The pretties are packed and I’m ready for a vacation! Seriously ready. I’ve hardly taken any time off this year. A glaring reminder is the fact that I still have 14 vacation days stowed away for the rest of the year. I’m ready to burn a few with a long weekend to DC. Since I moved back to the Midwest from DC in 2009, I’ve hardly been back. Can’t wait to catch up with friends and visit some of my fav places. Though, I’m not too happy about all of this rain heading up the coast from Hurricane Karen. I’m determined to make the best of the dreary days.
The makeup I’m bringing for this trip is a lesson in self-control. Two blushes is editing for me, guys. And please do congratulate me on bringing a single eyeliner. Cream blushes are my jam right now so I couldn’t possibly choose between Butter LONDON Naughty Biscuit and Illamasqua Velvet Blusher in Peaked. The BECCA Radiant Skin Satin Finish Foundation is like a tinted moisturizer with a little more oomph. Wears beautifully all day, so I like to travel with that one. I always over pack eye makeup, so I’m keeping it simple with Benefit Nude Swings, an always perfect with everything rose gold, and the option to go smoky with Chanel Enigma. That one eyeliner I can survive on for four days? Smashbox Always Sharp Waterproof Kohl in Penny Lane. When you twist the cap, it sharpens itself! Since I know there’s probably a handful of lipsticks buried in my purse, I’m only packing two in my makeup bag. Burt’s Bees Sunny Day and MAC Retro Matte in Flat Out Fabulous. If I can’t actually get a sunny day, may as well channel good vibes through makeup!
Like clockwork, the vamped-up plum pout reappears every fall. It’s like the falling temps signal that it’s OK to go dark again. It’s a look I associate with that season, which is why I wanted to wear it instead in the smack dab of summer. What makes this look so powerful (and feel so comforting) in October and November has the opposite effect in the heat. The bright sun and exposed limbs somehow lend a more vibrant look to one that is usually dark and broody.
If trying this out during peak sweat season just doesn’t feel right, follow these steps. I promise you, it will be way more interesting than you think!
Go matte. As counterintuitive as it may seem, the more matte your lipstick, the more seasonally appropriate it actually is. I find I don’t need any help with the glow or dew in the summer, and a glossy vamp lip can feel a little one dimensional. I’m loving the BECCA Ultimate Matte Lip Colour in Antoinette. It’s ultra matte but somehow hydrating, too.
Shimmer on the lids. A statement lip can carry itself, but to soften the look even more, I’ve been wearing a shimmery bronze on the eyelids. Nothing smoky or extreme, just a soft wash of color that balances out the matte texture on the lips.
Bronze away. I skip blush altogether a lot in the summer but especially when I’m wearing a dark lip. It feels more natural to be bronzed to all get out this time of year and definitely isn’t the way I’d wear this in chilly weather.
Go berry vs. brown. I think the undertone of the lipstick increases the wearabiility. Opt for something with more berry or red undertones versus brown or black. If it’s too dark, it may wash you out or make the look dated.
Any time the temp hits above 85, I know I have my work cut out for me. Looking (and feeling) put together in the summer requires some premeditation. I know I’m going to sweat (tote around the deo) and I know my thighs will rub together (can’t fight heat expansion). But wearing primer, even if just under CC cream, sunscreen or bronzer, keeps my face from looking like it is melting off. Don’t think of it as wearing another layer — this is the one that counts. Primer helps fill pores, smooth skin and make for an even canvas for whatever you need to layer on top of it. I’m in the pro-prime camp. I’ve narrowed the field down to two vastly different formulas that I think cover all summer woes.
Matte skin is never my default since I want all the radiance I can get, but I cannot deny the need for BECCA Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector on those awfully hot days. My pores appear massive in that kind of weather and this formula is designed to control excess oil and stand up to humidity. The bonus? You can dab on throughout the day like you would blotting paper and it doubles as an eyelid primer.
On the flip, we have NARS Light Optimizing Primer, the newest in the brand’s pro-prime lineup, which gives skin the luminosity that I crave. The slight iridescence in the formula is the perfect balance of white/champagne/pink tones to light up the skin. It also extends the longevity of your makeup but in a dewy way. This formula practically doubles as a highlighter and it doesn’t hurt to have the added SPF 15.
When you live in the Midwest, it is practically a medical necessity to travel south to a warmer climate for even a few days. By mid-February, I’m usually at my breaking point with winter. This year, my husband and I are seeking refuge in Miami. Per usual, my vacation makeup bag is packed to the brim. Here’s a peek at what I brought!
This week has served as a reminder of what winter in Chicago really means. Frigid cold with painful wind chills. I think I’ve softened over the years. While this weather is never welcome and just makes me all around sad for people and animals without homes, it is sort of expected. But it has given me a whole new beauty challenge to tackle. That is, how to not look pale and lifeless. The usual sweep of highlighter over tinted moisturizer just doesn’t do the trick in subzero weather. For those of you feeling frustrated that nothing seems to look good in this weather, you are not alone. No, looking radiant actually takes some work. My approach is to layer brightening products a bit excessively. Overcompensation, if you will.