Beauty · Lifestyle

Must-Have Makeup Items for College Students (And Everyone Else)

Heading to college soon or already there?  From a “been there, done that” perspective, I am going to share with you some of the makeup items I had to have in my college makeup bag, along some items I wish I had!

Moving into a dorm at college is an adjustment!  You no longer have any physical help from your parents or other family members.  There is no one there to keep you organized or make sure you’re out of bed on time, and you have to think of everything- what and when you will eat, assignment due-dates, meeting times, transportation, laundry.  Literally everything is different, including how you get ready before class or work, which means you probably will end up with less time for primping.  Plus, you don’t have your own bathroom (at least I didn’t), so you have to tote all of your supplies back and forth.

Anyone can benefit from the following makeup items because they will have you polished and ready to go in a jiffy.  No need to get all Picasso on your face for everyday activities like class and study groups.  Save that for the parties!  (Sorry, Mom.)

BB CREAMMakeupBag Clipart

There are a multitude of reasons why I am suggesting BB cream.  But first and foremost, it is a moisturizer and base all in one.  For whatever reason, I only recently began using one, and it’s right up there with your standard foundation.  I don’t even miss my foundation, honestly!  It masks all my imperfections and evens out my skin tone.  My current favorite BB cream is made by e.l.f., and I purchased it for about 6 dollars at a drugstore.  You can read my review of it here.


Highlighter wakes you up by brightening high points on your face, and it takes 10 seconds. My favorite is one that comes in a stick form, such as Clinique Chubby Stick Sculpting Highlight.  I just apply it on top of my BB cream:  Make big “parentheses” around your eyes so that the light reflects the highlighter above your blush line and on your temples, and dab it under peaks of brows, down the bridge of your nose, and on your Cupid’s bow.  Don’t forget to blend really well so that you don’t see any lines.  I really wish I had owned this in college.  I am not sure if it didn’t exist (I am sure it did) or wasn’t as well-known (…because I went to school in the age without Instagram, and Facebook only came out my senior year.  And yes, I know I am dating myself.).  Now, I cannot live without it.


Ahhh…the dreaded all-nighter.  This is highly likely during finals time.  You will want a concealer than is a shade lighter than your skin to brighten up your tired eye area.  This one by Maybelline really brightens my aching eyes, and it comes in 6 different shades.  I use the “light” shade.


No time to fill in your brows but can’t live without something?  A tinted brow gel like this one from L’Oreal will do the job.  It will hold your brows in place while making them appear fuller and a little darker.  You can watch this video of me applying it if it helps.  I also like this NYX Cosmetics Tinted Brow Mascara.


Need I say more??  I can’t live without mascara, either.  I would say blush and mascara were most two most used makeup items throughout my 4 years in undergrad.  My favorite high-end mascara is Chanel Inimitable Intense.  It really stiffens and lengthens your lashes and lasts all day.  My favorite drugstore mascara is CoverGirl Professional Super Thick Lash, and you can see me comparing it to Chanel here.


If you wake up feeling pale, this can change the world.  Haha, no, seriously, I can’t live without blush.  I am sure you were already bringing brush along in your makeup bag!  But here is my current favorite: L’Oreal True Match Super Blendable Blush in Spiced Plum.  Don’t forget your favorite brush!

lip gloss swatchesAN EVERYDAY LIP PRODUCT

I would choose a long-lasting gloss in the color of your choice.  Bare Minerals Marvelous Moxie stays put for hours and hours on my lips, so I only have to re-apply after meals.  It is by far my favorite gloss of all time.  Watch a video here!


This is a must- for the gym, before bed, for when you don’t want any color.  I am using this one by Burt’s Bees.  It’s 100% natural and makes my lips feel like butter.  The only thing is that it doesn’t contain SPF, so maybe purchase one of those as well.  Blistex carries an SPF balm, and I believe EOS does as well.

When you are pressed for time (Trust me, it will happen!), these items will get you through everyday college activities looking polished and natural.  These recommendations are really not just for college-goers, though.  They are for everyone else in this hurried world who has places to be and needs to be punctual (ahem working moms, stay-at-home moms, and pretty much all women).  Polish up and show up!  You will be more productive.

Best of luck on your journey!  That’s what’s up in lifestyle and beauty revelations today.  I hope this makeup routine saves you a little time!  Are there any products you would add to the list??  If you need some more beauty suggestions, check out this post.  Thanks for reading!!

Notes: Want a pretty stock photo like my featured image? Check out this post by Helen in Between.

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18 thoughts on “Must-Have Makeup Items for College Students (And Everyone Else)

  1. Hi Jackie!

    Thank you so much for being a follower of my blog. I just wanted to let you know that I’m moving from WordPress to Squarespace. This means that my posts will no longer show up in your feed. If you enjoy what I write, it would make me tremendously happy if you could hop over to my site and resubscribe. You can subscribe by email in the side menu, to get an occasional, minimal update with absolutely no spam or advertising, ever. It would mean a lot to me.

    Thank you and have an amazing day 🙂


      1. I came across something today you might be interested in. Another blogger is putting together an ebook of recipes for a nonprofit. She said this:
        ” I am pulling together a recipe eBook for charity that will be sold in the Goods Giving Back marketplace. It will benefit a different nonprofit member on a rolling basis. This is a great way to give back and get your name out into the world in a different way. Every contributor gets a credit with a photo, a short paragraph about why they choose to give, a business/blog URL, and two social media links with their recipe.”
        I submitted two of my recipes, and here is the link if you want to submit!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Thankyou! This is so helpful! I love your blog! It would mean the world if you checked out my blog and commented at !! THANKYOUUU I just started so some tips would help.


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