10 Must-have Items in Your Makeup Bag


Set of Brushes

You stopped painting with your fingers when you graduated from kindergarten, so why are you still putting on your makeup that way? Your face is the canvas, and makeup brushes are the tools you need to make it a masterpiece. Using a makeup brush will also keep your hands off your face before they can leave behind a layer of dirt, oil and bacteria that can cause breakouts.

You'll find a different brush for just about every type of makeup:

  • Blush brush -- tapered at the sides with a rounded tip
  • Eye shadow brush -- soft bristled with tapered sides and a rounded top
  • Lip brush -- firm, tapered bristles
  • Powder brush -- soft-bristled, large brush
  • Brow/lash groomer -- rough bristles with a square or slanted tip

You don't need to buy every single one of these; just don't use one brush for everything, unless you want to wear blush on your eyelids and eyeshadow on your cheeks.

Before you buy a makeup brush set, test it out. In a good-quality brush, the bristles should all move in one direction to give you more control over application. When you pull on the bristles, they should stay firm. If clumps of bristles fall out in your hand, find another brush to carry around.