Frequently Asked Makeup and Skincare Questions

oye.

Can you tell this is a question mark or does it just look like a random collection of eyeshadows? ._.

Frequently Asked Makeup and Skincare Questions

Since creating my blog, I’ve received many questions related to makeup and skincare. Although I am nothing close to a professional expert on this topic, but do spend quite a bit of time dabbling with makeup and skincare, I feel like I can speak from some experience and answer these questions. Remember that these are just my opinions as a consumer who has tried 1239128308 products (and counting)… D:

The questions that I’ll be answering in this post are:

  • Do under eye dark circle creams really work?
  • How do I cover my under eye circles?
  • What is a good cleanser for acne?
  • What kind of brushes do I use to apply foundation, eyeshadow, etc.
  • How do I do a smoky eye or x makeup look?
  • Other makeup tips!

Do under eye dark circle creams really work?

In my experience, under eye dark circle creams do not work. They may work to a certain extent on some people, but for the most part (based on my research), under eye circles are genetic and difficult to remove with creams.

Right now, I am currently using the TARTE Maracuja C-Brighter Eye Treatment. I have yet to notice a difference using it, but MakeupAlley (a website that I highly recommend) has an extremely high rating for this product. Like most things with makeup and skincare, it all comes down to trial and error. What works for me, may not necessarily work for you. This eye cream in particular seems to have worked for a lot of people.

What creams can’t do, makeup can! Which goes into the next question…

How do I cover my under eye circles?

Let’s break it down into four steps:

  • Moisturize: The under eye area is super delicate and requires some extra care. Moisturize this area to prevent your makeup from settling into fine lines and creasing.
  • Correct: This is the step most people don’t do. When you skip this step, you may find that your dark circles are emphasized even more.
    • Take a look at your dark circles and identify what colour they are. Extremely dark/black under eye circles call for a peach-coloured corrector. Green/blue/veiny under eye circles call for a salmon-coloured corrector (think back to the colour wheel in art class and the lesson on complimentary colours and the theory behind this will make sense).
  • Conceal: So now your under eye area is peachy or salmony and that ain’t cute. Now we need to hide that with some concealer! If you like the highlighted effect, you could grab a concealer that is 1-2 shades lighter than you skin tone. I personally don’t like to highlight the under eye area on an everyday basis, so I go for a concealer that’s the same colour as my skin.
  • Set: You think you’re done? NOPE. Now you need to set the under eye area with some good ol’ powder to prevent creasing. Make sure you use a super finely-milled powder for this step.

Products that I use:

  • Moisturize: TARTE Maracuja C-Brighter Eye Treatment
  • Correct: I use the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer in the shade 25 Medium. I find this shade in particular has a bit of a peachy undertone that helps me correct my dark circles. However, it is quite light in terms of coverage so may not be ideal for someone with extremely dark under eye circles… also, if you are not my skin tone (NC35), then this may not be very helpful.
    • A product that I would recommend for dark under eye circles (I haven’t personally tried it, but have only heard good things about it) is the Bobbi Brown Corrector. These correctors are divided into bisque (salmon) colours and peach colours, so you will definitely find your perfect match!
    • Another product that I would recommend is the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. This concealer was a bit too high in coverage for my liking, but for those with dark under eye circles, this is another product that I would recommend.
  • Conceal: Again, I use the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer, but in the shade 20 Sand. However, I am on the market for another concealer and I’m eying the MAC Pro Longwear Concealer, which again, have only heard good things about.
  • Set: I have found that the Maybelline concealer doesn’t crease on me, so I usually skip this step. I’ve also heard that the MAC Pro Longwear Concealer doesn’t crease either — bonus! But if your concealer is prone to creasing, I have heard good things about the Ben Nye Banana Powder.

Other helpful resources to learn how to conceal under eye circles:

What is a good cleanser for acne?

When I was on a tight budget, Neutrogena cleansers were great, especially the pink grapefruit cleanser: Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial Cleanser.

These days I’ve been using the Philosophy Clear Days Ahead Oil-Free Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment Cleanser. I really like the Philosophy cleanser because it doesn’t contain harsh ingredients like parabens or sulfates.

When it comes to skincare, I always pay very close attention to the ingredients. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the most expensive skincare products contain the best ingredients — sometimes pricy products even have terrible ingredients.

The main takeaway point is: do your research. For me, parabens are a no-no and although it’s a common ingredient in makeup, I try my best to avoid it in skincare.

What kind of brushes do I use to apply foundation, eyeshadow, etc.

This question could be an entire post on its own. I know I’ve said this already, but trial and error is the best thing to do. The amount of makeup brushes that I own is quite embarrassing and I’d say that I don’t even use half of them. The main reason being is because I bought lots of kits and experimented with the brushes to see which ones I liked best. I would recommend that you do the same!

I own three kits from Real Techniques and I would highly recommend them! I don’t use all of the brushes from the kits, but buying all of these brushes gave me a really good starting point with my makeup brushes and helped me experiment at a low cost. The kits that I own from Real Techniques are the Core Collection, Starter Set and the Travel Essentials.

BH Cosmetics is also a great place to buy makeup brushes. They are very affordable and the quality is decent. I do prefer my Real Techniques brushes more, but there are a few BH Cosmetics brushes that I reach for on a regular basis, like the blending brush and the small smudge brush.

And if you are on a super tight budget, then ELF Brushes are decent as well. One of my favourites is the ELF Studio Blush Brush, which I use to set under eye concealer (if its prone to creasing).

Another tip: just because the brush says ‘concealer brush’ doesn’t mean you have to use it for concealer. If you like to use your concealer brush for eyeshadow, by all means go for it!

Sigma brushes are great as well and although I don’t own very many, I have only heard good things about them. They have many MAC dupes and a great video to watch is Jaclyn Hill’s video on makeup brushes: ALL ABOUT MAKEUP BRUSHES. Make sure you read the description bar to see what the MAC dupes are for the Sigma brushes!

How do I do a smoky eye or x makeup look?

My absolute favourite YouTube videos are by Jaclyn Hill. Her videos are the most informative because she breaks down each step in the makeup process, making it really easy to follow along with her. She does some great smoky eye tutorials which I will list below. Tanya Burr is also a great makeup artist who makes easy-to-follow makeup tutorials as well.

Jaclyn Hill

Tanya Burr

How do I pick out a foundation colour? What about from the drugstore?

I think most people know this, but it’s important to look at your undertone: are you warm, cool or neutral? A good starting point is to look at your veins: blue veins = cool-toned skin, green veins = warm-toned skin.

Also, matching the foundation to your neck/chest area is key because having your foundation be a different colour from your face will not look pretty. :( If I find that I’m in between foundation shades, I usually go for the lighter shade because foundations oxidize (get darker) and you can always make a foundation darker with bronzer.

If you are buying a foundation from the drugstore, I would recommend two things.

  1. Bring a foundation colour along with you that you already know works for you. Then compare the colours to see if they match.
  2. Find out what you MAC shade is and type that into Google along with the foundation you want to purchase. For example, when I was looking to purchase the L’Oreal True Match Lumi Foundation, I typed in “L’Oreal True Match Lumi NC35” and I found that most people with my skin tone use the shade W4.

Why do you like makeup? Why do you know so much about makeup? *insert another condescending question here*

Makeup is my hobby! For some it’s collecting shoes or books, or for some it’s cooking or baking, but for me, it’s collecting makeup. In my spare time, I enjoy reading beauty blogs and watching YouTube videos of my favourite beauty vloggers.

With that being said, I’d say the main reason why I know a lot about makeup, specifically when it comes to products is because I read a ton of reviews. So my main piece of advice would be to always read a review before purchasing a product. And read reviews on anything because if the product exists, there will probably be a review on it. People like to review anything and everything — from eye creams, to soap to toothpaste.

Again, since makeup and skincare is subjective, I would take the reviews with a grain of salt, but reading someone else’s opinion and experience with a product is always helpful.

TEACH ME HOW TO PUT ON MAKEUP!!!

Below I will list my favourite YouTubers and blogs so that you can learn more about the world of makeup :) I already mentioned Jaclyn Hill and Tanya Burr as my favourite makeup artists when it comes to makeup application and techniques. Other beauty bloggers and YouTubers that I like are:

  • Vivianna Does Makeup – a British beauty blogger and YouTuber – blog
  • Mouldyfruit – another British beauty blogger and YouTuber (love her product recommendations since we are similar in skin tone) – blog
  • Essie Button – Canadian YouTuber and beauty blogger living in England – blog
  • Makeup by Megha – An Atlanta-based makeup artist — I started watching her videos when I first got into makeup!
  • The Beauty Milk – A Caribbean beauty blogger with helpful makeup tutorials and reviews

Well that was long…

If you’ve reached this point, wow :O Thank you for reading! If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment and I’ll try my best to answer your question. Hope this was helpful. :)

8 comments

  1. Ikhlas says:

    Thanks for the informative post, Yousra! I know I was nagging you a lot about the brushes questions so thanks for clarifying hehe :) And gorgeous picture as usual :)

    • Yousra {Swatching Oddity} says:

      I think I might actually do a separate post on makeup brushes because there is so much more I wanted to talk about, but I felt like it was getting too long! So you can continue nagging me, lol :)

  2. Whitney says:

    GREAT question and answer post! I didn’t learn about correcting until I was at a bobbi brown booth in the department store and the sales associate told me about the salmon pink colour for eye circle correction.

    I love watching Essie Button! Another youtuber I like is ilikeweylie too, she’s hilarious!

    • Yousra {Swatching Oddity} says:

      I like ilikeweylie too! I discovered her videos through fashionista804, another YouTuber I like! Her tutorials are great too (should have mentioned her in my post) >_<

  3. Ruby says:

    I like how you answered the questions all in 1 go.. I did read to the end! I think my answer would be exactly the same as yours on the “why do you wear makeup” question! Its a hobby that some people just don’t understand -_- Ps. my fav youtuber is Farahdhukai (I’m sure you know of her too).

    PS. the eyeshadow pic DOES look like question marks :P I’d love to see a post on the names of them or ur favs.

    MissRubyRoo | Beauty Blog

    • Yousra {Swatching Oddity} says:

      Farah Dhukai is awesome! I really like her videos too. I want her to do my makeup D:

      I can tell you which eyeshadows are in the picture :) Starting from the top going towards the bottom of the question mark: MAC Cranberry, Amber Lights, Sumptuous Olive, Coppering, Texture, Tempting, Brown Script, Rule, Chickadee (Makeup Geek) and Smut.

      • Ruby says:

        Thank you for taking the time to list out all the eyeshadow names!! Brownscript, rule and texture have been on my mac shopping list for ages now =)

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