Somehow we missed Mercedes’ first routine in our inbox (guh!). But like many a clean girl, hers keeps evolving and we’re thrilled she sent in this new one because, well, it’s awesome. Now, can someone tell us what “stippling with a beauty blender” is? Because this makeup technique sounds amazing!
Age: 30 (on the cusp of 31, Gemini love)
Current weather: New England spring – holding steady in the low 60s, not a ton of humidity yet.
Hair: Naturally wavy, relatively fine but I have a lot of it, past my shoulders, very dark brown. I wear it in loose waves (from a large barrel curling iron) all the time.
Favorite icon: Not from the past, but Kate Winslet has been one of my beauty icons since I was young. She is such a truly beautiful, real woman and she inspires me to accept my own natural beauty.
Skin: I’ve always had a problem with dryness, but since going natural it really is more towards the “normal” side of things. Occasional cycle-related pimples, and a bit of redness here and there, but overall no major skin complaints. I’m happy! I don’t really ever wash my face with cleanser – I either use Jane Iredale’s magic mitt with warm water, or an oil cleansing method with macadamia nut oil (what I use to take off my eye makeup) and a hot washcloth. A few time a week I exfoliate with May Lindstrom’s The Clean Dirt.
In the shower…
I usually shower in the evenings, and as much as I would like to was my hair infrequently, I cannot stand the smell of scalp and with hot yoga classes and the lack of fragrance potency of most green hair products, I end up washing every other day. Shampoo and condish are my one true love Yarok, sometimes switched up with John Master’s Organics Zinc and Sage, which my boyfriend says makes me smell like “swiss miss” (the marshmallow, I guess). I suds up with either Dr. Bronner’s (the baby formula one) or a charcoal shower gel, and have been using up old bottles of Acure shampoo and condish to shave with (didn’t like it for my hair). Also, I’ve been using Rare El’ements pre-shampoo treatment a few times a week before I wash. I’ll usually put in, go to a yoga class, and then wash out. Once a month I’ll do a coconut oil deep conditioning. This has all transformed the condition of my formally pretty fried hair. I also like to do face masks once a week or do – my fave is the Pangea Oraganics seaweed one.
Outside the shower…
On the face it’s a spritz of some kind of toner (right now it’s the Acure one for dry skin – meh about it, next up will be In Fiore which I’m dyyyyying to get my paws on), and argan oil all over, and Kahina eye cream. My newest find is Bija Body…and I.love.it. I use the daily serum and lotion all over. It smells divine and lasts for a good long while. Sometimes I use Chocolate Sun self tanning lotion on my legs. I try and let my hair air dry as much as possible, and use Intelligent Nutrients leave in condish as a heat protectant. Then I use a large barrel curling iron to create large waves, do a little backcombing for volume, and set with some Intelligent Nutrients hairspray.
I love love love makeup. I have a separate everyday routine, and weekend/going out routine (which unfortunately still utilizes some dirty stuff). My current go-to day routine includes a layer of Vive Sana sunscreen, and RMS un-cover up in 22 applied with a beauty blender. This is my new FAVORITE discovery. The un-cover up didn’t work for me as an undereye concealer and I was lamenting the money I spent on something I couldn’t use. But then, inspired by posts on here about different ways to use products, I started playing around. To use all over the face for light coverage I discovered I need to use some kind of primer (the sunscreen, or sometimes I’ll just Vapour’s Skin perfector if it’s going to be overcast all day), and stippling with a damp beauty blender makes it blend in so well. Then I use a very light shade of Jane Iredale’s concealer click pen under my eyes, a contour-ish dusting of Studio 78’s bronzing powder (new discovery, love! Almost a dupe for NARS Laguna), a dab on the cheeks of Revolution Organics cream blush (the hot pink one!), sometimes a bit of RMS living luminizer on the cheekbones and cupid’s bow, fill in the brows with Jane Iredale brow gel, even out the eyelids with Nvey Eco concealer, curl lashes, apply some Jane Iredale basic black eye pencil on my waterline (top and bottom), apply a coat of Tarte’s lash primer (also a relatively new discovery, and it noticeably prevents mascara from flaking), and a few coats of Josie Maran’s GoGo mascara. Lips right now is Ilia’s tinted lip conditioner in Blossom Lady. It may sound like a lot but this takes me less than 10 minutes and I feel like me but better. Now, going out makeup is another story! It tends to include lots of black liquid liner, fake lashes, and bright lips <3
So glad to be part of the NMDL community. Green beauty is a huge passion, and I learn so much constantly from all of you.
Right back at ya, Mercedes!
I’m about to write a pretty girly how-to makeup post. It would almost warrant a YouTube video—if it weren’t simple enough for a monkey!
Two completely random events conspired last week for me to come up with a whole new makeup look (just when I thought I’d tried it all). 1) A 100-degree heat wave hit Los Angeles for two days putting the entire city in a sweat. And 2) I ran out of my favorite dirty mascara.
And so, the look that I’m calling “night-for-day face” was born. All you need are two products that you likely already have: bronzer (or blush if you don’t do bronzer) and a pencil eyeliner. It’s night-for-day because I like to wear eyeliner (with mascara) and bronzer for evenings out in the summer. But, while the eyeliner gives this look a touch of evening edge, it’s so light that it passes as polished without being too much for daytime wear.
The absolute best part about this face though? It’s 100% weather-and-activity-proof. There’s no leaks or smudges or runs. And it’s really really easy to reapply during the day. Also, it’s super liberating to not wear mascara but still have a little eye happening! Here’s what I do.
Prep: I’ve been using the Marie Veronique face oil, which smells and feels amazing. (Would I pay the $110 for it? Nope, probably not, but I got this bottle gifted.) The oil really helps the bronzer apply nicely though your usual moisturizer will likely do the trick. My skin has been pretty clear lately so (knock on wood), I’ve been using minimal concealer.
Apply: Bronzer with my finger (love the studio 78 one) under my cheekbones and slightly up around the contour of the bone. A tiny bit along the bridge of my nose as well as my eyebrow bone. Then I very lightly line the inside of my eye with a black pencil (Jane Iredale or HoneyBee Gardens). Very very lightly though, so that it’s more of a translucent gray than black if that makes sense. If you go too dark without mascara your eye will look small, but somehow that doesn’t happen if you do the line barely there.
That’s it! You can add some lip gloss or a touch of color on the lip, but the trick is light touch with everything or else you just look made up.
What have you been doing with your makeup these days??
Next week marks for the first day of spring, but last night the new season was alive and well in a suddenly balmy Los Angeles. Those who don’t live here tend to think that we’re all running around in tank tops in February—but it is so not so. These last few days however, have given us a taste of what’s to come—which means I’ve been thinking about spring makeovers.
It’s completely Pavlovian for me. The temperature rises a few degrees and I start dreaming of new hairstyles, clothes, makeup. I even had a fantasy about gel nails the other day. (Someone please remind me how that’s a horrible idea, k?)
I’m the sucker they write magazines for. Luckily, right now I have two newish products in my roster that are helping me refresh my look for spring—and that don’t involve me doing anything too silly.
Have you tried either of these products?
1. Studio 78 Paris, Bronzing Powder Me love a good bronzer, and this is the best one I’ve tried in a while. It does exactly what it should: enhance your natural skin tone, define your face structure, and give you a glow. It should not look like you stepped off one of the Housewives of somewhere sets. Siobhan reviewed this line a little while back, and was crushing hard on the under eye concealer and blush. I too tried three (different) products and the bronzer was the standout for me. (Note: The eye shadow is also really special, the eyeliner notsomuch. There’s something I don’t love about the way it applies.) It’s a bit too bad re the liner because I specifically like wearing bronzer when I’m doing more of an eye thing, but I have other ones.
Now, you might be wondering if a bronzer is worth $43 and I can’t answer that question for you. What I will say is that I’ve never in my life finished a bronzer—it is a product that lasts as long as you’re willing not to throw it out. I don’t worry a whole lot about germs and such, so I’m guessing I will be whipping this out every spring for the next several years unless I lose it.
2. Vapour’s Multi-Use Stain / 209 Impulse This product is killing it for me right now. It was actually part of our Quarterly package last time, so I’m curious to know if those who got it are loving it as much as I am. I’ve had several days now where I wear nothing else on my face. This long-lasting stain is the perfect color for lips and cheeks, and perfect too for most skin tones. You can control how intense it is by how much you use—it can look as subtle a post-romp flush (sorry! blame spring!), or as dramatic as a true red lip. The tube is huge, which thrills me for two reasons: 1. There’s lots of product in there. 2. It’s easy to find in my purse! And when you’re only using one product, that’s kind of a boon.
So, what spring makeover fantasies are you having? Have you tried any great new products for the season?