Quick Beauty Routine || Save or Splurge

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It’s been a while since I’ve shared my beauty routine over here, so I thought I’d post a little update! I’ll preface this by saying that I’m not an expert! But I’m so fortunate to be able to try new products fairly regularly and am excited to share some that have made it into my daily routine. I’m also going to share where I prefer to save and where I splurge!

I know this post is wordy, but it’s packed with tips, products suggestions, and other information. The actual quick beauty routine takes me just about 5 minutes to complete!


Honestly, I don’t wear makeup every day, but I always feel more pulled together and a little better about myself when I complete a quick beauty routine with concealer, mascara, a little lip gloss and fill in my brows. As I get older, I find that less is more. Heavy makeup makes us look older, so I really only do a full face when I’m shooting photos. For special events, I’ll either do a more dramatic eye or lip. But never both.

Let’s dig in!

Concealer and Foundation: Save or Splurge

For this quick beauty routine, I don’t use a primer. I find it to be an unnecessary step and have never found one that felt good on my skin. I know some people who swear by them, I’m just not one of them. My first step is concealer and I’ll explain why below.

I was always a huge Shape Tape fan (I wear shade (shade light neutral) and while I still love it, I do find myself reaching for Maybelline’s Fit Me concealer more frequently (I wear shade light). It feels less drying, is easier to blend and doesn’t settle into lines. I apply it under my eyes and around my nose, as well as lightly over any pink or brown patches on my cheeks. I blend with these sponges

If I need a heavier concealer or want to cover a bruise on my leg or blemish on my chest, I always reach for It Cosmetics Matte CC Cream (I wear shade Medium or Light Medium, depending on the time of year). This stuff is the holy grail for coverage. It’s amazing. But for me, it’s too heavy for use all over my face. I apply it with these sponges or this brush.

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Foundation: Save or Splurge

Believe it or not, even though I have more “mature” skin, I switched to a powder foundation earlier this year and never looked back. Liquid and cream-based foundations were feeling heavy on my skin. And even though I have dry to combination skin, MAC Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation has become my new best friend. Liquids and creams seemed to weigh my skin down but MAC Studio Fix is weightless, creates a flawless canvas, lasts in all types of conditions and is easy to freshen up without looking cakey – like at all! I’m obsessed. I wear shade NW-25 and apply it with this brush or this brush lightly over my whole face and neck and sometimes my chest. It lasts and lasts. For this quick beauty routine, I save on brushes and concealer.

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Blush and Bronzer: Savor or Splurge

I’m no queen of contour, but my fair skin needs a subtle blush. Subtle being the keyword. I have a newly discovered love affair with Nars blushes. I love the shade Deep Throat. I know, I know…that name. Another cult favorite is the shade Orgasm. You see where they’re going with this…For a budget blush, I recommend NYX Ombre Blush. I love the shade Mauve Me. I brush lightly onto the apples of cheeks and blend upward across my cheekbones.

For this quick beauty routine, when it comes to bronzer I prefer the save option. I swear by Physicians Formula’s Butter Bronzer. It’s warm, buildable and has very minimal shimmer, which is my personal preference. It also has the prettiest light scent that makes me feel like I’m on vacation. I don’t wear this every day, only when I want to warm up my skin a little. I wear the shade Bronzer.

If I feel I need to blend out my blush/bronzer or dampen down a little extra shine, I’ll add a dusting of Laura Mercier translucent setting powder. It’s definitely a splurge but is such a great product and lasts forever.

I also tend to skip highlighter as I feel that it tends to highlight imperfections and fine lines more than anything else.

To complete the steps thus far takes me two minutes or less!

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Eye Brows and Eye Primer: Save or Splurge

While I don’t use a skin primer, I do have an eye primer of sorts that I swear by. For this quick beauty routine, this product is essential, even if I’m skipping other steps. I love MAC Paint Pots in shade Painterly. It is a neutral color that eliminates any blue or purple on the lid and provides a flawless base for shadow. When I wear this my shadow does not crease at all, all day long. 

While the MAC Paint Pot sets on my lids I quickly do my brows. I alternate between Benefit Gimme Brow in shade 5 and NYX Brow Mascara in shade Espresso. They both do exactly the same thing and are just as effective with the same staying power. The only difference is Benefit Gimme Brow has a smaller brush that is slightly easier to work with.

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Eyes: Save or Splurge

Eye Shadow is definitely worth the splurge, especially on a versatile palette! My go-to for a quick beauty routine is Urban Decay’s Naked Petite Heat Palette. At first, I was a bit put off by the bold colors but I quickly learned that they are much more versatile than I first believed and really set off my blue eyes. I brush the shade Vibrate across the outer two-thirds of the lid, followed by Hot Spell and Strike in the crease. If I want a more dramatic eye I’ll finish with a liner brush to apply shades Heist and Strike on the outer half of the lower lid and I’ll press the shade Inhale into the inner corner and the brow bone.

The other two palettes that I most reach for are the Tartlette Clay Matte palette and the Urban Decay Born to Run palette. The Tartlette palette is made up of all matte shades which I love, especially in the fall and winter. It’s a great palette for creating a smoky eye. And the Born to Run palette is so versatile! You can create an endless variety of looks and it’s great for all eye colors. It’s such a good one.

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I don’t wear liner frequently but when I do, I always use Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Pencil on my waterline. And if I’m brave enough to play with liquid liner, Urban Decay Perversion liquid liner is the easiest to apply. 

When it comes to my lashes, I curl them then prime with Urban Decay Subversion last primer (forgive me but my puppy got ahold of this tube but didn’t actually consume any of the product, thank goodness!), followed by Urban Decay Perversion mascara. This gives a bold lash that I haven’t been able to replicate with any other products.

Lips: Save or Splurge

For a quick beauty routine, I just finish with a gloss. I’m not a big fan of how most lipsticks feel on my lips and tend to save them for special occasions. Lip gloss also makes your face look more youthful than the harsh lines of lipsticks. When I do want a bolder lip, I love Nars Satin Lip pencils. They are ridiculously easy to apply, go on like a gloss and dry to a satin finish. The color lasts and lasts. I love them. 

I also love MAC lipstick in Blankety for a pinky-nude and Neutrogena Hydroboost glosses, especially in the winter.

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Don’t forget to set!

If you want makeup with serious staying power to take you through the day, and even into the night, make sure and set with Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray. Mist on this weightless spray to give your makeup serious staying power. This stuff keeps your makeup looking gorgeously just-applied without melting, fading or settling into fine lines.

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Quick Beauty Routine: Favorite Products

And if you missed it, I’m styling wrap bracelets for fall right here on the blog!