Beauty basics: foundation & concealer

Every week, Michelle will answer your beauty questions with a video tutorial. This week’s question comes from Lindsay, who asks, “I know, sounds dumb. But where do you put coverup? Concealer? Do I put base on over or under concealer? When do I powder?”.

It’s cool, Linds. We’ve got your back. Here’s how to apply basic foundation & concealer.

Products Used:
Benefit It’s Potent! Eye Cream
Oil of Olay Complete All Day UV Moisturizer
Smashbox Photo Finish Primer
Make Up Forever HD Invisible Cover Foundation #115
Cle de Peau Concealer in Ivory
MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder (Light)
MAC #224 brush
Haughty Go Big or Go Home brush

Got a question? Email Us!

Pare down your panty drawer

by Ashley

It’s time to clean out your underwear drawer.

Feeling like you look good in your underwear gives you swagger all day, so you should always wear lingerie that makes you feel confident. To make sure you can’t put on a bad pair, you should probably pare down.

Here are some tips to decide which of your panties needs to go. Set aside 30 minutes to do a full audit to make sure you look your best underneath.

  • Fit. Try on each pair you have. If they don’t fit anymore, they need to go.
  • Comfort. Is that pair comfortable? Do you ever wear them? Unless they are mega sexy and don’t fail any other tests, you should probably not have that pair taking up room in your drawer.
  • Shape/Condition. If they are stretched out, have pulls in the fabric or dead elastic, or any stains, they must go. “But I wear them on my period” you say to me. No. Wear a black pair on your period and throw out those ugly panties.
  • Match. If your panties don’t match or coordinate with a bra that fits, then I get rid of them. I do not recommend the nude bra + whatever panties practice. That combo will not give you the swagger mentioned above. If you happen to have a fabulous pair of unmatched panties you really want to keep, then buy something to go with them on top (bra, cami, pasties, etc).

I recommend you do this once a quarter to keep you fabulous underwear collection current.

Basics: how to know if your clothes fit

by Michelle

One of the basics of fashion is to make sure your clothes fit properly. This can be tricky if you’re undergoing weight changes, like I am – I’m currently in the process of shrinking after having my second child 7 months ago. Today we’re going to focus on the ladies (but we will be addressing this issue for men in a later post!). Remember: if it doesn’t fit, it isn’t fabulous.

First, some pre-shopping – or pre-closet cleaning – tips and truths.

Measure beforehand.

This mostly applies to anyone who has recently undergone some weight changes, but there is also a lot of general confusion stemming from the fact that seemingly every brand sizes their clothing differently. There is nothing worse than thinking in your head that you wear a size 6 and then realizing in the dressing room, after asking the salesperson multiple times to bring you new sizes, that you actually can’t get the size 14 to zip. And then crying. In Banana Republic. Not that this has ever happened to me or anything (see above: re: just had a baby). Avoid this situation at all costs by measuring yourself beforehand to get a decent idea of where you should be starting. What Size Am I? is an amazing website that lets you input your measurements and tells you what sizes will fit you in different brands – and most brands publish their size charts on their website.

Have a good tailor.

Clothing is manufactured based on the measurements of fit models. You are (probably) not a fit model. But just because you’re 7 inches shorter than the shortest chick on the runway doesn’t mean that those jeans aren’t rocking on you. You just need those 7 inches taken off of the hem. A good tailor is magic and can make clothes that fit pretty well look AMAZING, and can save clothes that have become a size too big or too small. S/he can also tell you interesting facts about yourself that you might otherwise never have known, like that one of your shoulders is shorter than the other (again, not that this happened to me or anything). If you’ve spent good money on something and plan to have it for a long time, it’s worth the extra twelve bucks to get it tailored. Make sure you know somebody.

Know what to avoid.

Trends come and go, and not every single one is going to look good on you. Know (and love!) your body type and avoid things that don’t flatter it. For instance, if you’re curvy, never attempt to buy anything in Europe…and that goes double for Asia.

Always check the rear view.

Sometimes something looks great from the front. Never walk out the door in an outfit until you have seen what it looks like from the back. Get a hand mirror and stand backwards in front of a full length mirror. Prepare to be horrified a full 40% of the time. Ideally, you would do this before you actually purchased an item, but we all make mistakes.

OK, ready to go? Here’s how your different items should fit.

Tops 

It’s too big if the shoulder seams hit below the top of your shoulders, you can see your bra through the arm holes, or it looks like a dress on you (unless it’s supposed to). Shirts that are too big add pounds, especially if you have big boobs and a small waist (think: tent). It’s counter-intuitive, but it’s true. Button up shirts should not gap in the front, but if it’s a great shirt that fits otherwise, your tailor can fix this with a hook-and-eye.

It’s too small if you can see the outline of your belly button through the fabric, it’s cutting off circulation in your arms, you have anything visibly bulging in the back, or you have to keep pulling it down all day to be comfortable.

Dresses

It’s too big if it doesn’t define your curves, unless you’re going for some Olsen twin bo-ho look. Then it’s never too big. It’s too small if you can’t zip it up (obvi) or if you are leaving NOTHING to the imagination.

If it generally fits but you see a few bulges, try it with Spanx.  If it generally fits but there is a weird blouse-y effect in the back above your waist, it’s made for someone taller than you. Try a petite version, or just move on.

Hem and strap issues can easily be addressed by your new best friend the tailor!

Pants

They’re too big if you can roll down the waistline without it popping back up, grab a bunch of fabric in front, or pull them all the way off without unbuttoning them. And if the hem is dragging on the ground or you have a gap in the back, go see you-know-who.

They’re too small if you have a “whisker” effect going on in the front. With dress pants, make sure you can fit a finger inside the waistband and that they look professional from the back (that means no rap-video tightness at the office, ladies). Jeans, on the other hand, stretch out a little with wear, so buy them as tight as you can stand – if it zips, it fits!  As with shirts, pants that are too big make you look bigger (and nobody likes that saggy butt feeling).

Jackets and Coats

It’s too big if the shoulder seems hit below your shoulders or the sleeves land more than an inch past your wrists (tailor!). It’s too small if you can’t button it, steer a car, or hug somebody without pain and fear of stitch-ripping.

Underpinnings

I’m not going to go into detail on this, ladies, but please do not wear anything that creates bulges you didn’t have before putting it on. And for the love of God, figure out your actual bra size – even if it means you have to live with not fitting into the standard sizes sold at Victoria’s Secret. Move on with your life.  There are a lot of instructions for bra measuring on the internet, but my favorite is at herroom.com – they also carry a large array of sizes! If you don’t trust your own measuring skills, the ladies in the lingerie department at Nordstrom’s are generally awesome.

Now that you know the basics, you’re ready to go to town. And remember, never buy anything that doesn’t make you feel FIERCE. Happy shopping!