Trousseau Makeup Essentials


One of my very close friend, who is getting married, is a total makeup newbie and must have previously just used a kajal and lip-gloss. She was apprehensive about her event makeup as well as items she would require for dressing up after her wedding. Considering there are many girls who aren’t very enthusiastic about makeup but want to try it, this post is a comprehensive list of the basics you require. There are many  basic-makeup articles on the web but I would like to focus on basic-trousseau makeup essentials for Indian brides.


  1. MOISTURIZER – This is a must for everyday wear. Choose a moisturizer depending your skin type, always read the label. During daytime apply the moisturizer first and then the sunscreen. You could also go in for separate day and night creams depending on your skin care requirements.
    Recommended: Neutrogena Oil-free Moisturizer for Combination Skinskin care trousseau makeup
  2. SUNSCREEN – A must when stepping out during the morning/afternoon. You could skip the sunscreen during indoor programs. Also skip the sunscreen if you are going to be photographed because it results in a white cast on your face during flash photography. Definitely apply moisturizer before sunscreen, especially for dry skin.
    Recommended: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Drytouch Sunblock
  3. LIP BALM – This is an essential for all seasons, even if we believe otherwise. Apply a lip balm a few minutes before applying any lip colour or use a tinted lip balm for a quick colour addition.
    Recommended: Forest Essentials Luscious Kokum and Honey Lip Balm


  1. PRIMER – Use a primer to make your makeup last long. This is applied right after your moisturiser/sunscreen. There are various textures of primers available but I personally find gel primers to be smooth and non-greasy. Primers can be skipped for everyday office-wear and casual outings, but if you plan on dancing the night out or long hours of social functions definitely use a primer.
    Recommended: M.A.C Prep+Primeface base trousseau makeup
  2. FOUNDATION – There are innumerable options in terms of texture, coverage and price point. Pick a medium-to-high coverage foundation which has a lasting power of about 5 hours and above. The other point to note while buying foundation is to match it to your neckline instead of the back of your hand. When at the makeup counter try the foundation on one side of your face and compare shades and finishes. Also try applying it on your own so you know how it feels and glides on. Take your time while deciding on the shade, if needed walk around for a few minutes and check under various lighting.
    Recommended: L’oreal Paris True Match Foundation
  3. BB/CC CREAM – A tinted cream is a must have for a quick base with light coverage. A BB/CC cream would be your go to for most days and casual outings. Most brands have limited shade options in BB/CC creams, but the main difference comes in terms of how it feels on your skin. Some are too drying while others might feel greasy. When at the makeup counter apply it and keep it on for about 20-30 minutes before making your purchase, you should be able to get the feel of it within this time-frame.
    Recommended: Lakme Complexion Care Face Cream
  4. CONCEALER – Optional. If you do not have prominent dark-circles or major blemishes you could easily skip the concealer and just use foundation for an even skin tone. But if you do have dark circles or blemishes choose a concealer depending on your problem. Read this article for an in-depth explanation of concealer tones according to problems.
    Recommended: L’oreal Paris True Match Concealerface makeup trousseau
  5. COMPACT POWDER – A compact powder mainly helps set your liquid base makeup and adds a layer of very-light to light coverage. When trying out compact powder at the beauty counter apply it over the foundation/base you would use it on finally, this especially helps check if the powder makes the face look cakey or not.
    Recommended: Revlon Touch and Glow Moisturising Powder
  6. BLUSH – There is no go-to colour for all skin tones. For example both me and my friend have fair skin tones and use the same CC cream, but I have a pale undertone whereas she has a reddish undertone, thus the same blush looks totally different on both of us. Another difference is in application, some apply it heavy-handedly and some lightly, when checking blush colours apply it on your own and check. A single pot of blush can last you years, pick a colour suitable for both day-time and party makeup looks.
    Recommended: The Body Shop Baked-to-Last Blushcontouring highlighting trousseau makeup
  7. CONTOURING PRODUCTS – Optional. Contouring, highlighting and strobing are methods of defining your facial features with makeup. Once you have a hang of makeup basics and want to play further with makeup then you could try contouring. When you go makeup shopping ask the counter clerk or a makeup friendly friend to try contouring and if you absolutely love the effect purchase contouring and highlighting poroducts.
    Recommended: Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Bronzing Powder and Benefit Cosmetics Watt’s Up Highlighter


  1. BLACK KAJAL – Black kajal suits most Indian skin tones and eye shapes. You could choose between a pencil, roll-on kajal or kohl.
    Recommended: Maybelline Colossal Kajaleye makeup trousseau makeup
  2. BLACK EYE-LINER – The are four product types to choose from- liquid, gel, felt tip pens or roll-on liners. You could check my post on eye-liner for more detailed information and tutorials. Along with product type they also come in various finishes. Try the different brands and product shapes with your own hand and then select which is easiest for you to use.
    Recommended: Lakme Absolute Shine Line Liquid Eye Liner
  3. MASCARA – A must buy. Adds a definition to your eyes. Select a water-proof mascara with volumnising and lengthening properties. For more details check this post.
    Recommended: L’oreal Volume Million Lashes
  4. COLOURED EYE-LINERS – Optional. This is dependent on your personal choice. Blue, brown and gold are most versatile for creating different makeup looks. If you plan to use these occasionally then go in for budget buys.
    Recommended: Lakme Eyeconic Kajal Blueeye shadow trousseau makeup
  5. NEUTRAL EYE-SHADOWS – First pick a nude matt eye-shadow matching your skin tone, this is useful for a quick eye brightening and also as a transition colour for certain looks. Next select colours for a brown smokey eye which includes a medium brown and a dark brown eye-shadow. Third would be colours for a black smokey eye which includes a medium grey and a black eye-shadow. Preferably keep these matt. The last set you need would be a silver eye-shadow, a beige glitter eye-shadow and a gold eye-shadow.  The neutral shades are great for creating formal looks and party looks.
    You should see my post on eye-shdaow basics for application tutorials.
    Recommended: Maybelline New York The Nudes
  6. FESTIVE EYE-SHADOWS – This would include shades of pink, corals and reds. I would suggest to buy palettes with a few shades of the festive colours. You could also go for individual colour pots if there is no budget constraint. In Kolkata the options for eye-shadow palettes are very limited, whereas if you have a Sephora in your city you could easily find more palette options. You could also use certain blushes as eye-shadows. Do your research and select about three-four looks then at the counter try colours for those, or you would feel lost with the number of choices. Invest in your eye-shadows because it’s important they have good staying power on your lids and a good brand eye-shadow will also last for years.
    Recommended: Lakem Eye Color Quartet

See next: Trousseau Makeup Essentials (Part 2) featuring lip colours, makeup brushes and other tools.

On a side note, even if this is your first time at the beauty counter please do not feel intimated into buying the products. Try them on, if needed check the durability over a few hours and read reviews online. Do your research beforehand for better decisions.

I have a lot more pointers for each category, but I have done my best to list the most important points. If you are looking for a consultation in Kolkata drop me a message at

Featured Image courtesy: Kaushal Beauty