Monday, January 28, 2013

Travel Makeup Bag: Study Abroad Edition


The big reveal has finally come: I'm studying abroad! Tomorrow I'll be on my way to the airport headed for Amsterdam, the Netherlands where I will be living and studying for the next five months! I've been somewhat hush hush about this whole thing (aside from a few tweets to Twitter friends) because I'm such a nervous person and I did not want to announce the trip until I was absolutely sure I was going. Over the last few weeks I've been gathering the beauty bits I want to take with me for my adventures abroad and I must say I'm quite proud of my self restraint.


My makeup bag is from Muji and I first fell in love with it when I was browsing Muji's online shop. Seeing that Julie had the same bag cemented my feelings for it and I finally bit the bullet and bought the pouch. I love how it has multiple compartments and the size is just right. I am showing liquid products here but they will all go in my TSA plastic baggy (post on that to come) as I want all my makeup to go in my carry on.


Choosing base products was relatively easy. I am bringing my Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream which is perfect for an effortless everyday look. On the days when I want to look more perfected, I'll have the Too Faced Amazing Face Foundation which I've decanted into a pump bottle from Muji. I only filled the bottle about one third of the way as I do not think I'll be wearing foundation too often. The plastic pump bottle is way more practical for traveling than the original glass bottle which does not come with a pump. I am only bringing one concealer which is Benefit's Erase Paste. For a liquid highlight I'm toting along a mini of Tarte's Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Iluuminating Serum which I can wear alone or mix into my foundation for an overall sheen. For powder I have Mac's Mineralize Skinfinish Natural which is a tad dark for me but I do not plan on packing it on. I'm also bringing my Neutrogena Mineral Sheers Pressed Powder Foundation which is on it's last legs because I want to finish it up!


For eye basics I have a tube of Too Faced's Shadow Insurance and a jumble of eyeliners. The Buxom Insider Eyeliner in Chocolate Citrine is a great travel option as it's retractable. The only "colorful" liner I'm bringing is NYC's Waterproof Eyeliner in Smokey Plum. I also have my Eyeko Skinny Liquid Liner in case I want a very precise black cat eye. Of course I threw in my Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Pencils in Zero and Bourbon. I have been using Bourbon a for about half a year in the attempt to finish it before I leave but alas it will have to come along. I'm packing my current mascara which is Maybelline's The Falsies Flared Waterproof and I really like how it holds a curl and adds length. I'm bringing along a mini of Benefit's They're Real Mascara which I have yet to try but hope it performs well. The Nars Pencil Sharpener also deserves a spot in my makeup bag as it has sharp blades and the rubberized packaging makes it incredibly easy to grip.


Cream eyeshadows are great as bases or used alone on lazy days so I'm packing Benefit's Creaseless Cream Shadow in R.S.V.P and Bobbi Brown's Long Wear Cream Shadow in Galaxy. A vial of Mac's Gold Mode Pigment is for dramatic sparkly eye looks and perfect for a night out. All three of these products are very tiny yet long lasting as you only need a tiny bit each time.


These are the last of the eye and cheek products and you can see my love for small palettes. I am very happy with what I've picked and I think I'm all set for everyday makeup looks. The Stila Merry & Bright Palette and Stila Sensational in Sydney Palette include the perfect neutral shadows and two convertible colors in completely different colors.


Although I'm not a huge fan of the Benefit Powda Wowza trio, it's compact and has a matte bronzer (Hoola) and two shimmery blushes (Coralista and Bella Bamba). I hope I can finish these powders up whilst away. The NYX Eyeshadow Trio in Suede, Sahara and Chocolate is a must have because I fill in my brows with the two brown shades and the champagne is a nice cheek highlight.


As for lip products I chose Revlon's Colorburst Lipstick in Soft Nude and L'oreal Colour Riche Caresse Stick in Sunset Angora as I wanted a neutral and bright lipstick. I also packed the Tarte Lipsurgence Lip Tint  in Swank as it's one of my favorite low maintenance red lip products. I decided to choose three sample lipglosses to save on space and hopefully I can finish these tubes and throw them out instead of bringing them back. I have Smashbox's Reflection High Shine Gloss, Cargo's Lipgloss in Morocco and Jouer's Moisturizing Lipgloss in Nude.


Another great thing about this makeup bag is that there is a special compartment for brushes with a plastic lined flap for easy cleaning. I chose five essential face brushes to fill these spots. From left to right I have the E.L.F Studio Blush Brush for cream blush, the Real Techniques Buffing Brush for foundation, the Ecotools Blush Brush for blush, the E.L.F Studio Powder Brush for BB cream, bronzer and whatever else I might need it for, and the E.L.F Studio Complexion Brush for powder.


As for my eye brushes and smaller tools, I am keeping them in my little Real Techniques brush roll. I also added my Essence of Beauty Angled Blush and Contour Brush which I use for bronzer and highlight. I chose mostly low end brushes and am leaving my Mac brushes at home as I am highly paranoid about losing pricier products. My eye brushes are mostly a mix of E.L.F, Ecotools, Essence of Beauty and a Sonia Kashuk Eyebrow Spoolie. The little blue gadget on the left is actually a foldable mini scissor that should come in handy.

So that is a rundown of my makeup bag as I head off to my new temporary home! Have you ever had to pack for an extended time away? How much (or little) would you try to condense your beauty stash for the trip?

24 comments:

  1. congratulations on studying abroad.. that sounds wonderful. I hope that you will keep the blog updated with your travels. I've never been there before so I'd love to see what you get up to. The beauty bag looks packed wonderfully and I'm sure you'll pick up some beauty bits over there too ;) Have a safe flight xx

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    1. Thank you, Christine! I am planning to blog whilst away so hopefully you all can get a glimpse of my adventures! I definitely packed with the idea that I will be doing some serious damage at their local drugstores (Catrice, Essence, Bourjois, oh my!) :D

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  2. It's amazing that you're gonna study abroad in Amsterdam! I am currently living near Amsterdam, it's 30 minutes traveling with the train for me. Maybe I will bump into you sometimes, as I am to be found there in the weekdays because of of my internship. :)

    Also, nice picks on the make up, but I bet that you will return with more back home haha. I hope you will enjoy your 5 months stay here and have a safe trip!

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    1. Awesome! Maybe we could bump into each other :D I'd love it for anyone who's from the Netherlands could give me tips on where to go and what to do!

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  3. Congratulations on your new adventure! For sure, you'll be able got hold of makeup over there. Sometimes, I overpack.. Oh wait, I always always overpack and when I get to my new place I would end up buying new products and then later on neglecting my old "loved" products. Have fun and good luck!

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    1. Thanks! I've already done some extensive research on what beauty brands I should keep an eye out while there so I'm really excited to share my finds! I tried to pack small things that I might hopefully use up and not have to bring home :)

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  4. Congratulations on studying abroad! It makes me anticipate my year of going abroad which is next Spring! I'll keep this post on bookmark when I begin packing [which is still a year away haha]. Can't wait to see your posts about your new adventures :D

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    1. Aw, I'm excited for you already! Do you know where you will be studying yet?

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    2. Kind of haha. I'll be heading to Hong Kong, but I'm currently in the beginning stages of the application process ^^

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    3. Cool :) I might be headed for Hong Kong later this year so I'm excited to visit for the first time! Good luck with your applications :D

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  5. Wha!!!!! I'm so excited for you!! I can't wait to see the posts from there.

    I love the Muji bag! Great choice =)

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    1. Thank you Stephanie! I hope I can find ample time to devote to my blog and keep you guys updated and entertained :)

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  6. sooo many products! I guess if you're going for a while, it's not too bad. Benefit's RSVP is awesome for travel, on lazy days I just swipe it over my lids and add eyeliner. :D

    Have fun abroad :D

    Steph // giveaway!! fun size beauty

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    1. I think I've overpacked for shorter trips but I think this is a reasonable amount for five months ^^ Of course I could always pack nothing at all but I like to have some options! I use R.S.V.P in the same way to brighten my lids if I'm too lazy to use brushes!

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  7. Congrats! There are not as many things as I thought you'd bring along but I have a feeling you'll end up hauling some more there too :P Just wondering, will you be bringing along your DSLR or point & shoot?

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    1. Hah, wait till you see my body and skincare products that I'm bringing.... I went crazy packing all of those other "necessities"! I am going to bring my DSLR and point and shoot because different outings will call for different cameras :) It seems a bit impractical and ultra touristy to bring a DSLR to every little lunch and dinner while I still want to take advantage of my DSLR for longer trips and sightseeing.

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  8. Congrats!! This is so exciting and I hope you'll have a amazing experience! I love how you only focused on the "essentials". Can't wait to read about some glimpse of your adventure :) Good luck!

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    1. Thanks! I'm excited to try new things and document some of my travels here :)

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  9. Safe travels, Kar Yi! It seems like every college student I know is studying abroad this year! You definitely packed in the right mind: smaller things = easier to finish which = more room to bring new goodies back! I would do the same thing or maybe even less because knowing my habits, I'd shop like crazy in a new country. This is especially true if when I'm aware of all the great low budget brands in said new country! Good luck in Amsterdam! :)

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    1. Thank you, Ashley! I have many friends who've traveled abroad last semester or this semester as well :) Hopefully I don't shop TOO much over there ^^

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  10. wow that's great! I think it will be an awesome experience to study abroad. This travel bag sure holds a lot. I can't believe you're leaving already! I look forward to seeing more pictures and stories about your stay there.

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    1. I knew for awhile I was going to study abroad but didn't feel the need to announce it on the blog at an earlier time. I definitely will try to post some photos soon but I'm still getting the hang of things and I don't have as much time to go online to blog.

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  11. Studying abroad in amsterdam?!?! I am so jealous and happy for you! Eeek! I can't wait to read all about your adventures. Eat well, have fun, be safe!

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    1. Thanks, Kelly! Still trying to figure out a lot of the basics around here but I'm excited for when I know the city a bit better :)

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