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Makeup Bag Makeover

  • PETER ARDITO

    Before: Compact Clutter

    Nicole Teut
    34, art director

    Nicole is packing too many eye shadow quads and face powders, which eat up a ton of space.

     

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    After

    Invest in a customizable palette. "Nicole can choose her favorite colors and swap them out each season," says Wade.

    Here: Mary Kay Compact Pro, $35 (makeup and brushes sold separately)

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    Before: Downright Dirty

    Beth Lawler
    41, paralegal

    "Beth has good makeup, but it's grubby because the inside of her case is such a mess," says Wade.

     

  • PETER ARDITO

    After

    A case with two pouches keeps cosmetics more organized. Wade recommends that Beth separate powders from creams and pack cleansing cloths for quick mop-ups.

    Sonia Kashuk bag, $10; Yes To Cucumbers towelettes, $3; Maybelline New York Eye Studio Eyeshadow, $10; Revlon blush, $10; Origins foundation, $26.50; L'Oreal Paris Brow Stylist, $9; Rimmel Royal Gloss, $5; Avon SuperMagnify Mascara, $8.50

  • PETER ARDITO

    Before: Lipstick Overload

    Debbie Simmons
    48, nurse

    Debbie wastes time trying to find stuff—and she's carrying eight lipsticks!

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    After

    Who says lipstick has to come in a tube? Save space with a compact DIY lip palette. "Fill it with your 'greatest hits' of color so they're always in reach," says Wade.

    Japonesque Lipstick Palette, $18 (lipstick not included)

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    Best If Used By...

    How fresh is your makeup? Under ideal conditions it has at most a two-year shelf life, says Ni'Kita Wilson, a cosmetics chemist in Fairfield, New Jersey. "As soon as you open a product, the clock starts ticking." Make the most of your countdown with these simple rules:

    1. STORE WISELY: Keep makeup in a dry environment, like your bedroom. Bacteria, mold, and yeast grow more easily in humid bathrooms.
    2. PAY ATTENTION TO PACKAGING: Look for pump bottles when possible. Foundation or concealer with twist-off caps or pots that you dip your finger into allow bacteria to enter.
    3. KNOW YOUR NATURALS: If you go green, plan on replacing your products more frequently. "Organic makeup lasts about half as long as traditional formulas," says Wilson.
    4. USE YOUR SENSES: Be wary of foul odors or liquid makeup that has separated. It's the first sign that a product has gone bad.

    When to toss
    Mascara: Three to six months
    Liquid eyeliner: Six months
    Powder, blush, eye shadow, foundation: 1 year
    Concealer, lipstick, lip gloss: 2 years

  • PETER ARDITO

    In the Bag

    Looking for a better storage solution? These three cases are pretty and practical.

    CHIC CARRYALL: Tory Burch Cindie case, $75: Splurge-worthy, thanks to the stout shape and stylish print.

  • PETER ARDITO

    Organize It

    TRIPLE THREAT: LeSportsac 3-Zip Cosmetic in Gum Drop, $20: Perfectly sized for your purse, and the zippered sections keep you organized.

  • PETER ARDITO

    Jet-Setter Bag

    JET-SETTER: Trina Audrey 3 Piece Travel Pouch set, $32: The clear bag doubles as a luxe (and reusable) plastic baggie for travel.

    Originally published in Ladies' Home Journal, October 2010.

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