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Beauty Newbie Guide to Essential Makeup Products in 2023

beginner makeup kit

by Holly James
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When I began to learn about makeup as many beginners I strugled to use the beauty tools, did not know what to use for my skin, which Cleanser I should choose and before all how I can makeup part of my daily routine.

I bought a makeup kit and after attending many courses, it worked!

So, If you

Don’t know which Neutral shampoo or Cleanser to buy?

Don’t know how to use the basic makeup kit?

Don’t know how to treat dark circles under your eyes?

Don’t know how to create skin undertones?

Don’t know how to determine your Undertone & Overtone?

Here is a compiled list for all the Beauty Newbies out there! It covers almost every general makeup product along with a few basic beauty tools.

NARS Blush
NARS Blush opened
NARS Blush opened

1- The perfect Blush for beauty newbies

This blush is very similar to eye shadow, and usually comes in a loose or pressed-powder form, but there are also blush sticks, and cream blushes which are creamier to the touch and more moisture based. Whatever it’s form; you apply it to your cheeks to draw attention to your cheekbones and give your face a youthful color. Pinks, oranges and “rouges” are the most common colors.

What I like about NARS Blush? – Pros

I was surprised by this blush! It’s quite expensive and I’ve been thinking about the pros and cons of such an expensive product that I’ve never tried before! Well, to be honest I tried some. The Blush reviews were very positive, so I decided to take the risk. I’m so happy I did it! It takes the least amount of powder to give me an excellent shine on my cheeks. It may have been expensive, but it will last forever!

The sensation of the blush is very soft and silky, and one application lasted beautifully all day. It has a compact size with mirror. It doesn’t come with a brush, but I’m sure I’m fine with it. I have a very expensive set of quality brushes that I take care of and should last a lifetime. So I prefer to use a quality brush with a high quality Blush!

What I don’t like about NARS Blush? – Cons

It’s quite pricy compared to other Blushes in the market. The fact that it does not come with a brush was a bit annoying. However, I still love this product.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link and help me earn commission by clicking here

Glo Skin Beauty Bronzer
Glo Skin Beauty Bronzer

2- My Favorite Bronzer 

Bronzer is similar to blush, except the color category is much more in the brown/bronze shade as it’s supposed to give you a faux-tan look. It can be applied all over the face or in specific areas to give a “sun-kissed” look. This is a must-have.

What I like about Glo Skin Beauty Bronzer? – Pros

It’s the Favorite bronzer of all brands due to

  1. Quality of product (last throughout the day)
  2. Color is on point (not tangerine orange)
  3. It doesn’t break easily (I’ve dropped it many times, taken it hiking/camping, and had no problems).
  4. The cost is excellent!!!
  5. It’s a cruelty-free product

What I don’t like about NARS Blush? – Cons

Sometime the container chips black all over the place once opened. However, I could handle it by opening it carefully.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link and help me earn commission by clicking here

 Docolor Makeup Brushes
Docolor Makeup Brushes

3- Best Makeup Brushes for bignners

No, this is not for your hair, hee hee.

When talking about makeup, a makeup brush usually is made of hair (natural or faux) to make it easier to apply your makeup. There are makeup brushes for every task- even for putting on foundation, lipstick and eyeliner.

Now that you know what makeup brushes are, you need to know they need to be washed- and often! You can buy special sprays and soaps for washing your cosmetic brushes, but a little secret (shh, don’t tell) is to use a mild shampoo on your brushes.

What I like about Docolor Makeup Brushes? – Pros

I love these brushes. They are so incredibly soft and blend amazingly. My eyeshadow looks way better. Hooded eyes used to upset me so much, and good brushes make a difference. I am already thinking about buying another set. I wash them after every use and don’t see any shedding so far.

What I don’t like in Docolor Makeup Brushes? – Cons

The smell is extremely strong and after a couple of months use some brush heads have detached from the holder, others have shedded or the bristle holders became weak and not able to hold brushes together. 

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

NARS Concealer
NARS Concealer

4- Concealer

Since the word “conceal” is in concealer, I bet you can guess that it’s used to conceal things on your face (pimples, scars, under-eye bags). Most commonly, concealer comes in either a stick form (it looks a lot like lipstick), or in liquid form. There are also cream concealers which are usually in a mini jar and also powder concealers (such as in mineral makeup). Often concealer will be a shade similar to your foundation, but there are also corrective concealers (they are in different colors, like green and purple to counteract colors you might have in your skin– like redness around a pimple).

What I like about NARS Concealer? – Pros

I really like this concealer, but I only use it when I need to look especially put together. I use it for dark under-eye circles, and it covers well and lasts all day. I splurged on it because of all the hype. I combine it with the Maybelline instant rewind concealer, which works just as well but doesn’t have the longevity of this one. It should be an everyday use for you if you don’t care about the price.

What I don’t like in NARS Concealers? – Cons

This is a mini-sized concealer at the price of the average size. However, I believe that this quality deserves every penny.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Pretty Vulgar Eye Primer
Pretty Vulgar Eye Primer

5- Eye primer

This is a product that is applied to the eyelid so that your eye shadow doesn’t crease or fade away quickly. It basically “primes” your eyelid for eye shadow. Eye primers are excellent if you want your eye shadow to last for hours upon hours and hold its color.

Pretty Vulgar Eye Primer? – Pros

first of all it’s Cruelty-Free and this is very important to me. I’ve gone through many eyeshadow primers, but this is by far my favorite. Everything that I put on my eyes stays on for days and days. As I’m sitting here, my eyes feel like a desert. They are so dry and Matte and adhesive for my makeup.

Pretty Vulgar Eye Primer – Cons

My only issues with the primer is that my eye makeup needs a refresh midday. My makeup has little adhesion.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Urban Decay Naked3 Eyeshadow Palette
Urban Decay Naked3 Eyeshadow Palette

6- Eye Shadow

There are many different forms of eye shadow, such as cream eye shadow, powder eye shadow and loose eyes shadow. As its name indicates, eye shadow creates a shadow above the eye to change your appearance. Eye shadow comes in a plethora of colors that can make your natural eye color “pop”, make you look sexy, fun, or enhance your natural look. I personally love eye shadow because the options are limitless!

Urban Decay Naked3 Eyeshadow Palette – Pros

A nice palette for everyday use and night outs/special occasions. The pigmentation is wonderful. You only need a small amount for your look, which means it lasts much longer than cheaper palettes and blends very well.

Urban Decay Naked3 Eyeshadow Palette – Cons

The only negative thing I would say about this is that there are quite a few repercussions. Therefore, I advise you to make sure you remove the excess from your brush. Do your eye makeup before the rest of your face or use a good amount of loose translucent powder under your eyes like “cheeks” to catch the consequences and then brush it off afterwards. It’s not a big deal though, so I’d recommend it, especially for people who are new to makeup and aren’t comfortable wearing bright colors.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Anastasia Beverly Hills - Tinted Brow Gel
Anastasia Beverly Hills – Tinted Brow Gel

7- Eyebrow pencil 

An eyebrow pencil can do amazing things for a woman who doesn’t have perfectly shaped brows, or who has barely-there eyebrows, or any woman for that matter, who wants to draw attention to her eyes… and everyone does don’t they? There are other ways to “fill-in” your eyebrows (such as an eyebrow powder or you can use an eyeshadow that is close to your brow color), but the most common way is to use an eyebrow pencil.

Anastasia Beverly Hills – Tinted Brow Gel – Pros

No one else makes this eyebrow product, even if they think they do. It’s not mascara and most use pens that don’t cover the hair. I have been using this for over 15 years. It’s different from mascara and the granite color I use is perfect for brown/gray/black eyebrows.

Anastasia Beverly Hills – Tinted Brow Gel – Cons

The brush of this product is short on one side, long on the other. It wasn’t like that couple of years back. Something has changed!

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Eyelash curler 
Eyelash curler 

8- Eyelash curler 

This is more classified as a “tool”, but for many women this is a staple makeup-bag item. It is a strange looking gadget that basically crimps, rather than curls, your eyelashes. This helps to open the eye up, by “curling” the eyelashes upward.

Kaasage Black Professional Lash Curler – Pros

It gives a perfect curl definition to the eyelashes. It doesn’t feel harsh and doesn’t hurt my skin like other curlers I’ve used. I love how it looks too. The matte color is charming Brings a pretty bag and 5 replacement pads, so you won’t have to buy replacements for a while! Overall great affordable eyelash curler.

Kaasage Black Professional Lash Curler – Cons

This eyelash curler is well-made and sturdy. But one of my friend find it pinches her skin when she gets right next to the base of her eyelash, and she wishes it had more curves to fit the shape of her eye. Maybe it’s different for you! as it’s for me and thousands of ladies who reviewed it.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner
Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner

9- Eyeliner 

As its name indicates, eyeliner is used to line your rim of your eyes. Eyeliner typically is found in pencil form but can also come in gel form and liquid form (think Amy Winehouse). You can also line your eyes with eye shadow and an eyeliner brush. Eyeliner can be an extremely versatile makeup product, and often comes in as many colors as the rainbow…and more.

Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner – Pros

It gives a perfect curl definition to the eyelashes. It doesn’t feel harsh and I am a lover of green beauty and have tried a LOT of “non-toxic” eyeliners. I usually avoid big brands like Honest because their standards aren’t always up to date, but I was pleasantly surprised by the list of ingredients.

Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner – Cons

some of my friends don’t like this product because of the wand design, bristle length, consistency of the mascara, and discomfort with use. I personally don’t have any of these issues!

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Almay Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover
Almay Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover

10- Eye Makeup Remover 

This isn’t really a cosmetic, but it is essential for those who wear eye-makeup. It is a special kind of product that is used only for removing the makeup from your eyes, which is a very sensitive area and the skin is soft and delicate… it’s gentle enough for your eyes and it does a better job than just plain ol’ soap and water does.

Almay Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover – Pros

I have always liked this product that I have used exclusively for about 10 years. I’ve always chosen Almay as my eye makeup remover, but this one is my favorite. It is convenient to use

Almay Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover – Cons

It ruined my friend contact lenses. so becareful while using it if you put contact lenses.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

GIORGIO ARMANI Luminous Silk Foundation
GIORGIO ARMANI Luminous Silk Foundation

11- Foundation 

This is one of those cosmetics that almost every woman uses. Foundation is a base that you apply to your face to smooth it out, and give it a really fresh and balanced look. It helps mask discoloration, scars and even pimples. Foundation comes in a lot of different forms and formulas. There are liquid foundations, loose powder foundations (such as mineral makeup), cream foundations, stick foundations, and tinted moisturizer (which are sort of classified as a foundation for women who have almost perfect skin and don’t need a lot of coverage). Also there are foundations for dry skin, oily skin, acne-prone skin, full-coverage foundation, light-coverage foundation etc. The list really does go on. This is one of the most difficult products for women to find because it can be very challenging to find a color and formula that matches and feels right for their particular skin.

GIORGIO ARMANI Luminous Silk Foundation – Pros

I think this line from the Armani Foundation is the best. Slightly hydrated but not greasy. Medium opacity as well. You may need some additional colors. It has a nice shine, but it still looks natural. Do not sink into lines and wrinkles and accentuate them. But if you need a night of intense makeup, it’s probably not enough for you.

GIORGIO ARMANI Luminous Silk Foundation – Cons

I couldn’t find any disadvantages for this product excpet that it’s pricy. but you always have to pay more for such quality product.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Dermablend Loose Setting Powder
Dermablend Loose Setting Powder

12- Loose powder 

Loose powder usually refers to a face powder that is usually applied with a puff or a brush. Often people use loose powder to “set” their makeup- meaning that it seals your foundation in place- or they use it to matte their face so it doesn’t look oily. Often this type of powder is called “translucent powder”. This is not to be confused with loose makeup like Bare Minerals or other mineral makeup. It doesn’t typically provide coverage, or color.

Dermablend Loose Setting Powder – Pros

I have combination skin that becomes very oily throughout the day, especially when I use foundation. I always trust that the setting powder will stay matte and even, and I have ordered the white shade of this powder. I had previously used Bobbi Brown white setting powder and Laura Mercier. All I can say that Dermablend loose setting powder is much better and much cheaper.

Dermablend Loose Setting Powder – Cons

For me I have no negative comments towards this product. However, Some people think it’s expensive.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara
Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

13- Mascara

Mascara is an all-time beauty must-have! Mascara comes in a tube and is applied with a “wand” type applicator with a small round brush on the end of it. When applying it, you brush the mascara on your eyelashes to make them appear bolder, more colorful, longer, or fuller. The most common colors of mascara is black, but brown and blue-black are also popular colors. You can also buy it fun colors like pink, blue, green, purple, red, gold, and silver. You can also buy mascara that is waterproof, if you live in a rainy place, sweat a lot, or like to swim.

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara – Pros

Great product. It makes my eyelashes look beautiful.

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara – Cons

My only complaint is that it takes some time to dry. I have long eyelashes, and the product continuously gets on my face. It’s irritating to have to wipe the stains off the mascara. It must be worth it because I wear it every day and love the way I look.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Rolio - Mica Powder
Rolio – Mica Powder

14- Mica

It is a natural mineral powder which is normally the main ingredient in mineral based makeup, but also in pressed eyeshadows and other color cosmetics. It is a crystal that is ground up into a fine powder which then color can be added to. It is very silky and non-toxic.

Rolio – Mica Powder – Pros

These colors are very attractive to the eye. They have very nice bright colors. A must-have and you get a lot too.

Rolio – Mica Powder – Cons


You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Julep Cosmetic Makeup Pencil Sharpener
Julep Cosmetic Makeup Pencil Sharpener

15- Pencil sharpener 

This is very similar to the one you use/used in school, except it’s not for your Crayola’s (lol!). Since eyeliners and lip liners are common makeup products, you need to sharpen them when they wear down. If you are in a pinch you can use a regular pencil sharpener, but you should use a sharpener that is designed for your makeup pencils the rest of the time!

Julep Cosmetic Makeup Pencil Sharpener – Pros

After reading a few reviews, I bought this sharpener, and it sharpened the pencil as quickly as butter. It was easy to clean and contained the shavings without a mess. I was worried because it felt flimsy, but it was worth it.

Julep Cosmetic Makeup Pencil Sharpener – Cons

I have no bad experience with it so far.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Illuminating Makeup Base Primer for Face
Illuminating Makeup Base Primer for Face

16- Primer (Face) 

This is just like an eye-primer except it is meant to be used before you apply foundation of any kind, so that the foundation doesn’t wear off quickly, and stays in place for hours. It is usually clear and applied all over the face before concealer or anything else.

Illuminating Makeup Base Primer for Face – Pros

It’s Cruelty-Free. I have been using this primer for over a month, and the results have been positive. I use it at 5:00 AM and can go until around noon (12:30 PM). Of course, I use a couple of oil-drying leaves to improve my T-zone. Also, I haven’t experienced any breakouts or skin irritation.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Artist's Choice Makeup Sponge
Artist’s Choice Makeup Sponge

17- Sponge & Sponge Applicator 

A sponge is most often used for applying liquid foundation. It isn’t rough like your household sponge or bath sponge, but very flexible and soft. Often sponges come in circle pads or triangle wedges. You can buy a variety in your local drugstore for very cheap, however they need to be replaced very frequently to avoid bacteria forming.

Sponge applicators are small wands with a sponge tip on either side. Usually when you buy an eye shadow a sponge applicator comes with it.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Powder Puff Face Triangle
Powder Puff Face Triangle

18- Powder puff 

A powder puff is usually a fluffy pad that is used to apply powder to the face, such as loose powder. It is also sometimes used with a compact (pressed foundation powder).

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

Guru Tweezers for Eyebrows
Guru Tweezers for Eyebrows

19- Tweezers  

This is a beauty tool that helps keep your eyebrow hairs in check. By using tweezers, you can pluck out stray eyebrow hairs. If you’ve ever had a sliver, your mother probably took it out with one of these things.

You can always buy it from amazon affiliate link by clicking here

7-Pack Black Peppermint Lip
7-Pack Black Peppermint Lip
Buxom Full-On Plumping Lip gloss
Buxom Full-On Plumping Lip gloss
Nude Envie Lipstick
Nude Envie Lipstick

20- Lip Makeup Products 

1- Lip balm 

This is used when you have chapped or dry lips. Think of Chapstick. Sometimes it also comes in a jar, like Carmex. Usually it has little or no color and isn’t glittery etc. and sometimes it even has medicinal ingredients. In makeup some professionals suggest putting lip balm on before applying anything else to your lips like lipstick.

2- Lip-gloss 

Lip-gloss is usually more of a gooey liquid that is applied to the lips to give them a shiny look. They usually have some sort of tint, and sometimes have a flavor or glitter added for the users’ pleasure! Lip-gloss can be worn on its own or applied on top of lipstick.

3- Lip liner 

Lip liner comes in pencil form, and the purpose of it is much like eyeliner. It lines your lips to help define them. It can also help keep your lipstick in place and can also be used to make your lips larger, smaller or even a different shape.

4- Lip plumper 

This is a relatively new product compared to most cosmetics. The idea behind this is to “plump” your lips to make them look fuller and sexier. Think Angelina Jolie. Often lip-plumpers come in a gloss and applied directly to the lips. They can irritate some lips as the active ingredient tends to make the lips tingle.

5- Lip primer 

Similar to eye primer, this is used to prime the lips. This helps keep lip liner and lipstick in place, and keep the color strong and lasting for hours.

6- Lip stain 

Any cosmetic that has the word “stain” in it probably means that it’s going to stain you. LOL.

Lip stains are the most common, but there are also blush/cheek stains as well. Usually stains are like a liquid or gel that you apply to the skin and run in (quickly to avoid splotches), because you don’t want to look like you were slapped in the face or something!

7- Lipstick 

Lipstick is one of the most popular and most ancient cosmetic products there is. There are cream lipsticks, matte lipsticks, shimmer lipsticks, glitter lipsticks, long lasting lipsticks etc. Most often lipstick comes in a tube. Nowadays, every color imaginable is available, each to provide a different look for every age, race and style of woman.

What is Contouring ?

Contouring is a technique to define the face. This dramatizes certain areas of the face (like the hollows of your cheeks) to make another area seem more pronounced (like make your cheek bones higher). For example, if you have a double chin, you can apply a bronzer, blush or eyeshadow (try to stick to more matte brownish shades), underneath your chin to give the illusion of a slimmer face.

What does a Fall-out in makeup mean?

Fall-out usually refers to eye shadow. Sometimes when you apply eye shadow on your eyes, bit of color “falls out” of the brush and onto your cheek/ under your eye. Applying your foundation after your eye makeup, or applying a little loose powder under the eyes, and then brushing it off afterward, can fix this common problem.

What is Highlighter?

“Highlighting” in makeup is a common technique. The idea behind highlighting is to enhance where light naturally hits your face. Often in eye makeup adding a light/shimmery shade underneath your eyebrow will make your eyebrows appear higher (this is a highlight). It’s used to add “light” to make something stand-out, or to give the appearance of an “opened-up” area.

What does Matte in makeup mean?

This is a descriptive word that is used a lot in makeup for foundations, blushes and eye shadow. The word matte basically means, no shine, shimmer or glow to it. Think of a when you go to get photos done, there is glossy or matte options. Glossy, obviously means it has a shiny sheen to it, and matte… well, doesn’t. A lot of more natural looks use matte colors, as it tends to look more realistic.

What does Mineral makeup mean?

Mineral makeup is a relatively new concept in makeup. Powdered minerals are combined with colorants (such as mica) to make mineral eye shadows, blushes and foundations. It is extremely popular because of its basic ingredients. Not to mention it’s non-toxic and great for all skin types and colors. Most mineral makeup is loose, not pressed, however that is also becoming an option as well as liquid mineral foundation like Maybelline’s Mineral Powder Liquid Foundation.

What does Palette mean?

Whenever you hear the words “palette” it basically means a tray with a selection of eye shadow, blushes, lipsticks, or a combination. A palette is usually in a thin case, that holds a certain amount of eye shadow etc. (such as the MAC pro palettes). Duo and quad are terms usually referring to a palette, (duo= two eye shadows etc., quad=4). If you’re still unsure, check out some my reviews/tutorials on different makeup palettes.

What does pigment mean?

Pigment always refers to how strong and bold a color is. It doesn’t necessarily mean a color is bright, but if makeup has good pigmentation, you can apply it to your skin and the color is opaque (or close to being opaque). If what you get on your skin is what you see in the container/eyeshadow etc. then the product has good pigmentation.

What does satin in makeup mean?

(Another descriptive word to describe colors in makeup) Satin eye shadows have a light sheen to them, but are not glittery or shiny. They are in between a matte and shimmer.

What does shimmer in makeup mean?

It’s another descriptive word to describe colors in makeup. Shimmer is more of a shiny format that appears reflective when wearing. Think of silk. It doesn’t have obvious chunks of glitter, but rather, they are very, very fine.

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