Building your own makeup kit can leave you daunted at first—I know I was! I remember stepping into those uber-bright stores, overwhelmed and confused with the thousands of cosmetics products on the shelves. I didn’t know where or how to begin.
Growing up in an all-girls' school where makeup was only allowed during school plays or events, you'd either go crazy for it or end up looking like a complete mess—foundation didn’t match my neck, eyebrows were a shade too dark, and winged liner seemed a tad bit crooked. It’s pretty obvious that I suffered from the latter...and laughably, I have photos to prove it.
It was quite a journey! A lot of trial and error happened along the way but over time, I learned what would complement my morena skin and not wash me out. I figured out which shades and looks I could easily pull off and what products wouldn’t break my skin out, too. Makeup was created to express oneself and enhance what you already have, but no matter what skin color or type we have, we should all be comfortable with the skin we’re in.
That said, for days when you feel like being a little extra, enhance your features, and hiding a little blemish here and there, it helps to have a full arsenal to help you serve looks when you need it. If you're ready to step up your game, here are a few tips and products that are both newbie-friendly and pro favorites!
Good makeup needs a good base! Start off with a primer to help your makeup last longer. Some people tend to skip this, but don’t! As much as it helps to keep everything in place longer, it also serves as a protective barrier between your skin and the different products you’re about to pile on your face. Without it, some products tend to go deeper into your pores, causing breakouts. There’s a wide array of primers for each skin type; whether you need something for hydration, oil control, or to smoothen out pores, there’s one for you.
BENEFIT Porefessional Face Primer, P860, Freyja, Glorietta 2
LAURA MERCIER Radiance Primer, P1750, Rustan’s
BANILA CO. Primer Original, P1150, SM Beauty
Get a flawless, seamless base that can work for you from day to night. Here’s a tip when swatching to find your shade: once you get the color that’s recommended for you, leave and walk outside. Check if it truly matches your skin with natural light. This practice not only allows the foundation to “bake” on your skin (your natural oils can sometimes oxide with the product), but natural light is the best for color matching since lighting inside the stores tend to manipulate your undertones and give you a shade that might be too light or dark for you.
MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Foundation, P2830, SM Mega Fashion Hall
L'OREAL True Match Foundation, P500, SM Beauty
MAC Face and Body Foundation, P1900, Rustan’s
Hide those dark circles and keep them at bay while making sure the wrong product doesn't crease or cake under your eyes throughout the day. When you’re in a hurry or your skin doesn't need that much coverage, a great concealer can be enough to cover a few blemishes and then you’re good to go!
MAYBELLINE Age Rewind Concealer, P399, BeautyMNL
NARS Creamy Concealer, P1750, Rustan’s
TARTE Shape Tape Concealer, P1950, The Makeup Store
Brows are arguably your most important features since they frame your face! Using a brow pomade or gel is ideal for easily sculpting those arches and keeping them in place. When choosing your brow shade, the general rule is this: If your hair color is dark, opt for one to two shades lighter. If it's normally light, then go for a shade darker.
THE FACE SHOP Designing Eyebrow Pencil, P225, SM Mega Fashion Hall
MAC Pro Longwear Brow Set, P1150, Rustan's
K-PALETTE Lasting Eyebrow Mascara, P720, Beauty Bar
Eyeliner and mascara
Make those peepers pop! From pencils to felt tip liners that won’t tug on your skin, easily use these to line your eyes while giving those thick, luscious lashes a faux falsies effect.
L’OREAL Lash Paradise, P499, SM Beauty
MARC JACOBS O!Mega Volumizing Mascara, P1340, Sephora.ph
MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Smoky Lash Waterproof Mascara, P1760, Sephora.ph
KAT VON D Beauty Tattoo Liner, P1233, Sephora.ph
K-PALETTE Eyeliner, P845, Beauty Bar
MAYBELLINE Power Black Liner, P349, SM Beauty
Contour and highlight
All-out sculpting your face like a Kardashian isn't necessary, but a few tricks and tips from them won’t hurt! These tried and tested products will chisel out those cheekbones and highlight your best features.
BENEFIT Hoola Bronzer, P1060, Rustan’s
HAPPY SKIN Glam Squad, P649, Greenbelt 5
FENTY BEAUTY Sun Lil’ Duo Mini Bronzer Set, P1600, Sephora.ph
From liquid blushes to creamy formulas and powder variants, there’s always something for everyone. It can easily be applied with your fingers; or, diffuse it with a sponge or brush giving you that perfect flush.
NARS Deep Throat, P1800, Rustan's
NUDESTIX Nudies in Sunkissed, P1980, Sephora.ph
BENEFIT Blush Bunch, P1590, Freyja, Glorietta 2
Hoard the classics! You should have a perfect nude for everyday, a flattering shade of pink, and a signature red in your kit. Hundred of shades and formulas to choose from, so its quite impossible not to find one!
MAC Lipstick in Diva, P1100, Rustan's
L'OREAL Color Riche Lipstick in Maple Mocha, P350, Watson’s
CHARLOTTE TILBURY Matte Revolution, P1620, Calyxta.com
A neutral eye palette that can easily go from day to night is a definite must have. You can’t go wrong with neutrals as they work for all skin tones and can easily be buildable for a smokey eye or dressed down for an everyday look.
KAT VON D Shade + Light Eye Palette, P2812, Sephora.ph
ANASTASIA BEVERLY HILLS Soft Glam Eye Shadow, P2930, Sephora.ph
MAX FACTOR Nude Palette, P830, SM Beauty
Sponges and tools
Stick with the basics. Sponges are best used for cream or liquid products while brushes are best with powder! Although having a complete set would be great, it's ideal to go for what you’d normally reach for—and preferrably in sizes that are travel-friendly, too!
BEAUTY BLENDER Sponge, P1156, Watsons
REAL TECHNIQUES Sponge, P600, SM Beauty
ZOEVA Classic Face Set, P3769, Sephora.ph
SHU UEMURA Eyelash Curler, P1300, Sephora.ph