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making faces :: hot stuff

it's hot in here. it's not you.
ah yes, it's that time of year when the sun is strong, the humidity is high and most people are a little leery of putting a layer of paint on their faces, even a light one. after all, the inclination in the summer is to remove layers rather than add them and hot, humid weather has a way of taking your nicely done makeup and turning it into something from the climax of "raiders of the lost ark" in a hurry.

if you live your life moving from one air-conditioned spot to another [home, car, office], that's very comfortable for you. but chances are that you're going to have to sit on a terrace to have a drink or visit a friend who find that air conditioning aggravates their asthma [me] or get on a bus because your brakes are being repaired. and there are a lot of people [me included] who just have to do battle with the elements every day.

no one is likely to force you to wear makeup [put on the mascara or we'll kill grandma!], so a lot of people just don't bother with it in the warmer seasons. but there are places- often workplaces- that do sort of tacitly expect that you make some attempt to hide the embarrassment of morning face and, if you're the kind of person who likes to put on makeup anyway, you're probably not interested in just stowing your collection until the mercury drops.

so, here are a few things that i find work for me... feel free to agree, disagree or add your own.




1. hot weather tends to make you perspire. i don't think anyone is going to disagree with that, but a lot of people use cosmetic products- creams, colour cosmetics, anything- that are actually intended to be quite moisturising. unless your skin runs quite dry [in which case, for once, you can laugh at the rest of us] you're at least going to want to move away from putting a lot of products on your face that are too rich or sebaceous. anything that has the keyword "glow" in it is suspect, because products that make your skin "glow" do so by imparting it with rich, nutritious oily goodness. doesn't mean you can't wear them [i've stuck it out with my nars' sheer glow foundation], but keep in mind that you'll be compounding what nature is doing to you anyway.

one thing that you can do is get yourself a nice mattifying primer. yes, it's another layer, but the whole point of these is that they help absorb. there are a lot of them around and i don't claim to have tried all of them, but nars has a very nice one that's light without being drying and neostrata in canada has one that leaves the skin feeling quite velvety. for a cheaper variant, apparently using milk of magnesia accomplishes the same goal, although i'd really recommend this only for oilier skins.

2. it's bright. again, probably not a lot of people are going to disagree with this one. the fact that you can't really do anything about the fact that you're under bright light all the time, though, means that there are a few things to keep in mind. very elaborate, detailed makeup under bright lights tends to look a bit overdone. keeping things simple- fewer shades, less blending, etc., tends to work better for me.

of course, that doesn't mean that you have to be overly subtle. under bright conditions, bold colours can really work. simple can mean one big punch in the nose of colour. 

3. heat makes things messy. makeup is certainly no exception. to get around this, i usually try not to get around it at all. bring on the mess and make it your friend. i like to do things that start out looking a little smudged and imprecise, because that way, when the heat inevitably takes its toll, it at least won't be quite so obvious. mac's sadly discontinued greasepaint sticks are amazing for this sort of work and give you the awesome sensation of literally colouring your face with big crayons. benefit's creaseless cream shadows and armani's eyes to kill powder-that-you'll-think-is-cream shadows are also very effective. essentially, a creamier product can go on looking a little blurry and inexact, but still look good. if you want to put shadow or liner over top of that base, it'll also help them last longer.

4. moisture feels good. i'm not being really controversial here, am i? but one of the things that i avoided for a long time, but now keep as a staple for everyday use is mac's fix+ spray. it purports to make your cosmetics last longer and is perfect for applying powder products [especially loose pigments] or priming your skin. i don't know that my makeup lasts longer with it, but what i will say is that it definitely keeps it looking fresher for the time it does last. it really seems to stop the fading that occurs, especially in warmer times. i also find that it softens the appearance of makeup slightly, making it look a little more natural and relaxed.

and you can spritz it on your face when you start applying and when you finish, to give an incredibly refreshing feeling. i swear i'm going to start carrying bottles of this stuff in my purse for those moments when i need something to relax me. it's probably better than vodka. well, the two go hand in hand, really.

here are a few things that i've done to my face that illustrate these points...

this is a sort of hot-weather variant on a smoky eye, where i just smudged a cream shadow over my lids, set it with a bit of a darker pigment and was basically ready to go.

face ::

nars sheer glow foundation "mont blanc"
diorskin nude hydrating concealer "001"

eyes ::
benefit creaseless cream shadow "skinny jeans"
mac pigment "the family crest"
mac eye kohl "smolder"
inglot e/s "352"
diorshow mascara

cheeks ::
mac blush "my highland honey"

lips ::
mac l/s "out-minxed"



here's one using one of mac's greasepaint sticks. i basically just used it all over my lid- more towards the outer corners, since that's where i like to concentrate colour- and the quickly blended a shadow over it. this actually held up remarkably well during a particularly hot day and i credit that to the fact that it looked all mussed-up to begin with. i only put eye kohl [also known as "liner", but i like to talk fancy] on my upper lash line, since, when it's really hot, it lasts less time on my water line than it takes me to apply it.

face ::

lush colour supplement "jackie oates"
diorskin nude hydrating concealer "001"

eyes ::
mac greasepaint stick "french quarter"
mac e/s "patina"
mac e/s "dazzlelight" [as a highlight along the brow bone]

cheeks ::
mac mineralize skinfinish "by candlelight"

lips ::
urban decay l/s "voodoo"


this is the sort of thing i was talking about in terms of using bold colours very simply. i'm kind of proud of the fact that this looks complicated, but actually took all of five minutes to do. because the colours are separated into blocks, there was really nothing to do other than just apply. they more or less blended themselves, clever buggers. i think that this shows off the lovely, intense pigmentation of the shadows that came out with mac's "surf baby" collection. there's a reason i got almost all of them.

face ::
nars sheer glow foundation "mont blanc"
diorskin nude hydrating concealer "001"

eyes ::
mac e/s "saffron"
mac e/s "sun blonde"
mac e/s "manila paper"
mac greasepaint stick "dirty"
ysl faux cils mascara

cheeks ::
mac cheek powder [aka blush] "my paradise"

lips ::
ysl rouge pur shine l/s "blood orange"


and, finally, another more colourful look. normally, i don't do this sort of pronounced liner in the summer, because it ends up looking a hot mess in short order, but one of the nice things i've noticed about the armani "eyes to kill" shadows is that they actually hold other products in place fairly well. it's like they're having a little colour competition on my face. these photos were taken not long after application, but i was floored six or eight hours later to notice that i looked more or less exactly the same. no summer-smudging, no fading, no creasing. i also decided to take another of the dangers of summer in hand when i did this by anticipating that i was going to get flushed in the heat. i started out with a fairly bright pop of blush on the cheeks and presto- i meant to look like that.

face ::
lush colour supplement "jackie oates"
diorskin nude hydrating concealer "001"

eyes ::
armani eyes to kill e/s "pulp fiction"
nars e/s "dogon" [dark side only]
mac mega metal e/s "prance"
mac e/s "all races"
mac fluidline "blacktrack"
ysl faux cils mascara

cheeks ::
guerlain blush g

lips
nars l/g "strawberry fields"

Comments

xasperadastra said…
two days ago a city here in Italy reached 46° centigrades .... O_O it's tooooo hot, really! My makeup routine is very simple: moisturizer, mattifing primer (benefit porefessional) under eye concealer fixed with trasparent powder, MSF in Sunny by nature on my cheeks and a eye pencil (colored is better!) If I am in the mood I can also apply a lipstick XD in the evening it's not so hot and I create the look I want with painterly as a base, eyeshadows and mascara! and fix + of course ^^^^
flora_mundi said…
Yikes! 46C! I'm wimpy when it comes to heat like that- I don't even think I could move! Thanks for the tip on "The Porefessional" (I love BEnefit's names)- I haven't tried it yet, but I'd like to. And Painterly is definitely a great base for shadows.

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