Full disclosure: I did not really know how to do my makeup in middle school. For reference, see the below picture.
I wore so much black eyeliner, you would’ve thought Wet N’ Wild had hired me as their middle school rep. I’m vaguely ashamed to admit that, yeah, I was that girl in middle school who reapplied their makeup every five minutes between class. The world ending and me not being able to reapply Lancôme Juicy Tubes every 45 were, in my 13-year-old mind, directly correlated.
Luckily, I have since outgrown such habits. Also luckily: while I’ve come to realize that some things should, duh, be left in middle school -- see: straightening only bangs, Hollister graphic tees, breaking out in hives around the dude you like (obviously kidding about the last one since I did that last week!) -- there are also some things from the days of yore that still deserve to stick around.
Namely in my makeup bag. For serious, I plan on using these products until I die because I’ll be damned if someone tells me I’m too old to wear soda-flavored lip gloss.
Curious by Britney Spears, $22.92: This perfume is hilarious to me for the following reasons:
1. The commercial. If you’ve never seen it (was the process of getting out of the year 2004 a difficult one, or?), please watch it now. It’s not the one with her in a forest, if that’s what you were thinking. The commercial for Curious is just a cluster of video clips looped together in an attempt to be existential. I’m obsessed with it.
2. The bottle is very clearly trying to be for classy ladies, what with its very swanky pump and all, but it is so clearly a product for girls whose names should end in “y,” but instead end in “i.”
3. This guy I used to date referred to it as “my slutty perfume,” as in, “You should wear the slutty perfume tonight.”
4. IT SMELLS SO GOOD.
That last one is the most hilarious because you expect this perfume to smell like Spring Break in Fort Lauderdale, but jokes on you because this stuff is delish. It’s not really “signature scent” material, but come the freakin’ weekend? It’s about time to have me some fun.
Wet N’ Wild Eyeliner, $.99: In the 6th grade, the guy I liked went out of his way to ask why I did my makeup “like a raccoon.” Cool! It made me wish I were dead!
Well, I got the last laugh on Ross Murray, because I now know how to do my eyeliner and he, oh, never mind. I just checked his Facebook and he seems to be doing very well for himself right now. He’s living abroad in London, which I bet is a lot of fun, what with the Olympics and all.
Regardless, this stuff is great! It goes on smoothly, is highly pigmented, and costs less than a dollar. I’m partial to the black one, but it comes in a gazillion colors. If you have a George Washington or a Sacagawea on you (and, let’s be honestly, when do you not have a Sacagawea coin on you?), why not go a little crazy? Get the purple one! You’re going to die one day!
Dr. Pepper Lip Balm, $1.99: If there is one thing I’d like to teach my daughter that I do-not-yet-and-likely-never-will-have it’s that, at the end of this day, this is better than any of the stuff you’re going to find at Sephora.
I got the suggestion from the late Brittany Murphy. Like, not directly, but it was one of those “Celebrities Show You Their Makeup Bag!” features and this was in hers. It rules.
If you remember it from middle school as being very drying to the lips, just know that they’ve managed to figure that out. Lip Smackers, man. For real talk, though, this stuff moisturizes your lips and gives them the prettiest red sheen I ever did see.
Bonus points: I was wearing it during my first kiss and Alex Johnston told me my “lips taste like sugar.” Yeah, they do!
Bare Minerals Warmth, $19: So, when I was in the 8th grade (not a girl, not yet a woman -- take a shot for every time I’ve referenced a celebrity named Britney/Brittany in this article), my dad took me to New York.
After seeing a matinee of RENT and having my life sufficiently changed by that experience, my world continued to be blown when my dad took me to Sephora and told me I could get one product. I instantly loved him more.
I chose this a product from Bare Minerals because it felt Very Adult and therefore Very Important. Up until getting this product, I was using this horrible bronzer that made my face look very Oompa Loompa. I look back in pictures and just, ugh, what was I doing with my life?
This stuff gives a very natural finish and, although I do have naturally olive skin, I’ve found that it also works for my pale friends.
That Pink Mascara With the Green Cap, But In Royal Blue, $5.19: Makeup artists freak the eff out about this stuff, and, honestly, it’s mascara. How high can the bar actually be set? That being said, this stuff doesn’t clump, doesn’t flake off come 3pm, and is rill cheap. But the best part? They make it in blue and it’s this really dark royal blue.
I wore it out the other week and, after confirming my friend’s suspicions that, yup, I really am wearing blue mascara, she told me, “I like it. It’s crazy, but not in-your-face crazy.”
If having crazy eyelashes is wrong, then I’m just never going to be interested in being right.