I’ve always thought primer was a category the beauty industry foisted upon the consuming public just to provide us with a fresh opportunity to buy, and that may indeed be the case. But I kept hearing raves about Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer, and finally on a visit to Sephora on Sunday, I went for it and people, there is really something to this. You apply a thin coat, let it absorb for a couple of minutes, and then put on your foundation or BB cream or whatever and just like that, redness disappears and you are left with one of those lovely lit-from-within glows that typically money can’t buy. It makes you look so special-occasion good that I felt a little guilty using it today, as I’ve got absolutely nothing extraordinary planned.
If I’m leaving the house, I’m wearing makeup. Doesn’t matter where I’m going or what I’m doing: I have headed, unbathed, many a morning in my jeans and sneaks and the tee I slept in, to the dog run with a face fully done, just because to do otherwise feels not quite imaginable to me at this stage in the game. Ten years ago I’d run out of the house with nothing but a swipe of the mascara wand. But you get older, your lashes thin, your cheeks no longer flush of their own volition. Beauty fades. It just does. I like to think of myself as drawing it back in.* The first thing I put on my face after washing it is Bobbi Brown BB Cream, which I switched to a while back because it has a higher SPF (35) than the BB Cream I previously used. It’s also an uncannily good match for my skin tone. In addition to which, you can see my actual skin underneath it, which is key: who can bear a foundation-y look?
Next up, I draw in my nonexistent brows with this pencil from YSL. Seriously, my brows are quite scant, so I need a product that doesn’t end up looking altogether fake, and somehow, this doesn’t.
For eyeliner these days I’m using this MAC color, a rich-but-not-too-dark brown that I picked up in the beauty closet when I visited Tribeca Mom at work not long ago. It goes on easier than most liners, and seems hard to screw up, which is key, because did I mention that I’m not especially good at applying makeup?
I am forever trying new mascaras, then going back to old favorites, and right now I’ve returned after an extended break to Better Than Sex mascara from Too Faced, even though I hate the name, because it delivers volume better than anything else I’ve ever tried.
I’m still very much liking the MAC lipstick I picked up (and wrote about) not long ago, but am back to using this really good red I acquired in August, because it reminds me of the summer, which I’m already missing.
I could never make a go of most blushes without the results looking horribly artificial. But just a bit of this—and a little goes a seriously long way; I’ve had the same eensy bottle for over a year—imparts the nicest, most natural flush.
*I realize there is a big no-makeup movement going on at the moment, and that many people feel quite empowered by it. If that’s your thing, fantsatic. This is what works for me.
I picked up this brilliantly pinky-red lipstick in the beauty closet at Redbook on a workday visit with Tribeca Mom the other day. It’s super-matte and the color lasts so seriously forever that I braved the MAC store on a Saturday to buy two more shades of the same formulation—which, if you know anything about me and my aversion to lower Broadway on weekends, is really saying something.
Just three exceptionally well-packaged soaps for your delectation. First up: the wrapping for this lemongrass nettle argan soap was inspired by Moroccan tiles, and I think I would wallpaper a (small) room in it if I could.
There’s apparently beer in this soap, as well as vitamin B, but I just like the interplay of the bold geometric pattern and the dots.
At a certain point on Thursday afternoon, the city’s heat and stickiness and altogether ick got to be too much, and I decided to hightail it immediately out to the country. Whenever I make a last-minute decision like this and pack in a rush, I forget something, and this time around it was my makeup. Perhaps you’re thinking that maybe this wouldn’t be such a big deal, given that I was headed for a few days of solitude in high summer, and perhaps, a decade ago, it wouldn’t be. But as it stands now, without cosmetic assistance, my lashes and brows are decidedly faded; they long to be drawn back in, and I feel better when they are. Whether or not there’s much of an audience doesn’t matter in the least. I had just heard about a new organic beauty pop-up boutique called Knockout Beauty close by in Bridgehampton (no website, but if you’re in the neighborhood, it’s right across the Montauk highway from the Candy Kitchen), and so off I went.
The first thing I picked out was this eyeliner, an old fashioned pencil, just how I like, in a nice subtle brown.
My hair is kind of brassy at the moment, so the woman who was helping me chose this brow defining wax for redheads, but I actually kind of love it.
Lipstick is not a priority when it gets this hot, but this is such a good red that I couldn’t resist. I like it so much I kept applying it and reapplying it all weekend, for no one but me.
For reasons I couldn’t quite follow, Knockout Beauty has adopted an anti-mascara stance, and doesn’t carry any. No matter: you can always find a more-than-suitable drugstore brand, and I did perfectly great at Rite-Aid with this Volume Express The Falsies from Maybelline. Lengthens and thickens just as nicely as any of those fancy brands I’m always banging on about.
And while we’re at it: I think I am finally going to have to just up and switch to Neutrogea makeup remover. So cheap. So good.
My hair has, for as long as I can recall, refused to get with the program. It’s fine, it frizzes, and is as dry as the desert at high noon. Not helping matters is the fact that I like to wear it straight (its natural state is ringlet-tight curls) which requires no small amount of of heat styling, so also: it’s damaged. But when I use All in One Milk from Davines, I can almost trick myself into thinking I was born with good hair. I spray a pretty liberal amount on before blow-drying, comb through (it’s an excellent detangler) and then style away. Afterward, my hair is soft and shiny and decidedly un-poufy, and it smells really nice too, which isn’t nothing.