How To Revamp a Makeup Bag

Have you got old and cracked, or out of date items in your makeup bag? Are you getting bored of all the same products? Well here’s how to revamp your makeup bag without spending a fortune (in places anyway.)

Obviously if you had the money you could go wild in a department store. But for most of us, drug stores have everything we need and more. It’s very easy to spend a fortune on cosmetics, and let’s face it – we all have. So I’m going to share some of my tips and some of my favourite products, as well as when it’s OK and sometimes necessary to splash out.

Now obviously before putting your makeup on you have to prepare your face (see my Skincare post for more) most likely than not people use a primer. Other creams are available too, like the BB, CC, DD, EE creams, god knows how many variations there actually are. A primer keeps your skin care separate to your makeup, it helps to keep makeup in place and depending on which brand, can even hide fine lines and pores.

If you’re wanting to introduce a primer to your routine it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. My favourite inexpensive ones are MUA (£4.00) and NYC (£2.49), the MUA primer doesn’t do anything spectacular it just adds a lot of moisture making your makeup appear more dewy and less powdered and dry. The NYC one has a glittery base which really highlights the skin and adds a glow, the glitter doesn’t affect makeup going on top either.

If you have the same problem as me and your pores are really visible and terribly large, you may want to invest in one that will hide them. Smashbox photo finish at £25 (you can buy a smaller version in a set for £14, which has an eyelid and under eye primer) it has a very velvety feel to it and conceals my pores really well. Porefessional from Benefit also works in the same way at £24.50, this also has a little colour to it so for those natural days, it would be perfect. I sometimes combine the two together to attack my pores and cover them completely!

As we’ve all experienced, expensive foundation is 9/10 better, it lasts longer and it looks flawless. Although I have been using Max Factor’s Long Lasting Performance foundation for years now, I’ve found it’s the only colour that truly matches me whilst giving me a good coverage. It retails at £9.99 but often Max Factor have 3 for 2 offers on which means I can stock up of my favourite mascaras too. The cheapest foundation I’ve used is Maybelline’s dream matte mousse, but that was only whilst I was in the house, it’s just under £8 and has a medium coverage.
MAC studio fix is my favourite foundation of all it’s £21.50, I only wear it for special occasions as it’s very heavy and sets perfectly. After my traumatic Illamasqua makeover I’ve been using their Skin Base, it’s nice and heavy but at £27 it’s a little over my limit to buy again.

If you’ve never used a concealer before you’re missing out, they do so much! Highlight, cover spots, contour and lighten dark circles. I use Collection 2000 concealer and I wouldn’t swap to anything else. It’s around £4 and absolutely perfect. It’s so heavy and a light colour even on my skin. I have a slightly cheaper one from MUA but it’s a watery consistency with a medium coverage.

Concealer sticks are available as well, just be careful using them on dry skin/spots as they are very drying.
Collection 2000 strikes again, a high coverage yet light in colour powder that has set every foundation I’ve ever used perfectly. It’s £1.99 and absolutely a must have! I’ve tried MAC studio fix powder and I didn’t think much to it at all. It’s around £20 and far too expensive for what it’s worth. I’ve also tried similar types from Maybelline and Rimmel but both make my colour look much darker than it is, which is definitely not what I

Blushes and bronzers are really easy to come across, MUA do powders and creams from £2! I personally use the Max Factor powder ones right now, but I’m looking to swap to a cheaper brand as they’re £7, which still doesn’t seem expensive but I’d like to get a variety of shades depending on what look I’m trying to achieve.

In my experience cheap mascaras aren’t always the best, but then again expensive ones aren’t either. Rimmel have pretty good ones for under £10, but my favourites all come from Max Factor and range from £9.99 to £11.99, again with these often being on 3 for 2, I don’t complain.

There’s plenty of pencils for a subtle look, or actual eyebrow kits around for a more fuller eyebrow. I absolutely love the MUA fashionista palette (£7 reduced to £3.50) seen in my ‘How to draw on your eyebrows’, although I have tried a similar kit of Benefit’s, I much prefer MUA’s version as it was actually more pigmented. Again, you don’t have to splash out! I used to draw my eyebrows on with an eyeshadow and wet brush.

For pencil lovers, MUA’s eyebrow pencil has a beautiful consistency as well, for under £2!

Now the basics are out of the way we can focus on the fun things!
If you’re looking to jazz up your makeup bag you’ll need a couple things….
Eye shadows
Palettes come in all shapes and sizes and believe me you do not have to buy the most expensive ones to get a good result. MUA and Beauty UK have fantastic palettes starting at £3! This can really transform your look as doing a simple contoured eye can add a lot of drama. 


Most people wear black eyeliner but if you’re looking for a change try a different colour, or add glitter for a bit of glam. Again MUA start off at £1 for glitter eyeliners so you could get every single colour!

For black eyeliner I love Lush’s independence, it’s £14.50, which is a little pricey for the product but I’m on my 3rd bottle now, I love it!
For a cheaper alternative collection 2000 is the one, fast stroke is something that a lot of people have learned to love.

I haven’t had much experience with gel eyeliners, I own the Maybelline one but I find it an absolute messy nightmare, with an impossible brush. It’s very black though.Finally lipsticks! 

A girl can’t have too many. If you’re wanting to start wearing lipstick I recommend going for a dark pink, it’s similar to most lip colours and most of the time people really like it. Lush’s perspective colour is perfect at £14.50.
If you’re wanting something to make your look pop, try Beauty UK’s lipstick, they all contain mint which makes your lips tingle and appear more plump. Perfect! They’re under £3, I currently use plumpalicious and it’s gorgeous.
MUA also has a fantastic range of lip colours, both brands have a detachable bottom containing a lip liner, a lovely added bonus.

As some of you know I redid my Mum’s entire makeup bag for her birthday last month, and these are the tips I used myself. Overall she’s really happy with her new things, a little unsure of what things are and what they’re meant to do, but I’m sure my Mum will get there in the end.

You can see I only splash out in places as inexpensive items seem to work better in a lot of cases. Obviously not everyone will agree, but I get quite a few compliments on my makeup so I shall carry on with my methods.

  • Great tips! I will use them when I decide to buy new makeup 🙂

  • Love this post, I want to try those palettes! 🙂


  • This is FAB I need to find a primer that will hide my pores so I will give the ones you've suggested a try, Great tips xx

  • I absolutely love this (and I love that you revamped your Mum's makeup bag so I'm about to check that out just now!)

    Natalie xx

  • such a nice and usefull post!!! I should get a primer:)))

    I followed you on bloglovin and also GFC (241) hope you'll follow me back!


  • Great post im going to try those palettes. Just started finding out about MUA. Thank you so much for following my profile I would love if you could follow my blog also hun xoxo