A Makeup Update… And A Giveaway!

I was looking back at old photos of myself the other day, and I was reminded that I really didn’t start wearing makeup until I was well out of high school… out of college, too, actually, and well into grad school in my early twenties. I even remember kind of worrying for a friend because she never seemed to leave the house without makeup on. I thought that was odd, I guess? Go figure. Needless to say, I would not then have been categorized as a very girly girl.

And although I love to wear makeup daily now, it’s more of a routine than a treat, a tool to try to look my best rather than something to play around and experiment with.

I am so thankful that years ago–almost a decade now–I received a boutique gift card for a makeover and a couple of items of makeup. But I have pretty much kept the same colors and look from then to now.

So last month, I took the plunge: I had my makeup done. Okay, is it totally ridiculous that it was a bit of a stress-inducer for me? It felt like going to the dentist: I want good teeth, I know I need to go, and I enjoy the benefit of having been… but I don’t enjoy it!

Thankfully, I have a girlfriend whose makeup always looks amazing. And double thankfully, she works for Mary Kay (not a brand I’ve ever used, but I was willing to give it a try!). Because TRIPLE thankfully, she was willing to come over to my house while the boys were in school and Sis was napping! SCORE!

We just set up at my kitchen table where there is great natural light. She went over skincare (like flossing of the makeup world: helpful, but not really my thing). I am trying to at least use a face cleaner (not soap) and a moisturizer, though, now. Baby steps. πŸ™‚

I like that she kept track of the products we tried that I liked (so my colors are on file… nice not to have to remember), brought a mirror and makeup palette (simplicity is good), and even left me with a little eye shadow sample to try something different, too (a midnighty-cobalt blue… pretty daring for this plain jane).

Here are my [non-expert] tips:

Wear a neutral color shirt so the color you happen to be wearing that day doesn’t influence your everyday makeup choices. I wore a simple navy blue tee.

Take photos. If you have a memory as poor as mine, you will benefit greatly from pausing to take a couple of photos during and after the process. I was sure to take ones of my cheek and closed eyes so I’d have something to reference if needed as I did my own makeup. You might feel silly doing that in the moment (I know I did), but you’ll be glad to have it if you want it later.

Work in natural light. This is tough to do if you are at a department store, but it worked out just great in my kitchen!

Try something new. If you don’t like it, don’t buy it, wash it off, and chalk it up to experience. Believe me, if you’d told me a month ago that I’d even consider purple eye shadow, I might just have laughed.

Don’t feel pressured. 1. With Mary Kay, there is a satisfaction guarantee, so when I decided a couple of days later I wanted lip gloss instead of lipstick, my friend just switched it out and I paid the dollar-or-so difference. 2. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to purchase the purple eye shadow (I mean… it’s purple), but I knew I wanted to by the end of the day. If you’re not sure about a product, don’t waste your money. it will be there if you change your mind! 3. Even if you love the look, you don’t have to get every item–I chose a few key pieces to get: I got a liquid foundation (the color match is so nice to have!), a cheek color, an eye shadow, and a lip gloss.

The before and after don’t look super dramatic in this photo… and I guess I am thankful for that (maybe my makeup didn’t look so terrible before?)… But what you can’t really tell is how my skin looks luminous rather than flat, and how my eyes pop rather than looking a little muddy. And I feel like my makeup look now is more… grown up?

So, my thoughts are that maybe it’s not so bad to go to the dentist.. er, I mean get my makeup done every once in a while. Though I’m not sure I’ll be doing it every six months, I don’t think I’ll wait another decade!

Meanwhile, there’s a little something in it for YOU! And that’s good news since drier weather is well on its way! My friend Carrie has given this extra emollient night cream & a cute little pair of black gloves to give away here on the blog!

To enter, simply leave a comment below about anything having to do with makeup–favorite brands, colors, trends, tips, warnings, etc.! Help this plane jane out, okay?! I could use all the help I can get! Your comment must be made by October 31st, 2012, to be entered to win, then I’ll send this on to you (shipped free anywhere in the continental US; you pay the difference beyond that). Wheeeeeeeee!

Want more details on theΒ Mary Kay emollient night cream we’re giving away? Click this link…

And hey, even if you’re a crazy person who doesn’t like to win free stuff, leave a comment anyway, okay? I love to read what you have to say!


48 responses to “A Makeup Update… And A Giveaway!

  1. I’m currently a junior in college and all I ever wear is mascara (super fair skin and hair!). It’s nice to know that people can make the transition to wearing make-up consistently even out of college! Sometimes I let my sorority sisters doll me up for fun, but that’s it!


  2. I don’t have any suggestions, but I just wanted to let you know I’m in the same boat as you! I just turned 32 and rarely wear make up. I probably put it on twice a month to go out somewhere. I’m a mom of 4 (11 year old son, 8 year old daughter, and 3 year old boy/girl twins)! I also have to leave my house by 4:15 every morning to get to work. So needless to say I have no time or energy to put on make up every morning! I need some quick 5 minute make up tips to use on myself.


    • Ashley, you can use a tinted moisturizer (a 2 in 1 time-saving product), a little bronzer for color, mascara & gloss for a quick ‘dash-out-the-door’ everyday look in 5 minutes! :~)


    • Thank you for taking the time to comment!! 32, mom of four, and leaves the house by 4:15?! Sounds like you should be giving ME advice as apparently you must have your act more together than I ever will!! πŸ™‚ Even if you take just one or two minutes to slap on a little moisturizer, mascara, blush, and gloss before dashing out the door, I’m guessing that would make a huge impact! I’m not sure I could risk the mascara applicator waving around my eyes that early in the morning, though! Hang a coffee drip, and carry on! πŸ˜‰


  3. 2 of my favorite people and 1 of my favorite things all wrapped up nice and tidy in an informative little blog post!!! Both you ladies ROCK my little cotton socks!!!


  4. You look great either way, but your right every now and again its time for a tune up. Speaking of I think it’s my turn, I will be 32 before year end and yes my opinion on this matter has changed Haha. I used to be the girl who hated make-up, unless I was going out you were lucky to get a bit of mascara on me. Your makeup looks fresh and classy, hope my experience will be the same. Thanks again for your daily awesomeness!


  5. I found a great all natural face wash from Trader Joe’s that I love. I do use a cream to powder foundation from Mary Kay and love it also. Your makeup looked great!


    • Pam, glad you like MK! Ask your Beauty Consultant about the new Botanical Effects Skin care…great for sensitive skin, is plant-based & made with botanicals (no irritants, alcohol, etc.). I know she’d be tickled to let you sample them! :~)


    • Carrie said a two-finger rule from the nose: if you put two fingers right next to your nose, the blush should start after that. I think the apples of the cheeks blush is a fresh, youthful look… but maybe too youthY instead of youthFUL? When she swept the color along my cheek bones, I felt like it looked more polished somehow. That’s a great thing about getting your makeup done from time to time, I think–you can incorporate what you learn into your existing makeup routine, tweak it a little, y’know?! Love that!


  6. Makeup is my THING. I first started wearing makeup after 5th grade, when I dabbled in makeup design for my sister’s modelling agency. My mom couldn’t really say no if I was doing it semi-professionally!

    My biggest pet peeves are too harsh of lines, as well as foundation that is too dark for the person’s face.

    My new obsession is an eyebrow pencil. My eyebrows, like my natural hair, are platinum blonde. Now that my hair is dark brown, my eyebrows have to be done (didn’t want to dye them). I’m really loving thick, angled, dark brows now. I think you’d look fantastic with a lighter, more ashy color pencil than I use (because I have much darker hair). You can get them for as cheap as 99c!

    I also think you’d look pretty in browns and pinks (whereas a lot of my makeup is black, red, eggplant, etc, and lots of outlandish colors) – like a soft pink lid with a brown crease. Before I commit to a look, I peruse the drug store for a cheap pallette to see if it’s a good look before shelling out the big bucks.

    Tip – wait 10-15 seconds after applying glue to false lashes before applying, and always bend the lash band a bit to make it “flexible.”


    • I’m totally with you on the browns (eyes) and pinks (cheeks), so it has been fun to have purple (eyes) and peachy (cheeks)–a new adventure!
      I LOVE that you peruse the drug store for comparable colors first. Isn’t there some website that tells you the drugstore equivalent to the department store brand colors you love?
      Brow pencil and fake lashes are getting a little out of my depth. I’m not that pro circuit yet!! But I love the tips, thanks!!


  7. HERE’S the LINK: http://www.marykay.com/carrieadams1

    Gina, I had so much fun treating you to your makeover! We started with the most important part of a makeover, which is good skin care. When your skin is hydrated and looks it’s best, your makeup looks great too. Next, we determined your foundation shade…MK specializes in training their consultants in perfect shade matching…DONE! Your ‘every-day’ makeup look was perfect for your ‘busy-mom-on-the-go’ lifestyle. A glamour look can be achieved by freshening up foundation & intensifying the color, adding more mascara & lipstick/gloss for evening or a more dramatic look. :~) If your fans have any questions, they can contact me through my website above. Thanks for the opportunity to treat you & I’m so excited for your PRIZE WINNER!! Woohoo! :~)


  8. Make-overs are so much fun! LOVE the Mary Kay tinted moisturizer! My skin has gotten dryer as I’ve aged and the tinted moisturizer feels great with good coverage.


  9. Hey, going to the dentist isn’t all that bad if you have a great dental hygienist πŸ˜‰
    My favorite piece of make up is my liquid eye liner. Doesn’t smudge at all. In fact I wish I could have eye liner tattooed on! I could live without everything except eyeliner and mascara: they are a must.


    • Yes, I’m with you: mascara would be my desert island makeup… Not that I’d be wearing makeup while marooned on a desert island… But cheeks can be pinched, lips bitten, but you just can’t conjure a defined eye without that little magic “wand”!
      Thanks for taking the time to comment! πŸ™‚


  10. I recently discovered tinted moisturizer………oh my goodness……….what didn’t I have this about 20 years ago???? Give it a try! I was impressed with the results!


  11. Gina, thanks for the inspiration! I too have a poor skin care routine; usually I wipe my face with the kids washrag when I finish bathing them…yuk! I recently discovered (why didn’t I think of this sooner?) that I can just use that special face wash (not soap) in the shower, since I can’t seem to make time to add something else to my daily schedule. Then I moisturize each morning before I put any makeup on. I’m with you, baby steps…(and anything that can minimize the time used on something that’s not overly important to me right now is a WIN in my book). Good luck pretty lady!


  12. Love this post Gina…and you look fabulous as always! I am one of those people who actually do have purple shadow. Go figure! Lol. Mine is a double ended stick duo from ELF…a nice shimmery mauve eye color on one end,a deep eggplant liner on the other. And it was only about $3 from Target so in your words, score! I like playing with colors(when I have the time that is). Most days its just some concealed,foundation and mascara. Oh,and lip balm…always a good lip balm cos I have dry lips. The colors/products you used here look like a lot of fun. I’m gonna browse the MK website. When it comes to makeup, I’m like a kid in a candy store πŸ™‚


  13. I have been a MK consultant for 15 yrs. I won’t use anything else—their skin care is the best. So glad you chose the best company to try makeup with new techniques. A MK consultant will be your best friend!!!


  14. I love Mary Kay! I’ve been wearing it for many years and still order from my original consultant in Raleigh…though we moved away 8 or so years ago! Love her and the products!


  15. I use to sell Mary Kay, I didn’t do so well because the people were more into Avon. 😦 I still like the Mary Kay products way better though! πŸ™‚


    • Tiffany, there are so many brands on the market, and it’s all about personal choice. Lots of women choose to use MK to have the benefit of their own personal beauty consultant. For some, this is not important. Find the products that work best for you, your lifestyle & your budget…and be the best-beautiful-you you can be! :~)


  16. Gina, My most favorite is a stain lipstick. I am not a big makeup person either. I am just very simple with my makeup and it also is just something that now I feel like I “have” to do. I love the Maybelinne super stay 24 colors. It will make my lips slightly dry so I always keep tons of chapstick around!


  17. I love the way you compared a makeover to getting a dental checkup, I agree. I happen to like Origins products, especially their lip gloss, because they are natural. They have a fantastic clay mask to add to your skin care routine, too. Gloss over lipstick is definitely the way to go. I usually pick up a drugstore lipstick then use the good gloss over it.


  18. It must be something about our generation, because I didn’t really wear makeup until I was well into my 20s either. Now I use MK’s 3 in 1 Cleanser and the moisturizer daily. I love their foundation too but I’ve found some comparable in another brand that is more cost efficient for me right now.


  19. am a MAC girl. I became a loyal follower in 2001 when one of my best friends from college got married. She paid a lady from the MAC counter at the mall to do all the bridesmaids make-up and the rest…as they say….is history! I have not looked back. I love them. Did I say love…I mean LOVE! SO here is the skinny on my fav MAC products.
    1. Studio Fix. This is a powder compact that goes on like powder but “sets up” like foundation. BRILLIANT I say! I love that there is no gooey mess but I get a nice cover up.
    2. Mineralize Skin Finish Natural: This is also in a powder compact. I put it on over my studio fix for a silky like finish.
    3. Mineralize Skin Finish Gold Spill: I use this like I would blush. It has a beautiful bronzey {is that a word?} look.
    4. Eye Shadow: I love their shadow. It has such a deep pigment that it will stay on much longer than others I have tried. My fav colors are Vex as a base….then Trax is my fav color. It is a deep purple. I actually use their black eye shadow and my eye liner. I have their liner brush and it works perfect. And no messy liner! I also use the same slanted brush to dip in brown eye shadow to fill in my brows!
    5. Paints: I use the color Bare Canvas as a foundation to my lids. I brush a light coat on and apply my eye shadow over top. It keeps the shadow in place all day! LOVE!
    6. Pigment color powder: Some days if I am feeling sassy I will use this to lightly sweep over the top of my finished eyes. It is shimmer and I love it. I use the color Naked.
    7. Lips: Pro Longwear Lipcolor. Go directly to the MAC on line and buy this. Seriously…best lip color ever. You put on the color end and let it dry. Then you just use the gloss end to freshen it up during the day. I also love their glosses. Oyster girl is my favorite.

    8. Mascara: This is the one item I do not get at MAC. I am a mascara snob. My heart belongs to Lacome! I use Definicils and have forever. It is hands down my favorite…best…end of story. I have tried others….even other Lancome brands…but I always come back.


  20. I love Mary Kay!!!!! I sold it for a while. I have wore it since high school. I use it all. I LOVE the Oil Free Eye Makeup Remover and the Timewise Cleansing cream. I am totally in love with the Cream to Powder foundation because it is quick and easy but gives good coverage. I also like the lipsticks they stay on well and moisturize my lips. Also the eyeliner is soft and glides on smoothly.


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    • Yes, achurdleAnita…lack or sleep and lack of water too. Our skin is supposed to rejuvenate overnight, not shrivel up like a dried prune…Eewww! I know…TMI! :~/ But, the good news is, there are great products out there that CAN rejuvenate & replenish our skin overnight, so our faces look & feel rested…even if we have a short night! :~)


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