitter if that’s your thing, and there’s no law that says you have to contour or use any type of makeup or technique you don’t like. You do you!

Susan Dowman Nevling Avatar

Skin care first, cleaning, moisturizing, sun screen and priming is essential before and cleaning and moisturizing after.
Makeup doesn’t have to be expensive but foundation must match your skin. Get expert advice from someone who sells more than one brand.
Start with neutrals and then go crazy with colors.

Jenifer Avatar

Wow! I just loved your tips!
Mine would be:
1- Take a good care of your skin: cleanse, scrub and moisture it always.
2- Always invents in good quality products for your skin (moisturezes, foundation and etc)
3- Feel free to try out many combinations of makeup, just have fun!

Abby Avatar

I was always scared to try foundation because I felt when my mom / sisters wear them it looks unnatural so for the longest time I just wore a tinted moisturizer or nothing but lotion . But now I love it . I watch a lot of YouTube tutorials , transformation videos, I checked out pin terest / Google for make up steps. Now I’m confident to say that I’m comfy with putting on makeup . I still haven’t mastered liquid eyeliner but that’s ok I opt for kohl eyeliners , and with falses I gave up . This might be lengthy but so far these r my steps 1. Moisturizer, prime face , prime eyelids , eyeshadows ( I use quads cause it’s not too overwhelming , foundation blending it evenly , undereye concealer , set concealer w/ translucent powder , then I do light contouring focusing on the 3 c’s , a little bronzer to kinda set my contouring , blush . Then spray my whole face with setting spray . Lipliner / lipstick last πŸ™‚ This seems to be working fine for me , and of course foundation/concealer/ I determine my skin tone . Determining skin tone and skin condition is a huge consideration in picking the right foundation .

Lea Avatar

My only advice that hasn’t been hit on repeatedly already would be (1) don’t start with pre-made palettes. I know many will disagree, but it’s more likely that you’ll only like/use a few shades in a pre-made palette and a self-made one is completely yours and shades you respond to. I personally only buy quads; anything larger is a palette I put together myself.

Avoid trends – especially at the beginning. Generally speaking (again), you’ll end up with a lot of product that doesn’t work for you or that you just won’t wear out. Compared to some, I may be boring, but I have a decent grouping of products I know will work for any occasion and look I prefer to do. Start with creating your classic and polished look for whatever suits you – school, work, whatever and then pick and choose where to expand. Then worry about branching outside your comfort zone; you’ll have a better idea of what to add in. For me, it’s anything that brings out the green in my hazel eyes that can work in an office setting.

jessika Avatar

Don’t believe everything you read, hear and see online. Especially social media. Some bloggers and YouTubers are PAID by specific makeup companies to say the products are nothing but amazing when in actuality they’re trash. If possible, swatch everything in person, online swatches are not everything they appear to be. If you can’t swatch it in person, then RESEARCH, RESEARCH, AND RESEARCH. Research until your fingers hurt. LOL. And most importantly, find out what your undertone is. It’s crucial! No matter how amazing your eyemakeup, highlight or lipstick is, if your foundation is all wrong, nothing matters. I’m sure this was more than three but people need to know! LOL.

Catherine Avatar

1. Start simple. Especially if you’re just starting, don’t go out and purchase a bunch of expensive makeup. Start with some good drugstore basics and see what formula types you like before investing in higher end alternatives
2. Understand that not all products will work for you. This is especially true for face products. Figure out if you have more oily/combo/dry skin and purchase products suited for that skin type. Though you may want a dewy look, luminous foundations just won’t work for very oily skin.
3. I found a wealth of knowledge on YouTube. Find a few trusted creators on there and look to see what they recommend. Some may be sponsored, so learn to spot the difference.

Mimielle Avatar

1. Figure out your face and eye shape and watch some tutorials on how to best work with them. Find a couple of models or actresses with similar ones and look at their editorials/red carpet/movie photos. Practice what you see and learn to develop your own look.
2. Get makeovers. Many places offer free or ‘with purchase’ makeovers where you can learn a lot 1-1 with some experienced people. Practice what you learn.
3. Check the return policy before buying. Many places in the US (even lots of drugstores and big-box stores) accept returns if you don’t like the product. Research before buying but don’t be afraid to return things that you can’t test that just don’t work out.

Isah Lacsam Avatar

1. Start with skincare applicable to your skin type.
2. Don’t be afraid to play with make up! Try every formula and texture. Every color and hue. Familiarize yourself with different products and brands and stick with what suits you.
3. You don’t need to splurge because a certain product is in at the moment. Find dupes, work your way with finding products that’s a steal but does the job well.

Deborah Avatar

1. Start with a very clean face.
2. Numerous products don’t look the same on as they do on/in tube, etc.
3. Try to choose the color foundation closest to your skin and sometimes that isn’t
very easy to do.

Bea Avatar

1. Brushes & sponges instead of fingers.
2. Find dupes of high-end stuff [before investing in the high-end stuff]. Some dupes are more effective, trust me.
3. Clean & sanitize your tools….including your face (before applying make-up)

Debbie Avatar

1. First of all, take care of your skin. A good cleanser, a mask a good moisturizer, a sunscreen and an eye creme are a good place to start. Also a good base.
2. Get a some good brushes. A few for face, a few for eyes, a lip brush and a spoolie will get you off to a good start. Real Techniques makes some decent brushes at a good price.
3. Think quality over quantity. Get the best products that work for you at the budget that you are comfortable with.

Dana (squidgeaboo) Avatar

I would add to this plethora of wonderful advice is: don’t get caught up in buying seconds of limited edition products, or products you won’t use up in a couple of months. You may think you’ve found the best product ever, but chances are good it will spoil or you will lose it before you need that second one. They are always coming out with better products and new collaborations!

I rarely need to buy mascara from all the samples I receive. I don’t wear it everyday, but still…?

Kimberly Avatar

1. Research like crazy! YouTube, blogs, go in stores and swatch for yourself.
2. Keep a wish list for when sales are happening and suggestions for your birthday gifts πŸ™‚
3. Resist the urge to buy the same colors over and over again, just because you love it and the finish is a little different.

Nicole Avatar

1. I think my biggest tip would be, assuming you’re working within your own budget, that you need to think about the cost of a product after you think of the value it has to you. That’s not very clear, but I see a lot of people (like on youtube) talking about what a good value these $2 eyeshadows are, or those $5 liquid lipsticks. They ignore the fact that if you don’t love those items on their own merits, apart from how much they cost, they aren’t going to be valuable to you. When I started getting into makeup I wish someone had pointed out to me that although items that are on sale or just cheap might be satisfying when you’re paying the bill, if they aren’t satisfying after that point they aren’t worth it. Shop for items that satisfy you and not your need to save 20%.

2. Try only one or two items from a brand or release before you jump right into buying them all. Also, pay for the shipping. Oh my god, the number of times that I’ve heard about something amazing and cheap and bought 10 of them to get free shipping (that probably cost like $4) only to find out that I hate the formula. Don’t do it. Pay for the shipping!

3. Just echoing what others are saying, but seriously, don’t be afraid to return. The staff at whatever store you shop in really don’t care, it isn’t a personal insult to them and if they don’t know that makeup sometimes doesn’t work out they aren’t using it enough. Also, if you’ve got a lot of makeup that you’re not using and have gone past the return date for, don’t just keep it forever. Sanitize it and sell it or give it away. If you paid $60 for a palette that sits in your makeup drawer for a year and never gets used and you can sell it for $20, at least you’ll have the $20.

Teresa Avatar

1) Start with good skin care. You cannot paint a beautiful picture over a rotten canvas. Make sure that you know how to cleanse, tone, and moisturize appropriately for your type of skin.
2) Use a good primer before applying your make up and remember that less is more. Make up does not have to be expensive. Experiment with the more inexpensive products and decide what you like. And do not forget the SPF.
3) NEVER go to bed without taking off your make up and doing a good night time skin care routine.
Nothing is as important as good skin care.

Brenda Lee Avatar

1 – Get a sample first if you can
2 – Research products before purchasing & read multiple reviews (don’t buy into the hype)
3 – return what you don’t like

Genevieve Avatar

1. Get your skincare sorted out: cleansers, moisturisers and exfoliates. You don’t need to go HE, lots of DS skincare products are just as good.
2. Find out your foundation undertone and shade. Even if you don’t want to wear a full face, at least you know your shade.
3. Research the rest of your makeup products – buy selectively with colours and shades that you will wear and have really good ratings, regardless of brand and price.

Diana Puckett Avatar

1. Don’t mix warm and cool colors on your face
2. Don’t pair a bold eye with a bold lip
3. Read or watch reviews on makeup brands, google swatches.

RMW (Rose) Avatar

Hmmm, the first is have a great canvas to work with, meaning have a great skin care regiment. Then do some research on the products before you buy. Look at the claims, the active ingredients and inactive ingredients, then you will have better knowledge before you spend any amount of money and time. Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask questions or concerns and just don’t be afraid to be you, enjoy and have fun! Welcome to the World of beauty, it’s a colorful World out there!?

Naomi Avatar

1) wear your makeup how YOU want to. if you’re happy with the look then you go girl (or any person)!

2) look into things before you buy them. don’t just buy into the hype and be aware of brands claims and what certain products are made for, etc

3) learn about cosmetic ingredients! learn to recognize product ingredients in both skincare and cosmetics, and realize what they do and how good they truly are for you! knowing exactly what you’re putting on your face and body can save you a huge amount of acne fighting, wrinkle prevention, etc

also a bonus #4 WEAR SPF 30 DAILY!! at least SPF 30 if not more

Anne Avatar

First off, try stuff. You won’t know what you like and/or what you think suits you until you do that. And ignore marketing/trends/etc you have no interest in!

Secondly, similar to Christine’s “Don’t just buy to buy”, do your research. If you want to prioritize things like no animal testing, vegan, etc stuff, you’re going to have to get your google-fu on. A caveat to that is don’t be afraid to return things you don’t like if you can do so as you don’t want a cluttered collection fulled with things you won’t reach for.

Third, have fun. If you’re only wearing makeup because you think you’re “supposed to” or “have to” or if it’s SOLELY due to self-esteem issues (I emphasize solely as we all have self-esteem issues and so they’re always going to be a little bit of it at least, even if we don’t think it is), then you’re going to wind up hating makeup and the process and yourself even more than when you started. Makeup should be for YOU, not for a societal pressure (this is different than wanting to look nice for someone you care about, or look professional in a certain setting, etc in some cases, though not in others so think that stuff through).

Hope Avatar

Figure out your skin type and face shape. Watch tutorials on YouTube. Practice with inexpensive brands before splurging on high-end brands.

Winnie Avatar

1. Don’t believe any negative reviews. Get samples and see for yourself. Just because a product doesn’t look good on one person doesn’t mean it won’t look good on you and vice versa. Just because they don’t like a product doesn’t mean you won’t. Keep an open mind. And have fun with your make up.
2. Invest in a Beauty Blender to start and then branch out to brushes.
3. Always, always, cleanse, cleanse, use a Clarisonic and moisturize your face and under eyes.

Caroline Avatar

I love reading these posts!! There’s so much awesome advice; even though I’ve been wearing makeup since I was about 12 I’ve picked up lots of great tips. It just goes to show you’re never too old to learn something new πŸ™‚

Jenna Avatar

Don’t be afraid to wear things out of the box, but if you go crazy on the eyes go neutral or light with lips and vice versa.
Blend. Blend. Blend.
Do your research on products to see if they are right for your skin type, find out your skin type if you don’t already know.
Ask for samples before splurging on a high end foundation.

Bonnie Avatar

1. Buy what you are attracted to.
2. Pay attention to what gets good results, and what doesn’t, either from you or others
3. Figure out what types of formulas will be your go-to, then buy all the shades that work for you so you have staples. You can still experiment with other formulas, but have plenty of things you love and trust.

Mo Merrell Avatar

I have friends who LOVE name brand this and that so they think buying high end makeup will mean better quality so don’t kick drug store makeup to the curb.

I always tell those wanting to try new makeup to go to a store where they can try it on or get swatches.

I always push to take care of your makeup and put it in their heads that it’s an investment so care for what they buy.

You don’t HAVE to wear a lot of makeup! experimenting is okay but if a step doesn’t work for you then don’t do it.

And most importantly to me to tell others is to know your skin! Your skin isn’t like your friends or the girl in the makeup store so find what works for you which will take time but in the end you will end up not buying products you don’t need and will learn to buy what you know your skin needs and loves.

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