Sunday, June 14, 2015

How to Shop for Makeup: A Basic Guide

We're living in times where attractive looks, svelte figures and a good appearance have become one of the most important aspects of human life. Everyone wants to look and feel beautiful. People are even willing to go under the knife to improve their looks and there's no denying to the vital role makeup has and continues to play, when it comes to personal grooming. Makeup not only enhances a person's appearance but also personality in some way. It adds confidence and boosts self esteem.
Thanks to the ever growing industry, makeup has not only changed drastically but also caters to the needs of all kinds of people and budgets.

So those of you who are new to makeup or are a bit confused about what to spend in, here's a little guide by yours truly that might be of help.

Super Saver

If you don't want to spend a fortune, then try out these brands, But remember, not all of their stuff is worth your buck, so do a little research before making a purchase.

EssenceEssence has a wide range of products that are quite colorful. The brand is well known for its nail colors that come in cute little bottles and funky shades.

I have used: Lip liner 11 In the Nude (read review) and Blush Brush (read review)

MUA (Makeup Academy)I love MUA for two reasons. First, it is very affordable and second, some of their products are really good. 

I have used: MUA Intense Kisses Lip Gloss Sealed with a Kiss (read review), Quick Smooch and Pucker Up (read review), Blush Perfection Cream Blusher in Bitter Sweet (read review), Powder Blusher in Lolly (read review), Heaven and Earth Eye Shadow Palette (read review), Pearl Eye Shadow in no 27 (read review), Eye Dust in shade no 4 (read review) and Lipstick in no 14 (read review)

MUR (Makeup Revolution): I have recently tried some of its products and I am quite impressed. A must check out brand it is.

I have used: Liquid Eye Liner, Water Proof Liquid Eye Liner, Golden Lights Highlighter and Cream Blush in Peach Cream (reviews coming soon)

E.L.F (Eyes Lips Face): E.L.F is a re-known brand in the US and has finally made its way to Pakistan through some Facebook pages. The brand is known for its pocket friendly prices and fine quality, specially, the Studio collection.

I have used: Lip Balm in Brown Bombshell (review coming soon)

W7: You probably haven't heard much about this one but W7 made an official launch in Pakistan recently.

I have used: The Bronzer Matte Compact (read review)


If you don't mind spending a few 100's more and are looking for more options and better quality, try out the following brands.

Maybelline: It has been around for years and is one of my favorite drugstore brands. Not only me but it is a favorite of many beauty bloggers and girls alike.

I have used: Baby lips lip balm in 05 Quenched (read review), Colossal Kajal (read review) and Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eye Liner (read review). 

In the past I have also used the express finish foundation stick, nail polishes and twist up lip glosses.

Rimmel: It follows behind in my list of favorites. Rimmel makes amazing eye liners and lipsticks.

I have used: Lasting Finish Lipstick by Kate Moss in no 08 and 10 (read review), Scandal Eyes Water Proof Kohl Kajal in 001 Black (read review), Glam Eyes HD 5 Colour Eye Shadow in 021 Golden Eye (read review), Apocalips Lip Lacquer in 400 Big Bang (read review) and 101 Celestial (read review), Scandal Eyes Rockin' Curves Mascara in 001 Black (read review), Lasting Finish Colour Rush Lip Balm in 710 Drive Me Nude (read review), Lasting Finish Soft Colour Blush in 190 Coral (read review), Exaggerate Eye Definer in 211 Sable (read review) and Lasting Finish Lipstick in no 420 Undressed (read review

I have also used the famous Stay Matte powder and it is a gem.

EtudeIs a Korean brand famous for its makeup and skincare products, I'm a fan of its blushes and have a few in my stash.

I have used: Color Eye Shadow in BL524 (read review), Highlight Beam Powder in #05 Pearl White Pink and Face Blusher in #22 (read review), Face Blusher in #16 (read review) and in #16.

I have also used the Cubic Star eye shadows, compact face powder and other single eye shadows.

Sleek: Famous for its pigmented eye shadow palettes, Sleek is quality and value for money.

I have used: i-Divine Showstoppers Palette (read review), Eye Dust in #680 Dirty (read review)

Milani: Although in this category, Milani is a bit on the expensive side. The products are packaged beautifully but not all of them are worth the price tag.

I have used: Eye Shadow Primer in 01 Nude (read review), Shadow Eyez 12 Hour Wear Eye Shadow in 01 Winter White (read review) and Color Statement Lipstick in 07 Best Red (read review)

DMGM: Talk about DMGM and you will most probably hear praises. I haven't had a very good experience with their pencils but the brand makes amazing foundation, powder and lipsticks.

I have used: Even Complexion Compact Powder in 04 Early Tan (read review), Photo Fix Lip Color in 336 Crimson Craze (read review) and Studio Perfection Secret Wonder Foundation in 260 Praline (read review)


If high end is your thing and you have some big bucks to spend, go for the following brands.

MAC (Makeup Artist Cosmetics): MAC is no new name and it keeps makeup lover and beauty bloggers excited. The brand has maintained its name for years now and is also used for film and professional photo shoots. I don't have anything special MAC to share with you guys but I'll get my hands on some stuff and review them right away.

Tarte: If you're the kind of person who prefers light to neutral shades in makeup Tarte is the brand to go for. The shades are not extremely dark and easy to play with. Tarte is famous for its amazonian clay blushes.

I have used: Pure Delights LipSurgence Lip Set (read review) and Call of the Wild Amazonian Clay 8-Shadow Collectors Palette (read review).

Urban Decay: Of all the high end brands UD has made a name for itself due to its amazing quality of makeup, specially, the Naked eye shadow palettes. I recently got a chance to shop from them and got myself the Smoked Palette, which I will review for you guys very soon.

Benefit Cosmetics: I love this brand for 2 reasons. One, they make beautiful blushes and second, I love the packaging. Do try out the Hoola bronzer and Coralista Blush.

I have used: The Powderrazi (read review)

Nars and Too Faced: These two particular brands are on my wishlist and I will come up with something from these soon, hopefully. Nars hold a very good reputation even in the Fashion industry whereas, Too Faced is famous among ladies.

That's it for my post today. Once you have your amount in hand you can go through the list and decide how and what will you spend on. You can either go for a specific budget category or what I personally suggest is to go for one luxury product like foundation, lipsticks, eye shadows and blushes from mediocre brands and the rest from drugstore brands. Hope my post was helpful. Ciao!
Kiran Imtiaz Author

I would love to hear from you. Leave in your valuable comments, questions and anything you want to share, below. Comments with irrelevant links will not be published.


  1. Ok Wow!! You have reviewed so many of the brands <3

  2. Very detailed and informative post. Loved reading it :)

  3. Very well written and comprehensive guide. I am sure it would help a lot of people esp beginners. Thanks for sharing :)

  4. Great post kiran! I would love to try some of the products that you particularly mentioned in rimmel

  5. I'll be coming back on this post before I plan some makeup shopping. *Thumbs up* :)

    Momina Haseeb | ๑ Divine Smudge ๑

  6. Every brand have products that are either too good or too bad, or some things in between them. Some times expensive brands comes with fully disappointed product and like wise some time you get super amazing stuff from a cheap brand. The only key is to, stop, look, explore, research and then buy. Hope I could also follow this rule...lolz. Kiran your post is so much helpful.

  7. Loreal is also quite amazing, thank you for this post ... it was really helpful.

  8. Such a nice and detailed post. Thanks for sharing :)

  9. Rimmel surely is steal! One of my all time favourtie drugstore brands. Need to try so many of the super saver ones you mentioned! Love this post and I think I'm going to bookmark it for supermarket trips! :D xo

    Jadirah Sarmad | Jasmine Catches Butterflies ʚϊɞ

  10. there comes a time in your life when you cant resist buying high ends ;/

    great post though :)

  11. I can see almost all of my favorite makeup brands hehe! Great post love <3

  12. I really needed an inspiration to organize my shopping cravings... you know when I like anything, I crave for it till I shop it Lolz. Nice post :)

  13. Super awesome post! You go girl :) -Sadaf