Friday, December 12, 2008

Face the day.

As a makeup artist, people are always grilling me on not just techniques, but also what I use on my own face. Some days, I really turn it out with the makeup I wear and really go out full-faced, but most of the time I’m in a rush in the morning, so all I want to do is slap a little product on my face, gulp my coffee and trudge off to work through the snow. So, here are some thoughts on what I do on a daily basis and how to do it.

When it comes to skincare, I am pretty anal. And I also use exclusively Clinique skincare products. It’s not that I think they are any better than any other brands, I just like their giveaways the best. I stock up when they have good bonuses. (Bonii?)

At night, I take off my eye makeup with Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm. I dab it on my eyes and then gently swab it off with cotton pads (I buy these in bulk at the dollar store, five or six packs at a time). Always work from the outer corner of the eye to the inner corner, very gently, so as not to tug on this delicate skin. Repeat until your cotton comes away clean.

Following up the eye makeup removal, I lather up my skin with Rinse-Off Foaming Cleanser, making sure I get into all the little nooks and crannies to take the day off. Never, ever pull downward on your skin, always work up. You want that skin to look young as long as possible, don’t you? (Other ways to keep your skin looking young? Well, maybe that’s going to be another blog post...)

Rinse off with lukewarm water. Ten splashes should get it all off. Make sure there’s no residue on your skin.

My skin tends to be rather oily, so I always follow-up my nighttime cleansing with a swipe of Clarifying Lotion 3.

Every once in a while (particularly once a month), I get a few little spots on my chin and jawline. When I get one of those, at night I dab on a tiny bit of Acne Solutions Spot Treatment Gel. That usually gets rid of the little devil after a couple of applications.

Are you using an eye cream yet? Maybe you think you don’t need to, because you’re still in your 20s and don’t have any lines around your eyes. Trust me when I tell you that it’s never too early to start. I started religiously wearing eye cream at night when I was 26, and I wish I had started a little bit sooner... Maybe 24? But I can’t really complain, because practically everyone I meet thinks I’m younger than I am... Anyway, at night I slide on a bit of Repairwear Intensive Night Cream. Then I follow-up with my night cream, Zero Gravity Repairwear Lift. And then, sleep!

You wouldn’t think that a morning routine would be that much different than an evening routine, but what can I say, I love products!

In the morning I need a quicker routine, so I wash my face in the shower with Liquid Facial Soap - it comes in a pump and you don’t need much, just the size of a pea. The great thing about higher-end products is that you don’t need much and they go very far. This cleanser is pretty strong and gets rid of all the oil on my skin from the night before, so I don’t bother with the toner follow-up in the morning.

I had been using Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion, but I recently picked up the Superdefense SPF 25 Age Defense Moisturizer, because I like two-in-one moisturizers with sunscreen in them. And I am loving it!

I take a dab of my moisturizer and put it on the back of my hand. Then I take my MAC Select SPF15 Foundation in NC25 (to which I have added a pump), and add one squirt of it to my moisturizer. I blend the two together*, and voila! Tinted moisturizer! That gets a smear all over to even out my skintone.

Now, it’s time for some magic. Yves St. Laurent Touche Eclat has changed my life. The texture is magnificent, you need the tiniest amount, and it brightens and lightens everything. I dab a bit in the following places:

- under the brow bone
- on the inner and outer corners of my eyes
- on the bags under my eyes
- in the nooks beside my nostrils
- down the nasal-labial folds to the corners of my mouth
- around my cupid’s bow and lower lip

Tap it into the skin gently, and glow glow glow!

Eyes are simple as anything - Benefit BADGal eye pencil on the upper lash line and smeared into the waterline, followed with a slick or two of L’Oreal Bare Naturale Mascara in Black, which I liked when I first bought it, but now I’m not really loving it. It gets really flaky throughout the day, which is really too bad because it looks really pretty. I’m too cheap to replace a mascara before it’s done, though, but as soon as it’s gone I can’t wait to try something else... I would use it on a photoshoot though, if I was looking for a nice, natural-looking lash.

I throw a little blush on the apples of my cheeks - Clinique Fresh Bloom All Over Colour in Peony. Followed with a slick of either lipstick (Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Mad About Mauve), or gloss (Benefit Her Glossiness A-List Lip Colour in Who Does Your Work?), depending on my mood...

And that’s it! I know it seems like a lot, but this takes me about five minutes in the morning, and with practice it should take you no more than that!

*Do note that SPF25+SPF15 does not equal SPF40. It’s still just SPF 25.