I created this page to chat about topics I would discuss with a friend over coffee - things I've learned along the way, over many years; little pearls of wisdom, as it were, that come from many years of experience. Check in from time to time to see whether I've deemed anything else worthy of sharing...topics which include other facets of our lives as women.
Tips to make make-up last and look good
Make-up is intended to make you look naturally more attractive. The no. 1 make-up mistake I often see is that women wear the wrong colour foundation; it should be tested on the jaw bone; if it "disappears" and isn't noticeable when comparing it to the rest of your face, it is the correct colour. Many ladies don't enjoy wearing foundation but as we get older our skin gets blotchy or you might be prone to pigmentation or spider veins, in which case you still want to aim for a basic even-tone and this is where BB creams can work instead of foundation (they are basically tinted moisturisers with added skin benefits). Here are some other tips I've learned along the way:
1. Use good make-up brushes made from natural fibres. Also use fat brushes for applying powder and blusher.
2. For longer wear and to look flawless on photo's, use a primer under your foundation - my favourite is Smashbox Photo Finish. In the absence of a primer, you can also use a translucent powder (no colour) to dust over your make-up to "set it", especially in areas where you are prone to "shine"- I like Clinique's powders.
3. Always make sure your brows are well-kept and fill in with brow pencil if your eyebrows are becoming sparse.
4. Decide whether you want to highlight your eyes or your lips with colour but never both. If you're going for a bright lip then use nude or subtle eye shadows.
5. As you get older we also want to steer away from eye make-up that has a sheen; rather go for matte since it won't highlight fine lines.
6. To make lipstick last, fill your lips in with a matching lipliner; blot with powder and then put your lipstick over it.
7. Very importantly, wear a good moisturiser under your foundation. If your moisturiser is not nourishing enough, your skin will absorb your foundation, highlighting flaws and enlarged pores if you have any.
My favourite BB cream, primer, foundation and face powder
Creating a winning message
The image we project to the world impacts not only on the important things like securing a job or business but also on our every day life. Most people want to project a "winning message" or the best version of themselves but sometimes time, attitude, lack of effort, lack of empathy on the day, the head-space we're in or our natural knee-jerk reactions to irritations get the better of us. For a winning image or message to be sustainable, I believe it starts with personal integrity and doing the right thing. And then there is visual integrity. Both aspects talk to self respect and respect for others.
Points to ponder about a winning message:
- It all starts with a smile and your facial expression. Smile more and you'll feel happier and people will smile back. A smile makes you approachable. Even if you must "fake it till you make it". I'm not suggesting you must be fake but often when you are feeling a bit down in the dumps and you smile, it has a way of lifting your mood. Try it!
- Don't gossip. If you don't have something nice to say about someone, don't say anything at all. Make kindness a guiding principle in your actions. Criticising others in conversation might provide immediate gratification or some sort of bonding opportunity with the one you're speaking to but will have a negative effect on how you actually feel about yourself days later. Build bridges, don't break them down.
- Listen more than you speak.
- Be well-groomed. This relates to hygiene and cleanliness. In addition, make sure your basic morning ritual includes doing whatever you have to do to achieve an even-skintone. Wear a BB cream (tinted moisturiser with added skin benefits) or foundation to create an even canvass to work with on your face (refer to "Tips to make make-up last and look good" in previous section for recommendations on products) . Some ladies are blessed with flawless skin and that's great. But many of us need help. Any other make-up like lipstick, mascara, etc all look so much better on a clear skin with "no distractions" so to speak. The make-up seems to "get lost" on skin that is blotchy, very red or has signs of pigmentation.
- Choose the colours, styles and fabric relating to clothes wisely. Remember that darker colours have more power than lighter colours. And quality always trumps quantity.
- Keep shiny fabrics for evenings.
- Leggings are not jeans or pants! Always wear a longer top over leggings.
- My personal niggle: don't speak on speaker phone (on your cellphone) when walking around in public.
- Remember the 3 P's: Polish, Poise and Presence - you are the message!
Having said all of this, remember that no one is perfect. We can only try to live our lives conscious of these things. I always remind myself on a not-so-good day, that we are all works in progress!