Monday, 28 January 2013

Minimal Makeup: Why I Wear Less

My minimal makeup routine; going bare faced and four fave go-to products.

For most of my makeup-wearing life, I had the same routine.  I'd often change product brands or colours; mascara, liners, shadows, lipsticks, gloss.  Trends came and went, but the basics like foundation, concealer, powder, blush, eye shadow, eye liner, mascara, eyebrows, were always there in their neat step-by-step application.  Officially educated in beauty school on the proper techniques, I may have sometimes second guessed the traditional approach, but pretty much found my routine and stuck to it.

In 2011, I began the year newly engaged, moved in with my fiancĂ©, and opened a boutique.  Thoughout that year I launched an online shop, planned a wedding, moved again, and got married.  As all this happened, I noticed my routine wasn't really working for me anymore and I dropped the whole shebang.

Don't get me wrong, I love beauty products.  I love applying makeup, I love what it can do to a face.  It's what I do all day long - beauty is my life.  And I'm not saying I have perfect skin - I don't.  

It just felt right to let it go.  Unfortunately, some of my friends took it as I was letting myself go.  Which wasn't the case, I mean, I still spent every day reading and researching beauty and was testing products all the time.  I was busy, and enjoying my look and my work.  After all, I'm of the opinion that it's beauty, and switching it up is part of the game.  Finding oneself by viewing oneself in a different light is what makeup offers.

In my early 20s, I wouldn't have left the house without looking 'perfect'.  It was important to me then, and I can appreciate when I see other girls around the city that have a well done face.  I always admire how pretty they look.

Interestingly, along this simplified path, I began to play more.  I noticed how one lipstick could be all I need.  A little colour on the cheeks, a little on the lips.  I realized I like the way I look without mascara, and with my brows lightened.  I tried colours I never would have before, I did a smoky eye on a bare face with a nude lip.  My minimal routine made a lot more room for makeup exploration.

For me, going minimal with my makeup has been less about fashion and more about my personal authenticity.  No matter what I do to my face, at the end of the day I'll wash off the colour, and the same person with light lashes, hardly any eyebrows and colourless cheeks will be staring back at me in the mirror.  Whether the trend is in my favour; bare-faced and bright-lipped, or not, I'll never stop playing with products.  It's also likely that by spring I could be touting a different new-found regime.  Anything can change, and that's the beauty of it.

These are my current go-to products for when I need just a little something.  Clockwise from top:

Kiss My Face Sheer Organic Shimmer in Garnet  I got this from Marsha Cummings at Good Roots, it's deeper than the hurraw, and I like the 90s vibe I get when I put it on.  Reminds me of these guys which were a permanat staple when I was a tween, but without the petrolatum.

Hurraw Black Cherry Tinted Lip Balm  Since the first time I saw Hurraw! I've been a loyal and loving customer.  The black cherry is tinted, and has a permanat place in my coat pocket or purse.  If I run out, I immediately get a new one.  It's also raw and vegan and silky smooth.

Sante Kosmetik Coverstick No.1  Another from Good Roots.  I'm a big fan of makeup in pencil form, (it reminds me of my love of drawing).  It's pretty sheer, but lightens my dark circles when they are out of control, and is super easy to apply.  Draw on and blend.

Ilia Beauty Neon Angel  I use this for lips and cheeks.  I love having pink cheeks and this super-bright cool-toned fuscia does the trick.  It's fun and attention grabbing, so I can make my lips a statement and balance out the whole no-mascara-blond-eylashes thing.

I also occasionally use these beauty papers.


  1. Love your blog! I'm showing all my friends!

  2. Finally having some time to read some of your posts and this is one of my favourites, as I can totally relate. I find it funny how friends or family can be judging of ones choice on whether they are wearing makeup or not. Makeup should be fun, and new looks should be tried - including bare faced ones :) Makeup shouldn't define someone that is for sure!