8 Beauty Products Every Woman Should Own

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Bold Lip Color

A vibrant pout provides a pop of color—no matter what makeup products you pair with it. Tip: Apply a bright lip stain first, then swipe a creamy or glossy lipstick in a matching shade on top. This layering technique will help the color last for hours without feeling dry or looking cakey.

Black Eyeliner

Like a little black dress, black eyeliner is a reliable, flattering staple—it defines your eyes and creates the illusion of thicker lashes. Tip: To prevent eyeliner from looking harsh or messy, try “tight-lining.” Lightly trace your upper lash line with a black eye pencil, creating a line no more than 1 to 2 millimeters thick.

Eye Shadow Palette

A sampler streamlines your stash but doesn’t stop you from experimenting with new color combinations. Tip: Pick a palette that has neutrals (like taupe, copper, or bronze) for day and rich, jewel tones (like plum, sapphire, or hunter green) for night.

Highlighter

This staple gives your skin a subtle, dewy glow. Expect compliments. Tip: Choose a pearly liquid highlighter to compliment lighter skin tones, or a shimmery peach to enhance dark and olive skin. Dab it on your cheekbones and down the bridge of your nose.

Bronzer

This golden powder fakes a post-vacation glow, especially when you sweep it over rosy cheeks—either natural or blush-enhanced. Tip: Don’t get bronzer-happy! Lightly dust it along the perimeter of your face and on the apples of your cheeks.

Mascara

This essential eye-opener helps you look awake, no matter how late you got in last night. Tip: After you apply the usual upward strokes, look down and brush the backside of your lashes. It’ll make them look thicker and darker and also deposit a tiny bit of mascara on your lower lashes, which is all you really need there.

Concealer

This staple hides blemishes and under-eye circles, letting your best features hog the spotlight instead. Tip: Use an illuminating, creamy formula under the eyes and a thicker, matte solution for long-lasting acne coverage.

Primer

Primer is like Spanx for your skin: It makes anything you put on top—like foundation—look smooth and flawless. And unlike undergarments, primer can also be worn on its own. Tip: Look for a formula with SPF (Sun Protection Factor) 30 or higher, and you won’t need a separate facial sunscreen.