A Quick Trip: What does a High Maintenance Beauty Blogger Bring?

I admit that I love peeking into the makeup bags of my fellow beauty bloggers. The few times I’ve attended Total Beauty events, that’s been one of the most fascinating things for me- visiting other bloggers and seeing what they’ve brought with them! This past weekend I travelled back to So Cal, where I spent a lot of time hanging out with friends and family (and I did some shopping, you can see my haul at the end of this post).

I thought that I’d share what I brought with me to California. I pretty much just pulled together stuff that I already have, though I have the advantage of my beauty closet and the huge numbers of products found there. While I was visiting with family, there was a lot of discussion about travel beauty products and where to buy them. In a few days look for a post about some of my favorite sources (this is for you Cathy!), and if possible I would love to make this a semi-regular feature on 15 Minute Beauty Fanatic! Please e-mail me what you bring with you when you travel, your beauty travel tips or where you buy your travel products from. I know I’m curious, I’m sure that others are as well.

This is my 3-1-1 bag. A quick run down on what was in it this trip:
• Notice that my bag is not a ziploc, it’s from Kiehls. I didn’t see it in the store when I was there the other day (nor can I find it on-line), but I have still seen this at department stores like Neiman Marcus. It was a travel 3-1-1 bag that came filled with different “must have” travel products. I love this bag, it’s a very heavy duty plastic and I can just easily zip it open or closed. If you don’t have it, buy one if you see it!
Kiehls Lip Balm #1 is my all time favorite to use every night or when I’m a little bit dry.
Bliss Lemon-Sage Body Butter: Strong enough for my body and my hands, it has a great scent (good for overcoming less desirable scents encountered when traveling) and doesn’t leave me greasy.
• Shout wipes, because I am messy and they are better than that Tide pen at getting out coffee.
• Contacts and refreshing drops
• Medicines: Here you can just see my Albuterol (yes, I’m an asthmatic), but usually my epi-pen (I’m allergic to mushrooms, strange but true) and some other stuff is here too.
• Baby Wipes and Hand Sanitizer: I ran out of wipes on the trip home (that’s why they aren’t pictured), but wipes and hand sanitizer are a must during cold & flu season.
• If the weather is particularly bad and I’m worried about being stuck somewhere (I was once stuck at O’Hare for about 20 hours) then I’ll bring along more essentials like face wash, deodorant and such as well.
• More about the cosmetics below

This was my makeup bag. The bag itself is a great black bag from Beauty Fix. I have a couple of them from different shipments, I like the size and shape so tend to use them for travel. I’ll go more in depth about the products below, though the fragrances I brought were EL’s Sensuous Solid Perfume and my lab sample of Kenzo’s UFO (that’s why it’s in that little non-descript bottle. The lab samples come like that)

Brushes are from left to right:
MAC 182 Buffer Blush: I love to use this all over my face to blend once I have applied powder
MAC 239 Eye Shadow Brush to apply shadow to the crease
MAC 266 Small Angle Brush perfect for blending liner down into the lash line
• I love to blend all of my shadow with #8 fromBilly B
• A black handled brush, this one with an angled tip. It’s called “angle tip shadow brush” (original, I know) and I bought it for about $3 at Target a few years ago. I use it in dark shadow over liner to create a smokey eye and it is amazing!
• Black Eye Shadow Brush from Coastal Scents: They sent this to me a few years ago with some samples, and it is by far my most used eye shadow brush. If I had to guess, I’d say it is the Black Crease Brush. It’s soft, has survived years of washing and abuse and is the perfect size for applying shadow all over my lid. On the site it is less than $2, which makes me wonder why I haven’t ordered more. I’ll likely be filling up a cart over there after I’m done writing this post.
Billy B Foundation Brush #2
MAC 129 Blush Brush: I have this in normal and “special” travel sized editions. It’s my favorite blush brush currently, it’s the perfect size to hit my cheek bone but not make me look like Bozo.
• Not pictured here: Billy B Eyelash curler

My current “go to” face products:
Stila One Step Foundation
Almay Line Smoothing Pressed Powder A basic powder, but this one doesn’t settle into any imperfections, which I love. It also doesn’t look all powdery. The only problem is that it can somehow be hard to find around my area. It’s not available at the Almay displays in drugstores, Meijer or Target. Only Walmart. So, head there.
MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer: This was my favorite pigmented concealer, but lately it seems I’ve been using 3-4 layers of it, and it’s not lasting all day. I’m not sure if this is because my pot is about a year old now or what… I’ve been looking for a new concealer, look below to see what I bought.
Givenchy Prisme Again Blush: Love this for the multiple shades in one container. I can concentrate on the dark pink for more color, or the lighter shades if I want. Just a little bit of shimmer, perfect!

I ended up Tweeting about this the other day (yes, you can follow me on Twitter, though I tend to be a bit quiet). I ended up bringing an insane number of eye shadows with me because I couldn’t make up my mind, and then it turned out I had room anyways!
• The top palettes are all from Laura Mercier. The far left palette is a 5 colour eye shadow palatte and the center is a “master toolbox” both of which I just bought off of HauteLook. I’ve been pretty happy with them so far, though I admit that the shadows are more pigmented than I thought they would be, so I’m happy that I brought the third palette, which is the French Vanilla from a limited edition she did a few Christmases ago. I want to say it was Saks or Nordies? I honestly can’t remember. I just know I put it on my list, my amazing hubby bought me eye shadow for Christmas.
• The remaining eye shadows are all from MAC. From left to right they are Magnetic Fields, Hypnotizing, Mont Black (this is a very pigmented black with silver shimmer, it is perfect as a liner) and Pin Curl. The larger shadow is Love Connection, a pink and warm gold combination.

MAC Penultimate Eye Liner in Rapid Black this is like a giant felt tip marker, but quickly gives you perfect liquid liner! It was part of the Tabloid Beauty collection, which was a way of pulling together some items that were already available either as permanent or temporary, and putting them in the regular MAC collection. Regardless, I just got this recently and need to start testing it. Thought I’d do that on vacation, but I didn’t.
Buxom’s Insider Liner
Cover Girl Lash Blast in both regular and length formulas. I need to do a full review still on the length formula, but I do love it. I use it over all of my other mascaras to help separate and I swear it does really help with length. Amazing!
Cils Booster XL from Lancome when combined with the LashBlast length the results are truly insane. People ask if I’ve had eyelash extensions or if I’m wearing false eye lashes. And my lashes are not that long. This primer is white, so make sure you fully cover it with mascara. But it really will add a few millimeters to your lashes, doesn’t make lashes clump together (like most primers) and does not affect the overall wear of the other mascaras.
MAC Plush Lash Mascara

I also brought way too many lip products with me!
• My favorite Lancome Juicy Tubes were included in a gift with purchase this fall and my mom gave me her minis! I don’t think she realized they were my 2 favorite shades, but thanks mom! So, now they are reserved for travel. Spring Fling and Magic Spell.
• VS Heidi Klum lip gloss in Passion Fruit (I think this is no longer available, but it is a great pink/nude color that I love)
• Cover Girl Outlast Lip Stain in Flirty Nude
• MAC Pro Longwear Lustre Lipcolor in Sappho
• MAC Lipglass in Almondine and a light pink that I can no longer identify
• Cover Girl Shine Blast in Aglow
Estee Lauder Gloss in Sweet Kiss
• MAC Lipstick in Laugh a Lot, Phlox and Beige-land (left to right)
• Burt’s Beeswax Lipbalm: Has an amazing peppermint flavor, and if you apply this, blot with a kleenex and apply gloss a minute later I swear it is like glue for the gloss! It will last hours longer. Try it, it works.
Kiehls Lip Balm #1

This crazy picture shows you quite a few of the products that I’ve been testing, so watch for reviews!
Nick Chavez Flocker and Volumizing Extra Hold Hair Spray: I don’t quite have the hang of using the Flocker correctly, but the hair spray seems pretty good.
Neutrogena Soothing Wrap lotion
• Olay Complete Body Wash: It’s been discontinued, but this little travel size has been with me for a bit. I think the most similar replacement product is the Ultra Moisture Body Wash
Secret Fresh Effects in Orange Blossom Verbena is my current go-to deodorant. Lasts all day, smells fresh but doesn’t overwhelm my fragrance and is an invisible solid that actually is invisible! Shocking, I know.
Bumble and Bumble Creme de Coco Shampoo and conditioner, they also have a hair masque, all of which I’m testing now. I might stop testing to write my review soon so I can save the rest of this yummy coconut scented goodness for a tropical holiday I’m trying to schedule now.
Clinique SPF 30
Glissandra Face Cream and Eye Cream: I’m currently testing these and I’ve been very happy with them so far. The cream is a bit too much for me to use during the day (hence, the Kiehls), so I’ve been using it mostly at night. I’ll hopefully be writing this up next week.
• The little jar in front of the Glissandra is a sample of Bioelements Measured Micrograins, one of my favorite exfoliators. I like to exfoliate after getting off of a plane, then use a great cream to get back to “normal”.
Bliss Fabulous Foaming Face Wash I love this stuff! Gets everything (even mascara) off, rinses off easily, no irritation or over drying of the skin.
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer, SPF 15: Still my all time favorite for every day use
Avene Thermal Spring Water: I know that most people tend to spritz something like this on their skin during long flights (and I’ve done that for long flights as well), for a trip from the midwest to California I didn’t think it was needed. I still bring it along for travel however, because when staying with family I tend to not do make up and such in the bathroom, rather I’m in the bedroom. By the time I get there and moisturize and such, that “magical” 3 minute window for sealing in moisture has past. So, I spritz with this after I dress, wait a minute or two, pat dry and then moisturize. I’ve noticed a big improvement in my “travel” complexion since I’ve started doing this.
• Finally, Crest with Scope Outlast. I know the ads where the couple bets on how long the freshness lasts are cheesy, but I swear my mouth is still minty hours later.

When in the OC, the hubby and I made a quick trip to South Coast Plaza. This mall is awesome, and if you ever go make sure you stop at the Concierge for a traveller’s coupon pack. Lots of great discounts! We have a great mall about 45 minutes from our new place that does have most of the same stores in it, but we both missed our stand-alone Kiehl’s store, and the Sephora is much bigger at South Coast. South Coast also has one of only 3 Shu Uemura stores in the US.

What we picked up at Kiehls:
Rare Earth Pore Minimizing Lotion which I’ve been meaning to try for months now! The masque was out of stock (again!), though our sales associate Rae promised to call me when it comes in stock and she’ll ship it to me. In the meantime, I got a sample of the masque!
• Rae saw me checking out the hair masques and recommended the Olive Fruit Oil Deeply Repairative Hair Pak since I was worried about dryness
• I bought a new Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer, SPF 15 for every day use or in between product testings
• My hubby already loves their shave cream (it’s my fault, he has sensitive skin and I make him buy it, he’s not girly at all), and he was happy to try out the Blue Eagle Shave Cream, which is the version with Aloe

From Sephora:
Lauren Luke’s My Vintage Glams Palette
NARS The Multiple in Orgasm
NARS Orgasm Illuminator
NARS Larger than Life Volumizing Mascara

From Shu Uemura:
At Shu I had a great makeup artist, Rose Mary help me. She was fantastic and I’m sure I’ll write more about her when I review these products.
Powder Foundation Natural Glow Finish: I wanted a pressed powder, and Rose Mary recommended this product. Turns out it is under powders and foundation on their site as well.
Pro Concealer, already I think that this concealer is more pigmented and longer lasting than my old standby of MAC Studio Sculpt. I’ll update with a review in the next week or two.
Lip Gloss Unlimited in 333S: Non-sticky, vaguely sweet tasting, great shine and just enough shimmer…. yay!

Some of my long-time readers might remember that I was once a very active member of the Makeup Alley Nail Board, it’s where I made a ton of my on-line friends like Michelle over at All Lacquered Up, and is the reason I currently have like… 400 nail polishes? Most likely? While in California I went to a few of my favorite nail supply stores and bought some new colors since I haven’t bought any new shades in quite a while!

Top row of OPI from Left to Right: Miami Beet, Panda-monium Pink, Jade is the New Black, Manicurist of Seville, La Paz-itively Hot in Matte, Ate Berries in the Canaries, Pearl of Wisdom

Bottom row of OPI from Left to Right: Eiffel for this Color, Glove you so much, Baby it’s Coal Outside, Suzi Skis in the Pyrenees x2 (oops, bought this at 2 different stores on accident), Light my Sapphire, Lincoln Park after Dark in Matte, OPI Ink Suede, Louvre Me Louvre Me Not, All A-bordeaus the Sleiv

Bottom Pic: Orly Bonder (my favorite, read more about My Manicure Routine), Essie Damsel in a Dress, Essie It’s Genius, Essie Blushing Bride, China Glaze Sci-Fi and Cords

I’m planning to restart posting pics of my manicures when I am done, so keep an eye out for these shades!

I’m sure I got some of this for free. Most of it I bought.



  1. Anonymous
    March 15, 2010 / 12:22 am

    Thanks for sharing! I love your stuff…


  2. March 15, 2010 / 4:46 pm

    Love this post, and any post related to travel beauty for that matter! Also wanted to say that I'm really enjoying your posts since you're "returned". I like how you've changed the focus of your posts a little- seems to be more on items you love rather than previews of every new collection. I'm a fan! ☺

  3. April 9, 2010 / 12:52 am

    Love this post! I travel a lot, so I have everything — except clothes — permanently packed. Whenever I get a new sample of something — like a packet of moisturzier, I throw it in the quart-sized bag. I also have a heavier duty bag than just a ziploc. Even the freezer bags wear out after a while…

    I *love* talking about packing strategies!

  4. April 12, 2010 / 7:25 pm

    I'm new to your site. Love it! Great product pics, btw.

    You mentioned Beauty Fix. I just took a look at their website. Is it worth it?

  5. April 21, 2010 / 5:20 pm

    I think Beauty Fix is worth it. They do have some great brands, and I think they're changing the program a little so you can even pick which products you get. I love the travel bags, I have 3 or 4 of them, and they're the perfect size.

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