I Consider Myself a Beauty Minimalist—Here's What Earned a Spot in My Drawer

The Lineup is a monthly series where we're giving you an inside peek at the beauty lineups of cool fashion people, editors, makeup artists, hairstylists, and estheticians—all the people we trust the most. Get ready for a behind-the-scenes look at all the can't-live-without products that make their worlds go 'round.

If you're already wondering how "minimalist" has made its way into the vocabulary of a beauty editor, don't worry—it will all make sense in a few scrolls. My relationship with beauty dates back to 2008, when YouTube was still relatively new and creators were filming makeup tutorials on the floors of their childhood bedrooms, convincing fifth-grade me that I absolutely needed the Maybelline Instant Age Rewind concealer. I would binge-watch these videos (like I do with TikTok videos now) and make mental notes of products and product descriptions, but I would never actually buy anything. As much as I loved watching beauty transformations, shade ranges were scarce, diversity in beauty was still a budding concept, and representation for people with darker skin tones was lacking, making my shopping experience not as fun as it looked on my laptop screen. I also didn't feel the need to wear makeup on a daily basis, so I never really applied the skills that I had been learning.




Fast-forward about eight years, and my YouTube obsession was still going strong. I was in college, feeling like I finally had a reason to wear makeup more regularly and starting to see some changes in the product offerings for women of color. You're probably imagining a full face of foundation, bronzer, blush, and eye shadow, but a full face for me meant mascara, lip gloss, and concealer (on a good day). And then, in 2020, the pandemic hit. Since I was unable to leave the house safely, my screen time and online shopping jumped to an all-time high. So I did what most of us did during quarantine: I developed a hobby. I didn't make banana bread, learn TikTok dances, or drink whipped coffee. I sat in front of my bathroom mirror and re-created YouTube makeup tutorials (pretty effortlessly, might I add).

Now, "beauty" is the second word in my job title, and I get to test products and create fun and exciting looks for a living. Despite all of the brands and items that I'm exposed to daily, I'm pretty loyal to the products I love, and it takes an amazing product to make me deviate from my eight-step makeup routine. My love for beauty has no bounds, but the space in my bathroom definitely does. So when it comes to haircare and skincare, I keep my routines simple and effective, adding top-tier products to the mix only when they've been proven to be absolute must-haves. Want a peek inside my easy and minimalistic routine? Just keep scrolling.


Skincare Essentials

I use this gel as a makeup remover and cleanser. It's gentle on the eyes and super nourishing. My facialist recommended double cleansing, and this is a perfect second cleanser. 

I use this mask once a week to lock in moisture and add radiance. It's packed with natural exfoliants like pineapple and papaya extracts to help achieve even-toned skin.  

When I got my first facial, my facialist noted some points of dehydration on my skin and recommended adding this toner to my routine. It's only been a month, and we're both seeing a difference in how hydrated my skin looks and feels. 

My biggest skincare concerns are dark spots and discoloration, and this product is highly recommended for melanated skin. It's backed by science and has become a major step in my nighttime routine.

Did I see an influx of gua-sha videos on TikTok and decide that I wanted lifted and de-puffed skin? Yes. Have I seen a difference in my skin immediately after use? Also yes. 

I have combination skin that skews a bit on the drier side, so I'm highly selective when it comes to moisturizers. This one is high in vitamin C, which is great for treating my dark spots.

Sunscreen is a non-negotiable for me. I glide this stick across my face and then rub the product in with my fingers. I love how portable this is. I can easily throw it into my purse for reapplication. 

Makeup Essentials

I'm new to the primer game, but of all of the primers I've tried, this one reigns supreme. It's lightweight and starts working before I even put my makeup on. The blurring effect is real. 

I was anti-foundation until I discovered this internet-famous Beautiful Skin foundation. Unlike a lot of foundations that I've tried, this one isn't cakey, but it's buildable enough to give me the coverage I need. My skin still looks like skin, and that's super important to me. 

This $5 concealer has gotten me through every phase of my beauty journey. It covers my dark circles and dark spots without excessive application. 

After years of waxing my brows, I'm now two years wax-free and content with my natural brows. I apply this glue and brush the hairs up for that "soap brows" look, and it lasts all day long. 

I don't think I've ever felt more passionately about a makeup product. The color payoff is incredible, and it's extremely easy to build and blend. This liquid blush is a must-have for me, and I get endless compliments every time I wear it. 

My life changed for the better when I discovered brown lip liner. I never thought I could pull off a nude lip until I realized that a brown liner makes practically any shade wearable. This one is creamy and glides on so easily.

I've said it once, and I'll say it again. This is the best affordable lip gloss. It's non-sticky, rich in color, and easy to layer. I'm a huge fan. 

I spray this directly onto my beauty blender and then pat gently into the high points of my face to set my makeup. I also love spraying this on during the workday as a refresh.

Haircare Essentials

I've always been your standard shampoo-and-conditioner girl, but per a TikTok recommendation, I recently tested out some detoxifying hair masks and saw a drastic difference in my curls afterward. They're tighter, shinier, and more hydrated. 

Finding the right hair products for textured hair is not easy, but I hit the jackpot when I found this hair cleanser. It's a light, sulfate-free shampoo that smells incredible. 

I use this leave-in conditioner as a detangler. It smooths out my curls, reducing frizz and locking in moisture. 

At the end of my wash-day routine, I run this product through my hair and individually twirl each strand to achieve defined and bouncy ringlets. 

A slicked-back bun is my signature hairstyle. This gel is the finishing product, leaving my hair sleek and glossy—no frizz or flyaways in sight.