Minimalist makeup bag

Since becoming a minimalist, I’ve really pared down my cosmetics collection and dealt with what was a lifelong cosmetics addiction (mostly!). So I thought it was time I’d show you my minimalist makeup bag.

Here’s the complete collection.

Everything I use. The bag was a gift with purchase that my mother gave me a year ago - I think it's pretty :)

Everything I use. The bag was a gift with purchase that my mother gave me a year ago – I think it’s pretty 🙂

Skin care

Toning and resurfacing. My skin care routine for morning comprises a toner for cleansing (Clinique clarifying lotion 2), followed by Paula’s Choice Resist 10% weekly resurfacing treatment, which I use daily. The difference in my skin from the AHA is amazing, and I’d strongly recommend it to anyone in their 40s who, like me, is dealing with a lack of clarity and a few surface lines.

Anti-acne (BHA).I also use Paula’s Choice 2% BHA lotion occasionally, mainly at that time in the month when I’m prone to a bit of cystic acne. It keeps my pores cleaned, and really cuts down the number of breakouts.

The four skin care products I use...keeping it simple works well.

The four skin care products I use…keeping it simple works well.

Anti-ageing. In the evenings before bed, I use Paula’s Choice Intensive wrinkle repair retinol serum. In combination with the AHA my skin is really looking amazing. Here’s the proof – I think I look pretty good for someone approaching 50 who has lived in the harsh conditions of Australia and New Zealand for most of her life 🙂

None of these products are exceptionally expensive, and I’d recommend all of them. Apart from the products above, I’d strongly recommend sunblock every day (see below) no matter what the weather or time of year, a good diet, and of course avoiding smoking and drinking.


Sunblock. This is the one essential I never go without, all year round, every single day. I’m currently using Olay’s complete defence daily UV moisturising lotion SPF 30+, which I’m not thrilled with as it’s too highly perfumed for my taste, but it does the job. I’ll replace it with something less fragranced when I finish the bottle.

BB cream. Garnier’s BB cream miracle skin perfector for sensitive skin. This is a real winner. Bought in the supermarket. It’s perfect for my very pale, dry skin and looks and feels amazing on. I used to use a Bobby Brown BB cream – this one, at a quarter the price, is better.

Eyeliner. Clinique kohl shaper for eyes in 202 Blackened Pewter. This is a beautiful soft colour for people with fair skin and blue eyes (like me) and works well with contact lenses. It also has a sharpener in the lid, which is a bonus. I’d buy it again.

Eyeshadow. Clinique chubby stick in 01 Bountiful Beige. Clinique’s palest colour, this is great against my blue eyes. I moved to stick eyeshadow a few weeks back, and have thrown out my brushes, as I no longer need them. This really simplifies my makeup bag 🙂

Mascara. Clinique high impact mascara in 01 Black. I haven’t worn mascara in ages, as I end up with racoon eyes every single time. In fact, I’ll ditch this. There. Gone.

Blush. Clinique chubby stick in 04 Plumped Up Peony. I use this blush stick on my cheeks as well as my eyes, sometimes on my lips as well. The colour is okay, but not quite warm enough for my skin tone (I’m a Spring in the Colour Me Beautiful colour palette). It’s just about empty, as I’ve had it a while, so I’ll probably replace it with Clinique’s “Robust Rhubarb” or “Roly Poly Rosy” in the same range, which look like they’ll be a bit warmer.

Lipstick. L’Oreal’s Infallible 2-step in 312 Incessant Russet. I don’t generally have a lot of luck with L’Oreal, as their makeup is virtually all for cool toned skin, but this one works well. It lasts all day, and I’ve bought the same shade over and over again.

Lip gloss. Clinique again, this is their chubby stick for lips in 02 Whole Lotta Honey. No, I’m not a brand loyalist, but I find Clinique’s colours and products suit me over and over again. They – along with other Estee Lauder brands – cater to warm toned skins. So if you’re an Autumn or a Spring like me (what does this mean?) you’ll find colours that work for you, whereas at L’Oreal and Revlon, not so much as they cater for the cool season types of the world (winters and summers). I wear lip gloss when I just want a light, relaxed, no-makeup look.

Perfume. I wear and own three perfumes – Davidoff’s Cool Water for Woman, Armani’s Si, and Clinique’s Happy. I’ve been wearing Happy since I was in my 20s, while Si is a newcomer that I fell in love with a few weeks back. Everything I wear is fresh, light and fruity or salty. I like to smell clean, not floral or heavy. I’m a bit over Happy now, but Si is destined to be a favourite for a long time to come, I think.


So that’s it. My makeup, all of it. Having fewer products and no double-ups means I can buy great products that suit me, take care of my skin properly with top skin care products, and ensure that I don’t use any out-of-date products that could be dangerous. Less makes sense, especially when it comes to makeup!