Beauty Essentials · Girlboss · Nerd

Back to School Beauty Guide

Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me wanna buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address. On the other hand, this not knowing has its charms.

– You’ve Got Mail

I’ve always felt August was a time for new beginnings. Right now, I feel refreshed and ready to take on my second year of graduate school. I have hope, that once school is back in session, I’ll be able to form real friendships with my classmates, push myself towards becoming more of a #girlboss, and find a way to pay for my beauty supplies and tuition at the same time.  I’m not looking forward to the stressed out skin and the physical toll that attending night school and working full-time will have on me in the coming weeks. However, I have prepared myself with a few beauty essentials to make sure I don’t look as  tired as I feel.

Tarte Wipeout Color-Correcting Palette – This is an incredibly useful and handy dandy kit to combat dark circles, blemishes, and acne scars. I use the green to hide redness and the orange shade to correct dark circles and darker pigmentation.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel: Clear – I think the key to looking put-together is to have well-groomed brows that perfectly frame the face. I swipe this colorless gel to keep my brows in line and also to tame those pesky flyaways that pop out of my ponytail throughout the day.

Sally B’s Lip Yummies – This definitely fits the bill for my perfect lip balm formula: a mixture of high quality organic ingredients that work together to deliver incredibly effective results.  The lip balms come in 6 flavors: Mints In Harmony, Orange Vanilla, Star Anise, Lavender Grapefruit, Unscented, and Peppermint.  All of the balms go on nice and creamy, but I think Peppermint feels the most refreshing.

Rainbow Light Advanced Enzyme System – These plant-based digestive enzyme supplements work to break down heavier meals for a more balanced digestive system. I need a lot of fuel to get me through the day, so I take a tablet with water before a meal to help reduce indigestion and bloating. If you want to learn more about the relationship between digestive health and healthy, beautiful skin The Beauty Detox by Kimberly Snyder is a great resource.

IOPE Air Cushion Natural Glow SPF50 PA++ – Liquid or mineral foundations just don’t cut it for me when I’m dealing with 14 hour days. Cushion compacts are a fuss-free way to look  more polished even when you feel like a walking disaster. IOPE is one of the more popular brands for cushion compacts, but their color selection is super limited.


Clio Peripera Oil Capture Pact
– I take this powder compact with me everywhere to keep the oil from pooling on my face. This is my favorite to freshen up and keep my oily skin from getting completely out of control.

Clio Peripera Kill Black Waterproof Pen Liner-In the morning, I glide on this jet black eye liner for a simple and incredibly striking look that will last all day.

I wouldn’t recommend buying perishable skincare/cosmetics off Amazon or eBay because of the very real risk of purchasing inauthentic, expired, and/or diluted products.  It took me awhile to find a reputable seller without the outrageous markups for Korean beauty brands, but I’ve been very happy with the service and selection at If you are looking for K-beauty brands that are more off the beaten path then this shop is definitely for you. Everything is shipped directly from Seoul, and I’ve noticed that the prices tend be a little cheaper than US based distribution centers. I bought the last three beauty essentials featured on this list from w2beauty, and if you are interested in ordering from there too, you can enter my sponsor code 2942277308 to get $5 off your first purchase!

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