My Makeup Routine for Work

Last week, I was chatting with my lovely friend Hoi Yin Li, who mentioned she was interested in seeing what I products I use on a daily basis when I get ready for work. I’m not sure how on earth I managed to get this post done so quickly considering it usually takes me a few weeks to prepare and edit a blog post, and on top of that I’ve basically been coming home only to sleep – but here it is.

I have to admit that I do a full face of makeup for work every morning – eyeshadow, brows, foundation, and even highlighting and a little contouring. It’s probably a bit much for a lot of people. However, even though I do the whole works, I feel like my makeup still looks quite natural and work-appropriate. I remember on two occasions male coworkers have told me that I don’t look like I wear too much makeup (I don’t remember how this topic came up as usually male coworkers avoid mentioning anything about the way their female cohorts look, haha). At the time, I took it as a compliment/good thing, but now that I’m thinking about it, it could also mean “you look rough, you should put some makeup on once in a while…”

Anyways, today I’m sharing with you the categories of products I use every day; I may not necessarily list specific products for some of the categories because I tend to switch those up a lot (eyeshadows, blushes, highlighters). For the makeup categories where I use the same product every day, I will mention what I’m currently using. In addition to listing the products/categories, I will also list my makeup in the order I apply them on my face.

Anastasia_Beverly_Hills_Dipbrow_Pomade.jpg1. Brow Product

I feel like most people don’t do their brows first, but the reason I do them first is give my eye and face cream time to absorb into my skin while I’m doing my brows. Currently, I’m using the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade in the shade Granite. It’s a good product, but I find it more fussy/time-consuming to use than an eyebrow pencil. This particular product is quite pricey though, so I do want to try finishing it up.



2. Eyeshadow Primer
I ran out of eye shadow primer a long, long time ago, so I started using this MAC Studio Finish concealer as a lid primer because it doesn’t match my skin tone anymore and thus can’t be used for its intended purpose of concealing. It actually works really well as an eyeshadow primer because it’s a bit tacky without moving all over my lids. I’m not going to lie, this product is really old, and I probably should have thrown it out already, especially considering it’s a cream product. However, the smell doesn’t seem to have gone off yet and I do wipe it down with alcohol often, so I’m keeping it until I finish this baby up. Then I can Back to MAC it!


3. Eyeshadow

Like most people who own a lot of eye shadow, I switch up my eye looks almost every day. Regardless of what look I’m going for, I do have to give a shoutout to one palette that will almost always make an appearance in my morning makeup routine: the original Tarte Tartelette palette, which consists of all matte shadows. I always end up using a shade from this palette, whether it’s one of the transition colours, the deep browns to darken my crease, or a matte browbone highlight.


4. Eyeliner

After applying eyeshadow, my next step is to line the eyes. In general, I prefer using liquid liner because I like the cleaner edges, but I also think that pencil liner is less fussy and more forgiving to use when I’m in a rush to get ready. The pencil liner I’m currently using for work is the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil, which you’ll have seen several times in my Project Pan.



5. Mascara
Because my lashes are pretty much non-existent, curling my eyelashes and using mascara is pretty much a “must” in my routine. There’s been several times when I’ve forgotten to apply mascara before work, which annoys me to no end because having eye makeup with no mascara looks off to me. For the last 5-6 years, I’ve been using the Shu Uemura eyelash curler to curl my lashes, and the current tube of mascara I’m using is the Maybelline Total Temptation mascara (review to come!).

After finishing my eyes, the next step is base makeup. I know that some people prefer doing their base makeup first, and others like doing their eye makeup first. I actually don’t have a preference – as I mentioned earlier, the only reason I do my eyes first is to let my skincare sink in, but if I haven’t washed my face and moisturized immediately before makeup, I’m totally fine doing my base makeup before my eyes.

6. Foundation Primer

I never used to be a primer type of gal, but a girlfriend introduced me to the Becca Back Light Priming Filter last year, and I haven’t looked back since. I wear primer mostly to help keep dry patches at bay and to give my skin a bit of glow underneath foundation, rather than to help make my foundation last longer as primer was originally intended for. The Back Light Priming Filter gives my skin the prettiest, healthiest glow without looking crazy or shimmery.

7. Concealer

After primer comes concealer, which I use for covering under eye circles and for spot concealing.  The Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Creme is the concealer I’m currently going through. I’ve mentioned before in my review of this product that I don’t love it for under the eyes, but I’ve been having some issues with hyperpigmentation lately and I’ve been appreciating the high coverage of this concealer for that purpose.

8. Foundation

About a year ago, I rarely used foundation, but I’ve been using it regularly for the last few months and now I’m addicted to using it! The one I’m using right now is the Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Liquid Makeup, which is almost finished up.


9. Contour

I started contouring a year ago and now I can’t stop doing it on an every day basis. I know, I know, it seems super extra for an everyday look, but it’s not a crazy contour routine where I sculpt my whole face. I only do the cheeks, which only adds half a minute to my makeup routine! Currently I’m using the NYX High Definition Blush in Taupe as a contour – I took this on a weekend getaway this past weekend knowing full well it would shatter, and I was not wrong. But I have no regrets! Alternatively, in the summer I tend to bronze instead of contour – for that, I have been loving the Physician’s Formula Murumuru Butter Bronzer in the shade Bronzer.


10. Blush

After contouring comes blush. I don’t actually own a lot of blushes, but I tend to switch up my blushes every day based on the season or to go with my eye looks. I can’t pick a favourite – I love both natural shades and bolder blushes as I think they serve a different purpose!


11. Highlighter

Besides eyeshadow palettes, highlighters are the other product that I own the most of, and are also my weakness! Although I currently have a highlighter in my Project Pan and am thus using it every day, I otherwise switch up my highlighters every day as well. While things like eyeshadow and mascara have been in my every day routine since I started wearing makeup, highlighter (like contouring) is a fairly new addition – I used to only do it on weekends or special occasions. This is definitely an extra step that is not necessary for work, but I…just love highlighter.



12. Translucent Setting Powder

Lastly, to finish everything off, I powder my face! I really only powder my forehead and avoid the other areas because I have dry skin, and powder tends to enhance the dryness. I’ve been using the Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder for the last two years and it’s a really great, finely milled loose powder.

Aaaand that is it! 12 products in my every day routine, which gave me a “yikes!” moment because I never realized I put that many products on my face! What do YOU use to get ready for work, and how many products do you use?

19 thoughts on “My Makeup Routine for Work

  1. Great post! This basically describes my everyday makeup routine although lately I have been so lazy to do my eyeshadows. Which sucks since I have so many amazing eyeshadow palettes haha. Looking forward to reading your review on the Maybelline mascara!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Okay, I’m glad to hear you use roughly the same amount of products every day, because as I was writing it all down, I was like “okay…this is a lot” LOL. I get it, I get lazy with eyeshadows once in a while too. Go use those pretties up!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes I understand! It is as if your using a lot of product when your righting it down or explaining it to someone but once all applied to the face it’s not haha. I definitely will be using it up! I am going to try and follow the peachy looks for the summer!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I wasn’t expecting you to have this post up so soon! This was really fun to read – I always like reading people’s everyday/work makeup routines because it’s likely that they are products that are fail-safe and very put-together. I also find them the most relatable too.

    As it’s been getting warmer, I’ve been enjoying minimal makeup looks which can range from as little as 4 products to probably 8 products max.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wasn’t expecting to have this post up so soon either, LOL. Was thinking more end of May, but then I looked at all of the draft posts I had ready to go and I didn’t feel like posting any of them yet.

      What products are you using for your minimal makeup looks? It’s interesting because a lot of people seem to wear less makeup during the summer for good reason, but my makeup routine does not change. I MAY use foundation less often, but that’s about it!


      • I have combination/oily skin so I don’t like too much coverage in the warmer months. In the colder months, I am more combination/dry so I can deal with having the extra layers but in summer, I prefer everything to be weightless and airy on my skin for fear of product melt-off and just letting my skin breathe in general.

        I’ve gone back to an old favourite actually – the Clinique Sheer Block SPF 35 which I use as both SPF and base in one. A fellow blogger Joyce tells me it’s a product from the 90s LOL so no wonder no one talks about it, but I like it – it’s easy and gives my skin light coverage so it evens everything out and even my pores look nice. (I believe I have an old post with this product…something like makeup for when you’re running late…😂😂). I’ve also gone back to a Charlotte Tilbury all in one palette…cannot fault it! Maybe I’ll do a post on this too? Who knows. 😉


  3. I do a full face every day too. And I do it for ME because I could probably go to my job wearing a paper bag over my head and I doubt anyone would notice. I just did a dramatic hair color change and no one has said a word. 🙄


  4. I almost always put on a full face of makeup every day too, even if I’m going for a no makeup look. I like taking the time out of my day to do my makeup while listening to an audiobook, it’s relaxing for me 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I do a full face for work days too! I go back and forth between neutral eye makeup looks and a bit bolder ones. I don’t work in a front facing office so I don’t really need to worry about clients seeing me, but doing my makeup in the morning is probably the best part of my work day 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I enjoyed reading this! I do my eye makeup first too! 😀 I switched a long time ago and initially it felt weird to have fully done eye makeup and bare face but now it feels more natural to do it in that order.

    I ran through a quick list of what I use in the mornings and I think it’s similar to your list – in order of application – I included skincare in the list too:
    • Face mist
    • Serum
    • Eye primer / cream base
    • Eyeshadows
    • Liquid eye liner (upper lash line)
    • Mascara (after this is where I use micellar water to wipe under my eyes)
    • Face cream
    • Eye cream
    • Sunscreen
    • Face primer
    • Foundation
    • Concealer
    • Powder
    • Brows
    • Pencil eye liner (for lower lash)
    • Blush
    • Setting spray

    Unlike you, I do my brows after I finish my foundation / powder since I feel like the application of them would disturb my brows. I rarely wear bronzer, contour, or highlighter for work days. 😛

    Typically how long does it take you to get read in the mornings? It takes me about 45 mins mostly because I wait for skincare layers to absorb in between, and I mess around on my phone in the mornings. 😛 I rather enjoy my morning routine though – similar to a night time routine, I find it relaxing to get ready for work.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for sharing your routine, it was so interesting to read! I find it very interesting that you do your eyes first, THEN apply face and eye cream – I never would have thought to do that! Totally get your reasoning behind doing brows after your face, as well as not contouring/bronzing/highlighting on an everyday process – it’s a bit much, LOL.

      It takes about 30 mins to do my makeup. In total (including shower, hair routine, getting changed and eating), it takes me an hour and 15 minutes from the time I wake up to when I leave the house. I also find the makeup part of it relaxing – the rest of it is a mad rush!

      Liked by 1 person

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