I’m notorious for carrying big bags. (I can hear the collective sigh of every guy I’ve ever dated, forced to stop and wait as I dig in my big bag for my Metro card, my wallet, my license, which should be in my wallet, but isn’t because . . . well, you get the point). Lately, I’ve been eschewing my bag lady status in favor of something more sensible — a just-big-enough crossbody bag that converts conveniently into a clutch.
That solution has created a problem — because I can’t fit my makeup bag into my downsized handbag. Not to worry, I’ve discovered I can get by with just a few beauty staples in my bag for a night out.
1. A lip/cheek tint: We’re talking multi-purpose here. Tote something small that will help you brighten lips and cheeks. I’m a fan of RMS Beauty’s organic Lip2Cheek, a sheer, gel-like formula that imparts tons of color. Benefit also has some great options.
2. Your fave mascara sample: Finally, a reason to actually use all those mascara samples! I have a ton of mini mascaras — swag from my Sephora Beauty Insider points or treats I’ve gotten from monthly subscription services like Birchbox. My latest obsession is the fruit-pigmented mascara from 100% Pure. It leaves my lashes looking (and feeling) natural. It even smells good. The sample size is effective, but dainty enough to fit in my clutch.
3. Foundation/concealer: If you use a powder foundation (like this velvety creation from Laura Mercier), you can probably just tuck it into your bag. But if you use a liquid foundation, I’m not suggesting you try to squeeze the bottle in next to your cell phone. Try this genius trick from the Beauty Department — repurpose an old contact lens case to hold a generous dab of your favorite foundation or cream concealer.
4. Hand cream: Winter is especially cruel to my hands, so I try to keep hand cream near at all times. You’ll keep your hands soft and moisturized, and also keep your cuticles smooth. Try a shea butter-based cream like FarmHouse Fresh Fluffy Bunny Shea Butter Hand Cream.
5. A hair tamer: I recently discovered this hair taming tool from Ojon and it has changed my life. OK, exaggerating. Still, it’s helped me to keep flyaways in check and camouflage some of the breakage I have (thanks again to Old Man Winter). I can even use it on my brows if they get unruly. Another product in my arsenal — Josie Maran’s Argan Intensive Creamy Oil — can also be used to tame runaway strands, in addition to serving as a lip gloss, on-the-fly illuminator or overall facial moisturizer.