Makeup Is as Easy as Paint-by-Numbers with Instructions from Three Top Beauty Vloggers

Makeup. We look at it. We test it. We buy it. We shove it into a drawer where it goes unused for months, or forever. We look at something we bought last week, or last month, and wonder how we ever thought that would be a color we could wear.

It used to be just us against the makeup (and the companies who make it). We would listen to the SA's promises about all the youth/beauty/mystery their products would deliver, buy something and then hope for the best. We would read beauty magazines and their "product reviews" -- heavily influenced by advertising dollars.

Then came beauty blogs, and things shifted a little bit. Empowerment through knowledge...or something like that. Women were buying products and publishing unvarnished reviews on their own Web site. Companies sat up and took notice, sending powerful, popular beauty bloggers samples for review -- you can spot the bloggers who review these items honestly quite easily. (Psst. They are the ones who give negative reviews, even when the swag was free.)

But now we have YouTube. Not only can we ask someone, "Do you like Product X?" we get to see them use it. YouTube beauty tutorials have a life, and following, of their own. Here are three of the best.

The Raeview

The Raeview is best for: Hardcore beauty addicts who invest in high-end skin care and cosmetics. You are serious about visiting the beauty counters at Neiman Marcus, and you speak knowledgeably about makeup. You know the difference between a limited seasonal release and a permanent collection item. They know you by name at the Le Métier de Beauté counter.

Raeview on YouTube

Michelle Phan

Michelle Phan is best for: Cosmetic addicts who regularly look for theme makeup ideas. You have a deft, steady hand and you aren't afraid to try bold, bright colors -- you aren't afraid of a good bargain, either. Michelle Phan is more concerned with technique and fun than high-end brands; you'll see plenty of drugstore brand cosmetics featured.

Michelle Phan on YouTube

Lauren Luke (a.k.a. Panacea81)

Lauren Luke is best for: Anyone who likes to laugh and enjoys watching someone really talented do what they love. Lauren's tutorials are amazing; she is approachable and warm, and demonstrates looks for everyone: old, young, natural, super-glam, theme, costume, etc. The self-taught makeup artist had her own limited capsule collection of makeup with Sephora several years back, and she's arguably the most popular beauty vlogger on the Internet. She uses lots of affordable, drugstore brands. Oh, and her accent? It's adorable.

Lauren Luke on YouTube

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Christina Uticone