I've wanted to do this post for a while and I've finally gotten around to doing it. If you're new to makeup, want to venture out into the luxury lines of makeup, or just simply have a hard time deciding on which products to try, hopefully this post will help shed some light on a few things.
First, I want to start by saying that I used to work behind a makeup counter and know that a lot of people are intimidated when they see rows and rows of products they haven't the slightest idea about. I know when venturing into an unfamiliar makeup line/brand it can be daunting and many times frustrating because you aren't sure which products are right for you and your skin type.
I will list some key points to keep in mind before, during, and after shopping for makeup at a department store.
1. What are you Looking for?
Go through your makeup drawers and figure out what makeup you want to purchase. Throw away old makeup you've had for a little too long and reassess the makeup you have. Look over the products that you really like and think about why you really like them. Are they long lasting, give your skin a glowing sheen, convenient to use, or suit your skin tone the best? Keep these things in mind when you begin your makeup shopping.
2. Know your Skin Type.
It is extremely important to know what type of skin you have and what your skin needs are. Are you excessively oily, extremely dry, have combo skin, or maybe just oily around the T-Zone area? You need to know how your skin behaves on a day-to-day basis so you have a better idea as to what to look for while you're shopping. Also keep in mind the time of year it is. Typically, we get oilier during the hotter seasons and drier during the cooler months. This means you may need to look for a foundation that may be targeted towards shine control or possibly one that is more moisturizing on the skin. You may also need to add a primer or moisturizer to your daily routine if you don't use one already.
3. Create a Budget.
When going shopping for high-end products, expect to pay the high-end price tag. Don't have unrealistic ideas of what things "should cost." Remember, these are high-end LUXURY items a.k.a. things you can't pick up at Walgreens or Walmart. Expect to pay at least $30-$60+ for a single foundation, or $10- $40 for a single eyeshadow. Come up with a realistic budget and stick to it. It may be a good idea to leave the credit cards at home and just carry cash, that way you don't go over your budget.
Tip: Make a shopping list. After determining the items you want, write them down (or type the list in your phone) so you don't forget or get side-tracked when shopping.
4. Do your Research.
Now that you have an idea as to what makeup you want to buy, I suggest doing a little research. There are thousands of reviews of products all over the internet- use them to your advantage. My "Go To" places for researching makeup products are Youtube, MakeupAlley, Sephora (depending on the brand), Google, other beauty blogs, or the makeup brand's website. You can find millions of opinions of certain brands and items.
Tip: Keep in mind that everyone has a different opinion. What may work for someone else may not work for you, or vice versa. The only way to truly know is to try out the product for yourself. (More on that later…)
5. Create a Plan.
After you've written down your list of items and done a little research, now figure out your plan of action. Figure out what stores sell the items you want. Then, decide where you would like to shop. Many times places like Sephora, Ulta, Macy's, Dillard's, or similar stores have an overwhelming amount of makeup and a ton of different brands to choose from. Don't be intimidated. This is what you've prepared for. When shopping, be confident and don't let the beauty consultants intimidate you or pressure you into buying things you hadn't planned on buying. It would also be good to go shopping by yourself. Sometimes our peer pressuring friends can get us side tracked and we may lose our focus or spend more money than we had intended. :) Remember what you came for and stick to your plan.
6. Look Around and Ask Questions.
When you get to where you're going, I would suggest looking around first and then asking the beauty consultant questions about the few products you had on your list to see what they say. Many times they have a little more insight about products and can give you more detail about what the products are really like. Also, use the testers they have out on display so you can play with the product to see how it looks and feels on your skin. A few things to keep in mind of the products are the texture, finish, and color.
7. Sample and Buy.
If you are on the fence with some of the items ask for a sample to try. They should be more than willing to provide you with a sample if possible. Keep in mind that sometimes you won't be able to take home certain items to sample such as mascara. If you know you have sensitive skin definitely ask for samples. Also ask about their return policy. There's nothing worse than spending hundreds of dollars on products that aren't right for your skin and not being able to return them. Then, after you've had all your questions answered and feel comfortable, make the move. Grab the items you want and go check out.
And there you have it. I know it may seem like a lot at first, but it's really not when you get into the habit of following the steps every time. And really, when you learn what works with your skin and learn what products typically work for you, you'll be able to cut to the chase and skip half of these steps. I really hope this helped some of you. I know when some people are venturing into the world of luxury makeup it can be pretty overwhelming. Trust me, I've been there.
Have fun makeup shopping! You got it girl!
Do you have any tips to share while your shopping for makeup? I'd love to hear them!
Disclaimer: I will not be held responsible for any makeup shopping addictions started by using these steps. :P