The 5 Affordable Makeup Products For College

I get asked often by friends, “How long do you take to put on your makeup before coming to school?”

My answer? 8 minutes tops. I don’t believe that makeup application has to be a 30-45 minute affair (unless you are going for a glamorous full-beat). As a busy college student, I struggle between having to wake up on time for a 9a.m. class, and maintaining the discipline to look good in the morning. I am not one to sacrifice both and hence found a happy medium in simplifying my daily makeup routine with only 5 affordable makeup products -- versatile, time-saving multi-taskers that allow me to still look my best every morning. I call it my capsule makeup collection:

  1. 1. ColourPop No Filter Matte Concealer

    We are conditioned to believe we need to apply a full mask of base makeup for every makeup application. Allow your skin to breathe by skipping that and going straight into concealer to spot conceal any darkness (especially dark under eyes, to cheat your way into appearing that you have enough sleep) or blemishes. I recommend using a concealer that is slightly lighter than your skin tone. Contrary to popular belief, you do not always need a much lighter shade for your under eyes, as this may make them look unnaturally bright and unflattering. Select a concealer that is relatively lightweight, blendable and matte (for zero creasing!)

  2. 2.  L'Oreal Paris Voluminous Lash Paradise Waterproof Mascara

    Mascara helps to open your eyes and make them look brighter. A drier mascara formula (typically waterproof ones are) is a godsend for those with sparse eyelashes as they are generally strong enough to lift and hold lashes without weighing them down.

  3. 3. The Face Shop Eyebrow Pencil

    I am not blessed with full, feathery brows so this is a must-have for me. Pick an eyebrow pencil that is waterproof and buildable (some formulas are very dense and hence tricky to apply, so stay away from those!). Select a colour that is close to your natural hair. If you have dark hair, I find it useful to pick a medium-dark brown instead of a deep brown as it is buildable and does not look as harsh from the get-go. Pro tip: You can use your eyebrow pencil as eyeliner too!

  4. 4. Tinted Lip Balm

    A tinted lip balm is the key to moisturised lips with a healthy touch of colour that brightens your entire face. You can also use tinted lip balm as blush by simply dabbing a small amount onto your cheek with a clean fingertip. This creates a subtle flush of colour on your cheeks!

  5. 5. Sleek Face Contour Kit (Light)

    I cannot live without this handy palette, for it is one of the most versatile beauty products I own. Other than its marketed usage as bronzer and highlighter, I use these two shades as my everyday shadows: the bronzer for an all-over wash of colour on my entire eye, and the highlight as a brightening lid shadow. Anyone who is fair to a darker spectrum of a medium skin tone can also use the bronzer for some light contouring as well, as the shade is neutral-toned. If I am lazy, I use the bronzer as a blush to warm up my cheeks too! This is definitely a product every makeup-lover should have in their makeup bag.