New to Sephora...

Hi all, so I've been using makeup a long time, and I've always bought the less expensive items, NYX is probably the most luxurious makeup item I own but I want to change that and begin buying some higher end items to add to my already large collection. With that said what are the top five items I should look into picking up first? Thanks! 

Re: New to Sephora...

Oh man... where do I begin! 5 products is so hard to break down.


1. Dior Shimmer Star. Pick either Amber or Rose Diamond depending on your complexion. Personally I love both and own both BUT I use Amber a bit more.


2. Foundation: Personally I LOVE Armani Luminous Silk but it isn't sold at Sephora. I also like the Hourglass foundations that are sold at Sephora and again, pick the variety for your skin type.


3. A bold red lip: Personally my favorite is Givenchy Le Rouge in 307 (Grenat Initie). It's a semi-matte lip. However for a truly matte bold red lip try either Still Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Beso (True iconic red) or Fiery (Also true red but more vampy) or Make Up For Ever (MUFE) Aqua Rouge in 8. It has a clear gloss on one side so if you're not ready to totally take the matte plunge you can wear a glossy red too!


4. I have eyelash extensions but before I got them I SWORE by Diorshow classic. I'm also a fan of the Diorshow Extase. They work wonders on eyelashes (I'd still say extensions are better though).


5. Josie Maran Coconut Gelee blush. Personally I love how cool and refreshing and easy this blush is to apply. There are a variety of colors depending on how you prefer your blushes but they're all very hydrating and it's really hard to "over-blush". 


Hopefully that helps! I wish I could've added more items but I don't want to overwhelm you in addition to the excellent suggestions everyone else has made!

Re: New to Sephora...

1. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim ... an all over dusting of it elevates your drug store foundations to the next level.

2. Beauty Blender ... again, can be used with less expensive foundations for a beautiful finish.

3. Anastasia Brow Whiz ... you have to try it to believe the difference it will make in your brows.

4. Nars blush ... I put off purchasing one for so long thinking that there couldn't be very much difference.  Love Sin for the winter months.

5. And of course, the Naked palette of your choice.  I use Naked 2 more often, but I know a lot of people prefer the original.  You have to choose the right one for you.

Re: New to Sephora...

I totally second most of these recommendations!


Especially -

1. Ambient light - YES

2. Love BB, finish is everything (as with #1), and can really improve your look

4. I LOVE NARS BLUSH.  Smiley Very Happy Smooth, buildable, sheer.  Love them.  Sin is a great color (but too warm/ruddy on me); I use Gaiety which is a cool sheer surprisingly natural looking pink on me, both are great choices.


The two substitutions I would make are some of my HG Products:


*Try Highlighting and Contouring!  I use MAC Emphasize to highlight, and MAC Sculpt sculpting powder to contour under cheekbones, chin, etc.  I really like MAC products all together for the most part.  Some of their blushes were not pigmented enough for me, but I am heavy with blush as my face is naturally kinda colorless.


* Yves Saint Laurent Volum Effet BABYDOLL Mascara.  I have this in black for dramatic but classy fake lashes look, and in brown for everyday.  LOVE it.  Low clump, great brush really combs lashes, naturally pushes and "sets" my lashes into "open" and awake and up mode -- without a curler.  Love this mascara for length and the deep dense black is great too.

Re: New to Sephora...

my favorite non expensive brands are Revlon and Wet N' Wild. Wet N' Wild has AMAZING super pigmented shadows in their line. Top notch quality that I sometimes think is better than high end brands. For Revlon I really like their nail polishes and the Photoready and Colorstay foundations.

Re: New to Sephora...

Hello Brandylynn111, and welcome to Sephora and BeautyTalk!  We're all very glad to have another Insider join this community and know you will find a wealth of helpful information and enabling sisters (& brothers) to guide you along the way!

With that said, I agree with marydiva in that you cannot go wrong with an Urban Decay Naked palette (personally just acquired Naked 3, though hubby is holding it hostage for Christmas) and NARS blush (I've had my Super Orgasm blush for 2+ years and just hit pan).

Foundations I've discovered is a very personal item.  If you live near a Sephora, I recommend going over to try a few products out before you discover what works best for your skin and skin tone.  Even a mini-makeover from a Sephora artist would be a great way to find your new Holy Grail foundation.

I've recently acquired Real Techniques brushes.  Finally found brushes that don't seem scratchy or irritating to my sensitive skin, and haven't shed the least little bit!  (Would never have thought to try them had it not been for this community and could never thank them enough for suggesting them.)

There are many great suggestions that will be tossed out there for you to pick and choose from.  And most are truly amazing products.  Please don't let the world of Premium Cosmetics overwhelm you.  Just remember to choose items that you're comfortable and happy with.

Best of luck and we'll be looking forward to hearing which products you finally select!  <3

Re: New to Sephora...

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1 - Foundation:  I think a high end foundation makes the biggest difference in anyones makeup, so I would definitely start there!  I have tried many many many high end foundations, and my absolute favorite is Estee Lauder Double Wear.  I don't think you can find it at all Sephora's, but go to an Estee Lauder counter and get a sample to try!


2 - Blush:  I love blushes by Tarte and NARS.  Tarte's Blissful is georgeous and NARS' Orgasm is a very popular one!


3 - Eyeshadow:  Definitely start with a nice neutral palette!  My favorite is by far Stila's In The Light palette, which also comes with an eyeliner, so you can kill 2 birds with 1 stone! 


4 - Mascara:  I really like Benefits they're Real.  They sell a smaller size for $10, so you could try it out with out investing too much.


5 - Eye primer:  A good eye primer is key to keeping your eyeshadow in place all day!  I really like ones by NARS or Urban Decay.


I hope this helps!


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Re: New to Sephora...

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NYX has some really great products, I have quite a few of their items in my collection.  I love their shadows and the white eye primer in the little tub.  That is a besides the point!  Some of my favorite products from Sephora are....


Too Faced Shadow Insurance

Any Too Faced Eye Shadow Palette

Benefit Blushes

Makeup Forever Single Pan Shadows

Sephora 12 HR Liquid Eyeliner

Sephora Brushes any of them!  I have always had good luck with their brushes

Tarte Smooth Operator Finishing Powder

Tarte Lash Primer

Tarte Skinny Eye Liners

Lorac Pro Blush Stain

Any Lorac eye shadow

Smashbox of Makeup Forever Concealers

Marc Jacobs Dot Perfume

Dior Pure Poison Perfume

Urban Decay Single Pan Eye Shadows


I know that's more than 5 but 5 things to pick from Sephora is too hard! 

Re: New to Sephora...

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Foundation: Try Kat Von D Tattoo or Guerlain Lingerie De Peau

Concealer Pen: Givenchy Mister Light

Blush: Anything from Nars or Tarte

Eyeshadow: Naked 2 Palette

Lipstick: Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick or YSL Rouge Volupte  


Re: New to Sephora...

if you are interested in the makeup and not skin care, i would say that you could stick to drugstore mascara - there are plenty of good ones. also, there are plenty of good lipglosses and lipsticks at the drugstore. i've also heard that nyx makes a great eye primer so i might stick with that. milani makes reasonable blushes and i'm told that rimmel has decent eyeliners. i also think you could get a great setting powder in the ben nye brand. foundation and concealer are two items i would definitely upgrade. also, i would consider investing in some good brushes. if it is between buying a higher end shadow or brush, i would recommend going with a good brush. if you can afford both, then certainly go for both. anyway, here are my recs for things that are a step above drugstore brands but not crazy expensive:


1. foundation: depending on your skintype i like bare minerals for sensitive skin or acne, laura mercier tinted moisturizer for light coverage, kat von d lockit tattoo foundatio for full coverage


2. concealer: occ skin conceal, clinique airbrush concealer


3. eyeshadow: a palette is cost efficient - take a look at the naked palettes or lorac pro or bare minerals ready shadows


4. brushes: sephora and mac make good midrange brushes. also take a look at real techniques for a cheap but well reviewed option, esp their face and blush brushes


5. i guess i would reserve #5 for cheeks, lips, or brows. for cheeks benefit and tarte are great midrange brands. for brows i would go with anastasia brow pencil. for lips, its probably best to get a palette. sephora makes some really nices glosses.


one last piece of advice: i would stalk the sale section, you can get some really great deals. keep in mind also that the sale section is going to be 20% off starting 12/25! best of luck!

Re: New to Sephora...

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Products I would recommend for starting out in high end makeup:


1. Urban Decay naked skin foundation(amazing stuff)

2. NARS radiant creamy concealer

3. A tarte blush (or NARS if your skin isn't breakout prone)

4. A shadow palate my recommendations for your coloring would be the lorac pro or the naked3

5. Hoola bronzer by benefit or park avenue princess by tarte( I am fair like you and can pull it off)

6. Depending on what kind of lippy you prefer a buxom lipgloss or an urban decay revolution lipstick 

7. YouTube videos you an get awesome makeup reviews and makeup tips (they have seriously changed my makeup life) 

Re: New to Sephora...

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Oh what a wonderful world you are entering! You will never regret it and your skin will thank you!


What I focus on is great skin care. after I strip my make up off, I pamper my skin and repair any damage that all make up inevitably causes. This will make your make up look better also.


Re: New to Sephora...

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Welcome to Sephora! Smiley Very Happy I think you’ll love BT, it’s a very welcoming and helpful community. Like you, I made the transition into high end makeup and it changed my life! I never knew that my face could look so fab! After going high-end, you’ll never go back. First thing first - you need to try some AMAZING eyeshadows. I highly recommend Urban Decay. They have incredible blendability, pigment and quality. The NAKED palettes are great investments - they’ll last you 5+ years!! I just got Naked3 in the mail and it’s BEAUTIFUL. Naked2 is ALSO fantastic! From your coloring, I’d recommend going with either Naked2 or Naked3. Naked3 is lighter, more natural and more rosy/pinkish. Naked2 has a lot of taupes. Every girl needs a good eyeliner! My holy grail product is the LORAC Front of the Line eyeliner. It’s a liquid eyeliner pen with a brush tip. The marker goes on beautifully with all the glamour of a liquid eyeliner without the challenge of application. It’s like a sharpie for grownups! It’s the easiest eyeliner on the planet and it lasts a long time! Now, in terms of mascara - diving into high end mascara can be very, very risky. I don’t recommend dropping $25+ on a mascara when you haven’t sampled it yet! That’s a sure-fire way to end up returning something. There’s LOTS of promo codes for different mascaras, so you can try a deluxe sample for free so you know you’ll like it before you purchase - this is something I always do! At other times of the year Sephora releases what’s called a Lash Stash. Unfortunately it’s out of stock. For just $45, you can try 8 deluxe mascaras and 2 full size, as well as a pair of falsies. Not only is that deal AMAZING - Sephora is out of it! They’ll have another one next year. I recommend finishing off the mascaras you currently own and holding out for the new lash stash to get released. Stick with mascara freebies from Sephora and you’ll be good to go until the next one comes out. (It’ll let you try a wide range of high end mascara. Mascara is always a hit or miss and you don’t want to invest in something you don’t know you’ll love.) As for blush, you absolutely CAN NOT go wrong with NARS blush. I highly recommend Orgasm. It’s a beautiful peachy pink that is universally flattering on every skin tone. It’s a cult classic! Now, in terms of foundation - I hate the heavy feeling of liquid - I just can’t go through my day feeling like there’s makeup on my skin! It drives me nuts. That’s why I could never use drugstore foundation without feeling smothered. For a full coverage foundation that is easy to apply and reasonable in price, I recommend trying BareMinerals. Both the READY foundation and the Original loose powder are amazing. I use READY because it’s more convenient and I like the silky brush that you use with that one, but the regular is still great. Smiley Happy In terms of lipstick - Bite is definitely the way to go. They use food grade ingredients in their lipsticks, so no icky chemicals that will leach into your system! I personally almost never finish a lipstick, so I LOVE Bite’s liplayers. For the price of 1 ½ lipsticks, you can try EIGHT different shades, just half the size of a full tube! Smiley Very Happy The Bite Lip Discovery kit is AMAZING. You can try lots of different colors without spending a ton of cash.
So, to sum up, here are my recommendations:
1. Urban Decay Palette (Get one of the NAKED palettes - either Naked2 or Naked3 would suit your skin coloring.) ($52 - expensive, but it’ll last 5+ years, so it’s totally worth it in the long run.)
2. LORAC Front of the Line Eyeliner (The best $22 I ever spent!)
3.NARS blush in Orgasm (I believe this is upwards of $28? It’s pricy for a blush, but it’ll last about half a year and the color is fabulous.)
4. BareMinerals Foundation ($28, I believe? Someone else can confirm if I’m wrong. I know it’s under $30. One of the most affordable high end foundations and also the best.)
5. Bite Lip Discovery kit ($38 for lipstick might seem expensive, but you get EIGHT different colors. Definitely a great investment.

Re: New to Sephora...

I've written a list of the products you've suggested, I am definitly going to get some of these the day after Christmas! I'm so excited, I regularly use E.L.F. or other cheapies, and aside from the three bare minerals brushes I use the only other brushes I have are elf ones and they're...okkkayyy lol I'm glad you understand where i'm coming from, I'm just sick of not having the looks I want since my makeup isn't working. Thank you very much for your reply!! Smiley Happy

Re: New to Sephora...

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No problem girl! Smiley Happy I'm sure you'll be back raving about high end makeup like the rest of us crazies in no time Smiley Happy

Re: New to Sephora...

My top products are;
-Clarisonic Mia 2 (skincare is essential for a great makeup application! IMO!)
-GlamGlow mud treatment (excellent for spot treatment, or a mask on your face! I have a skincare obsession! Smiley Happy )
-Urban Decay anything! (Setting spray leaves me shine free all day long, the eyeshadows stay and don't crease, and the eyeliner is the BEST I've ever used!)
-Benefit Hoola bronzer (About $23.00 and great pigmentation!)
-Benefit Dandelion blush (same price, and great quality!) 

-Sonia Kashuk brushes (From Target, i use the black handled ones, with a few white handled ones. They are a bit pricey for drugstore, but I like them better then my Mac and even some Sigma.)
-Real Techniques brushes (Cost me $20 at Kohls for two face brushes, and I use them every single day! Love it!)

Re: New to Sephora...

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I second the recommendation for Sonia Kashunk brushes. They're better than most high end. 

Re: New to Sephora...

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Welcome!  Sephora has changed my life!  I am quite a Sephora junkie, I love poking around, looking at everything, asking for samples, advice, etc. The associates at my local store are so nice, they know me and are always so helpful!   Some of my favorite things are Too Faced eyeshadow palettes and Candlelight Duo highlighter, Ole Henriksen skincare, Hourglass mineral veil primer and ambient light finishing powder, Sephora brand eyeshadows, eyeliner pencils, lipsticks, and microsmooth powder foundation, blush and bronzer.  Sephora's own brand I find to be of very good quality.   Sephora has some nice palettes as well, I have 2 microsmooth palettes and several of the mini eyeshadow palettes.  Have fun!

Re: New to Sephora...

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Hi Brandylynn111! Welcome! 

My top 5 are:

(1) Anything UD (Urban Decay) ESPECIALLY the 24/7 eyeliner

(2) Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara
(3) Make Up Forever HD Foundation (just got hooked on this)
(4) Hourglass Primer
(5) Fresh Tinted Lip Treatment

Have fun trying out your new products Smiley Happy


Re: New to Sephora...

Welcome to BT Brandylynn! There are all price points on Sephora and some less expensive brands are better than more expensive brands IMO. We all have our favorites. Between sales, value kits and sets, and promos; you will be able to add some nice products to your collection without breaking the bank. If you get a product that does not work for you, Sephora will take it back. They do not hassle you if you have a return. They want you to be happy with your products.


You will also learn so much and meet wonderful people; that is the best! Have fun and jump in!

Re: New to Sephora...

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Thank you for the welcome Smiley Happy What are your fave less expensive brands? I know i've spent thousands on drugstore cheapies. I won't buy Lancome simply because L'Oreal is the same company and come out of the same factory. 

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