What’s In My Travel Makeup Bag?


You know, the thing with travel makeup bags is that most of what’s inside are fixed costs, or rather, weight.

You need only a few pumps of foundation to last you a week, few swipes of blush, mere millimeters from eyeliner pencils, 0.5% of mascara, and extremely light dabs of lipstick that make almost no difference in height.

Foundation may be transferred into a little makeshift jar, if you insist, but that would quickly deteriorate the quality of the product, and who would take apart a blush or break into half a pencil? Mascara is impossible to modify for travel. Lol. It also makes no sense to transfer lipstick into a separate palette unless you’re bringing a lot of colors, in which case immediately translates into ‘bringing more than necessary’. We probably really only need 3 shades, unless you’re a MUA.

So for the most part, the amount of makeup we bring for a 4-day or 4-week trip is the same. Agree? I know you do! 😀

Let’s look at what I brought for my 5D4N Okinawa Trip 2012.

1. Makeup bag: I got this from Diesel at KL Premium Outlet. It cost RM120, I think. It’s expensive, but the quality is really good! Waterproof, sturdy, yet light. And the little birdcages print is so cute! This pouch is actually detached from the hanging toiletry bag with 2 more compartments.

2. Urban Decay Naked Palette: Every girl’s must-have in their travel makeup bag, seriously! I brought Naked on my 7-day Taiwan trip too. Other palettes with neutrals will do, but I rely on Naked the most. The neutral shades I use most are Virgin, Naked, Buck, Darkhorse. I used Virgin and Sin a lot more before MUG Shimma Shimma came into the picture.

3. Z Palette with 23 eyeshadows: What?! Need so many for what?! I didn’t know there’re 23 eyeshadows in my Z Palette until I just counted. Lol. I usually have my most used or newest (to try out) eyeshadows in the Z Palette for easy access. I’m going to get the smaller, squared Z Palette so that I can force myself to bring half of these next time I travel. In here are eyeshadows from MAC, Makeup Geek, NYX, Sugarpill, L’Oreal, Kat Von D.

4. MAC Lustre Lipstick in See Sheer: I LOVE See Sheer! It’s a pretty, coral, that brightens up my skin instantly.

5. Revlon Colorburst in Blush: Hmmmm I find this so-so only. It tends to slide off easily.

6. MAC Studio Fix Foundation NC25: I didn’t use this but brought it along in case I don’t have time to stipple liquid foundation on in the morning. Luckily I managed time for my Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation every morning!

7. MAC Blot Powder Light: One of my daily essentials! Used to set makeup and control oil, in a way. I’ve panned out my MAC Blot Powder Pressed!

8. MAC Beauty Powder Too Chic: I have thrown away/put aside all other highlighters ever since I got MAC Beauty Powder in Too Chic. Looks exceptionally stunning yet natural on yellow-toned skin. It makes me look like I have cheekbones! :O

9. Bourjois Youth Extension Flower Perfection Foundation: I brought this along with Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation as I wanted to test out the latter, but was afraid I’d hate it. Turns out I loved the 123 so much I have completely stopped using Flower Perfection.

10. Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation: OMG. I cannot tell you enough how much I am in LOVE with this foundation!!! I have not reviewed it because I want to fully test it out, like whether it oxidizes, whether it causes any breakouts on my sensitive skin, oily control issues, etc. But till now, I have not found a single thing I dislike about it, honestly. Unlike its predecessors like Bourjois Youth Extension Flower Perfection Foundation and Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation, the Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation is not as highly reviewed. I don’t know why, but this is the PERFECT FOUNDATION for my imperfections. Super love!

11. NYC Sunny Bronzer: I chose to bring NYC Sunny instead of MAC Gold-Go-Lightly because Sunny’s less pigmented and a lot easier to control. You cannot afford to make too many mistakes (for makeup) when traveling with a tour group because set off time is not as flexible.

12. Milani Baked Blush Luminoso: My cheapest and most favorite blush! It looks pink when the rest of your makeup looks nice with a pink blush, peach when the rest of your makeup looks nice with a peach blush.

13. Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Liner Black Ink: I like Black Ink very much but it’s drying out really fast. I’ve used it to almost the same remaining amount as MAC Fluidline Blacktrack but Bobbi Brown’s Black Ink is still performing quite okie. Much less creamy, but not as flaky and dry like Blacktrack towards its last days.

14. Bourjois Liner Glitter Fizz: This is by far my favorite colored liquid eyeliner! Even MAC ones cannot compare. MAC Liquidlast in Inky was disastrous.

15. Lioele Artist Auto Eyebrow Pencil: Groom and define eyebrows quickly and easily! Jen from frmheadtotoe uses 03 Grey Black; Juli from bunbunmakeuptips uses 01 Natural Brown. :)

16. Clio Brush Eyeliner Kill Black: Best black eyeliner I have ever used. Great sharp tip that makes control a breeze.

17. Pupa Multiplay Eyeliner 02: Gorgeous, gorgeous eyeliner that may turn out to appear green, blue, turquoise, grey, depending on the eyeshadow used. So very versatile and surprising!

18. Bourjois Contour Clubbing 45 Blue Remix: This was a random buy and it turned out to be one of my top pencil eyeliners. I don’t use it often enough though, as the bright blue is quite a statement maker. Check out a makeup look here. But I do like the quality of this pencil very much.


Tip from Bun Bun: I realized that there was less smudging from eyeliner and mascara when in Okinawa, because of the cooler temperature and lower humidity levels. So don’t believe 100% when bloggers in other countries say a certain product is 100% smudgeproof because Singapore’s weather is entirely different. Believe that it worked for them, but don’t blindly believe that it will alleviate all your smudging woes.


19. Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler: Fits the curve of my eye perfectly. Doesn’t pinch my eyelids like other eyelash curlers do. Even Shiseido’s cannot compare.

20. Mascara guard: I don’t usually use this but the L’Oreal Ultra Volume Collagene Mascara forced me to. It’s an extra effort but I do like the thick, volumized lash effect the L’Oreal mascara gives so much that the effort is negligible.

21. Brush holder/protector: This brush holder is a great way to carry your brushes around. Normal foldable brush cases or pouches never impressed me as the brushes would either slip out of the slots, or have their bristles squashed, or are too fragile themselves to provide any protection. And the best part is if you use The Brush Guard on MAC 217, the guard will not move! So 217 remains in shape all the time. 😀

In the slots are brushes from MAC, Loewe-Cornell, Essence of Beauty, Makeup Geek, SASA, elf.

This brush holder is hard core, man. Review coming up!

22. Face brushes: Oh yes, the downside of the above mentioned brush holder is that the slots are tight enough for at most two eyeshadow brushes. To fit two mascaras into a slot, I actually cut the middle stitches. So for face brushes, I just put them into my Strawberry Shortcake case.

23. Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda Concealer: Yes! I’m still using it!

24. Too Faced Retractable Kabuki: This is what I use to blend bronzer and blush. Love that it’s retractable for hygiene purposes and that it’s pink. 😀 I would use it to apply face powders like MAC Studio Fix too.


As for skincare, I don’t really bother transferring into smaller bottles or jars unless the original bottle is super bulky. I don’t transfer skincare because I have sensitive skin and don’t want unsterilized bottles to affect the formula. As for hair and body care, it really depends!

So these are what I brought TO Japan. Also check out my makeup haul FROM Japan!

How about you? How much makeup do you bring on a trip? Do you pack as light as possible or do you just chuck everything into your luggage? 


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About Bun Bun

Hello! My name is Juli and Bun Bun is my alter-ego. I blog to share my love for makeup, how to apply it, and what works or what doesn’t work, all from an Asian perspective.

My first makeup product was a shimmery light blue lipstick which I proudly wore all over my eyelids and lips. It cost $2.50, felt like $250, and made me feel like a million bucks.