Stuck in a Beauty Rut

Beauty Tips

Stuck In A Beauty Rut?

Ready to take things to the next level? Join my Patreon and put a few dollars in my virtual tip jar!

In return, you’ll get access to exclusive perks for both makeup lovers and makeup artists.

become a patron!

Ask Me

Do you have a beauty or makeup question? Tap the button below and get advice from a pro. Your question may even become a future blog post!

have a pressing makeup question?

want to work with me 1:1?

Used in cosmetology schools around the world, translated in German, this is like having a makeup artist in your back-pocket.
Get your copy >

i wrote a book (and it's really, really good)

Bad habits are hard to shake. Whether you're new to makeup or need a refresher, my course is foundational!
Learn More >

work smarter, not harder 

First thing you have to know is your skin type. Grab my free skin type guide here >

New here?

Stuck in a Beauty Rut?

This article is for those of you who have found yourselves in a beauty rut or a beauty routine (or lack thereof) that is boring. Your skin isn’t as glowy. Your makeup just looks blah…you want to make a change because you have plateaued. After years of doing the same thing, you just get bored. You need a new hobby. A new sport. A new look. This article is full of 4 pieces of makeup advice you can probably implement today and on the cheap!

1. Use those makeup samples….stat.

Deluxe Sample Flat Lay Natalie Setareh


When you are in a beauty rut, getting started can feel incredibly intimidating.

That’s why my first tip is to first go through all those samples you’ve accumulated recently. Anything older than a year, please toss! That stuff is expired and can cause irritation and/or breakouts.

Check out this post on how to “spring clean” your beauty collection

While you’re going through your products, make sure that those samples are formulated for your skin type. If you don’t know your skin type or you don’t know what products are formulated for your skin type, grab a copy of my book or take my skin type quiz.

Makeup or not, taking care of your skin always looks good!

Experiment With The Samples

Grab those samples and maybe try doing the 10-Step Korean Skincare Routine for a day or two. Obviously that’s not something I could (or would recommend doing) for longer than a few days but changing things up a bit may give you just the boost you need. Plus, you’ll get around to using up those samples and maybe discover a new favorite product or two.

If You Don’t Have Any Samples…

Most of the time, samples pouches are not large enough to really drive purchasing decisions.

So the next best thing to using up samples is investing in deluxe samples of skincare and makeup products.

You normally find these deluxe samples close to checkout or in the travel size section of where you shop. Not only the smaller sizes cheaper, but they are large enough to drive purchasing decisions, are the perfect size for travel and keeping in your makeup bag or purse, and of course if you like the product, you can even refill them with the larger sizes, if possible!

This is a win-win all around.

Check out this post on how to shop for makeup.


Face Masks Flat Lay Natalie Setareh

Tip #2 Get a cream highlighter 


Glowing Girl


I don’t know about you but when my skin and makeup has a glow to it, I just seem to have a little pep in my step. And when you are in a beauty rut, you probably have forgotten about highlights.

When I was visiting my mom in Tucson, a city situated smack dab in the middle of the Sonoran Desert (very beautiful), my mom gave me her leftover cream highlighter since I forgot mine.

While cream highlighters are a pro kit staple, at this time, they faded out of my personal beauty routine.

Check out this post on the foundations I use in the professional kit.

Not only do cream highlighters add a soft glow to your cheeks, they also help keep powder blushes and powder illuminators last longer. They are also super versatile and can be used on your eyelids, the corner of your eyes, and your cupids bow alone or under whatever makeup you decide to put on top. You can even mix it in (sparingly) into your foundation.


Here are some of my favorite cream highlighters:


MAC Hush Cream Highlighter

MAC Cream Colour Base in Hush

The gorgeous and subtle sheen of MAC Hush but this has been a kit staple for year and I use it mostly on the eyelids. It’s not TOO bright and also, doesn’t lean too silver or too gold. This looks great on it’s own but also under a shimmer or metallic shadow.


NARS | The Multiple - Copacabana

NARS – The Multiple in Copacabana

Worth EVERY PENNY-seriously, it’s like one of my most favorite products EVER. Of course this is the color I use for my complexion (and it may even be a little cool for me) but NARS has a gorgeous range of these multiples for different skin tones. You’ll want to grab a copy of my book to learn which color highlighters are best for you.


COVER FX | Custom Enhancer Drops - Moonlight

COVER FX | Custom Enhancer Drops – Moonlight

This is a kit staple. A little drop goes a LONG way. There is a bit of a learning curve because yes, there is such a thing as too much highlight. But once you get the hang of using it, the more powerful this become.




Tip #3 Curl Your Eyelashes

Before After Eyelash Curler

Step 1. Curl your lashes.

Step 2. Apply mascara.

Step 3. Trust. This one little hack will literally gift you appearance of an instant eye lift, no needles involved.

I mean, look how gorgeous this is. If you feel happy using it, you’ll actually use it.

If you don’t have the time or energy to curl your lashes on the daily, go get a lash lift! This is a semi-permanent curl just for your lashes! They last 6-8 weeks and it’s great. I highly recommend.


My Favorite Eyelash Curlers




Like: Revlon Eyelash Curler $5.99

Seriously, my fave and super affordable–I have an old, all metal one with white pads.



Love: KEVYN AUCOIN | The Eyelash Curler

This is my pro-kit staple and you can’t go wrong with it (unless of course you have lashes that won’t curl.


If your lashes are too stubborn to curl (because that is also common as well), then make sure to add a couple extra coats of mascara and really work the mascara into the lash line. Remember, the formula AND the wand matters when it comes to mascara. You should LOVE your mascara and if you don’t, it’s time to switch it out.


I have an entire section of my book dedicated to mascara and how to determine which is the right one for you. This is valuable information and will save you tons of time, money, and headaches. No more trial and error in the makeup section!


Lashes For Days All About The Wand

Picture showing different types of mascara wands



BONUS TIP:  Groom your brows!

Shaping brows and opening your eyes with mascara are always easy (and cheap) ways to upgrade your look. I’m still working my mascara series so if you are in the market for a new mascara…I’m here for you. I will help.



Tip #4 Change Up Your Lipstick


Natalie Setareh MAC Heroine Lipstick Selfie



If you have have five or six empty MAC containers? If so, head over to your local MAC counter, recycle those bad boys and get yourself a FREE  lipstick! Not sure what color to get, check out this post ‘How To Find The Perfect Lipstick‘. Remember, if you know your undertones and basic makeup color theory, you can make an educated decision!

No empty containers? No problem!

Skip your daily coffee run and save that money for a new drugstore lipstick. Have fun picking out a color and wearing it alone or mixing it with a color you already have. It’s amazing how just changing your lip color makes you feel like a totally different person.


Some Lipstick Staples


ROSEBUD PERFUME CO. | Smith's Rosebud Salve

ROSEBUD PERFUME CO. | Smith’s Rosebud Salve

Honestly, this isn’t a lipstick but mix this into anything or with your cream blush and you have a beautiful shine that’s not sticky.





Ok, there’s a few things Charlotte Tilbury does well. Her lipsticks are one of them — I can’t explain why I love them so much but I do. Pillow Talk is such a classic color that looks flattering on so many skin tones.



L'ORÉAL PARIS | L'oreal Paris Colour Riche Collection Lipstick - Jlo's Nude

L’ORÉAL PARIS | L’oreal Paris Colour Riche Collection Lipstick – Jlo’s Nude

A bit lighter than Pillow Talk and costs less, I love this color for an everyday polished, not overly done lipstick.


Don’t know what lipstick color to wear? Check out this post ‘How To Find The Perfect Lipstick

Bonus Tip #5 Paint Your Nails

Here’s the thing. I love having painted nails but hate having chipped nails and/or doing them myself. I can always do my left hand so pretty, my right hand so-so, and well — it seems like when I do my nails myself it takes forever for them to dry. If you have the extra funds to go get them done, write them off as a business expense to yourself! Self-care is the best care. If you don’t have the funds, do them yourself.

Painting your nails is big impact. You immediately feel more polished (sorry, I had to).

I’ve never been a huge nail painter mostly because I lack patience and they always end up getting smudged and chipped within minutes of me thinking they are dry. But. As I’ve gotten a little older, I’ve become a little more patient and when my nails are painted pretty, I just feel a little bit more put together. Plus, it’s cheaper than going to a salon (which is normally my cop out for not wanting to do my nails at home). So, I painted my nails today and I’m digging this Julep polish. It dries so quickly!! Woot woo!


Julep Nail Color


And that’s it! 4, wait 5 tips on how to get out of a beauty rut?

I hope these tips helped and I wish you a most wonderful, fabulous day. Don’t forget to follow me on social media and join my email list at the footer below!


If you’ve been in a beauty rut for a long time…

and you are really ready to step out of the slump, make sure to check out the Create Your Signature Look program. This is a high-touch 1:1 coaching program in style and makeup. Sign up at the link above and learn more by hopping on the email list or even better, scheduling a call to learn more about it and see if it’s a good fit for you.


Natalie Setareh Makeup For Beginners Online Course


Look no Further!

Need Makeup Help?

Beauty is about perception, not about make-up. I think the beginning of all beauty is knowing and liking oneself. You can't put on make-up, or dress yourself, or do you hair with any sort of fun or joy if you're doing it from a position of correction.

kevyn aucoin