Hello, friends! I’m just back from a cruise vacation and am easing my way back into the real world. My April favorites blog will go up soon, but I thought I’d take a few moments on a rainy Sunday to answer the questions I’ve received here and on Instagram. Some are about makeup and others are more personal, so this will be a mix of both. Diving in …
Q. How did you get into makeup and skin care?
A. Not to be a downer, but a lot of it was driven by my battle with cancer. I’d really never paid that much attention to skin care until chemotherapy, which was hard on my skin. At first, I was on a skin resurrection journey. I made a New Year’s resolution to never go to bed without cleansing and moisturizing. When I saw what a difference it made, I added other products into the mix. By the way, I’ve kept that resolution. I’m even a little superstitious about it, so I do my routine every night without fail.
Q. Are you really over 50? Why don’t you have wrinkles?
A. Yes, I’m really over 50. I’m 56, in fact. And I’m not wrinkle-free! I do have a few fine lines, but nothing horrifying. Part of it is good genes; the rest I credit to being committed to good skin care. Morning and night after cleansing, I use a toner, a serum, a moisturizer, a neck- and chin-firming cream, an eye cream and a lip balm. At night, I add a sleeping oil (Sunday Riley’s Luna). I also use targeted beauty masks several nights per week and always use sunscreen. About twice per year, I get some additional help in the form of Botox at the corners of my eyes, as well as a very tiny bit of filler to make my bottom lip symmetrical.
Q. What is your advice for women with aging skin?
A. Adopt and stick to a skin-care regimen. Exfoliate. Have facials. Wear sunscreen every day and stay out of the sun when possible. Too much sun is incredibly aging. The same for smoking, so stop. And drink in moderation, because too much alcohol speeds up the aging process by causing wrinkles, loss of collagen and elasticity, dehydration, redness and puffiness. Oh, and wear sunglasses to keep from squinting.
Q. Are you married? Any children? Do they read your blog?
A. Yes, I’m married and we have two adult children. My husband is a newspaper editor. He’s much quieter and more private than I am. I never meet a stranger, which both horrifies and amuses him. Our daughter Elizabeth recently earned her PhD and decided to give back by working with Teach for America for two years. Our son James graduated from college several years ago and works for a pharmaceutical company. As for reading my blog: No way! Every once in awhile, my husband checks out the makeup looks on my Instagram page and tells me if he sees one he particularly likes or dislikes, but that’s about it. Elizabeth has perfect skin — even and poreless. Her makeup routine is limited to BB cream, blush and neutral eye looks. Every once in awhile she humors me by letting me do her makeup. James just thinks I’m his wacky mom.
Q. If you could only use one brand of makeup for the rest of your life, what would it be?
A. I started to say MAC because they have such a huge catalog of products, but I would have to go with Marc Jacobs. The quality is exceptional and I’d need my favorite Le Marc Lip Creme lipsticks at hand. Clara and Slow Burn are my current crushes.
Q. What product do you have the most of?
A. Definitely lipsticks. I have lots of them, ranging from the nudest nudes to fiery reds. I have very pigmented lips, so I didn’t start wearing lipstick regularly until I was in my 30s. Now, I see lipstick as a form of self-expression. Plus, I think my lips are one of my best features.
Q. What is your favorite lipstick?
A. That’s hard, because I have so many! I’ll cheat a little and give you one from each color family. Nude: Whisper by Nudestix. Light pink: Penelope Pink by Charlotte Tilbury. Bright pink: Clara by Marc Jacobs. Coral: MAC Vegas Volt. Purple: Dominique by Nars. Muted red: Lost Cherry by Charlotte Tilbury. Traditional red: MAC Red.
Q. If you could use just one makeup item, what would it be?
A. As much as I love lipstick, I’d have to choose mascara! It makes a huge difference.
Q. Your recent photos look different. Have you had work done?
A. No, and I’d tell you if I had. I’ve lost just over 20 pounds and it is evident in my chin and jaw line. I was worried that losing weight would leave me with sagging skin along my jaw and on my neck, but so far so good. I’ve been using Algenist’s Firming & Lifting Neck Cream.
Q. How have you lost the weight? Are you on a particular diet plan?
A. No plan, just healthy eating. I drink a fruit smoothie for breakfast; have a salad, soup or Lean Cuisine meal for lunch; and dinner is a small steak, chicken breast or fish with a vegetable. Ice cream — and particularly Blue Bell Dutch Chocolate — is my weakness, but I’ve replaced it with sherbet. I’m not on a diet. I’ve made a permanent lifestyle change.
Q. Where do you get the quotes you post on your Instagram page?
A. From friends, from random internet searches, from other people’s Instagram feeds. I love quotes and clearly others do too because they get a lot of likes and seem to inspire people. Sometimes they reflect the way I’m feeling and other times they don’t. I just choose quotes that appeal to me and that I think others will relate to.
Q. You review a lot of products. Are you paid for it, or do you get the products free?
A. No, not paid. And I wish! Nope, and I’ll tell you if I write a sponsored post.
Q. Do you have pets?
A. I do! Two cats live with me: rescue kitties named Otis and Bea. They are siblings but Mama Cat apparently slept around because I’m sure they have different dads. Otis is a black and white “moo” cat and Bea is a gray tabby. I love them to pieces! My husband works in another state and our old man is with him — Sparky is a 16-year-old orange cat. I would love to have a dog, but I travel a lot and that would not be fair.
Q. Who is your favorite makeup artist?
A. I like Lisa Eldridge’s work and watch her YouTube videos for tips. Her looks are always clean and wearable. Also, Wayne Goss has great, practical advice and reviews.
Q. Do you have a YouTube channel?
A. Not yet. I plan to start one as soon as I learn to edit videos.
Q. Who are your beauty icons?
A. Marilyn Monroe, because she just had an incandescent glow. And Elizabeth Taylor was so beautiful. On a more contemporary note, Scarlett Johannson.
OK, that’s it for now. If you have any questions, send them to me here or on Instagram. I’m Makeup_Plus_50. -Ronda