Skincare & Makeup Routine | Drugstore Products

June 28, 2016

I have been a very loyal Mac and Sephora girl for a long time now, meaning my beauty products were mostly from one of these two stores. Also, as I mentioned in this post, Giorgio Armanis cosmetics have won my heart over in the recent past.  But in the last few months, I have also been doing some research about drugstore beauty products, and turns out that some of them seem to give these high end brands a stiff competition while also being light on your wallet. And having consistently used these drugstore beauty products from Fred Meyers store for my skincare and makeup regimen for at least a month now, I am happy to say that they are a hit with me (and believe you me, a lot of experimenting with several products has gone into this). 

So today I am sharing with a post I have been working on for a while now - some of my skincare and step-by-step makeup routine (long post alert :)), along with a few of my latest favorite drugstore beauty products. And for everyone thats been asking me for a post on makeup, here you go :) 

Please note : Not all products are suited for everyone, so use caution when you buy any beauty product. Some of the highly recommended products didnt work well for my skin and I simply discarded them (and wont be talking about them in this post either). 

Exfoliator -> Cleanser ->  Toner -> Moisturizer 
These four products are crucial for a good skin care routine, even if you do not wear makeup.

Exfoliator : One of the most important steps in a good skin care routine is to gently exfoliate the skin at least two to three times a week (overdoing it can do more harm than good). Think of exfoliation as deep cleaning - it removes dead skin, breaks up the dirt accumulated in pores and aids in blood circulation. Hence keeping your skin soft, healthy and glowing (of course younger, too). 

* Biore Charcoal Bar is my favorite. It boasts to be 2.5x times better than other exfoliators.
* Simple Exfoliating Wipes always come handy when I am traveling.
* DIY - good old sugar and lemon juice scrub (another favorite). 

Cleanser : Removes makeup, dirt, oil and bacteria. Cleansing unclogs the pores, renews the skin and keeps it hydrated. You need to cleanse twice daily, no more, no less, and never go to bed with your makeup on, no matter how tired you are. Theres a wide range of cleansing products to choose from - face wash, makeup remover, facial wipes, micellar water etc and I use a combination of these. 

 * pHisoderm is excellent - not only a thorough cleanser but also restores the pH balance
* Simple Micellar Water is a holy grail product - a  no rinse complete cleanser
* DIY - milk or coconut oil are perfect to remove makeup too

Toner : It is essential to close up the pores after all the deep cleaning and cleansing and a good toner does exactly that. Applying toner also helps restore pH balance, in addition, it aids in removing any leftover dirt and grime after cleansing. And when it comes to toner, I do not buy one from the store but make my own instead.

* DIY - homemade rose water
* DIY - one part apple cider vinegar and one part filtered water

Moisturizer : It restores moisture back to your face thus preventing the skin from becoming dry and flaky. Rule of thumb, apply moisturizer every time after you cleanse - an extremely important step that many skip, especially after washing the face before bedtime. Moisturizer also aids the products you apply after to penetrate the skin properly. And always choose a moisturizer with an SPF of at least 15. 

* Olay Complete All Day Moisturizer With SPF 15 (need I say more)
* DIY - vitamin E or virgin coconut oil

Serum : While not mandatory for a good skin care regimen, serum promises to do to skin what moisturizers cannot, simply due to the fact that serums are made up of smaller molecules that can penetrate deep into the skin and thereby provide additional benefits. If you use serum, always apply it before applying your moisturizer. 

* Olay Regenerist Serum, a little goes a long way and is fragrance free

Basics Of Makeup
Now that your skin is clean and prepared, you can start applying your makeup. As a rule of thumb, always start with the thinnest product first. 

Primer -> Foundation -> Color Corrector -> Foundation -> Concealer -> Powder 

Primer : The most important step to ensure your makeup looks smooth and lasts longer is applying a good primer. Primer acts as a base by sealing the pores and filling in the fine lines, it also prevents makeup from smudging or creasing. 

* Maybelline Master Prime visually blurs tone imperfections and smoothes fine lines

Color Corrector (CC Cream) : This is a saving grace and your best friend to get that flawless look, but it sure is a daunting task to pick the right colors/shades to address your skin concerns - dark circles, redness, dullness, dark spots, etc. Remember the color wheel - the rule of thumb is that opposite colors cancel each other, so pick appropriate shades to attack different problem areas.

* NYX Color Correcting Concealer Palette helps cover many skin concerns 

Foundation : Its basically the essence of your makeup. Foundation evens out your skin color and adds radiance. Liquid foundation gives the best finish unlike powder foundation that makes your skin look cakey and dry after a while. And finding the perfect shade for your skin color is never easy, I have been recommended 3 different shades by 3 different reps at the same store, so it's really a trial and error. 

* Maybelline FIT Me with Sunscreen for a dewy + smooth finish 
Concealer : As the name suggests, it conceals em damn adamant scars, dark spots and hyper pigmentation, which neither the CC cream nor the foundation could tackle. Use the concealer sparingly and apply it only to a small area, specifically to cover the spot. 

* Maybelline Master Conceal is one of the best and camouflages any imperfections
* Covergirl truBlend FIXSTICK works equally well

Contour (Optional) : It helps redefine certain facial features (higher cheekbones, slimmer nose and chin) and takes attention away from features you dont want others to focus on. Pick a contour two shades darker than your foundation. If you use a cream contour like me then apply it before using a setting powder, and if you use a powder contour then apply after using the setting powder. 

Highlighter (Optional) : It attracts light and gives you a reflective dewy look. That perfectly lit-from-within glow is all thanks to the highlighter. It enhances certain features (high points of the face - cheekbones, temples, brow bones, cupids bow, bridge of the nose, apples of the cheeks and jaw bone). 

* NYX Wonder Stick has a contour on one side and highlighter on the other
* NYX Liquid Illuminator is a lightweight liquid highlighter

Powder : Always finish off your makeup with powder. It helps set the foundation and concealer. Powder also helps to absorb oil and is great for touch ups throughout the day. Based on your need and skin type, either loose or pressed powder can work best for you. 

* Milani Face Powder is a multitasker face powder - setting, finishing, blotting 

Bronzer (Optional) : It adds radiance to your skin and gives a naturally sun kissed look. Apply to areas where the sun rays naturally hit your face - forehead, chin, jaw line and the tops of the cheeks. 

* e.l.f Bronzer provides a healthy glow

Blush (Optional) : It adds color to your skin and gives you naturally flushed cheeks. Apply it to your cheekbones and blend it outward towards the hairline. This should always be the final step (something to keep in mind if you are going to contour and highlight). 

* Neutrogena Healthy Skin Blush
* Rimmel sculpting palette - highlight, contour and blush

Eyes: Eyebrow -> Eye Shadow Primer -> Eye Shadow -> Eye Liner -> Mascara

* NYX Eyebrow Cake Powder 
* NYX High Definition Eye Shadow Base & Primer
* L.A Colors 5 Color Matte Eyeshadow 
* Physicians Formula 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum
* Maybelline Master Kajal 
* L.A. Colors Bold Lash Mascara

Lips: Lip Primer -> Lipstick -> Lip Liner -> Lip Gloss (optional)

* NYX Lip Primer
* Milani, Revlon, NYX, Loreal, Maybelline, L.A. Colors - just pick any color that suits you ;)
* Maybelline Lip Liner
* L.A Colors High Shine Lip Gloss

Setting Spray : It keeps your makeup in place and helps it last longer. Certain setting sprays can also keep your skin hydrated and supple.

* NYX Dewy Finish is a lightweight water based spray 

Brushes : A good makeup brush(es) is as essential as the makeup itself, if not more. Real Technique and ecoTools Makeup Brushes are both abso-freaking-lutely amazing!!!  And to be honest, I like these brushes better than the ones I have purchased from Sephora. 

Bottom line, when it comes to beauty products there is no one size fits all, you just have to go out there and try a few until you find the one that works best for you and your skin type. So let me know which among the above are your favorite and do tell me about your other favorite products that I should absolutely try?

“Makeup is not a mask. Maskup is art. Makeup is passion. Makeup is expression”.

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