Whether you stow a backup beauty arsenal in a drawer at work, or lug too many products around in your purse (honestly, how many lipsticks do you have floating around in there?), it's a good idea to scale it back. Try steamlining your makeup routine and eliminating clutter with drugstore beauty basics that pull double duty. And the bonus with multi-taskers? You get great bang for your buck.
Click on for our guide to multi-tasker beauty essentials.
A version of this article appeared in our March 2013 issue with the headline "Desk drawer beauty basics," p. 46.
Whether it's dry winter hands or scaly summer legs, a light moisturizer is a skincare no-brainer, but will also stand in well for a few other beauty basics. Pick a scent that you love and lather it on your pulse points in place of perfume, or try running a dollop of lotion through the bottom half of your hair to hide damage, boost shine and tame fly-aways. Just be careful not to apply too close to your roots, or you might end up looking a bit greasy.
We like: Iris Ultra-Moisturising Hand Therapy Lotion, $15
"When you opt for a lip/cheek combo product in place of a traditional lipstick, you'll get the bonus benefit of a sheer, pretty blush," says Toronto makeup artist David Goveia. A creamy red or berry shade is great for going out after work, but also doubles nicely on your cheeks. There are many dual-purpose options out there depending on what you like: A liquid tint will stay put for hours, and the cream-based formulas are easy to blend.
We like: Stila Cheek and Lip Stain, $32
Don't stop at chapped lips. A basic balm can solve many of your beauty qualms in a pinch. Start with your dry cuticles, knuckles, elbows and even split ends. Or, apply a sheer coat to your brows to darken and define their shape. In place of a highlighter, pat a little balm on your cheek and brow bones for a dewy finish "that will help make skin look flawless, says Goveia.
We like: Eos Smooth Sphere Passion Fruit Lip Balm, $6
Combat the oily-complexion curse with a handy pack of disposable blotting tissues or pressed powder. Whether it's stress, pollution, travelling, working out or changes in the weather that trigger your midday shine, you don't have to take off all your makeup or wash your face in order to nix the oil. You can totally refresh your look in less than 30 seconds.
We like: Relaxing Natural Lavender Blotting Papers, $10; and Tarte Provocateur Mineral Pressed Powder, $39.
A small spritz will refresh second-day locks and boost volume, but without the white residue, because the aerosol works to absorb excess oil around your roots.
Not into big hair? Try misting your clothes to beat static cling, or lightly spraying a run in your stockings. Just remember to keep the can at arm's length from your clothing to avoid getting a dark spot.
We like: L'Oréal Elnett Satin Extra Strong Hold Travel Size Hairspray, $8
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