Make Up Inventory & Intentions

March 11, 2015

You have probably been expecting a post like this from me... I have been sorting out my make up collection, started a mini project pan and have held a blog sale. 

I really want to downsize my collection. This will sound really silly but... sometimes when I open a drawer and see 10 blushers I just panic and don't know what to choose. It makes putting make up on stressful rather than enjoyable... I see how many products I have and need to use up and this makes me feel pressure rather than pleasure.

I have got myself a 'clean slate' by clearing out, selling and giving away some of my least used and least loved make up. None of it was 'bad' stuff that didn't work, I just have better suited options in my collection already.

So I am turning over a new leaf - publicly. 

Video Here:

I have been trying to improve my buying habits and reduce my consumption. 

I quietly and privately started a small project 5 pan, the videos were filmed at the start of Feb and March with them both going live a month later, so I was not doing the challenge 'live' and I could delete the videos before they were seen if I failed. I surprised myself with how well I did, how motivated I was and how rewarding I found the whole process. 

This encouraged me to start a bigger, public Project 10 Pan and to join in the Panning community on YouTube, there are so many great vloggers that can help encourage and inspire you in the process of using up and enjoying your make up. I'll link some of my favourites at the end.

My Current Collection & My Intentions

As it currently stands I have one of everything (CC cream, powder foundation, bronzer, etc) apart from in the following areas:


This year I will not buy any blushes, I plan to try and use up 1 cream blush and two powder blushes. 

Lip Glosses

I have 4 lip glosses - two are nude/natural colours and two are darker, vampy colours so I want to use up one of each colour family, leaving me with two glosses.

Lip Sticks

I currently have 12 lip sticks and really only wear them for filming or nights out... both of which are pretty rare occurrences. 

I plan to use lipsticks more and try to work my way through 5 or 6 this year leaving me with 6 or 7 lipsticks in different shades. 

I've worked out I will have: A 'my lips but better' colour, a nude, a purple/bright pink, fuchsia toned colour, a dark brownish kind of colour and one or two reds. Even if I reduce my collection by half I will still have plenty of variety and colour options. 

Eye Pencils

I currently have two pencil eye liners and I intend to use up one of them... It's part of my small project 5 pan.

Eye Shadows

This is the shocking one - I have 66 eye shadows! What?? Who needs that many colours?! 

Having said that, this is the only drawer that I open with relish every. single. time. 

I absolutely love seeing all those colours in their many pans... I debated joining in the 'pan that palette' challenge on YouTube but I really have no desire to use any of them up or hit pan on any. I feel like I have a really good selection of bright colours and neutrals as well. 

I also have a dark, smoky palette (Lily Lolo Laid Bare) and a light, neutral palette that I can take with me whenever I go away (Red Apple Lipstick/Benecos)... I don't really want to change that. 

I will, however, make sure I use them more often and enjoy them more... rather than just sitting in front of the open drawer, staring at them!

Ultimate Goal

My ultimate goal is to have one of everything except blush, lip products, eye shadow and liners. I have a Pacifica highlighter I purchased from iHerb which I want to use up so that I can replace it with the new Brija Cosmetics highlighter in her Harry Potter collection.

I want to change my overall attitude to buying and consuming make up... I think I have made gradual progress and now I am essentially on a 'no buy' apart from replacements.


I thought I would add a little bit in about this category, this has never been much of a weakness of mine, unlike a lot of other bloggers. For a good few months now I have been trying to limit what I buy, only getting replacements where possible, of course I haven't been perfect by any means! 

I have been using up my abundant supply of samples and I think you will of noticed I have posted more empties posts/videos because I have been focussed on using up one product at a time rather than leaving things half finished and moving onto the next.

I have a few items that will be included in an upcoming Project 10 Pan so you will see more then.

Again, this is another area that I want to be concious about, only buying replacements as much as my willpower will allow.

Nail Varnish

I currently have 14 nail varnishes and most of them are dark colours that you would typically associate with autumn/winter so I want to buy some spring/summer colours but keep my collection below 20. I'll try to avoid having two very similar colours, I want a variety of options not 5 purples, for example.

Final Thoughts

I have always struggled with 'excess' and have always been a bit ashamed of my 'consumer' side, I know it is at odds with the 'green' and holistic lifestyle I have been trying to live for the past 4-5 years.

Having said that I feel like I have been gradually and quietly making progress, improving my will power and re-aligning my intentions. I'm starting to realise that 'stuff' only makes me happy for a short amount of time. 

Also, being the sole carer and provider for my daughter has made me realise that each beauty item I buy takes something away from her - an experience, a day out, a trip together, an item or improvement for out home, etc. I know that I need some treats for myself but I certainly need to work to find a better balance.

So... are you ready for this new, improved Rachel?! Watch this space!


Details of my Project 10 Pan will be coming up soon. Here are some links to my fave YouTube Panning ladies!

Amber F
Pretty Pistol 86

This post does not include any products sent for consideration.
The links are not affiliated.
All opinions are honest and my own, any suggestions made are based on my own experiences and are meant as a guide. Please always take care when making any DIY products and patch test to rule out an adverse reaction.


  1. These are great aspirations and I wish you the best of luck in reaching them. I've been working on simplifying my inventory as well as I haven't been as diligent as I should about using up all my products before their expiration date or because of forgetfullness.

  2. Thank you :-) It's such a shame to waste things (especially beautiful make up) so I want to try and avoid that where possible xx

  3. karen calladine11 March 2015 at 16:05

    Good luck with this Rachel. I am thinking about a project pan x

  4. Wild Organic Beauty11 March 2015 at 22:04

    I really enjoy reading posts like this. I am always trying to pare down, but I don't think I've discovered my holy grail beauty products yet - I'm always discovering new products that I love! xx

  5. It's so great to read this I have been sorting through so much of my stuff recently not just make up as I found I was getting overwhelmed by the shear volume of stuff not to mention the mess, and I just wasn't able to enjoy things as much anymore. I don't know how people can have huge drawers upon drawers of cosmetics that would just stress me out too much. I really look forward to seeing how things work out for you with this.
    I also really liked what you said at the bottom that although you need to treat yourself spending money on things you don't need/won't use up taking away from an experience for Maddie or between you and Maddie. It is a lovely way to look at it and put things into perspective.

  6. Ah me trying not to buy (especially makeup) something i already have in terms of color or type of product , i am far away from having my unnatural palettes empty but i want to use what i bought so..embargo to cosmetics for me too

  7. Well done. It's funny how we all have one category of product that we have a gazillion of. I can't imagine having 66 eyeshadows in my wildest dreams but have around 100 lipsticks! I agree that being mindful is so important - I guess we need to go through the spend, spend phase to appreciate what's important.

  8. Thanks, I started mine 'secretly' and with a few easy options in there so I wouldn't get quickly demotivated. It's funny how I have completely got on board and feel really motivated to make progress, something must of clicked... or my competitive side is coming through maybe?! :-)
    Good luck if you do try one x

  9. That's the trouble, you have to have fun finding the ones that work best FIRST before you can ever consider 'settling down' and not being tempted to cheat! haha! xx

  10. I do find it stressful as I think of the products going to waste. At least if I keep my collection small nothing should go 'off' before I get a chance to make a good dent in it or finish it off.
    At the end of the day I would rather enjoy life, having experiences, creating memories and enjoying myself than have a big drawer full of pretty 'stuff' that I will never get proper use out of.
    I will be sure to keep you updated :-)

  11. Good luck! Hope you can find a way to make it fun and work well for you too, it shouldn't feel too much like a chore. x

  12. Wow 100 lipsticks! That's crazy... put our two collections together and we could open a shop!! haha!
    I did need that 'spend, spend, spend' phase to realise that it doesn't actually achieve anything.... apart from stress and an empty bank account! x


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