I’ve got wicked under eye circles. They go away sometimes and then return whenever I start to feel too good about my appearance, just to keep me in line. There was a time when I held out hope they might be banished altogether, but that was before I had access to a fashion magazine’s beauty closet, which enabled me to sample copious of-the-moment remedies and finally conclude that the only true cure for under eye circles is a first-rate concealer. I still feel that way. But this Kate Somerville cream, of which I was given a sample the other day, definitely has some kind of magic in it. I put it on the other morning as a base before applying concealer, then returned to the mirror five minutes later* and the thick purple crescents under my eyes were, much to my astonishment, significantly diminished. Anything that allows me to spackle on the makeup just a little less thick is aces in my book, so I bought the stuff, which wasn’t cheap, but I think will work out very well on a cost-per-use basis because you only use just the eensiest little squirtlet of it.
* A beauty editor once instructed me to wait a full five minutes between application of eye cream and concealer, and indeed that does seem to be the exact right amount of time necessary for for maximal concealer absorption and minimal concealer smudging.
There’s something happening later on this week that I have to look especially good for, so I’m doing the usual drill and getting a blowout and false lashes (my failsafe shortcut to looking professionally made up) and then a manicure too, which almost never happens around here, because my nails are too sad to even bother. But I love how short nails look with dark polish, and this eggplant-y black purple is too good to resist. It’s very goth-girl-from-a-good-family, which is pretty much exactly the look I’m going for.
Thanks to a single very unfortunate, highly zealous pre-adolescent attempt at tweezing, my eyebrows have always been on the scant side. And while this has never pleased me, it has also never really obsessed me: like many women, I’ve got a gift for pinpointing physical imperfections, and this one always fallen squarely on my B list. Lately, however, the situation’s become a little more dire: as the years march on, it turns out, our lashes and brows naturally thin, and it’s gotten to the point where some kind of boost feels necessary. So not long ago, I marched over to Sephora and purchased this pencil/brush combo from Anastasia. Its very slim point makes application minimally more time-consuming but virtually mistake-proof, and it really is something to see what a difference it makes. Just make sure when choosing a shade to go with your hair’s natural hue or, even better, one lighter. Never darker, unless what you’re after is a one-way ticket to Joan Crawfordsville.
My skin’s been on the temperamental side lately, so I’ve been playing it light on the makeup, foregoing my beloved bronzer even as my skin assumes its annual deathly winter pallor. The whole situation would be quite tragically unpretty were it not for my Benefit Cha Cha Tint, which goes on nice, creamy and sheer, and just a shade or three brighter pink than what anyone might describe as sweet.
The heat clanged on this morning at around 6am, which to me always feels like the true arrival of fall, and also serves as my annual reminder that—thanks to my building’s management-controlled, bone-dry, super-sweltery thermostat—it’s time to step up efforts on the moisturizing front. Hands are always the first to go, so I keep this all-natural lavender balm on the night stand and glop it on thick right before bedtime. Try it: in the morning, your hands are soft enough that you can get away with not re-moisturizing during the day—which is always such a sticky old pain.
In a matter of months, I will turn 50. And I am, in many ways, fine with this. Too much of one’s late 40s seem to be about the slow creep to 50 anyway, and so I feel pretty OK about just getting there already. What I am not OK with is being an almost-50 year-old who still suffers the occasional breakout, and yet this remains part of my reality: a few days ago, I awoke to find three red spots on my right cheek and another on my left, just as fresh and alive as the day I turned 16. Does this happen to any of you? And if so, do you recall it happening to our mothers? I do not, and it hardly seems as though it should be part of the deal. At least I’ve got this powderkeg of a zit-eradicator from Kiehl’s on my side: apply it super-sparingly and just to the area affected, and it lays waste to unwanted pimples—a word that shouldn’t even have to be in our vocabulary at this stage in the game.
Friday afternoon I was walking up Bleecker Street, feeling all cute and stylish and tall in my new wedge clogs—yes, these—when I tripped out of the right one and toppled—ass over teakettle, as the Brits like to say—on to the sidewalk. This was not the first time I have taken a tumble on account of my footwear, not by a long shot: there was an incident involving the first day of high school and a new pair of Candies; another, quite a few years later, involving the steps up to the New York Public Library, formal dress, and the CDFA Awards. And there were many, many incidents in between. But I had, for the most part, always managed to remain vertical. And the damage to my person was never much more than a particularly impressive bruise.
This time was different. This time my foot hurt, and it hurt a lot. When I got up to walk, it was not with great ease.
Did I proceed immediately home? I’d like to say yes. But just minutes before, I’d run into my friend Caitlin, who is one of the very charming ladies behind the counter at my neighborhood office cafe, and she carried with her a shopping bag and an urgent look. She’d just visited the Fresh store, and learned that their Supernova Mascara, which is what she swears by, what her mother swears by, is the best mascara ever, is to be discontinued. She’d gotten herself what looked like a year’s supply, and I—despite both my strong belief that one needs never buy anything other than drugstore mascara, and now throbbing right foot—was intrigued. And guys, this is some really good mascara. Thick and glossy and un-clumpy and eyelash-curly too. I’ve had lots of fun applying it as I idle on the sofa, foot on ice, leg elevated.
Surely my super-sparkly new Chanel eyeshadow—which goes on more slate grey than the pitch black you see here—is meant for the most seriously dramatic of of evening looks. But I think it is better utilized lending glamour to life’s more pedestrian moments. Like just now, for instance, when I felt positively bewitching here on the sofa ordering new orthotics online. And also: as I contemplate my upcoming afternoon trip to the pet food store, I feel the possibilities for fantabulousness are positively endless.
As I have noted before, I like myself a nice chubby-style lip pencil for summer. And especially one that allows me to get away with a poppy, bright-ish pink—so fun in summer—even though that’s not typically the most flattering tone on me. This one is called Chunky Cherry, which is rather great, as is the fact that it’s both super-moisturizing and not too shiny, two things that almost never happen in the same lippy at the same time.