The makeup kit for less than a thousand.

Those who know me know how much I love buying
makeup. I’m like a little girl collecting crayons and Hello Kitty stickers. I
don’t wear all the makeup I buy, but it just makes me happy to know they’re

My latest crusade has been to
build a great makeup stash that comes in under a thousand bucks. (I can’t do it
below P500 – believe me, I’ve tried. But unless you want to apply powder blush
with a cotton ball everyday it’s simply not doable.) Be reasonable, though; I
expect you’d have the basics, such as a cleanser, a moisturizer, running water
and tweezers. I am delighted to report to whoever cares that I’ve succeeded. For
girls with more ingenuity than money, here’s the

1. Tools – I have always maintained
that you can get away with just one tool, and that is a not-so-fluffy powder
brush. This is meant for the application of loose powder, a light application of
pressed powder or bronzer. However, if you get one that is very slightly on the
stiff side, you’ll have enough control to also use it (aslant) as a blush brush.
Annie Magic Beauty repackages tools made in Korea; they have a powder brush
(branded My Fox on the handle, your choice of frosted white or matte black) that
is surprisingly decent for P270.

2. Foundation
– San-san (yes, the brand endorsed by Kris Aquino) carries liquid foundation
that is lightweight, and available in a limited range of shades. The low level
of pigment makes it more of a tinted moisturizer than a foundation, but that’s
fine, because it’s only P60, and you should also get

3. Concealer – San-san’s concealers come
in only 3 shades, but have good coverage in a portable stick package. They cost
P80 each. (The foundation in Natural matches the Natural/Medium concealer
shade.) P80.

4. Loose powder – I so believe in
loose powder. It diffuses fine lines and large pores and knocks back
overenthusiastically-applied blush. Teen’s Fashion 21 has loose powder in small
containers, in shades from light to tan, and it will only set you back

5. Blush – Allue is marketed as an
entry-level makeup brand, and it has the cutesy packaging to prove it. They have
2-pan blushes for around P50 each. The colors are quite shocking in the pan –
virulent berry red, bougainvillea pink – but can be blended out onto the skin
and appear surprisingly fresh. They have 5 combinations available, including one
that is gold and silver.

6. Eyeshadow – You
can’t go wrong with Nichido’s eyeshadow trio. You get a highlight, a base color
and a crease color in neutral fawn, coppery brown and chocolate brown for P150.

7. Lipstick – Nichido makes lovely sheer
lipsticks (with names cribbed from Laura Mercier) for P168 each. I like their
Bare Lips and Desire shades. And they wear well – no chapping, no uneven streaks
when applied.

Pile them all into a ziploc
bag and you, cheap makeup maven, are ready to go.