Makeup Musings: I Think I Want to Scale Down My Makeup Collection, But I Don’t Know Where or How to Start


I may have mentioned this to you already, but I recently culled my closet. No joke, I Kon-Mari-ed the living crap out of it! I donated all the pre-Connor clothes that no longer fit me (which was most of my wardrobe, to be brutally honest) and only kept what 1) fit me perfectly, 2) didn’t look hella raggedy, and 3) made me feel AMAZING.

Goodbye and thanks for the memories…

I did keep a few items that have sentimental value, including a $15 dress I found at Marshall’s, which I wore to a fancy party 1999. I got numerous compliments on it, and several people assumed it was Versace. It very much was not, ha ha ha!

Anyway, I basically rebuilt my closet from scratch using a checklist of wardrobe basics I found through Erin Busbee, a stylist who caters specifically to fashion for women over 40, and for first time in a really long time, I feel like I can get dressed in the morning without feeling stressed out or bad about my body.

Another first: each piece in my closet absolutely works for me, and there is no dead weight. NONE. Each item has a purpose, and everything gets worn.


banana republic black pants
Smiling ’cause I’m wearing pants that actually, ya know, fit!

What’s been especially great is the feeling of freedom. It feels good to finally say goodbye to all of the clothes that didn’t fit me, and while it was hard at times (like saying goodbye to the brand new black Kate Spade dress I never lost enough enough weight to get into), letting it go has given me 1) more physical space in my home and 2) more mental space in my mind.

This has got me thinking a lot about how scaling down my wardrobe could be applied to other parts of my life, including (WAIT FOR IT) my makeup collection.

I love and have loved and will always love makeup so, so much, and right now, I have a lot of it.

If I’m completely honest with myself, only a small percentage of it still gets worn.

I think it might be time to let some things go.

To all the brown shadows I’ve loved before…

But yet, it’s hard, since it’s still very fun for me to try new things and collect fun pieces.

I don’t see myself as ever being the person who has just, like, one makeup bag of tightly edited down products, because I love having options!

Still, I can’t help but wonder if there’s a way to narrow down the scale and scope of it so I feel the same way about makeup that I do about my closet. I wonder if it would just as feel good to have NO. DEAD. WEIGHT. in my makeup collection.

Would it be freeing to have a succinct group of eyeshadows that I truly and deeply love? Or a small group of nude lipsticks, all of which get worn and used frequently?

I’ve had this idea floating around in my mind for the last week or so, to perhaps narrow my collection down using a manageable number like 10. For example, only keeping 10 nude lipsticks that I absolutely adore. I could also do, I dunno, 10 red lipsticks that I love, or maybe 10 bright lipsticks? I dunno, that still seems like a lot of lipstick! Yet, at the same time, it also doesn’t seem like nearly enough, HA! I can easily see myself going down the road of “Why have 10 nude lipsticks I love when I could easily have 20?”

mac nicki minaj nude lipsticks liners lipglass
I love nude lips and I cannot lie.

And, seriously, how would eyeshadow work? Would I keep 10 neutral eyeshadows? (OMG, IMAGINE HOW HARD THAT WOULD BE) Or would it be 10 browns? Maybe I could even do 10 warm browns, 10 cool browns…

In typical Karen fashion, I’m 100% over-complicating this, but I think you get the gist of it. There’s got to be a way to have a makeup collection that feels robust and complete, but not redonkulously overwhelming.

I’d love to hear how you handle your current collection. Do you keep it small and manageable, or do you just go for it and hold onto ALL OF THE THINGS. I’m curious to know how you keep things in check and from getting too out of control.

From one makeup lover to another…the struggle is real. Talk to you soon, ‘k?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


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