Take It To Go – Blush

So, maybe you ran out the door with no blush on (either a no makeup day or a “wow I really need some caffeine because I didn’t even remember BLUSH day”– we’ve all been there!). Or, maybe your blush has gone AWOL mid-day. (That is so annoying. Where did it go? Did it have an appointment or something??)

My solution for this is to keep a small, easy to apply, go-with-everything blush in my makeup bag in my purse. My choice is Stila Convertible Color in Lillium. I actually have a mini size, which is SO cute, but even the full sized Stila CCs are not that big– about the size of a powder compact, but slimmer. I like to use a CC because they are cream blushes (but not so creamy that they slide off my skin), easily applied with fingers and also work as a lip color in a pinch. I prefer to use a cheek color I can apply with my fingers because then I don’t have to bring along a brush!
To apply, I hold my middle finger and pointer finger together side by side, and tap the surface of the CC gently. That’s all I need for a natural flush. I then tap the color onto the apple of my cheek and blend like hell. The key is the tapping of the CC’s surface. You don’t want to use a rubbing or scooping motion. You’ll get way too much product on your fingers. Hopefully that explanation makes sense; I hope to eventually have a video to show you guys. (side note: I just now read that the tapping method is actually recommended by Stila, too! ha…I did not know. Silly me thinking I was original…)

Choosing your Stila CC shade…

If you’re fair like me and have cool to neutral undertones, you’ll want to choose Lillium, or maybe Petunia, which is a bit of a deeper, rosier color than Lillium.

If you are fair with neutral to warm undertones, you may want to try Gerbera, which is peachier and warmer than Lillium. Or for more of an intense warm color– Gladiola.

For those of you with darker skin tones, I recommend Fuschia or Poppy. Those two colors are quite bright but will look gorgeous as a pop of color on darker skintones– you gals really pull off the bright blushes well.

If you just want a neutral nudey color, try Peony. It leans a tiny bit warm, which is why I prefer Lillium.

Stila Convertible Colors are $25 retail, but Stila’s website has the code STILAPRO for 40% off and free shipping. Unfortunately Peony is out of stock but the rest of the colors are in. If you are desperate for Peony, try Beauty.com! They have 20% off, but it ends today.

Alternative cream blushes that will do the job if you can’t get Stila or don’t want to:
– Carmindy’s Sally Hansen line has some creme blushes that I have not tried personally, but I do hear lots of good things about them.

– NYX also has creme blushes, but in only a few colors. They are EXTREMELY pigmented, so use with care. :)

Take It To Go – Oil Control

What’s in your purse? My purse is utter chaos. I LOVE big purses (hello! look at how much stuff you can carry in there!!!) but when it comes time to actually, uh, find something in there, it can get a little scary. So when it comes to my makeup bag that I carry in my purse, I like to keep a few essential staples that get the job done, and reduce clutter. I am calling this mini series of posts “Take It To Go”.

Blotting Basics

I always have blot powder and blotting sheets. If you have just a bit of mid-day shine, a swipe of blot powder is fine on its own. But if you have any kind of oil issues, you need blotting sheets. If you apply blot powder more than once (maaaybe twice) a day without blotting off excess oil first, you run the risk of looking cakey.

As for applying blot powder, I recommend against using a sponge, because whatever you use to apply your blot powder will be in contact with oily skin on a regular basis and thus needs to be washed regularly. A brush will hold up better after many washes. I use a retractable EcoTools kabuki, but any fluffy brush will do. Pick something portable. I like retractables because the cover keeps things clean in my bag.

Remember with both your powder and your sheets to blot, not wipe. Use a blot sheet in a dabbing motion, applying gentle pressure to the area you want to absorb oil from. Don’t forget your eyelids. Very gently blotting them with a sheet will help battle creasing and fading without messing up your eye makeup. When it’s time to apply the blot powder, fluff it on to your face. Don’t buff it in. Use a dotting motion, or very gently sweeping strokes so as not to disturb your makeup.

Popular Blot Powders: MAC Blot, Urban Decay De-Slick, NYC Translucent, Maybelline Dream Matte.

Popular Blot Sheets: Boscia Blotting Linens, Clean & Clear Blotting Sheets (and many drugstore knockoffs of Clean&Clear which are exactly the same). In a pinch, Starbucks napkins and toilet seat covers work surprisingly well, too!

For seriously oily skin, you may want to consider using a mattifyer. Many primers and sunscreens also have mattifying properties, but sometimes in my experience their effect doesn’t last all day or through really vigorous activity like dancing, the a/c broke in your office in July, etc. A product I love as a solution to that problem is all right mattifying gel from the goodskin line at Kohls. The main mattifying ingredient is silica, which I’ve found to be extremely effective at oil control. The beauty of this product is it’s designed to use under makeup or over it for midday touchups. When I met Meghan Malloy, regional artist for the Kohls beauty brands, she noted that it was one of her favorite products and I witnessed the results on her myself!

Hope that helps with the challenge of keeping from looking like a greasy mess even as summer begins. :)