Ever since I was a little girl and I would help my Grandma put her makeup on and we would use nail polish to paint flowers on our nails, I have had a love for makeup and beauty products. My passion has only continued to grow as has my product collection. I will admit that sometimes I can spend hours getting ready before leaving the house, but there are also times that I can’t or don’t want to take that much time. There are also occasions that I need to pack a smaller makeup bag so it is very useful to have beauty products that serve dual purposes; these can save time, money and space. Here is a list of 15 beauty products that can be used for more than one purpose.
Generally speaking, bronzer is used to warm up the skin with a color that is a shade or two darker than our current tone and also to add more definition to the face with the use of shadowing. Bronzer comes in a variety of shades from more cool-toned brown to warm terracotta and more. These powder bronzers can also very easily be used to add definition to the eye crease instead of having to carry around eyeshadows. You can apply it with your pointer finger or a brush. Using a bronzer as eyeshadow gives a more natural look for everyday wear or it can be used when you need a bit of an eye lift. You can wear it alone or over an eye primer or concealer. I have often used this trick and always love how it looks. It works well for a put-together effortless work look too. A great affordable bronzer that works well on the face and eyes is Rimmel London’s Natural Bronzer. Actually, any bronzer can do the job, just make sure you don’t pick a bronzer that is too orange t if you are very fair skinned.
Blush works very similarly to bronzer but let me break it down for you just in case. Blush comes in a very wide range of shades and finishes, even more than bronzers: pinks, reds, browns and much more. With blush, you can not only create a natural or dramatic flush on your cheeks, but you can also use it as eyeshadow. There are some bright red and pink blush colors that are just not available in eyeshadow shades. So, whether you are going for a specific look or just need a little extra color on your eyes or don’t have eyeshadow around, blush works in a pinch just as well as bronzer. Just be sure to use a light hand when applying so you don’t end up looking clownish. Apply in your crease and blend.
One of my go-to, absolute minimum makeup looks consists of the following: bronzer in the crease of my eye and a pressed powder face highlight on my eyelid and/or highlight on my brow bone and inner corner of my eye. Generally speaking, I would apply highlight at the highest points of my cheekbones to make them stand out and sometimes at the tip and bridge of my nose. Highlighting the brow bone and inner eye corners helps you look more fresh and awake and it’s just as easy to use face highlight as it is eyeshadow. If you don’t have any tools handy don’t be shy to apply with your little finger for precise application.
12. Brow Pencil
Brow pencils are a fantastic and easy to use to fill in sparse eyebrows or to darken them. Brow pencils tend to be available in blonde, taupe, auburn, brown shades and sometimes black. On one occasion, I had only brought my absolute bare minimum makeup items, and, as it always happens when I don’t pack something, of course I ended up needing it; plans came up that called for slightly more intense makeup. Since I didn’t have any eyeliner to darken or smoke around my lash line, I used my brown eyebrow pencil and it definitely did the trick. I of course would have preferred having a black eyeliner or more makeup in general but my bronzer, highlight eyeshadow look worked well with the brow pencil liner. The retractable pencils and the ones you sharpen both work. You can then smudge the line a bit with your finger or a Q-tip.
The original Beautyblender sponge is my favorite. It beats any imitations that I have tried. It is perfectly squishy and bouncy and since it is not too hard it applies products very gently giving a perfect finish. This sponge can be used with almost any product that you can apply to your face. Whenever doing full face makeup and with liquid foundation, as opposed to stick foundation, use the larger round side of the sponge to apply the product. After that, use the more pointy side to apply under eye concealer. This gives a more precise application of the concealer right up into creases around the eyes. It is great not having to carry around a bunch of brushes when you don’t need to because of this multi-purpose sponge instead.
10. Fat Fan Brush
Another tool that I love when I don’t want to bring a lot with me is a very fat and dense fan brush like the Morphe E33. (Although the one I actually have and love is from the previous Morphe Elite line). The reason that I love this brush is that it is so fat that I can use one side for applying bronzer to warm up and lightly contour my face. Then I can flip the brush around and use the other side to highlight the tops of my cheekbones. I can also apply blush with the top or middle of the brush without needing to clean the brush when switching products. If you have all your tools with you, then just use this brush with one of the previously mentioned powders. But if you need a brush works well for all three then grab a fat fan brush.
9. Setting Spray
Makeup setting spray has got to be the best invention ever for making makeup last. I can remember what my makeup used to look like at the end of the day before I started using it. It’s amazing. Once you have finished applying all your makeup, you spray it all over your face with your eyes closed and let it dry. Setting spray melds all your makeup together and takes away the powdery look. Depending on which spray you use these setting sprays can also do many other things. There are sprays that not only make your makeup last longer but also help hydrate your skin or fight oily buildup. Since makeup setting sprays have ingredients that help hold your makeup in place they are a bit sticky when still damp. I discovered they can also work well as a hairspray if needed. I use it as hairspray every time I set my makeup. Since I have baby hairs that stick up a bit where I part my hair, I am able to comb them down with number eight on this list, after I set my makeup which setting spray which dampens my hair along my hairline. Of course, I don’t recommend setting your face with hairspray but if you need to smooth out a bit of frizz and all you have is your makeup setting spray, don’t be shy to use it.
A spoolie is basically an eyelash or eyebrow comb. There are tons of different kinds from disposables to reusable ones. You can comb through your brows with a spoolie to groom them and put them in place. It can also be used to blend out eyebrow filling product to make it look more natural and hair-like. A spoolie can also be used to apply brow gel or mascara. It is also great for combing down your baby hairs on your hairline. It works better than any other hair brush or comb; the way the bristles are intertwined helps smooth down the hairs and keep them in place.
7. Hand Cream
Everyone knows what hand cream is for: to moisturize your skin of course. But I also learned this next piece of information from my incredible hair stylist. Over the years, I have eliminated most unnecessary or unhealthy products from my home. Now, I basically don’t use hair styling products when I do my hair anymore. When I go to the salon it’s a different story; I let them do their thing. My hair stylist uses a product to weigh down my hair and reduce static and fly-aways since I have quite fine hair. He then told me that before products like this were made, stylists used to use hand cream in the same way. So, basically if your hair won’t stay down and could use some more weight around the ends you can rub a little hand cream in your do.
At this point, every single person who knows or is obsessed with makeup, definitely knows what MAC Prep + Prime Fix+ is. Fix+ is sprayed on your face before applying makeup to help your makeup stay on and last longer. It also adds little extra hydration for the skin. You can use Fix+ also to set your makeup by spraying it finely all over your face after application is complete. Another great use for Fix+ is it helps intensify eyeshadows. With metallic eyeshadow colors, it amplifies the metallic aspect of the shadow and gives your eyes a really pretty sheen. Just hold your makeup brush several inches away from the sprayer and spritz the bristles until sufficiently wet. Then put the wet brush in the eye product of choice and apply where desired. This will also help keep the shadow on longer. Be careful not to let the shadow transfer to your upper lid before it has had a chance to dry fully.
5. Clear Mascara
Mascara is probably the most basic makeup product that everyone knows. It enhances your eyelashes by giving them more color making them more visible. Some mascaras also lengthen, volumize or curl your eyelashes too. Clear mascara on the other hand would really only be used if you want to tame your lashes or get them to stand up more. It can also be used as a clear brow gel. Using a clear mascara in your brows will help set them in place so you don’t have to worry about those hairs falling all over the place and looking messy.
4. Makeup Remover
Makeup removers come in a variety of formats: wipes, oils and waters. Use them to clean the makeup off your skin before you wash your face thoroughly and apply your night skincare products. Another way you can use makeup remover, (although for this it’s better to choose one that doesn’t have oil in it), is to clean your eyeshadow into a wing shape, getting you a line that will help guide you in applying winged eyeliner. First apply your eyeshadow as usual and don’t worry about being as messy as possible in the outer edge of your eye because this can give a nice gradient effect. Next, take a makeup wipe or a drop of remover on a cotton and run it along your outer eye to make a line where you will eventually apply your winged liner. Voila, there is your guide, or you can skip the liner and just keep the simulated eyeshadow wing.
3. Tarte Shape Tape
Tarte Shape Tape is a very popular concealer because it gives very full coverage without looking heavy and creases much less than most other concealers. It is only available at Ulta and on the Tarte website. Whenever I am doing a full face makeup, I always use the Shape Tape to conceal my under eyes but here is another use that they also advertise. This concealer is also meant to use as a cream contour. Choose a color that is one or two shades darker than your skin color and apply to the areas you’d like shading or definition then blend it with a beauty sponge or brush. Not only is it contouring but it is adding coverage if you have skin imperfections in those areas. The same can be done to highlight but with a shade or two lighter than your skin. Use this over foundation for a full faced look.
2. Translucent Powder
Translucent powder is all the rage as the perfect way to set your under eye concealer or foundation before applying other powder products. This will help keep your cream products from sliding when you are applying bronzer and others. It also often helps blur fine lines and sometimes fight oil and shine from breaking through. Since these powders often absorb oil, you can use them in your hair like you would a dry shampoo if you are really stuck. When you just don’t have time to wash and dry your hair but need a hair pick me up, just apply a bit in your roots and let it sit a few minutes then brush it out thoroughly. If you have blond hair it is easier to use this trick. With darker hair, you may want to wipe your hair after with a slightly damp cloth or tissue or use a hair dryer to remove any excess powder. Otherwise you may end up looking like you have gray hair instead of just oily hair. This isn’t a trick you’ll want to use every day but in a pinch it can save you time and grief.
Drunk Elephant Skincare is a fantastic skincare line with a great philosophy. Their product, B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Gel, adds hydration and vitamins into your skin. Mix it with Drunk Elephant Serums to make a nutritious cocktail for your skin. Another really cool way to use it is to sheer out a fuller coverage foundation. I just tried this trick recently and it worked fantastically. In summer, instead of buying a new foundation that has a lighter feel and gives lighter coverage, just take a couple pumps of your foundation and a pump or two of B-Hydra and mix them together before applying on your face. Not only will you have two foundations in one but you will get all the added benefits and hydration of the B-Hydra gel. I wore my makeup for hours when I tried this trick and my foundation lasted as it always does; it didn’t break up any sooner and it looked great. I mixed it with my Make Up For Ever Ultra HD liquid foundation.