I started my makeup journey with one philosophy : If it’s not seen, how would people know I’m wearing makeup?
Yes, I was not terribly secure in my application nor choice of colours, but I was into sparkles and shimmer, pink blushes and blue eyeshadow, all topped off with a bold lip. I had a lot of leeway in my place of work, and they tolerated it even if I might have pulled off some strange looks back then.
It was about then also that I started paying more attention to makeup, and the different collections that were hitting the stands. This was back in the day when new collections would take about 2-3 months to arrive on our sun-drenched shores. By that time, I’d have read all the reviews from people in the UK and USA about what was good or what to avoid. Helped save me money!
But whenever a new collection popped up with a neutral or brown eyeshadow palette, and muted colours for cheeks and lips, my interest level would drop. Brown? Neutrals? What’s the point of a nude makeup look? I’d scoff.
I cannot tell you when exactly I crossed the line from wearing “bright colourful makeup” to “understated neutral makeup” but I crossed that line quite many years ago when I woke up one day and realised that I was wearing makeup not for anyone, but for myself. The lightbulb went on!
So I’m curious to know if or how your makeup preferences has changed over the years and I’ll show you quickly how I do my looks these days – very quick, very efficient :)
I started learning how to enjoy wearing makeup when I dabbled into Japanese brands. They had an aesthetic that appealed to me – a clear skin base, transparent colour on lids, with lots of mascara, light blush on cheeks and juicy glossy lips. But Japanese brands became expensive, and the more affordable ones became less and less available, so I began to search further, and I found looks I liked in brands like Bobbi Brown.
Bobbi Brown makeup is I swear, underrated. They don’t shout very loudly, and they haven’t yet descended into the frou-frou and whimsical, for which I appreciate. There is something reassuring about pulling out one of their products, and knowing that I’m getting something high quality that looks, and feels good.
Today, my goal when I do my makeup is very simple. Let me just show you quickly how I do my everyday makeup these days. It is very simple, and I can be done in just a few minutes flat. Very useful for when you just want to catch that extra 15 minutes sleep :D
A good base
Be it a BB cream, tinted foundation or a full coverage foundation (I like using any one depending on my mood), my goal is to achieve a transparent base for skin that looks like skin. I dab concealer (current fave) where I need it, and keep it light and sheer. Imperfections may show through, but I’m now comfortable with that. It doesn’t define me as a person.
A strong brow
I don’t profess to being able to draw my brows properly, but I like a slightly more defined brow, with an arch. I don’t go for the straight, thick Korean-style brows, preferring a well-balanced but defined arch brow. It helps balance and frame my face better (because I have a big face :P )
One of my first loves in makeup is blush. The love remains today. At one time, I favoured light pink cheek colours. Now, I opt for something a little more peachy-pink or coral as I feel it looks more flattering. Dabbing on the colour, and taking it just under my eyes (instead of just on the top of your cheeks, which is quite old-fashioned) makes it look more flattering and fresher (in my view) – tell me if you want a picture tutorial ;) I now also wear light bronzer for a touch of warmth on the skin.
Bright lip colours
Bright lip colours have always been my signature, but more so now. I wear them because it is so easy to dress up a look with a bright lip (I always prefer a lipstick with a touch of shine), and it allows me to get away with doing less on the rest of my face LOL! :D
Neutral eyeshadow or no eye makeup
When I wear eye colours these days, I go for something quite neutral or light. I favour browns, taupes and greys just lightly applied over my lids, and an eyeliner for light definition. I wear a lot of crayon style cream shadows, like one of my favourites from Bobbi Brown or Laura Mercier, because it’s easier and quicker.I don’t wear mascara – I haven’t for almost 6 years! :D
And there you have it!
Makeup preferences can change with time and lifestyle
It’s a very simple look that I wear almost everyday, with very little variation. The main variations are in the choice of colours and products I choose to use. But otherwise, it is not only quick, I think it looks fresher too.
It also ties in with a change in lifestyle for me. I now lead a simpler, more casual lifestyle. It reflects itself in my choice of clothes and in how I do my makeup.
It also ties in with better self-confidence in how I look. I don’t need for anyone to actually see the makeup I’m wearing anymore. I don’t wear it to impress anyone, nor do I wear it to show off any non-existent skills. I wear makeup because I enjoy it. If I don’t want to wear it, I don’t. But if I want to, I do.
And sometimes, that’s all there is to it. Growing up, maturing in your views and outlook on life, and having your lifestyle change all play a part. I now have palettes of blue and bright coloured eyeshadows gathering dust in my drawers :P Yet, I’m loathe to toss them out :P
For fun, I thought I’d show you how I might have used to do my makeup back in the day, and how I do my makeup these days.
On left is how I used to do my makeup almost on a daily basis. Yep, blue eyeshadow and chockfull of shimmer! :D Pink blush applied on the sides of the cheeks (the smile and swipe trick everyone does), a heavy base with concealer and powder to set, and a bold lip.
On right is basically how I tend to look today on a daily basis. Very light, barely there eye makeup, bolder brow, sheerer base with just a very light or no setting powder, cheek colour dabbed under the eyes and to the sides of cheek, and a bold lip. In fact, today I wear lighter lip colours too, compared to what I used to before.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with either look. The first used to take me much longer, while the second is now quicker. The second suits my current lifestyle better, and if I hanker for the good ol’ days, I just pile it on :D
Has your makeup preferences changed over the years? Do you use more today or less?
I don’t think I use less per se, but I think I’m more economical in my use, and choice of colours and textures. Makeup is fun – if you don’t like it, just wipe it off and start over! :)
This post is made possible in part by Bobbi Brown Malaysia. All comments and opinions are our own