15 minutes (30 minutes including applicator cleaning)


All make-up, applicators, skincare

A towel

Soap & water (for applicator cleaning)

Your shopping list

Your REFUSE bag


  1. If you don’t have space on your bathroom counter top, place a towel on your bed and lay out your collection of make-up, applicators and skincare.

  2. Firstly, we’re taking away anything that’s been opened and is over 12 months old. Cosmetics and skincare items, once opened, have a shelf life. If you’ve had fingers or applicators in contact with the product, it’s ‘contaminated’ with bacteria and over time this can taint the product, compromise its chemical structure and potentially be downright unhealthy, in short.

  3. Perform a cull on any applicators, brushes and sponges that you’ve not used in over six months.

  4. Note, we’re not using the REHOME bag for skincare, cosmetics or applicators – it’s just not healthy to share make-up, unless the products are unopened/unused.

  5. Give the rest that you’re keeping a solid cleaning. Warm soapy water will do the job (I like to wet my brushes, circle on a cake of soap and massage until the pigment is no longer visible or emerging from the brush); rinse well and allow to dry over the edge of a counter to allow air to circulate around the brush.

  6. If you store your cosmetics in a make up bag, consider running it through your washing machine or handwashing it.

  7. Look at the how you’re storing your make up – is it orderly? Easy to access? Consider storage trays for any excess products or products that remain in your bathroom, rather than in your handbag. Colour block where you have multiple colour options of a product.

  8. Add to your shopping list any products, brushes, applicators, skincare and cosmetic items you need to replace or add to your collection.

makeup skincare


I'm no make-up professional so I’m not going to tell you what you should or shouldn’t have in your kit. Make-up is a personal thing so keep going until you find what works for you. I do highly recommend booking an appointment with a cosmetics specialist though (either with a brand you are familiar with or step out of the comfort zone and try something new). Do this once a year to learn about new products, advancements in the field and new application techniques.

A lot like our clothes, things change, and it’s easy to find yourself stuck in a rut, using the same products/colours/techniques, year in, year out.

The team at Priceline Pharmacies, I’ve found to be exceptionally well trained and helpful as well, if you’re watching your pennies and looking for less expensive, yet often equally effective brands.

Sometimes, with cosmetics, you do get what you pay for and often the more expensive brands are highly pigmented, meaning you use less product.

Regarding skincare, I won’t lie, I’ve never spent a fortune on skincare products. Having experienced chronic skin issues in the last decade, I’ve spent countless hours chatting with dermatologists and desperately researching cosmetic ingredients, toxicity, potential side effects and so on. I could write many more pages on that topic alone but in the interest of keeping this succinct, I was astounded by what I found and ever since have been quite discerning about what goes on my skin.

A cleanser is not on the skin long enough to have a penetrating effect of any sort, in my opinion, so I find myself ignoring claims about a cleanser to do anything other than clean the surface of the skin. That said, most of my life I have used QV brand and cleanse twice, as is always recommended.

Toner is recommended for oily skin types and an alcohol-free option is always kinder to skin.

As far as moisturisers go, I’m, again sceptical as to what can penetrate the skin and produce miraculous anti-ageing effects and so on. I choose to see moisturiser as a barrier to keep the skin from drying and that’s about it. Feeding your skin from the inside, with good dietary choices and water consumption, makes far more sense to me.

I love Jojoba Co’s Jojoba and Rosehip Oil for a natural alternative, which I back up with a Rosehip Oil night cream in winter or after sun exposure.

I would much rather spend money on treatments, that I know are going to promote skin cell renewal or collagen stimulation – microdermabrasion, peels, needling to name a few.


  • Make your appointment to chat with a cosmetics specialist. If you’re unsure where to start, have a browse through Priceline or David Jones.

  • Throw out those items you’re not keeping.

  • Schedule a time to wash those brushes and applicators, if you couldn’t do so today.

  • Hit the shops armed with your shopping list (I do love those days when Priceline has a storewide sale on cosmetics, just quietly though).

  • Have you had a treatment lately? Do your own research and book in for a series of treatments, at the very least microdermabrasion (I personally love it).


Gold Coast, Brisbane & Northern New South Wales Stylist, Louise Chambers is available for personal styling, photo shoot & media styling, style workshops, fashion event MC bookings and media bookings.

Instagram: @stylechambers