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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Makeup Tips from Paula Begoun and How I Took the Path of Frugality

You probably know these already, but you might take a look at her product recommendations. I love how her list ranges from the low to the high, showing, that in makeup, perhaps more than most things, low end products may be just as good as high end.

I remember watching a show on Public Television--back in the day when we called it Channel 13--which did an expose on cosmetics. I was under 10--at least in my memory. I was fascinated. I learned that lipstick is mostly wax, for instance. I remember learning that 25 cents of raw ingredients could become a designer lipstick. I wonder if that--plus the fact that my father worked in market research--set me on the path of severe skepticism about product claims. Of course that path intersects with the path of frugality.

Enough autobiography! Here are Paula's tips, copied from my email. Remember, she has FREE shipping on a $20+ order. Paula has never steered me wrong, I must say.

Paula's Choice Skin Care

Essential Makeup Do and Don'ts!
Beauty Tips from The Cosmetics Cop Team!

Paula & The Cosmetics Cop Team love to share makeup tips and product recommendations for looking young, healthy, and vibrant. All it takes are just a few simple rules, some practice and a dash of finesse. To help you, we've assembled our list of makeup Dos and Don'ts along with some bonus product recommendations!

Makeup DOs

• DO apply eyeliner as close to the lash line as possible: A soft or charcoal brown shade can look beautiful by enhancing the lashes and framing the eye. If the outer corners of your eyes have begun to droop, make sure the eyeliner turns up ever-so-slightly so you don't emphasize the drooping. For the lower lash line, use a softer color than you did for your upper lash line. Powder eyeshadows work great as eyeliner - M.A.C., Shu Uemura, Sephora, and Trish McEvoy offer wonderful options.

• DO wear lipstick: Soft lip color is a sexy, glowing look any time of day. Red is a great option, and it makes a dramatic statement, just keep it on the brighter side as opposed to magenta, purple or browns. Some of our favorite red lipsticks include:

* Make Up For Ever Rouge Artist Intense in s21 or s43 Moulin Rouge ($19)
* Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Cherries in the Snow, or Fire & Ice ($7.99)
* Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Lipstick in Stay Scarlet ($22)

• DO consider color balance: In other words, if you are wearing a pinkish lip color, your blush should be in a similar color family. It's sort of like if you are wearing a pink skirt and orange top; it can sometimes work, but be careful. High contrast makeup can look glaring, and if you're thinking young, vibrant and healthy, stick with related color tones.

• DO complement the intensity of your blush with your skin tone: If you have fair to light skin, pale pink, rose, or peach shades will always flatter more than deep berry or plum shades, which can make the cheek area look bruised. In contrast, women with medium to tan skin tones can look gorgeous with berry or plum-hued blush. The Cosmetics Cop Team has some favorite powder blushes, and they are:

* American Beauty Blush Perfect Cheek Color ($15.50)
* Jane Blushing Cheeks Blush ($4)
* NARS Blush ($25)
* L'Oreal True Match Blush ($10.95)

• DO pay attention to your smile: Whiter teeth make you look healthy and vibrant, adding incredible brightness and beauty to your face. Since Paula's Choice launched our Brighten Up 2-Minute Teeth Whitener we have all become fastidious about our smiles! And our customers agree: This product has become the best-selling item Paula's Choice has ever launched!

• DO test out makeup primers: You want a primer that enhances your skin tone while also giving your skin the ingredients it needs to look and feel healthy. Some formulations smooth out skin and help create a lit-from-within look, while others can leave garish shine or accentuate dry areas. It can also depend on what type of makeup you're applying on top of it, which is why experimenting is crucial to finding the right primer! Some of our favorite primers include:

* Giorgio Armani Light Master Primer ($55)
* Jan Marini Age Intervention Prime Face Primer ($75)
* M.A.C. Prep + Prime Line Filler ($19.50)
* Victoria's Secret Airbrush FX Face Primer SPF 20 ($14)

• DO blend (and blend, and then blend again): Whether it's foundation, blush or eyeshadow, blend away harsh edges. If you're trying to cover up imperfections, blending is crucial to imperceptible concealing. Don't use emollient/greasy concealers on blemishes. Do use a lightweight, flesh-tone (that means no yellow, orange, or lavender tones) concealer that is a shade or two lighter than your foundation.

Makeup DON'Ts

• DON'T cover up skin problems instead of treating them: No matter how good a makeup product is, it will only look as good as the skin it's applied to. Skin must be smooth and free of dry, flaky patches or yucky, clogged pores. Using makeup to conceal what you don't like about your skin is the wrong approach. Start with good skin care and your makeup will always apply and look better.

• DON'T forget to check your eyebrows: Brows that are drawn-on, pencil-thin, overly sparse, or too-arched are not what you want to see. These mistakes can make someone who is 25 years old look much, much older. If you need to fill in and shape brows, here are some of The Cosmetics Cop Team's favorite products:

* Billion Dollar Brows Brow Powder ($16)
* Paula's Choice Browlistic Long-Wearing Precision Brow Color ($9.95)
* Maybelline New York Define-a-Brow Eyebrow Pencil ($5.59)
* Sephora Arch-It Brow Kit ($35)

• DON'T forget to check your makeup in a magnifying mirror: What you can't see, you can't fix, especially makeup settling into lines around the eye and folds along the mouth. A little powder applied directly over the line, blending upwards and out, can keep everything in place, but you have to see it up close to get it done right. Paula prefers 10X magnification, but anything 4X or above will certainly do the trick. These mirrors are widely available at many stores, such as Bed, Bath & Beyond.

• DON'T over-moisturize around the eyes: It's a slip-up waiting to happen. It will encourage concealers and foundations to travel right into the very lines you want to hide. If you feel you need an extra-emollient moisturizer around your eyes, do it at night after you've removed your makeup, and use lighter-weight products during the day.

• DON'T over-do the shine during daytime: Extra shine or glitter is fine at night, but during the day it just looks immature and overdone, kind of like wearing a sequined gown to the office. However, there are many "radiance-boosting” makeup products that forgo obvious, distracting shine in favor of creating a subtle luminosity. Examples of our favorites in this category include:

* Clinique Fresh Bloom Allover Colour ($29.50)
* Physicians Formula Mineral Glow Pearls ($14.99)
* Lorac Oil-Free Luminizer ($28)
* Jane Shimmering Bronzer ($5.99)

• DON'T over-apply lip gloss: Too much gloss can look like you're drooling, instead of adding a glow of color over your lips. Also be very careful with glossy, slick, or creamy lipsticks; if you have lines around your mouth, these will bleed quickly and won't last past mid-morning before a touch-up is needed. You can also stick with softer colors from some of the best lipsticks we've found for comfortable, long wear - and they don't feather into lines around the mouth! Our favorites:

* Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Lipstick ($22)
* M.A.C. Lipsticks ($14)
* Rimmel Lasting Finish Intense Wear Lipstick ($4.99)
* Revlon Matte or Super Lustrous Lipsticks ($7.99)

• DON'T use cream blush: When you blend it on, you're generally wiping off the foundation and powder you just worked so hard to apply. It also tends to slip and fade more during the day, and is generally hard to control. Given how soft and beautiful blushes are these days you can achieve a sheer, creamy look without a cream blush and get better, faster results. If you must have a cream-type blush, stick with cream-to-powder formulas such as:

* Revlon Cream Blush ($9.79)
* Clinique Blushwear Cream Stick ($18.50)
* Studio Gear Naturalism Cream-to-Powder Blush ($15)

Now that you know what to do and what not to do we hope your makeup application and the look you're going for will be easier than ever to achieve! Here's to beautiful days ahead - and using makeup to enhance your best features rather than covering them up!


FB @ said...

All fantastic tips.. except I really neglect my eyebrows.

I guess I should care, but I don't. I ought to do an experiment. One eyebrow dark, one light ;)

Frugal Scholar said...

@FB--My daughter says eyebrows are very important.