VIDEO here in my IGTV. Wow – it’s been a few years since I’ve posted my makeup routine! Some things have not changed (it’s still all neutrals, under 10 minutes, and easy enough for makeup novices) but I’ve been slowly switching out former go-to products with more effective new finds and more clean options. There’s many different standards on clean or less toxic beauty, but for the purposes of this post, I’m going to point out the ones that meet Clean at Sephora guidelines.
Sephora’s sale has now ended, but Follain offered me code JEANWANG for 10% off code their site (with just a few brand exclusions). They are an excellent resource for clean beauty and skincare, and have stringent requirements for the products that they carry. There’s several popular brands in their offerings including Indie Lee, RMS Beauty, Saie, Ilia, etc. My picks from their site:
- Non toxic Lemongrass everything soap which we buy on repeat – works wonderfully at sinks or showers without drying out skin, smells great and the refill size is the best value if you have empty soap bottles at home.
- Ultra Hydrating mask which I use overnight every few days
- Zesty morning organic body butter from another small Boston business
- Everybody bar soap lathers up nicely in the shower without drying out skin
- Almost anything Indie Lee I’ve tried (squalane oil, cleanser) has been great, but pricey!
Everyday Makeup Products from my Video
Some of these are admittedly on the pricier side, but they last me a very long time. As you can see in the video, I apply each product fairly lightly and it takes a while for me to even make a dent in most of these!
Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Foundation (Sephora; Nordstrom) in shade #6
FYI, Sephora’s “shade finder” using my old foundations as reference points worked well for me. Foundations ALWAYS have mixed online reviews and this is no exception, but I personally have more dry skin to normal skin and love this. It’s fuller coverage but feels very lightweight, and lasts all day for me if you set it.
Applied using: either small taps with a slightly damp beauty sponge, or, I prefer buffing foundation on in small circles and strokes using a flat top foundation brush as shown in my video (I love the Sigma F80 Kabuki brush; available at Nordstrom or Sigma). Using a brush like this is always much faster for me!
Clean at Sephora: Kosas Creamy + Brightening Concealer (Sephora; Kosas) in shade #5
Read more about the brand’s clean-focused mission and ingredients here. This concealer is super creamy and non-drying indeed, and I’ve been liking it better than the popular NARS option in my opinion (I was shade “custard” in NARS). Most unhappy reviews I read about this mentioned yellow undertones, which works in my favor because I love how it suits my skin tone. The shade I have runs a tad on the lighter side, as #5 is labeled Medium, but it’s comparable to some medium-light concealers I have in other brands.
Tarte Shape Tape (Tarte; Ulta) – use code SECRET20 for 20% off and free ship! I used Kosas in my video but must share this one as well. If speaking purely from a functionality standpoint, Shape Tape is still my favorite under eye concealer for brightening and great coverage. In the summer I use their shade medium sand, and in the winter I use 274 light medium sand which is very close to Kosas in #5.
3. Setting Powder
This has probably become the most important step of my makeup routine. If your concealer isn’t staying all day, if your bronzer or blush is blotchy or is your eyeshadow isn’t blend well, a good setting powder might be all you’re missing. For my quick everyday routine I skip eyeshadow primer, so applying some powder to my eyelids makes a HUGE difference in my eyeshadows applying smoothly and blending well.
Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Finish Pressed Powder (Sephora; Nordstrom) – in shade 2 / Medium. Huge fan of this – it’s finely milled and provides a truly airbrush-like finish over foundation and concealer. I pat this with a powder brush right after applying under eye concealer and use it all over my face and eyelids. This feels silky smooth on my skin and helps powder bronzers, blushes or shadows apply seamlessly on top. I still do use loose powder for certain purposes, but pressed is so much less messy!
Anastasia Brow Powder Duo (Sephora; Nordstrom) – in Ebony. I use this daily yet it still lasts for ages (just got a new one after maybe 2 years?). I use a very light hand with this powder to not end up with starkly colored brows. As seen in my video, I start by defining the bottom edge of my outer brows, then the top edge of my arches, then fill in the area with small brush strokes, working my way towards the center of my forehead and getting lighter. Finish by using the spool end to brush out the powder for a more natural look.
5. Eyeshadow (read Step # 3 first)
Clean at Sephora: Ilia Eyeshadow Palette (Sephora; Dermstore) – in Warm Nude. I’ve been so happy with this, I’ve added several Ilia products to my “try list” as a result. This is talc-free unlike most eyeshadows, and all of the shades are actually wearable and flattering for me. The hues are in a beautiful mix of 3 different finishes (matte, satin, and metallic) that go easily from day to night looks. The palette itself is also slim and compact!
6. Lash Curler
7. Liquid Liner
I’ve been skipping mascara for my simple everyday face, also to also speed up my makeup removal process at night. I’ve tried a whole bunch over the years and still prefer my old favorites from Too Faced and Lancome (the Hypnose Drama Waterproof one is the only one that really holds a curl for my stick-straight Asian lashes). Below is my favorite out of more clean-focused options I’ve tried, but with a caveat.
Clean at Sephora: Milk Mini Kush High-Volume Mascara (Sephora) – I specifically chose the mini version of this mascara because some reviews mentioned that the brush in the full size was big and the packaging was a bit heavy. I also prefer to buy mini mascaras to avoid drying out and waste, since I don’t use it daily. This mascara truly makes my lashes longer and fluffier and feels lightweight, BUT it does start smudging onto the under eye area shortly afterwards – I wipe it off with BiFacil before going on about my day without further issues, but that’s obviously not ideal. If you also use this mascara and have found a solution, or have a clean mascara you love for short straight lashes, let me know!
Clean at Sephora: Lawless Velvet Matte Bronzer (Sephora) in Golden Hour – I’ve been seeing more and more about this clean-focused brand and am excited to try more products from them! This is well described, since it’s finely milled and truly applies velvety smooth but with a matte finish. I have the lighter shade, but I could have gone for the darker Blazed. I brush on several sweeps of this and can likely use less in Blazed for a more pigmented bronze.
Applied using: Brush in the video is an old one from Sephora Collection – closest one available now might be their Pro Bronzer Brush #80.
Mac Lipstick (Nordstrom; Ulta) – in Velvet Teddy. This neutral lipstick has been one of my everyday go-to’s for years. For me it’s the perfect “my lips but better” shade and is very forgiving when applied quickly.
Not Shown in Video: Treatments, SPF, Tan Drops
Clean at Sephora: Olaplex Hair Perfector No. 3 (Sephora; Dermstore) – Super popular but for good reason. Note this is not a conditioner. I use it prior to shampooing & conditioning about once a week, and feel like it’s made a difference on my colored hair that was getting brittle. You can get the smaller size to try out – while it’s still pricey, it’s a lot less than salon treatments!
Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask (Sephora; Laneige)- oldie but goodie and lasts a long time. I’ve yet to find a lip mask I like better than this one so it’s always on my repurchase list during these infrequent sales. I put this on before bed (smells so good) and wake up with well hydrated lips.
Clean at Sephora: Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Drops (Sephora) – I mix one to two pumps of this to my Elta MD SPF (see my post on facial sunscreens), more if I’m going without foundation for the day. These are a nice but fairly subtle tan and the ingredients are supposed to provide skincare benefits. The color won’t really show up if you wear fuller coverage foundation over it, but for lighter makeup looks it adds a bronze glow. I also don’t know if this color will show up if you have darker skin to start with.
Clean at Sephora: Isle of Paradise Tan Drops (Sephora) – I got this when the sale started so have only tested them out for a week on my face, arms and legs, but am very happy with the product! The difference between this and bronze drops above is the Drunk Elephant bronze drops come out a tan color already add an instant, more subtle bronze and wash off with your makeup at the end of the day. The tanning drops on the other hand are clear, and are like self tanners that take a few hours to “develop” and turn deeper in color after applying to your skin.
Like other self tanners, you must wash your hands after applying to avoid your palms turning very tan. The color that develops on me is a nice tan, not orange, and hasn’t been rubbing off on my sheets or pillowcase. The color from tanning drops is also buildable if you apply more the next day. I got “medium” and do have to apply several drops to my lotion make a visible difference in color, so would actually get the darker color next time and hopefully use need less product!
I’ve been getting a lot of questions on my looser waves, so wanted to mention a few updates from my voluminous curls tutorial! I mostly still follow that process using the same products and tips for volume, but started using this 1.25″ Revlon curling iron with a clip (also at Ulta) instead of clipless, also I brush the curls out with my fingers after they cool to form softer waves.