Once upon a time, I could not imagine emerging into the public eye without makeup. When I was younger, I slathered on liquid foundation in attempt to cover up the dark circles that I imagined into existence under my eyes. I would race through my homework in class so I could spend the last three minutes looking in my compact mirror and reapplying my eyeliner. It was an obsession. It was a safety blanket.
Convinced that I was gross without it, I spent the next ten years or so buying products that were toxic and over-priced. I remember one saleswoman in particular asking me why I was buying Lancôme’s Photogenic Lumessence as a college student. “That’s usually coverage for our older customers,” she insisted. I thought this was odd, as I was dropping about forty dollars on the product, and the saleswoman was implying that it was “too much” for someone my age. It wasn’t until a few years later when I became too lazy to care. I’m not sure exactly how it happened, but it was wonderful. I gradually realized that my naked face wasn’t as ghastly as I thought. And that makeup wasn’t necessary for my everyday emergence into the public eye. I wore it to when I went out (which is never), and I wore it to work, as I have Benjamin-Button-Please-Card-Me-For-a-Rated-R-Movie syndrome. But other than that, it was my bare face that I bared to the world.
I have nothing against makeup. Makeup is fun, and I enjoy wearing it to dress up. I just don’t want to spend money on products that I don’t need, that aren’t healthy for me. The idea that my skin will supposedly age ten years if I sleep in it doesn’t make me want to sing praises of the commercial products that are on the market. So I decided to start making some of my own, which is not only cheaper, but the ingredients are words that you can actually pronounce. Simplifying my beauty routine took getting used to, but I will never go back. What used to be in a big bag loaded with products that I would stuff in my purse now has been reduced to the “essentials” for what suits my personal taste. Everything that I use on a daily basis (minus my big glass container for powder) fits neatly into this little canvas bag. Here are all the products and tools that I use:
- Homemade Activated Charcoal Liquid Eyeliner (Recipe here)
- Homemade Activated Charcoal Mascara (Recipe here)
- Jackie Oates by Lush (for under my eyes)
- Homemade Foundation Powder (Recipe here)
- RMS Un Cover-Up (for blemishes)
- Eyelash curler
- Bare Minerals Marvelous Moxie Lip Color (for special occasions)
- Sephora Pencil (for filling in my brows)
- I use three brushes total: one for powder, one for blush, and one for the application of my liquid eyeliner (not pictured)
I also have a Sephora eyeshadow pallet, and a Benefit blush pallet, both of which will probably last me forever. Transitioning to zero waste doesn’t necessarily mean purging yourself of all commercial products that are still perfectly useful. I use both the eyeshadow and blush for special occasions, and therefore have no intention of throwing them away just for the sake of preaching a minimalist lifestyle. Once I’ve used up all of my store-bought items, I will be finding alternatives to make myself, such as beet powder for blush, and cocoa powder for eye shadow. Until then… this is what works for me, and I’m happy with it.