Make it Up Ingredients

Want to buy the ingedients for my upcoming book ahead of time? Here's your shopping list!

Oils, Butters, and Waxes

Ingredient Recommended Quantity Notes
argan oil (USA / Canada) 100mL/3.3fl oz Only used in skincare; not necessary for makeup recipes.
beeswax, refined (USA / Canada) 227g/8oz I found refined beeswax provided the most consistent results, and that’s really important with a lot of these small batch recipes.
candelilla wax 227g/8oz You could purchase less (~100g) if you can find it at a reasonable price.
castor oil (USA / Canada) 473mL/16fl oz This is one of the most-used oils in the book.
cocoa butter (USA / Canada) 500g/1.1lbs You can use the raw or the deodorized stuff, depending on how much you like the scent of chocolate.
refined coconut oil (USA / Canada) 454g/1lb You can use virgin or deodorized, but make sure it’s not fractionated.
Emulsifying wax (Polawax (USA / Canada), BTMS-50 (USA / Canada), Emulsifying Wax NF (USA / Canada / AU)) 226g/8oz Ritamulse SCG (Emulsimulse, ECOMulse) won’t work here as we use e-wax in mascara and that particular e-wax makes your eyes feel like they are on fire.
grapeseed oil 473mL/16floz Only used in skin care; not necessary for makeup recipes.
jojoba oil (USA / Canada), white or golden 473mL/16floz I prefer golden. This is one of the most-used oils in the book.
unrefined shea butter (USA / Canada) 1000g/2.2lbs Only used in skin care; not necessary for makeup recipes. You could purchase less (~500g) if you can find it at a reasonable price.
sweet almond oil (USA / Canada) 473mL/16floz Those with nut allergies can use safflower oil instead.


Ingredient Recommended Quantity Notes
Boron nitride 28g/1oz Only used in eye makeup recipes.
Calcium carbonate 28g/1oz Make sure you buy the powdered stuff, don’t make your own from egg shells!
white kaolin clay (USA / Canada) 227g/8oz If you end up having to buy more that’s ok ’cause kaolin is super useful!
Magnesium myristate 28g/1oz For lip and eye makeup
Magnesium stearate 28g/1oz This is used in most recipes; no substitutes!
Sericite mica 113g/4oz You’ll need plain sericite mica; check the INCI to be sure it hasn’t been blended/coated with other ingredients.
Silica microspheres 6g/0.2oz Because this ingredient is quite pricey outside of the USA I’ve kept the required amount low, but if you can get it for a good price, buy more! You can add silica microspheres to almost anything and it’s the best alternative to sericite mica I’ve found.
corn starch 227g/8oz Corn, arrowroot, or wheat starch will work, and food grade is fine (and often cheaper).
titanium dioxide 113g/4oz Oil soluble, non-micronized.
zinc oxide 113g/4oz Non-micronized.


There’s some flexibility with the pigments you purchase depending on what you want to make, refer to the notes columns for more information.

Ingredient Recommended Quantity Notes
Red iron oxide 28g/1oz Required for almost everything.
Yellow iron oxide 28g/1oz Required for almost everything.
Brown iron oxide 28g/1oz Required for almost everything. Dark brown variety preferred.
Black iron oxide 28g/1oz Highly recommended, mostly for eye makeup, and especially if you have darker skin or hair.
Red iron oxide, blue shade 28g/1oz Fantastic for berry tones, especially in lip colours, but not required.
Green chromium oxide 28g/1oz Mostly useful for eyes and colour correcting against redness. If you don’t struggle with redness and don’t like green eye makeup you can do without.
Hydrated chromium green oxide 28g/1oz This is a beautiful turquoise colour—mostly useful in eye makeup. Not required.
Blue ultramarine 28g/1oz A must-have if you like purples and vivid blues.
Pink/lavender ultramarine 28g/1oz Not necessary, but buy it if you like the colour.
Carmine 28g/1oz Required if you like classic red lip tones, corals, pinks, and purples—red iron oxide is way too muddy and will not work. You can use FD&C Red #7 as an alternative (in everything except lip stain) if you are alright with using it.
Coloured micas 28g/1oz You can buy a stunning rainbow of micas, and it’s seriously tempting to do so! I’d recommend starting with a white-silver mica, gold mica, bronze mica, and perhaps copper. You can use the white-silver one as a shimmer base and colour it with all your other pigments. When I say “white-silver” I mean a mica that is basically just pure, white shimmer, not grey. Some suppliers call this silver, others call it white or diamond. Go by the photo more than the name.


Ingredient Recommended Quantity Notes
Broad-spectrum preservative 28g/1oz I recommend Liquid Germall Plus™ (USA / Canada).
Vitamin E MT-50 (USA / Canada) 15mL/0.5fl oz  
vegetable glycerine (USA / Canada) 473mL/16fl oz  

Optional Ingredients

Ingredient Recommended Quantity Notes
Alkanet root powder 113g/4oz Used in one lip recipe. If you can purchase less, do—you only need a few teaspoons.
Bentonite clay 454g/1lb Only used in one recipe. If you can purchase less, do—half the listed amount is fine, but it can be difficult to find depending on where you shop.
Essential oils <15mL/<0.5oz You can make all the recipes in the book without essential oils, but some basics like peppermint essential oil (USA / Canada), lavender essential oil, tea tree essential oil, and rosemary essential oil would come in handy.
Evening primrose oil 118mL/4fl oz Only used in the skincare section, but if you struggle with acne you’ll love it!
xanthan gum 60g/2oz Only used in one project.


Item Notes
corn starch I love Krups coffee grinders and would recommend getting one of those (Braun is also good). Get a blade one, not a burr one.
dust mask We’ll be working with lots of fine powders and whipping them around in our coffee grinder, so you must get a dust mask. Inhaling fine powders can make you sick over the long term.
flexible silicone spatula I can’t recommend these NorPro ones enough! I use them for everything
Glass prep cups These are super necessary for making single serving lipsticks and eyeliners. You can buy silicone prep cups, but I really don’t like those—because they don’t heat up you’ll find your concoctions melt slowly and solidify quickly, giving you very little time to blend in pigments. I probably have over 50 of these wee cups—they’re super useful for recipe development as you can easily make small amounts of things and I’ll often leave concoctions sitting in a prep cup for weeks as I test ’em.
Mini wire whisks One or two of these will come in really useful
Mini measuring spoons Look for ones that are 1/8, 1/16, 1/32, and 1/64 tsp, rather than ones that are based around the weight of water they hold (0.15g, etc.). This set is the one I use.
Disposable pipettes/eyedroppers These are crazy useful for measuring out small amounts of liquids, especially since a few recipes do use “drops” as a form of measurement.
A scale that measures in increments of 1g or less I’d really recommend one that goes down to 0.01g; I got mine on Amazon for ~$10, and it’s insanely useful. You’ll really appreciate the accuracy.
Small funnels These are really useful for getting your concoctions into containers. You might also consider a syringe or two.
Small containers for your projects A selection of 5g, 10g, and 30g containers is fantastic for holding everything from eyeliner to foundation. Look for sifter lids for the 10g and 30g sizes.

Where to Shop

If you live in the States, you’re spoiled for choice. Know that your shopping selection and cheap shipping are the envy of the rest of the world!




The best place you can shop for all the cosmetic type ingredients is TKB Trading, though you can also find many of the ingredients you’ll need on Amazon.

Ah, my home and native land.

Believe it or not (I’ve done the math!), and even with currency conversion, cross-border shipping, and duty, it’s still often cheaper to purchase your ingredients from TKB Trading out of California. Ouch, eh? A huge part of these seems-not-quite-right savings is the bonus of only paying for shipping once. Sure, it’ll probably be $45USD+, but there aren’t many places in Canada you can shop at that’ll ship for under $25CAD, and with the selection TKB has, it’s sort of like shopping at three stores at once. The savings become extra obvious if you are purchasing larger amounts of each ingredient (TKB’s bulk pricing is much better), and for some ingredients like silica microspheres (250g from Saffire Blue = $116CAD, 227g from TKB = $19USD).

If you want to stay within Canada, Saffire Blue currently has the best selection of makeup ingredients I’ve found yet. New Directions North America has been steadily dropping all cosmetic-specific ingredients from their shop, so while you might find a few oxides and micas there, you usually have to buy a lot (250g+). The selection at Voyaguer is pretty good as well. I’ve never shopped with Aquarius Aromatics, but they have a reasonable selection of cosmetic ingredients (mostly pigments and basic powders), including the best price I’ve found on silica microspheres on our side of the border (227g/4oz = $25CAD). The Aroma Shoppe is also a great place to look—they specialize in ingredients for cosmetics, so they have a lot of what you’ll need. They ship out of The Netherlands, but it’s actually cheaper and faster than shipping within Canada in many cases. They also have the best price on carmine I’ve found yet.

The only ingredients I haven’t found in Canada is magnesium myristate and boron nitride. Windy Point has said they’re planning on bringing in both, along with the rest of the ingredients you’ll need for the book, so you might want to sit tight until they get everything in 🙂

The UK
The Soap Kitchen has a great selection of all the most common ingredients, as does Aromantic (they’ve got silica microspheres). Aromantic doesn’t call their pigments iron oxides, though, and gives them names like “classic black” and “coffee brown”, so you won’t find them by searching for oxides. The Aroma Shoppe also has quite a good selection of ingredients and they mostly focus on cosmetics, so it would be a great place to start.