MINI PENNY: Daily Face

Monday, February 24, 2014

Daily Face

We all have our routines. A lot of Minis send me questions about what products I use on the daily, so I figured I'd give you a step by step of my process.

So, this is the mug I'm talking about (No-shame selfie game, amirite?) — cat eyes, bold brows and a bright lip. I am by no means an expert on makeup (I've learned most of it from friends and blogs!), but of all of the looks I try, this is what I always come back to. (Don't worry... you'll see a full before and after photo. *wink*)

Read the full how-to after the jump.

Cleaning & Prep

For starters, a clean face is important. I've talked about it time and time again — I use baby wipes instead of makeup remover wipes for easy cleanup and makeup removal. But for a deeper cleaning, moisturizing, and prep, I go a bit deeper.

I use Clearasil face wash, which I talked about here. Because of the dry weather, I've cut back to using the exfoliant, wash, and pads to every other day. Starting last week, I tried out this Charcoal Bamboo Dew Puff. I've been shopping for something similar for a long time, but Dew Puff was kind enough to send one of these for me to try it out. So far, I really like it (and Brock is totally weirded out by it, haha). The texture feels great on my skin. I normally use it on it's own, buffing in a circular pattern. I haven't tried using it with any cleanser (the packaging says that you can, but the website says it's not recommended..?). Anyone have any pointers on this?

After cleaning my face in the morning, I use MAC Lightful Softening Lotion. I discovered this stuff after getting a makeover from a friend of mine who works for MAC. I really can't say enough good things about it — it's sort of like a hydrating toner. I put it in a small spray bottle and spritz it evenly on my face after washing. I really would be curious to try other products from this MAC line in the future.

Apply moisturizer. I've written before about how much I love Lulu Blossom's Day Cream. A little bit of this stuff goes a long way and makes my skin feel fantastic. I allow the moisturizer for a few minutes while I do my hair. Once I'm ready to start applying makeup, I prep my face by applying Urban Decay Pore Perfecting Primer. I've written about this stuff before, so obviously a tube of this stuff lasts a long time.

Anyway. This is what I look like after prepping my face. For real, no makeup except for the primer:

So that's vulnerable, right? Haha. But this is good to give you guys an idea of what my "flaws" are (quotations because I don't really consider them flaws, just bits that I like to enhance) — uneven and red skin tone, spotty and short brows, and blemishes.

Eyes & Brows

I normally start my makeup with brows. I didn't used to think much of them, but now that I cut my hair off, they seem to be a focus of my face.

I use Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Brow Mousse. This is another product that hovers around the $30 range which I bought over a year ago and is still goin' strong. It's a really good buy. To determine where my brows show start, arch, and end, I use the popular brush measuring technique.

1. First, I use a brow brush to comb the hairs in the angle that I will be filling in my brows. Using an angled brush, I draw my downward, outside brow line first, starting where my arch begins. This helps me make sure that my brows will be sort-of even. ("Remember, your brows are sisters, not twins," is my favorite brow advice.) I have a tendency to arch my brows, aka perpetual-surprised-face, so these photos make them look a little more uneven than they actually are when I'm relaxed (hah).

2. Once I have the outer edges complete, I draw the bottom and top guides from my brows and fill it in with short hair-like strokes. This helps give them a more realistic fill. Be sure to angle the brush in the direction that the hair grows — for example: when you get closer to the center of your face, the hairs tend to grow upwards instead of outwards. Mimic this.

3. I use a small concealer brush and concealer to create an "outline" above and below my brows. Using the other side of the brush, feather out the concealer. This gives a strong brow definition and cleaner lines. This trick changed my eyebrow game forever. I use ELF Undereye Concealer and Highlighter with an ELF Essential Concealer brush.

Eyebrows done. Next up, eyes.

4. Primer! I love ELF Studio Primer. For a buck, it's hard to beat. I apply this with the supplied sponge brush and then use a concealer brush to even it out.

5. I'm still using my Julep Sweep Eyeshadow Palette. So far, this is the only Julep makeup that I've really liked. They polish? Great. Makeup? Eh. The palette is great, though. I use an ELF Essential Eyeshadow Brush and Julep Tiramisu to cover my lids. In the creases, I use Julep Dusk with an ELF Essential Eye Crease Brush. The Julep shadows bend easily together, giving a subtle shadow without it being "too much" for my taste. I'm really a big fan of neutral eyeshadow!

6. Next, I line my topline and about 1/3-1/2 of my bottom waterline.  I've tried a few gel liners and haven't found much that I'm in love with. I'm currently using Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Liner in Eggplant. This purple is dark enough to be subtle, but still gives a small hint of color. And... purple. How can I resist. It took me a long time to get used to applying to my top waterline, but it is totally worth it!

7. This is the big one for me — liquid eyeliner. I get asked about my liner most often. After years of searching for the perfect kind, I've discovered Milani Infiniti Wear Liquid Liner in Black. A close second place is Boots No. 7 Stay Precise Liner. I prefer the Milani because it is easier to find (Walgreens!) and is a few dollars cheaper. Seriously. It's amazing — doesn't smudge or show wear. In fact, I have to layer primer on top of it to remove it at night. To apply, I start from the outer corner and work in — I guess this isn't common, but it's easy for me to create the tip of my wing and work inwards. Instead of winging "up," I pull my skin taught and draw a straight line from the tip of my wing to nearly the inside of my eye. Because of the shape of my eye, a straight line still has the illusion of a curved line. Once the top line is draw, I connect the corner of the wing to the corner of my eye and fill it in. Because it's a long lasting liquid liner, give it time to dry! It will smudge to your upper lids if you open your eyes too wide, etc. So be careful.

8. And lastly, I apply mascara. I used to exclusively use false lashes, but nowadays I only do it for 'special occasions.' Instead, I picked up a tube of Diorshow Blackout by Dior.


This took me a long time to tackle. I grew up with acne and red/pink skin and was always teased because of it. So inevitably, it took me a long time to find products that worked and complimented my skin. I start with a small amount of Garnier BB Cream in non-problem areas for light coverage (jawline, hairline, forehead).

9. I use the same concealer here that I did to clean up my brows. Using the built in sponge brush, I make a triangle-esque pattern of lines as seen in the first photo. Then, using a large foundation brush, I use one side to blend the concealer, and the other side to feather the edges. This helps cover the majority of my redness since the concealer has a yellow base.

10. I have two foundations that I use — one that matches my skin (Boots No 7 Beautifully Matte) and one that is a tiny bit darker (ELF Tinted Moisturizer). I use the slightly darker moisturizer to contour very lightly lightly on my cheekbones. I use the Boots foundation on other areas of my skin that need coverage and blending.

11. Using the concealer brush, I put a but concealer on any pimples or blemishes I have. Just like every where, I use the other side of the concealer brush to feather the edges.

12. Recently I picked up a Be A Bombshell One Stick. I really like stick blushes and have used similar ones by ELF and NYX. I apply a small amount of blush to the apples of my cheeks — by smiling dorkily in the mirror — and blending in circular motions outwards.

13. Finally, I finish off my face by using Revlon PhotoReady Pressed Powder and an ELF Studio Kabuki Brush.


And finally, lips! I love rich lip colors.

14. Pretty simple! I line my lips and fill — sometimes with the liner or sometimes with the lipstick. I prefer to use a lip brush instead of applying directly from the tube. My favorites lipsticks currently are Bite, Maybelline, and OCC Lip Tars.

15. If there are oops-spots on my lip lining, I use the concealer and brush in the same way I did for the brows or use a baby wipe to clean up.

And that's it, I'm done! I do a little bit of tweaking here and there from day to day (different lip color, blush color, or perhaps an olive eyeliner instead of black), but these are the basics. From beginning to end, it's quite a change, eh?

I've bee wanting to try more OCC Lip Tars (I have three now) and the Anastasia of Beverly Hills DipBrow Pomade. What are your favorite makeup products?

Disclaimer: Charcoal Bamboo Dew Puff was a gift from Dew Puff and Varo Marketing Group. Reviews are my own. Clearasil was part of a sponsorship from R29 + Clearasil. You can read the full review here. Maybelline Color Elixir was part of a sponsorship with R29 + Maybelline. You can read the full review here.

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