Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Tips for project panning and reducing your overall collection.

I am by no means an expert on project panning, since this is my first year officially doing it, but I thought I would add my two cents into the mix, in case people were wondering how I've been getting through my collection. It seems to be a trend lately on You Tube and some of the makeup boards, where people are getting more and more overwhelmed by their collections and want to pare down to the staples. My quest these days is to have only Holy Grail items, or at the very least, items that I really, really, really like and will get through in a reasonable amount of time. I grew really tired of buying things, loving them for a week, and then shoving them into a drawer for six months. Makeup should be fun, not a burden or a guilt trip or a panic attack every time you get ready.

1. Be consistent. Sure, it's boring sometimes, but there's no guaranteed way to get through a product quicker. Mix up the item you're working on with new colors or trends. Watch YouTube, read blogs, scroll through Pinterest, even go to the Sephora/Ulta websites and see how the makeup companies pair different colors together, i.e. NARS duos (Amber F is great to watch for color pairing/inspiration and "Pan that palette" challenges.) You can rotate a weekly makeup basket, or pick a few items to use completely until they're gone. You can also pick a palette to use five times a week or however many days works for you. I find that it helps to use product you actually like, so that way it's not viewed as a punishment of sorts. PrettyPistol86 made a great point when she finally decided to get rid of an NYC blush she'd been panning. Why waste time panning a $3 blush when she has other blushes she loves more/spent more money on/look better? Do whatever works best for you. And if you want to change up your method of how you select makeup, go for it! It's your collection. Do what you want with it. 

2. Apply often. Lipstick, perfume, lotion, etc. If you only swipe your lipstick on twice a day (once in the morning, and once after lunch) try re-applying more frequently, like after you've finished your coffee, or if you think your lips are getting dry. Same thing with lotion. If you wash your hands, apply a hand cream afterward. And who says you can only spray perfume on in the morning? Sometimes I spritz again just before my husband comes home to make sure it's fresh. Obviously, if you're wearing a heavy duty floriental, like Dune or Allure, then maybe skip this step. But lighter scents and body sprays can definitely handle multiple applications in a day.

3. Apply liberally. Lip gloss, lotion, cuticle oil, body wash, shampoo/conditioner, etc. Don't be stingy. You're trying to use things up, remember? Granted, some things can only be applied in certain quantities, like face and eye makeup, but other categories are fair game for being a little heavier handed. 

4. Multitask and/or re-purpose. Make your products pull double-duty, especially when it's something you only typically apply once during the day. Shimmery champagne eyeshadows can easily double as cheek highlights. Eyeliner works well as a shadow base. Top off your eyeliner with a powdered shadow. You can even go old-school and use your lipstick on your lips and as a blush. Some people use hair spray on a spoolie to tame their eyebrows. You can even swap conditioner for shaving cream.

5. Inventory your collection. Nothing smacks down the urge to buy a new eyeliner like the black-and-white fact that you already have a hundred at home (and probably in a similar color). Do it yearly, bi-annually, or even quarterly. Some girls type up a list in Word or Excel. I just write down every category and tally up the numbers in a notepad I keep on my vanity. For example, at the moment I have 0 foundations and 2 CC creams. Unless I have a need for heavier coverage in the future, there's no need to buy a foundation.

6. Keep track of your empties. There's a couple ways to do this, so just find whatever helps you the most. Some people track the money they "get" out of a product, or the money "saved" by using it up and not buying something new. I like it because it's a sense of accomplishment and it shows how long it really takes to use something, even dinky sample sizes. Keep a list, take a picture (that's my preferred method, a la empties posts), draw sharpie lines on the side once  month - it doesn't have to be elaborate. Just something to mark your progress.

7. Purge. The money is already gone. I repeat, the money has already been spent. It's already been "wasted." Keeping old and/or unsanitary things or stuff you know you just don't use does not bring the money back. Why waste any more time or energy on something you don't love? Find it a new home or just chuck it if it's too old to pass on because the money is already gone. Admittedly, this was one of the hardest things for me to accept and still is, to an extent. Watching Pinksofoxy and Tati's decluttering videos have actually been really motivating. They taught me that if I've had something for several years and haven't made a dent in it, then that should tell me something... I'm not using it for a reason. Don't hang on to something that doesn't make you happy. Kristin Gehm is famous for saying "Life is too short to suffer through a bad mascara" and she's right!

Happy downsizing, everyone!

P.S. If you're happy with how your collection is currently but are worried about potentially going overboard again, you can always follow the One In, One Out Rule. If you buy an eyeshadow, another eyeshadow has to leave your collection. If you buy a lip gloss (or four...) then four lip products have to leave your collection. At the very least you won't start accumulating more stuff without thinking about what you already have at home. So far this simple strategy has already saved me from impulse-buying a couple eyeshadow palettes. I only have two eyes. I do NOT need any more palettes. But there's something so alluring about them when you see them under the terrible, yet magical store lighting... until you start thinking about which palette you would have to sacrifice to the makeup gods so you can have your new precious. 

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