I am constantly being told by society that I must look like I am 25 by any means possible. Stretch. Fill. Paralyze. Die. Suction. Bleach. What rubbish!
I am now a proud member of the Pro-Age Movement*. I embrace my age and all that comes with it. I embrace my silver hair, my wrinkles, and my crows feet. I don’t love my age spots, but I’m not lasering** them either. I do what I can to protect my skin from further damage by using natural, healthy ingredients – for the most part. I accept what I cannot change. I am happy in my own skin.
I have come to realize that with mature skin less is definitely best! Makeup, if too much is applied, has the opposite effect from what one is hoping to achieve. Meaning: Your skin will look older and all of your lines and orange peel areas will be enhanced rather than hidden.
I recently watched a YouTube video of a beautiful 30-ish woman giving a tutorial on flawless makeup. She started with green tinted primer, then used a green colored corrective stick (her skin tended to have red areas around her nose and chin), followed by foundation applied with a brush, an under eye cream concealer to hide dark areas, finally finishing up with mineral powder applied with a Japonesque brush. Five products and two brushes to get flawless looking skin! Next she did her eyebrows and used — are you ready for this? — six products to shape and color in her eyebrows along with two more brushes. So that was a total of 11 products and 4 brushes to look natural!! I was too exhausted to continue to watch her eye makeup tutorial which had at least five more products and a couple of brushes. I imagine her lipstick routine is complicated as well.
I have whittled down my makeup collection to just the essentials. I use minimal makeup to get my desired results and, frankly, I look so much better now. Plus, everything fits easily in my carry on bag when I travel. Bonus!
Here’s what I use:
1. A good quality moisturizer with as natural ingredients as possible. I’m still experimenting to find a DIY version that isn’t too greasy and that travels well.
2. A roll on under eye concealer that helps diminish the puffiness and dark circles. I also apply a quick swipe of it around my nose and on the one dark spot on my right cheekbone. I use my ring finger to dab that into the skin and wipe any excess across the frown line between by eyebrows.
3. A small pot of cream blush works great for my dry skin and applies color exactly where I want it. I dot a little across the top of my cheekbones and my cheek “apples” and blend.
4. Two eye crayons; one white, one brown. For daytime I blend the white crayon across my eyelid and up to my brow bone. Then dab a bit at the inner corner of my eyes near the tear duct to brighten this area that tends to be dark. I use the brown crayon at the crease of my eye and blend up towards my brow bone – to counteract the age-related droopiness. For nighttime I reverse the crayons to get a smoky eye. Brown on the lid, white from crease to brow bone. Blend lightly and run a little brown close to the outer edges of my lower eyelashes.
5. Black or dark brown eyeliner. I like to use a very tiny brush to blend the eyeliner to soften it a bit. I also hit the roots of my bottom eyelashes from about the middle of my eye to the outer edge with the brush only. There is plenty of eyeliner already on the brush for the job. I then use the same brush to run along the top V of my eyebrows to fill in some thinner areas.
6. Upper lashes only with mascara. I like this NYC City Proof mascara since it doesn’t clump or flake at all. I can reapply later in the day and it still doesn’t clump. Love.
7. Rosy lip gloss.
That’s usually it! If I feel like I need a little more coverage for a special event I will use a bit of tinted moisturizer like a BB cream.
I cannot tell you how simple this five minute routine is! No more digging through a makeup bag or drawer for the right product. Everything fits into a small plastic bag that fits into the zipper compartment of my travel bag.
I hope you’ll be inspired to pare down your own makeup routine to find what works best for you and your schedule. Less time in front of the mirror means more time for other things that you enjoy.
*I think the model Cindy Joseph coined this phrase. She has a great line of products – Boom! by Cindy Joseph that I’ve used in the past. I love her multi-purpose Boomstick Color. Check it out for yourself – she’s adorable. And, no, I don’t get remunerated for mentioning this!
**Full discloser: I tried laser skin resurfacing twice; once about 18 years ago to correct what I thought was excessive fine lines under my eyes. At 38??? What was I thinking?? The laser procedure was too strong and my skin took months to recover and for the redness to get to a manageable stage. It was horrible! About five years ago I had a fairly large broken capillary under my left eye zapped. Each time it felt like the doctor was stubbing out lit cigarettes on my skin! So painful! Never again.