a beauty client having her makeup done

What to invest in when you buy your makeup kit!

different types of foundation for a makeup kit

Your makeup kit is the most important investment you can make when becoming a makeup artist! You need to plan carefully because it will take up most of your expenses. You’ll need to invest in products and palettes which work with many different skin tones, textures and types which can run up the costs as well as hygiene products such as brush cleaners!

We’ve come up with a list of our favourite products for our kits! I’d also suggest that you depot as much of this as possible! By some blank magnetic palettes and fill them up. Makes your life so much easier because it also means you can pack what you need for that day instead of lugging around an entire palette just so you can use one shade. Please also remember that makeup has an expiry date and you should not be using expired makeup on your clients! None of these recommendations are sponsored or feature affiliate links, they’re just my own opinions about what has worked and continues to work for me. 

1. Primers

 Necessary! A controversial first start as some artists think that primers are a waste of money and don’t do anything. However, When you’re working on event makeup which needs to last possibly a whole day, I think a primer is absolutely necessary! The best primer I’ve ever used is the J One Jelly Pack primer. It’s very thick and sticky which makes it great for oily skin, it will make the product stick better to the skin (even on those annoying nose patches) and it’s incredibly hydrating which will benefit all skin types. The stickiness also helps keep dry skin down and prevents flaking while keeping their skin hydrated. However, some people will not like the feel of this one at all because of how sticky it is, so a good substitute might be a moisturiser or lightweight primer such as the Bobbi Brown face base. I’d also very much suggest buying eyeshadow primers! The P. Louise bases are affordable and help blend out shadows. They keep the eyeshadow lasting longer and they come in a variety of shades and colours! 

makeup primers for a makeup kit

2. Foundation 

Foundations again are a bit of a controversial subject. Some artists think that foundations should be the most expensive part of the kit as it covers the most surface area but also can melt/slide off. Because you don’t want to be lugging 50 shades of foundations in varying formulas, we suggest getting some face palettes with some colour adjusting drops. The RCMA face palettes are a favourite with most artists and they come in a wide range of colours! You’ll need a blank palette to mix the colours on but they’re a really great alternative and not too expensive. 

different foundation brands for a makeup kit

3. Concealers 

Concealers are very versatile. You can buy concealer palettes or buy a few key shades and mix them. You can use them to highlight and bronze the face as well as conceal so it’s worth investing. I love the Mac Pro Longwear concealers but they can run expensive when buying for your kit, so if you’re not looking to break the bank, the RCMA concealer palettes might be a better fit. However, some drugstore brands like Maybelline, Makeup Revolution and ELF have brought out some amazing concealers this year so do your research and find what you like! As always, I’d advise buying products that work for a variety of skin types.

different brands of concealer for your makeup kit

4. Powders

oof Powders are one thing you’ll definitely need to make an investment in! Just google ‘flashback mary’ and you’ll see why you need to make powders something you consider very carefully. There’s nothing worse than spending hours on a look only to have it ruined because your powder flashed back. A common cause of this is zinc in the powder so make sure whatever you’re buying is zinc free. You also need to consider that different skin tones will require different powder colours.

You’ll need to have at least 3 loose powders. This goes back to basic colour theory because although the white translucent powders claim to not leave a white cast, they do and you don’t want to leave your clients with medium-deep skin tones looking ashy! Keep the white setting powders for fair-light clients only. We recommend the RCMA translucent powder or the Laura Mercia translucent powder for fair-light skin tones. For medium-deep skin tones we advise looking at the range of shades offered by Fenty Beauty, Huda Beauty or Bobbi Brown.

loose powders for your makeup kit

Each of these brands offer powders in a variety of shades and you can even ask a Bobbi Brown artist for advice when you go to buy product. We recommend loose powders as these tend to work best for most skin types. Baking is going out of trend but you’ll still need to set your clients’ makeup. However, if you’re hired to stay throughout the day for touch ups, you’ll want to grab a pressed powder to avoid mess. I personally prefer the Maybelline Fit Me pressed powders as they come in a variety of colours and even add some coverage which is sometimes needed as makeup fades throughout the day. 

5. Blushes, Bronzers and Highlighters 

Oh My Luckily for makeup artists everywhere, brands seem determined to put blush, bronzer and highlighter palettes out everywhere. For these, we recommend looking to Fenty beauty. Especially for bronzers, Fenty Beauty has one of the most inclusive ranges and isn’t too expensive. Some of these products however, you can look to the cheaper brands! ELF does amazing cream blushes and blush palettes which are highlight pigments and come in a range of colours for less than £5! MUA does some great highlights, as well in a huge range, for £2.50, meaning you can buy almost all of the colours for a very low cost while offering an amazing range to your clients. Blushes, bronzers and highlighters can also be used as eyeshadows so remember to be versatile with what you buy. 

elf blush palette for your makeup kit

6. Eyeshadow 

Now here comes the biggie. Out of everything, I would suggest that you invest in good eyeshadow palettes. For me, eyeshadow takes the longest time so you want products that are going to be easy and fast to work with. Now I’m not suggesting you go and buy all of the Natasha Denona palettes and bankrupt yourself before you’ve even started, but for colours that work on all skin tones you’re going to be looking at Juvia’s Place!

Amazingly pigmented shades and a black owned business, they’re some of the best eyeshadows I’ve ever used, and they’re easy to depot. I’d also advise buying some ‘core’ palettes from cheaper brands like Morphe. Well, you’d really only need one, but Morphe palettes tend to be full of transition colours with a few pops of colour so you could buy one or two, maybe one lighter and one deeper in colour, depot them, and voila, you have all of the transition shades you could desire.

juvia's place wahalla palette for your makeup kit

I’d personally recommend the first Jaclyn Hill palette as the quality is great and there’s a variety of tones in it (however the blues and purples aren’t that great so circle back to Juvia’s Place for those). My favourite eyeshadows brands for client work include Beauty Bay (especially the Nikkie Tutorials palette), Huda Beauty (full sized palettes, my favourites are the Nude and Naughty palettes), Jeffree Star (a very controversial pick but his eyeshadows are seriously amazing and the lipsticks can be used as bases and eyeliners) and some Anatasia Beverley Hills palettes (do not get Subculture! But the Jackie Aina palette is very pigmented and great for dark-deep skin tones, the Modern Renaissance palette is also a great choice if you don’t already have the colours in your kit).


7. Brows 

 Brows Again, luckily for makeup artists everywhere, brands seem determined to give us brow palettes! These aren’t something I’d necessarily invest in as you can often use eyeshadows in place of brow powders and drugstore brands such as MUA make my all time favourite brow pencil (brow define micro brow pencil) for only £3, so once again, you can buy all the colours without breaking the bank. However, if you’re looking to buy pomades, the best ones I’ve ever used are from Anastasia Beverley Hills. I’ve had mine for years (for personal use not clients) and it hasn’t dried out yet but if it does, you can warm up the product on the back of your hand or add some oil to it to liven it up again. 

anastasia beverley hills dip brow pomade for your makeup kit

8. Lipsticks and Glosses 

Keep in mind with lipsticks, that if you buy from brands such as Jeffree Star, you can use them as eyebases and eyeliners! For the price, they’re a great investment. However, brands such as Anastasia Beverley Hills have brought out great lip palettes but if you’re working all day at an event, these might not be the best option. Look for liquid lipsticks that last all day like Jeffree Star and Maybelline. You’ll also need to keep up with the trends and right now, glossy lips are in! Make sure to invest in a good clear gloss and some base colours, but again, these products don’t need to be too expensive. I think the key thing you should takeaway from this is that not all of your makeup needs to come from high end brands! As long as the product is good quality, clean and in date, it’ll be fine! Let us know what you think in the comments, what do you use in your kit?

maybelline superstay liquid matte lipsticks for your makeup kit


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