One product, many purposes

You are wearing that dress you found crumpled in the back of the closet. It is not a colour you normally go for, but you like the shape. This means you will have to use a different shade of eyeshadow. Unfortunately, you’ve hit pan (Read more: Cosmetic dictionary – Cosmetic terms explained) on the most suitable one, about four months ago. What now?


At some point you will run out of a cosmetic product and need to substitute, until you can get to Mopani to replace it. This is what you can use.

Mascara and eyeliner

If your liquid-liner runs out, sanitise the applicator and wave it to dry. Then use the applicator to gather some of your mascara formula and apply. You will have to move quickly, before the mascara dries out.

If your mascara is finished, use a liquid liner to give your lashes a tint. You can compensate with an eye-lash curler for volume.

Contour, blush and eyeshadow

If you have run out of contour, you can substitute with an eyeshadow palette.

If you have a warmer skin tone, you can use brown-, bronze- and peach-coloured eyeshadows and blush to recreate your contouring. Use a rose gold shade with a shimmer to highlight your cheekbones and the inner corners of your eyes.

Contouring on cooler skin tones can be done with brown eyeshadows with a hint of grey. Silver or eggshell-white shimmery shades can be used as a highlighter.

For a pop of unexpected colour, you can use a cream blush on your eyelids or lips.

Use your contouring palette as an eyeshadow, this works well when you try to create a natural, darker crease for those “no-make-up, make-up” looks.

An eyeshadow can also be used as a brow-filler.

Lip- and eye-pencils

Soft pink lip liners often brighten the eyes when used on the lower lash-line, paired with pink or peach eyeshadows.

An eye pencil of any colour can be used to recreate an ombre lipstick look, or even match your lipstick shade.

Primer, concealer and BB cream

BB creams are often used as an alternative to foundation. Some may prefer better coverage on some days. If you have run out of a primer, you can use BB cream as an alternative. The light formula is absorbed into the skin quickly and it won’t leave you feeling cakey.

Your concealer can be used as an eyeshadow primer, as it offers a nice even and clear canvas with grip for the make-up to sit on.

Lipstick and blush

You can use a rosy pink lipstick as a cream blusher. Start with a light dab, and blend it out. Then repeat until you have reached the desired colour.

If you have a nude lipstick, you can use this as a concealer. A powdered blush can be dusted over your lipstick to set it and give it a matte finish.

To note

The quality, texture, pigment and density of the product you are using as a substitute will all affect how well this works. It might take some experimenting to find out what works for you.

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