I don't know about all you young girls out there, but as an older woman I am really finding that I have had to modify my makeup routine to cope with the heatwave we have been experiencing off and on since Christmas. I've also become a master in the art of pinning my short bob up off my face or shoving the frizzy mess under a broad-brimmed hat. Why don't we Ausies accessorise more with hats? They hide a multitude of hair sins and are saviours for our faces!!
Anyway, I think I have found the perfect light makeup combination for me, that is not too cakey, creasy (made this up but you know what I mean), shiney or runny. It may or may not work for you – but I think we would all agree that in heat and humidity less is definately more, because 'more' just wants to slide off your face and onto your strappy top.
1. Don't aggravate your skin. Hold exfoliating back for a milder day, as your skin is extra sensitive with the blood close to the surface. Cleanse gently and pat dry.
2. Toner is your friend in the heat. Use it after cleansing, and follow up with a very light moisturiser. I use the Clinique 3 step system, so Dramatically Different Moisturiser works a treat as it is light and applies easily.
3. DO NOT GO ANY FURTHER WITHOUT APPLYING SUNSCREEN! I'm using Ego Sun Sense daily face invisible tint finish (image source). It's a UVA and UVB SPF 30+ protector that is non-greasy and that I'm finding works well for me. It doesn't matter what you use, as long as you make sure that any face that is leaving the house in the Australian summer is covered in a broad spectrum sunscreen. No excuses.
4. Next I layer on extra protection in the form of BB cream. Currently I use the L'Oreal and Garnier products interchangeably. However, I'd really like to get my hands on the Smashbox one which is SPF 35.
5. I then sparingly apply concealer only where absolutely needed, following with a very light dusting of mineral powder. Currently I'm using Ultraceuticals Ultra Active Even Skintone Compact (image source) because it's a mineral pressed powder and I love it.
6. Now it gets easy. I have dispensed with blush, eyeshadow, eyeliner and lower-lash mascara in the heat. Blush is a waste – because you are already naturally glowing and rosy and you need nothing more. Even with primer, eyeshadow still creases and liner still runs. If you must use a liner, gel has the best staying power. And my experience is that no mascara, waterproof or not, has the staying power to not end up on my under-eyes (is that what we call them?). And my bags are dark enough without the added 'noir'. But as sunglasses are such an important item in eye protection you'll have them on ALL the time when you're outside, making eye makeup less important.
7. So next step is a slick of mascara on my top lashes followed with highlighting my eyebrows in blonde pencil to give them definition, before spritzing with MAC Fix+. (If you don't want to splash out the $$ you can use any similar spray. I have found Avene to be just as effective.) This step is the saviour of summer makeup. MAC Fix+ – I LOVE IT!!!
8. Last but not least, while the MAC dries (and I promise, it does, even in high humidity) I choose a lip liner and lipstick or gloss in a summery pink or neutral.
Now, I have to tell you that the competitor in me strives to get all this done before the perspiration starts to bead on my upper lip, which is nearly an impossible feat in the Queensland heat. But it means I have acquired more time in my day, and I really feel pleased with the finished result, which, I promise, lasts the distance.
And I know I don't have to remind you that the most important thing to do in the heat is to DRINK LOTS OF WATER – beauty really does come from within.
Do you have any further tips for surviving the harsh Australian summer? Please share and I promise I'll try your suggestions. (And sorry about all the shouty capitals – but there are just some things that need stressing when it comes to the summer sun and beauty.)