One lovely gem I have recently discovered through Mama Mia, is a book by the gorgeous Zoe Foster called Amazing Face. It has all sorts of beauty stuff you didn't know you needed to know...and more.
The Work Face.
You want coverage that is light but covers the imperfections, an eyeshadow that hints at glamour but doesn't scream 'made up', defining mascara and a hint of colour on your cheeks for a healthy glow. That about it?
Coverage - Tinted moisturiser (+ concealer for imperfections) is my daily routine and I love Clinique City Block or Olay Total Effects Tinted Moisturiser with 15+ is creamy and beautiful.
*For night time or more coverage Chanels Aqua Ultralight Vitalumiere makeup glides on.
Concealer - Spots: Estee Lauder Smoothing Cream Concealer is the bees knees, just add a bit of loose powder over the spot. Under eyes: Cheap and cheerful Garnier roll on anti dark circles cream doesn't drag skin and hydrates.
Eyeshadow - The perfect duo with a cream and a grey/dark brown colour will take you anywhere and you can just add eyeliner to take you into the night.
The below image shows a basic eyeshadow application with a creamy/peach shadow over the whole eye socket and a browny/grey on the outer half of the socket and a little swept up at the outer edge.
They have added a dark liner along the lash but this is up to you.
Stila make 'rechargeable' compacts so you can pick and choose your perfect combo. Good old Revlon eye combos are also great.
Brushes - If you only buy one brush, buy yourself a good quality eyeshadow brush (MAC or Bobbi Brown are top of the brush brigade). Preferably small and flat so you can apply over the whole eye socket and use to smooth shadow/liner along the lash line.
Mascara - Thanks to Zoe Foster mentioned above, I now proudly use Clinique Naturally Glossy Mascara, which delivers beautiful eyelashes with no clumps (better believe it). Clear mascara is also fabulous for taming brows.
Blush - Nars Orgasm and Sin are two favourites, which are a little $$ but last and last. Bloom and Benefit make lovely cream blushes too (these make my cheeks break out so see how you go).
Lipgloss/lipstick - MAC and Burts Bees make lovely glosses (not too sticky) and David Jones and Natio lipsticks are creamy + staying power.
As you will see from the links above, if it can be bought on Strawberrynet, I'm there.
Take it to the Streets
Winged eyeliner is the style of the moment and I talked about it here. The simplest way to take your daytime makeup to night is to add liquid or pencil eyeliner in dark brown/black with more lashings of mascara.
I have not quite mastered the art as yet (have the eye makeup remover pads handy) but hopefully will transform my look very soon.
An easy way to cheat is to use a stubby eyeshadow brush and just moisten your favourite eyeshadow colour and apply like liner along your top lashes.
For more help than I can offer on a plethora of beauty topics, head to Primped, which has all the latest styles and how-tos.
What are your work essentials for makeup?
Source: Valj via stock xchng, Gabriela Pinto via Flickr, matchstick via stock xchng