Anyone that knows me, knows that I love makeup. I always have really. When I was younger, I would watch in the wings while my mom put on her makeup. She never was one to wear a lot, she's so beautiful naturally, but when she would, I want gaze into the bathroom while she opened her MaryKay powder and put it on her face. The way she'd glide a deep red revlon lipstick across her lips to finish the look. I just thought my mom was so beautiful, I wanted to look the same. When she'd be gone, I'd, as most girls would, sneak into her makeup and try it on. Lipstick all over my mouth and her powder that was several shades darker, all over my face. You couldn't tell me I didn't look amazing!
When I got to middle school, many of the girls were already wearing makeup. At least mascara and lipstick. We were 13 and 14 years old and they were in the bathroom retouching between classes. I wanted to join in on the fun, but my father prohibited me from wearing makeup until I was 16. I, of course, would take what I could find and apply it in my bathroom based on what I saw in the magazines. I actually remember my first two makeup looks I did were inspired by J.Lo's makeup in the "All I Have" video with L.L. Cool J, and an Alicia Keys makeup look I saw in a magazine. When I saw how transformed I was, I fell in love with makeup and knew it'd be a part of my regular routine. The eve of my 16th birthday, I was working at Auntie Anne's (I can still make a bomb pretzel) and on my break, I went into JC Penny and bought a makeup box with eyeshadows, blush, lipsticks. I did my makeup perfectly before school and walked downstairs. My Dad called me a Jezebel (LOL!) and my mom asked how long I've been wearing makeup because...she knew! Lol.
Fast forward years later, and I've been wearing makeup now almost every day. Recently though, I have become OBSESSED with minis. Mini lipsticks, mini eye shadow kits, mini highlighter palettes, mini skin care...basically if it's tiny, I love it! I think this obsession started with my last job. I've always traveled, but it's been for leisure, so I'd throw things in my bag and check it and have it when I arrived. My last job required me to travel often, whether driving, flying or by train and sometimes at the last minute. To be able to have my toiletry bag, with my makeup (because you know a B was popping in those meetings!), was a blessing. So many of my favorites come in small format, so I could keep my same routine without worrying about overages, forgetting something I love in a hotel or having to run in a drug store because something was confiscated from my carry on. Lord knows most drug store brands DO NOT have the range!
My favorite kind of minis are the ones I use in my regular routine when I'm home. That means it's not always lipsticks and eye shadows, but also skincare and stuff to tame this mane of mine. Some of my favorite minis in each category (with links) are:
- City Mini Eyeshadows by Maybelline: I absolutely love these palettes because they are super pigmented and have a set of colors that already work together. You can create several looks from one kit, but they're small enough to pack a couple. Also, they're only about $8, so you won't break the bank with them. Target currently has them on sale starting at $4.39!!!
- Better Than Sex Mascara by Too Faced: This mascara is by far my favorite mascara. I have naturally short, but curly, lashes and it makes them look so full and luscious. The fact that there are minis make packing super easy. I'm also pretty forgetful, so I never have to worry about leaving my main thing behind with this little mini! This retails for $12, which is a great price for a luxury product that actually works! It also comes in waterproof! **As of 2/6, Too Faced is currently having a sale and this is only $9.60!!**
- Powder Blush Palette by Elf Cosmetics: This quad set is great. It gives you 4 colors that are pretty pigmented and wear very nicely. There are two shimmer blushes and two mattes. I love that because it gives you the option to wear highlight or leave it off if you feel. It's also only $6 and comes in a 2 different shade quads!!
- Clinique Pep-Start Moisturizers: I really enjoy these moisturizers because they work! I carry two with me usually. The Hydroblur which doubles as a primer and is SUPER moisturizing. It's a favorite of mine in the winter and is part of why you all always comment on my skin on instagram! The other I like is the Hydrorush which is also very moisturizing, but doubles as a sunblock for the face. It is SPF 20 and has saved me from sunburn on my face in places like Punta Cana, without being greasy or giving me flashback in pictures! They are currently on sale at Sephora for $7.50.
- GlamGlow Masks: Ok, so this may be a little "bougie" for some of ya'll (the mini is 24), but I do travel with masks and body scrubs! I have a routine for my skin and body care, so if I'm traveling on a day I would normally do a mask, I like to make sure I can still do it while I'm away! I love Glam Glow masks because they do what they say! my current favorite is the charcoal clearing mask. I feel like my skin looks super fresh and bright after using this, as if the mask took all the ick out of my pores. Especially important when traveling and sitting on a plane. Eww! A little goes a long way and it's really effective, so give it a try!
- Moroccanoil Original Treatment: I REALLY love how this feels in my hair. It's thick enough to add moisture and shine to my hair, but light enough that it doesn't feel greasy. I also love that this works in my hair whether it's straight or curly! For those of you with finer hair, it also comes in a "light" version in the mini as well. It's so good to me!!
- Eco Styler Gel: This is one of the only products I travel with that I don't use on a regular basis. I really like the coconut version of this gel, but I use other gels for my twist outs and wash and gos. However, I tend to use this when I put my hair up or slick down my edges. That's usually what I'm doing when I travel: salvaging my hair until I get home. This is perfect and the mini is under $2!
I find the best places for mini makeup brands come from 3 places:
- The Checkout Jungle at Sephora: you know that area, when you're standing on line, waiting to go the register and all of those bins are filled with beautiful goodies you really don't need...but you want! There's mini foundations, Laura Mercier translucent powder (!!!), setting sprays, concealers and the list goes on!!
- Samples at the end of an order: When you check out of a lot of online beauty shops, whether it be Ulta, Sephora or directly from the brand, they offer deluxe samples. Many times, I'll pick up lip colors and mini pencils. I think these travel best and you can never have too many. I have like 4 of my favorite brow pencils in a mini size for travel and retouches.
- Gift bundles: You find these mostly during the holiday season, but many brands put out mini sample kits to get new customers to try the products with less commitment. I actually got a GREAT Urban Decay Vice mini lipstick kit that now has me hooked on their formula. It had mattes, creams and metallics in one kit and a range of colors. So yeah, I need full size asap. The great thing about these kits also, is that they often go on sale, so you can get more for your money!
That's all I have for my favorites about minis and how much I am loving them at the moment. Do you have a favorite product you like to have in mini format? I'd love to hear about it below!!
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