I did some spring cleaning last weekend. Actually, that’s a total exaggeration. I blasted the front of the house with a hose to get rid of the cobwebs and then supervised the ten year old while he cleaned the outdoor furniture. After this burst of energy I moved on to having a makeup clean out and updating my makeup bag for spring. As you’ve probably gathered by now, I own a heck-tonne of makeup and regularly I put products on rotation, least I stick to the same ‘old look’*. The start of spring heralds a little more thought than my usual “oh, haven’t used this for a while, I’ll give this a go” efforts. In thinking through what I look for in my spring makeup products, I realised this would make a good blog post!
So, here’s five tips to get some spring in your makeup bag!
Lippy – Think BOLD
Four years ago I owned eight lipsticks and they were all. ,more or less, the same shade of nude. Honest – ask my husband!
These days it’s a different story: I am a raving fan of the bold lip and berate my former self for not getting my big girl bold lip pants on sooner. There’s something sexy and alluring about a woman that wears a bold lip. It’s also a statement of confidence and frankly, there’s nothing sexier than a confident woman. Oh and it’ll change an outfit: You won’t need new clothes. The first time I wore a bold lip, I won’t lie, I felt so self-conscious – I had to work up to it. But I broke through that ridiculousness: Now there’s no stopping me.
Lipstick colours are such a personal thing, I’d totally recommend rocking up to your local pharmacy or Farmers, looking for a sales assistant who has MAKEUP ON THAT YOU LIKE (this is important) and say “Please help. I want a bold lipstick. What would suit me?” That’s totes what I do and how I’ve found my two bold lip favourites (MAC’s Up the Amp and Body Shop’s Damson in Distress).
I’ll let you in on a secret too, if you are bloody knackered and look tired, a bold lip will detract from tired eyes: People will focus on your lips.
Eyeliner with a pop of colour
I’m the biggest cheerleader out there for the humble black and brown eyeliner. However, a pop of colour, like purple, gold, green or blue, is a wonderful – and easy – way to brighten your look. You don’t need to go cray-cray with it, just a pop of colour on the lower lashline, smoked out with your finger, will make a world of difference! You don’t even need to wear eyeshadow ‘upstairs’! Fellow brown eyed girls: Think purples and greens. Gorgeous.
I seem to gravitate towards cheap and cheerful eyeliners: Essence, LA Girl, Avon (in particular the Glimmersticks) and Rimmel are brilliant and light on the wallet. At the pricier end of the spectrum (NZ$39), you can’t go past Eye of Horus eyeliners. These buggers apply smooth and creamy then set like bloody concrete. Hell, go swimming in them. I do. Buy these online from the good bi-arch Toni at Beauty Bliss (small world, I knew her when she was little, she is a good mate of my brother’s… Sheesh, I’m old).
It’s all about the base!
Two things here: Make sure you’ve got the right colour and think about going more sheer for spring.
First up, one of the biggest makeup crimes is having one foundation and concealer shade and wearing it year round. Mate: You’ve gotta mix it up! What do you need? A lighter one for winter, a darker one for summer. Once you’ve got this you can mix a teeny bit of the two together on the back of your hand to get the perfect shade for spring and winter. I do this, not just with foundation but BB/CC cream and concealer too.
In terms of coverage, I favour a sheerer base in spring and summer as I like to let my skin breathe. So, it’s out with my beloved Revlon Colourstay and in with Mary Kay’s CC cream and Garnier’s BB cream. Garnier BB Cream is an easy buy as you can biff this in the trolley when you do your grocery shop. Mary Kay’s CC Cream can be ordered through a Mary Kay Consultant, like Lilybeth: A Beautiful Education (Shout out: Check her page out, I’ve learnt a sh*t-tonne from her, oh and you can FB message her to order the CC cream, oh and she also lives in the Bay of Plenty, thumbs up).
Deviating slightly, as Lilybeth reminded me when I emailed her about the afore mentioned CC cream, don’t skip sunblock. Even though BB and CC creams contain SPF, you still want to protect yourself from UVA rays. These buggers are the rays that don’t burn the skin, but lead to wrinkling, sun spots, melanoma etc. Yeah nah. I’ve got enough wrinkles and other things to worry about. So products like BB/CC creams should only be used on top of a broad spectrum sunscreen. Poos and wees! However, it’s still better than no SPF, which is what many people use…. But not you guys, eh? Do I need to mention at this point my undying love for Skinnes Sungel? Get in.
Blusher – Don’t skip it
I need to write a whole blog post on why you need blush in your life. Suffice to say I’m constantly astounded that makeup-wearing women often skip wearing blush. I don’t get it, unless someone has a naturally rosy complexion, in which case, leave well alone. Frankly blush is up there with being as important as wearing eyebrows! A pop of colour on your cheeks ‘in the right place’ will make a world of difference and make you look awake and fresh: Just the ticket for spring.
Where’s the right place to wear blush I can hear you asking? Yeah, OK, this is where things get confusing… The answer is: It depends on your face shape. I love this video from The Makeup Chair. Sinead is amazeballs.
Colourwise, the tone that will suit you will depend on your skintone. On my old mug, I love peachy tones and MAC Melba, NARS Orgasm and NYX blushes in the colours Peach and Pinched get a thrashing from me. Again, a good beauty counter should steer you in the right direction of the perfect shade for you.
Get your glow on!
But wait: New to highlighter? What’s the buzz? Here’s my sales pitch: You know how everyone looks better in candlelight? That warm flicker of light softly illuminating their skin? You can fake that shit with a highlighter and look all pretty, glowy and slightly sun-kissed.
Why bother? A completely mattified face can tend to look a bit flat and dull, so bring some life back to your skin by adding some light to get a more multi-dimensional look. Apply highlighter where the shine would be if the sun was hitting your face. I don’t like to go too OTT with highlighter, I have a fair bit of natural shine anyway, thanks to my oily skin. I’m not keen on looking like a 80s disco ball. I’m a fan, however, of accentuating the top of my cheekbones. All I do is use a small blush brush and sweep highlighter along the top of my cheek bones.If you are of the ‘enjoy getting carried away’ camp, go nut and highlight the tip of your nose, the top of your cupids bow (lips) and the middle of your forehead.
Highlighters aren’t something you need to spend a lot of coin on, I wrote about this ELF highlighter (it’s official name is ELF Shimmering Facial Whip) that I got from Kmart yonks ago. I still rate it, mainly as it’s fit for purpose and will only sting you NZ$3. I’m currently obsessing over Makeup Revolution’s Shimmer Brick, as mentioned in my August Faves blogpost. I bought this online from the UK for NZ$5.50. Equally, I love MAC’s Soft & Gentle highlighter, there’s a good reason this is a highly rated and duped product.
Now all you need is a new makeup bag to go with your purchases. I’m currently lusting after some of these makeup bags from Kitco, as a clear makeup bag is my absolute fave, none of this “where the hell is that”, shuffling through malarkey: You can see the contents at a quick eyeball. This makeup bag too, I want just for the giggle factor!
*MAC Syrup lipstick doesn’t go on rotation. That’s a STAPLE.