Call it minimalism, call it 'on trend', or just a Spring clean, either way decluttering has become a bit of a hobby of mine recently. I've tackled my wardrobe, purged at least a quarter of my beloved candle collection (a big deal for me) and now I'm onto a complete makeup overhaul come declutter.
But it's a tough one... because I truly love makeup! However comparing my makeup process on holiday, with a quarter of my collection (if not less) to my standard hour-long application in front of my hoards of makeup, I know I much prefer the quicker simplistic approach. And to be honest, I think most people do, however much you love makeup, fashion or even candles. Choice equally decisions and decisions equal confusion and time.
Basically, less is more.
But it has to work for you! There's no point in stripping your lipstick collection down to only a few then feeling like you have a lack of choice and re-buying. It's about balance and really accessing what you use over what you think you need. Below are my 5 tips that I believe can help you achieve a capsule makeup collection that will keep you clutter-free and appreciating what you have.
Step 1: The initial purge
Much like creating a capsule wardrobe, there has to be an initial purge. It may require an evening or an entire weekend depending on the size of your makeup collection but I suggest working through it by sections so not to overwhelm yourself. Maybe starting with base products, eyeshadows, lip products etc. The idea here is to majorly declutter your makeup stash; ditching all products that are looking worse for wear/out of date first and then products you just don't like or use (maybe passing them only a friend or family member). This should still leave you with a lot of choice but your collection should be looking lighter.
Step 2: Deciding what works for you (2nd purge)
Next, comes the 2nd purge in which I covered myself in makeup swatches deciding what products just don't suit me. That means the grey toned nude lipstick you love the look of in the bullet but makes you look slightly ill when on lips has gotta go! I suggest this is done in daylight as you will need to see what each product looks like against your complexion and compare swatches. Talking of similar products, again consider your least favourite going to a better home. I promise you however much you love a white gold highlight you don't need two of them in the exact same formula.
As for backups, of course you won't want to ditch them. But I'd suggest storing them away in a cupboard so they are away from your makeup collection and to ensure you don't accidently have two of the same product on the go at once.
Step 3: Organisation
Hopefully, by now you have only the makeup products you use in your collection, plus a few extras... because as I mentioned above, it is all about balance. Now is the time to decide if your current makeup setup/storage solution is working for you. If you keep all of your makeup in a makeup bag so that it's travel-friendly - from room to room, maybe it's time to think about a clear one or a fold-out makeup organiser with zip compartments. But if you apply your makeup in one place I would highly recommend an acrylic makeup organiser. Not only does this kind of storage allow you to see where everything is but it keeps it looking neat and tidy plus it's a good long-term solution. The above acrylic makeup organiser cost me only £6.65 from eBay here but if you want it ASAP then ASOS also stock the same organiser in two sections for £14.99 + £7.99 here. For larger options again you could look to eBay here, or Muji here, which ofter a good range of solutions but do cost more I've found.
Step 4: How To Organise Acrylic Makeup Storage
If you go for a makeup unit you have a few options on how to organise it. You may want to organise it by product, grouping lip products, eyeliners & pencils together etc, how it fits best in the organiser or by how you apply your makeup (a good option if you have little time when getting ready). I personally like storing by product type as I'm naturally messy and this means more than not I put everything back in its rightful place once I've applied my makeup.
A little extra tip if you want to store palettes in your makeup organiser, is to remove the bottom drawer. This creates an open slot (as seen above) large enough to store them!
Step 5: How to keep it up
Like with all change if can be easy to gradually slip back into old ways. If you have initially purged your collection properly this will only happen with unneeded future makeup purchases. Of course, you will occasionally want to treat yourself but possibly limit it to only a few products per month and only what you know you will use... no spending on that unicorn highlighter that looks oh so pretty but won't be a staple in your collection. To never waste money on makeup again you may find this post I recently wrote helpful.
A Seasonal Update
I also personally like to go through my makeup collection each season (so 4 times a year) and change it up, possibly a good time to treat yourself to new items, so that my setup only includes the shades and formulas that suit that time on year. This is also a good time to physically clean your makeup bag or give your acrylic storage a bath!
With a mindful capsule makeup collection you will find makeup application quicker and will see that less really is more!
Let me know if I've convinced you to give your makeup collection a total overhaul!