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Fresh-faced makeup at home, even when you don't really feel your best

Now for something frivolous and fun, here's something I haven't done in a long while: a makeup tutorial! Oddly enough, since being in quarantine, I've gotten really into doing my makeup every day. It's not that I wasn't wearing makeup before everything closed down (I still wore it to work), but I was pretty minimalist and hurried about it. Working from home, I have a little bit more time to just sit down at my makeup table and take time for myself--it's more an act of self-care than an act of beautification for anyone else, if that makes sense. And it's not about looking glam and flawless, but just about looking a little more awake, refreshed, and alive. I've often felt like, on the days that I feel the worst (physically or emotionally), when I LEAST feel like putting on makeup, those are the days when makeup can help me the most, in terms of a pick-me-up. And I definitely haven't been feeling great lately, so I am grateful for this little ritual to help start my day on some sort of positive note, every day.

So here's pretty much my go-to makeup look these days:

As you can see, I'm not trying to look airbrushed and contoured and perfect, as if I were going out. (Because where am I going, really?) The point of this, again, is to just look a little brighter, a little more awake, a little more perky. A little more inner glow, as opposed to shimmery. (Full disclosure: I have help on the "glowy" part by being in my 3rd trimester, so... YMMV *shrugs*)

This is only sort of a tutorial: ironically, the literal next day after I placed an order from Fenty Beauty, their Youtube channel posted this tutorial using ALMOST EXACTLY the products I had bought. (I felt so validated! Thanks, Fenty!) But even before I received my order, I was pretty much doing the same sort of look anyway. I'll go over the Fenty version of this look first, and then discuss how to achieve the same sort of thing with some cheaper (but equally awesome) products. 

Fenty version (which is almost the same as the video I linked):
  1. On a makeup palette, I mixed a pump (maybe a pump and a half) of the Pro Filt'r Instant Retouch Primer and a pump of the Hydrating Foundation (I wear shade 210) and applied it with my ELF Ultimate Blending Brush (linked because it's well worth the $6!!) I chose not to apply any concealer or setting powder, but you can if you want to.
  2. I used my Real Techniques Instapop Cheek Brush to apply Fenty Cream Bronzer in Macchiato to the perimeter of my face. 
  3. I used my fingers to apply Fenty Cream Blush in Cool Berry to the apples of my cheeks, and blended it out using my EcoTools Precision Blush Brush.
  4. On my eyes, I'm wearing Fenty's Hu$tla Baby Killawatt Highlighter as eyeshadow, and a coat of Thrive Causemetics Liquid Lash Extensions Mascara in black.
  5. On my lips, I'm wearing Fenty's Gloss Bomb lipgloss in Fenty Glow. Okay, well, I was earlier in the day--in this actual picture, I'm wearing Honest Beauty's Tinted Lip Balm in Fruit Punch, because it was the end of the day, and at some point, I switch over to lip balm.
That's it! Just a few simple steps can make such a huge impact on how I'm feeling about myself and my day!

If you wanted to simplify it even further and not have to use expensive products, here's what I would recommend:
  • At the very, very simplest, if you wanted to do something like this but are new to makeup or you don't care as much or you need something SUPER fast, I would recommend: tinted moisturizer, blush, and mascara. The tinted moisturizer will lightly even out your complexion (and help hydrate your skin, which is important!), and the blush and mascara will add a little color to wake up your look a little bit. You'd be amazed at how much can be accomplished by so little.
  • All the brushes I listed above can be found at Target, Fred Meyer, the drugstore section of Ulta, etc., but all the products (except for the Honest Beauty lip balm, which you can find at Target) are high-end. So, here are some things from the drugstore that I really like in place of them:
    • For face: This tinted moisturizer from Neutrogena isn't bad, though it's pretty light on coverage. I really like this one from W3LL PEOPLE, but if you're going to spend that much, you might as well spend $5 more on Fenty, but you don't really need a primer with the other one, so, up to you! Also, I've swatched this one from ColourPop several times and really liked how it felt, but haven't had a chance to truly test it out.
    • For blush and bronzer: I super, super love Physicians Formula's Murumuru Butter Blush and Bronzer. They are suuuuuper smooth and easy to apply and blend. And if you happen to find them at your local store when there's a BOGO sale going on, all the better.
    • For eyes, I've pretty much become ride-or-die for that Thrive Causemetics mascara *shrug* Sorry! That hasn't happened in so long. But if you're looking not to spend so much on mascara, another high-end mascara that I really like, Benefit Cosmetics Roller Lash, comes in a mini-size that costs the same as most drugstore mascaras (and how often do we use up a full tube in the recommended three months anyway?) I also really like this mascara from Honest Beauty, though it's a more subtle lash look. For the eyeshadow, the shade I'm wearing is a goldy-peachy metallic color, and lotsssss of brands make a shimmery light neutral eye shadow. If you want something fast and easy (and don't already have one), I really like Maybelline's Color Tattoo cream eyeshadows--try Frontrunner or Socialite.
    • For lips, again, that Honest Beauty tinted lip balm has become a favorite for me. It comes in several colors, in case Fruit Punch is not your jam. Another lip product I think is really cool is ColourPop's Just a Tint lip crayons. They're more intense in color, are pretty comfortable to wear, and have this fruity candy smell that I really like.
Of course, if you are just not a makeup person, then you can continue BEING a not-makeup person :) This post definitely isn't to pressure you into doing things you have no interest in doing. But if beauty products are part of your avenue for self-care, then I hope this helped at least a little. Whatever your beauty preferences, it's all about doing your best and taking care of YOU :)