I Tried To Find The Next Viral Makeup Applicator Using Household Objects

by Hatti Rex

There doesn't seem to be any set formula as to what the next weird viral makeup trend is going to be, or when it's due to grace us with it's presence, but there seems to be an overriding sense of making things relatable. Whether you're desperately fishing for a last minute mascara that you can fashion out of toiletries you already own or attempting to apply foundation using an actual egg, all these techniques aim to be quick and easy DIY alternatives to potentially expensive cosmetic products.

After coming to the realization that there are probably a lot of useful items lying around the house that would be good for applying makeup, ones that wouldn't once again leave me with literal egg on my face, I decided it would be a sweet idea to test a few out — not only for the sake of beauty life hacks on a budget but mostly because I wanted to get in there before the cool bloggers caught onto the trends so that I could claim I got there first. After all, this is the internet. Perhaps I'd end up starting the next new viral hashtag, maybe eventually someone would erect a plinth with my name on it and an engraving of a makeup covered mushroom. A girl can only dream.

After rummaging through my cupboards for interesting everyday objects that could be used to apply my foundation, I settled on: a mushroom, a spatula, a tampon, a plastic glove, a lasagne sheet and a scouring pad. All these items had interesting textures that were similar to pre-existing applicators, so in theory it shouldn't be impossible to achieve a half decent coverage.

1. A Mushroom

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The best thing about using a mushroom to apply makeup is that they have their own built in handle, meaning that your fingers won't get messy. Without peeling off the skin, I dipped the head of the shroom into a dollop of foundation on the back of my hand, before gently dabbing it across the entirety of my face.

The texture of the mushroom was fairly efficient in covering my skin, although the trickier areas didn't seem to get much attention at all. Would probably not attempt to use a mushroom as an applicator again, unless stranded in a forest with nothing but a bottle of makeup. Although in that hypothetical scenario, I'd probably be trying to either escape or build a makeshift treehouse.

2. A Plastic Glove

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If you're ever feeling supremely extra and are wanting your makeup routine to feel more like a dramatic scene in Grey's Anatomy, then I'd highly recommend donning a pair of disposable gloves to apply your foundation. Pull up a YouTube playlist of hospital sounds and you'll feel like the star of your own medical drama.

Out of all the DIY options I considered, the gloves were unsurprisingly the easiest to use, especially seeing as it's possible to fully control what you're doing and can easily dab product into all the little nooks and crannies. It was just like applying it using your bare hands, without having to wash them afterwards.

3. A Scouring Pad

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Using the soft part of the scouring pad would've been playing in easy mode, so instead I used the scratchier side. Usually seen tackling grime from dirty surfaces, my skin wasn't exactly pleased about this makeshift applicator coming into contact with my face. I decided that a gentle pitter patter was the only option, although it wasn't really possible to get a coverage that'd ordinarily be good enough to leave the house with. Scrub a dub-dub, leave your pads in the tub.

At first it did leave an interesting texture, fans of the faux freckle look or avant garde aesthetics could probably try using these techniques to their advantage, experimenting with different colors and patterns.

Oh, and please ignore the fact that I forgot to remove the previous layer of foundation beforehand, ya girl done goofed.

Object Four: A Tampon

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It will come as a shock to absolutely nobody to discover that using a tampon as a makeup sponge will completely absorb a whole load of product. It's almost like sanitary products were invented to hold moisture or something, whoa.

First, using a tampon proved to be really annoying but as the little lady started to open up a bit, she proved to be a fairly alright makeshift applicator (at least compared to some of the other options...). It'd probably be handy if you're out and about, in need of a makeup touchup but still have some emergency tampons hiding at the bottom of your bag. Then again, using your actual human hands could potentially be more effective but whatever.

5. A Spatula

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The only way to get anywhere using a spatula is to completely overdo it with the product, honestly, I properly caked the stuff on (pun half intended, you know, baking utensils and all that). Using a bit more foundation than normal wouldn't have been too much of an issue if the stupid thing actually made my skin look great but it didn't. Applying makeup to the larger, flatter surfaces actually turned out ok but as per usual, the fiddlier areas looked completely messed up.

6. A Lasagna Sheet

You truly do get what you pay for, and my own-brand lasagna sheets surely weren't up to the job. When I envisioned applying my makeup with pasta, I'd imagined a soft touch lasagne sheet that was easily malleable and a decent texture to work with.

Even after leaving in boiling water for 20 minutes, my sheet was still really solid, leaving it to snap in my hands. I couldn't have applied my makeup with this if my life depended on it, so I chucked half the useless hunk in the bin whilst my boyfriend nibbled on it's twin for the sake of minimizing waste (pasta al dente, bon appetit!)

There are probably a million household items that would make a passable makeup brush, but after trying out a handful of mostly useless options for myself, I'd suggest sticking with the more traditional techniques. Once again, my 15 minutes of internet fame will have to wait — but it was still worthwhile to get creative.

Images: Hatti Rex