8 Things I Wish I Knew When I Was Just Starting My Makeup Hobby

It’s been almost two years since I started collecting makeup and studying its application. It was a fun journey but there were a lot of mistakes that I wish I didn’t make - money wasted on products that didn’t work, horrible foundation mishaps, stuff like that. If I can go back two years and give myself makeup advice, this is what I would say.

1. Prioritize good skin. No matter how awesome your Shieseido or Chanel foundation is, bad skin still looks bad. The makeup will not sit well on your face and it will feel uncomfortable. Sure, it can make your skin look better than it actually is, but if your skin is bad in the first place, the improvement will not be significant at all. Hunt for the best skincare system that works for you before hunting for makeup.

2. Invest in good foundation that matches your skin perfectly. “Good” is subjective of course, and I’m still looking for the best, but there are good foundations that can be bought for cheap or steep, depending on your budget. Look for a product that lasts at least 6 hours before blotting, have great oil control, and a natural finish. Seriously, make a checklist. As for finding the perfect shade, swatch the foundation on the side of your jaw. If it disappears, that’s what you’re looking for. Don’t worry too much if the foundation will darken on you in a few hours; a finishing powder can easily fix that.

3. Eyebrows are important. I keep saying it here, and I’ll say it again: eyebrows frame your face, thus enhancing its natural shape. They also bring out your eyes. Always keep them groomed and apply eyebrow powder to improve their shape.

4. Don’t forget the lip balm! Chapped lips are a sight for sore eyes.

5. Don’t buy makeup mindlessly. Don’t get something just because it’s cheap, or because everyone has it, or because the packaging is nice. If you have a bottomless pocket, sure, knock yourself out, but buying products and not fully maximizing them is very senseless. Likewise, don’t build a makeup collection by buying cheap, drugstore makeup and then discarding them for nicer, more expensive makeup. Why? Because you’ll be wasting money you should have just saved for the good stuff. There are products that are so great that they’ve become cult favorites, icons in the makeup world in their own right. You want to get these first and develop your own standards for future purchases. More on this later.

6. Rape makeup testers. Don’t be shy, help yourself. That’s what they’re there for! Swatch the product first on your skin so you can see their effect. More often than not, makeup looks a lot different applied than when they were in a container. It’s different for everyone since skin color and tone affects how the color will look on you.

 7. Research the product online if you’re unsure about something. Similarly, follow beauty blogs/websites for makeup news, reviews, and tutorials. If you don’t know which yet, Makeup and Beauty Blog and Temptalia are two of the best beauty blogs in the history of forever! Check out my side bar for other great blogs here in the Philippines. They have a lot of informative posts on the Philippine beauty scene.

8. This is probably the best advice I can give you: instead of buying cheap makeup and then eventually buying better, more expensive ones because your standards have improved - why not go about it the other way? Buy the best makeup first and then work your way down. That way, you have a developed sense of quality, meaning you know what to expect from your makeup instead of just guessing what it should or shouldn’t do. Here’s an analogy: you thought dial-up internet was ok, it wasn’t fast, but it’s reasonable for the cost. Then you upgraded to DSL. It’s more expensive, but it’s more convenient and time-saving! In fact it’s so good, you’ll never go back to dial-up EVER. Like that.


Well, I will elaborate on #8 more in the very near future since this is a subject close to my heart. In the meantime, I hope you found these tips helpful! I’ll probably be adding more along the way as I improve my makeup skills and collection. If you’ve got any tips, please feel free to share them in the comments section.