A recent study commissioned by Benefit Cosmetics posed that question to groups of French and American women (albeit in a less dramatic fashion). The results revealed that 25 percent of the Americans polled treasure their concealer or foundation, while 26 percent of the French prize mascara above all else. The runner up, regardless of nationality, was lipstick or lip gloss, while moisturizer, eyeliner, and blush were universally left behind. Personally, I’d be a rogue in that survey, as I refuse to go out without a squirt of Dr. Jart+ Water Fuse Beauty Balm and a stash of Clean & Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets for touch-ups.
So what do other Allure staffers consider essential?
“Well, I might as well be waving an American flag: As someone with a long, tumultuous relationship with acne, concealer would definitely be my must-have item. “ —Kate Sullivan, writer
“Without any hesitation, mine is Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1. So much so that even if I’m not carrying a purse, I WILL find a way to smuggle it with me via sleeves, socks, or whatever means necessary.” —Alexandra Owens, editorial assistant
“I guess mine would be a brow groomer, because I never leave the house without combing my brows! Even if I’m makeup-free and going to the gym or to run errands, I must comb my brows…messed up brow hair freaks me out.” —Heather Muir, beauty news editor
“Hands down it would be M.A.C. Zoom Fast Black Lash Mascara. No doubt about it, it’s my stranded-on-a-desert-island product. I am all about the drama when it comes to makeup, and this mascara gives me the boldest, baddest, blackest lashes.” —Christiana Molina, editorial contributor
“For me, it’s blush. Without it, my skin can look so tired and sallow. Plus, it takes two seconds to apply, so even on a lazy Saturday, it’s no big deal.” —Amy Keller Laird, beauty director
What’s your ultimate beauty must-have?
PHOTO: DAVID STESNER