my favorite daily makeup essentials

my favorite daily makeup essentials | almost makes perfect

when i got married, i decided to skip booking a makeup artist and instead have my maid of honor do my makeup for the wedding (didn’t hurt that she used to do makeup professionally). because i had her do it, i bought some fancy makeup which i never did ever, and got to keep it! buying a few fancy items really taught me how fancy items are actually pretty nice to have around — and i’ve really started figuring out which products are worth splurging on and which ones aren’t.

btw — i know this is a different type of post than normal. i always find reading about other womens beauty regimens super fun, so i thought you might too. if you guys like this type of post, i have more where this came from (how about favorite skin care products, hair products, nail polishes!?)

my favorite daily makeup essentials - face | almost makes perfect


day to day, especially if i’m just running errands, i just wear powder from the pharmacy. i’ve been buying this neutrogena powder for years, i find it to be really subtle and just evens out my red. i had gotten some fancy powder for the wedding, but i honestly don’t see much of a difference. in the winter, or if i haven’t been in the sun a lot — i brush some bronzer over it along with a little extra as blush. i do see a difference between pharmacy bronzer and this fancy bronzer, the pharmacy ones can look jersey shore in a matter of seconds, but this one is really natural and light.

for the days when i want to look a little better, i use arbonne primer. my sister in law bought this for me for the wedding and i am OBSESSED. i honestly didn’t know what primer was 8 months ago, but it feels like silk going on and it keeps my whole face really even and not at all oily. the best part is even though it’s expensive, i use less than a dime size for my entire face. i just recently started using tinted moisturizer, because apparently that’s what you do when you’re in your 30s. i googled the shit out of which was the best one and everyone said laura mercier. i have to agree, it’s light and for someone who isn’t used to wearing concealer or foundation, it doesn’t feel cakey compared to just using powder.


my favorite daily makeup essentials - eyes | almost makes perfect


i’ve literally been wearing the same exact eyeshadow and eyeliner for over 15 years. that is cray, but i guess i like what i like. i’ve never looked good in heavy eyeshadow, so i’ve always stuck with this really pretty simple mac shade. and when i’m doing nighttime makeup, i just add a little darker eyeshadow to the corners sometimes and that’s about it.

as for the eyeliner, the only thing i’ve changed in the last 15 years is the color. i have always worn a thin line on my top lid, like always. i honestly feel naked without it. i used to wear black, but once i started using a dark brown, i felt it looked a little softer and better on me. this bobbi brown gel eyeliner is basically no fail for me, i apply it with an angle brush and it always stays on from day to night. when i’m doing errands, sometimes i’ll use a cheap pencil, but i rub my eyes quite a bit and the pencils smear really easily.

i never believed in eyelash curlers until my maid of honor forced me to buy one. i must say it does make a big different before applying mascara, but i’m still trying to figure out how to do my left eye as well as i do my right eye. how does anyone do it?!

i do feel like i’m buying mascara quite a bit, and while i do notice a difference with the more expensive brands, i still will buy my share of maybelline before a vacation or whatnot. i definitely like to layer on the mascara, and this one really doesn’t look clumpy.

my last trick is a really simple and hopefully really helpful one if you don’t know it. i used to work on a TV show where i had to wake up at 6am and be on camera. i looked so tired everyday, so my girlfriend recommended i put white liner on my bottom inner lid, and it really does the trick to get rid of the redness in your eyes. when i’m looking a little worse for the wear, i just put a tiny bit on the inside and outside — and obviously i don’t need an expensive liner for this.


my favorite daily makeup essentials - lips | almost makes perfect


just like everyone says you should, i try to remember to put chapstick on before i do all my makeup. this doesn’t always happen, but i use this nivea chapstick all the time. i have about 5 tubes scattered everywhere, i always keep one in my purse, one in my nightstand, one with my makeup. i also have a really bad habit of picking my lips (we call this “lippy” in our house) because i have pretty dry lips. sometimes i remember to scrub them in the shower, but for the most part as long as i use this stuff regularly i’m in pretty good shape. doesn’t hurt that it’s cheap and its near the checkout stand at most pharmacies so i don’t forget to stock up.

as for everyday color, i am a huge fan of my nars pure matte lipstick. i got the same shade as my sister in law after seeing her wearing it — and it’s so natural and pretty and not too pink and it is super pigmented so it stays on for a good while. it’s like, the perfect everyday color. when i’m mixing things up, i also love my nars satin lip pencil. again, it’s really pigmented so the color stays on pretty well. if i wear a darker lipstick at night, i usually layer this on top to make it a more “me” shade.

for nighttime, i am obsessed with this maybelline lip stain. not only does it stay on for waaaay longer than the fancy lip stain i bought for the wedding (which was YSL!!!), but they have so many cute shades – and i get compliments on them constantly. the only drawback is when my lips are super dry, i’ll wake up with what looks like a nasty chapped vampire mouth if i forget to remove it before i go to bed. but i love it.


my favorite daily makeup essentials | almost makes perfect

so that’s it, i always feel like i wear no makeup, but when they’re all piled together it seems like a lot of products… jeez it’d be fun to be a boy right?

and did you like this post? would love to know if i should do more beauty posts!

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  1. I always love makeup post and am so curious what other people are wearing. Selecting makeup can be so daunting. Can I suggest adding a photo of you with your makeup on? You say you wear it minimally, I would love to see how you apply it.

    1. thank you kate! ok next time i’ll show — but i’m shyyyy!!! x

  2. I will 120237% read more beauty posts! I was actually tossing around the idea of making my own rather similar to this a few days ago, and then when I went to see what that might actually LOOK like… I realized I’ve been using the same tube of mascara for 5 years. Eek! I’m trying hard not to think about all the bacteria I’ve been jabbing at my eyes all this time!

    1. bahah — mascara is the one thing i really only like new, maybe because i’m doing something wrong!

      1. No, it sounds like you’re doing it right! I think you’re supposed to throw out your mascara after something like 18 months at the most (the tubes usually have a recommendation) because it gets clumpy and germy and gross.

  3. I love your blog, and was pleasantly surprised to find a makeup post today! I love makeup, as I imagine a loy of women do, and would totally love to read more. My vote goes to skincare!

    1. ok you got it!!! thanks claire!

  4. I loved this post! It’s always fun to see what other women have in their makeup bags. As someone who also “Googles the shit” out of new products, it’s nice to save some time and try what works for others. I’ve been thinking about biting the bullet and buying that Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer (it’s so darn pricey). After reading your post, I think it’s time! Thanks!

    1. i knowww – that’s why i’m only gonna use it when i’m trying real hard to look good. otherwise its the cvs stuff all the way.

  5. I love beauty posts and certainly enjoyed reading about the products you like to use. I would have enjoyed seeing a picture of you wearing the make up too! I’m most curious about the lip color. I would totally enjoy future beauty posts as well. Love your blog and your aesthetic!

    1. thank you courtney! next time i’ll show photos — have to psych myself up for that though. the one thing about the nars lipstick is that it looks totally different on my sister in law than it does on me — it might be perfect on everyone!?

  6. Obsessed with this Molly! Love that its a mix of drugstore and fancy-shmancy. I’m a die-hard drugstore makeup addict but like to see what other people think is worth the extra money!