Face Oils

As you may already know, I am very pregnant. Approx 40 weeks now! I'm expecting our little girl anytime now and so have taken the next month or so off of work. And while that means no appointments... it does mean lots of blogging! I have learned so much after working in the cosmetics industry for over 10 years and working in New York for over 6 years. I was really busy living in NYC but now I'm slowing down and I have so much I am dying to share with you! Face oil

Lately I've been super ALL about face oils. I found this really interesting article in Cosmetics and Toiletries (a scientific journal on cosmetics) from 2008 about "free form" cosmetics. It seems like it was just around 2008 that the various health conscious cosmetic trends were becoming popular, a lot that can still bel seen today.  Free form earlier in 2002 simply meant free of synthetic colorants and fragrances. But in 2008 the list had expanded to include free from mineral oil, petrochemicals, polyethylene glycol (PEG), sodium laurel sulfate, parabens, genetically modified ingredients, phenoxyethanol and most recently silicone. What's interesting about face oils... is they are SUPER free form. Like it shocks me when I look at the ingredients. It's usually very simply a list of oils- usually from flowers, herbs, fruits, vegetables and nuts.

Here's a breakdown of 4 different face oils that I have in rotation now:

Extra Face OilScreen Shot 2015-05-08 at 8.40.28 AM

Brand: Bobbi Brown  Bottle: 1 oz, Glass bottle with a twist lid   Price: $83 USD Scent: neroli, patchouli, lavender, and sandalwood Thoughts: Bobbi Brown's extra face oil was the first face oil I was introduced to back in 2006. And for that reason, as well as the beauty and quality of the product, it holds a very special place in my heart. One interesting thing to note is that despite being the most mainstream brand of all these oils it will leave you smelling the most like a hippie. I think it's because of the patchouli and sandalwood. Another interesting observation about the product is the packaging. It's a twist top, and all the others are either a pump or a dropper. It can get rather messy and not very good for travel. But... the packaging is extraordinarily beautiful and the weight of the product in your hand feels very luxurious.


illuminating rose collagen renewal face serumScreen Shot 2015-05-08 at 8.05.16 AM

Brand: red flower  Bottle: 1 oz, Glass bottle with a dropper Price: $86 USD Scent: Rose damascena   Thoughts: I was given this as a gift from the girls at the Red Flower store in SoHo after buying their Nature radiant skincare travel set and some blood orange shampoo. It sat around in my skin care storage unit for about a year. I have had it in rotation with the other 3 face oils for the past couple of months. ROSES. It's very rosy smelling and I kind of love and hate that about it. Just some nights it's a little too strong for me... but during the day I love it! Maybe because during the day I'm moving around and at night I'm just laying there smelling it while I drift off to sleep!  It's important to remember that these are oils that we are putting on our face and usually oils have a very strong scent. I really like the packaging, and the dropper applicator, gorgeous!


Carrot Seed Soothing Facial OilScreen Shot 2015-05-08 at 8.08.23 AM

Brand: Naturopathica  Bottle: .5 oz, Glass bottle with a pump  Price: $40 USD Scent: evening primrose and very light notes of lavender, ylang ylang and rosemary   Thoughts: I was given this as a gift from a good friend of mine that works at Naturopathica. Since I was already using three other face oils, I was like what the heck, let's throw another one in the mix! This oil is half the price and size of the red flower and Bobbi Bown oils. The applicator is different too, It's a pump top. Travel wise- I think this feels like the thickest glass and the least likely to break. The scent is great! It's definately rosey- but the other ingredients make it a little more herbal smelling, which I love.

Organic Nourishing Treatment Oil

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Brand: Dr. Alkaitis  Bottle: 4 oz, Glass bottle with a pump Price: $90 USD Scent:  My favorite scented oil out of he four. It's hard to describe- flowery (rose) with a white sandalwood, subtle liquorice and country mallow.  Thoughts: I recieved this face oil in a Dr. Alkaitis travel set, and it's fabulous! For $55 you get a 1 oz plastic container of the face oil with a pump as well as 7 other products to try!  Despite being the most hippie/ granola/ organic/ free form/ all that goodness kind of brand brand- I think it smells the most flowery and sweet and least herbal. Dr. Alkaitis also brands this as an all over oil- meaning face, hair and body. I look much tanner after applying this oil over the other oils- and the reason why is becuase it has turmeric in it.  See the pic below, the one on the right is the Dr. Alkatis and the one on the left is the Red Flower. The ingredient list in this product is facinating!  You have to read it hereScreen Shot 2015-05-08 at 8.22.10 AM Dr. Alkaitis is one of the most revolutionary brands out there in terms of health and global/ social resposibility. Taking the whole 'free form' cosmetic idea to the next level. We're talking: certified organic, bio-dynamic and ethically wild-crafted ingredients. The products are biologically active, all raw, living and theraputic. The Doc preaches, 'If you can't eat it, then don't put it on your skin".

The Tokyo Report

I love Japan! I had such a wonderful time visiting and I cannot wait to go again! AND I brought back some pretty sweet Asian beauty goodness! Here I'm going to share with you my favorite packaging and product finds, as well as insider traveling tips!

First up is a futuristic mascara by a Korean company called too cool for school. I stumbled upon this little spot on Cat Street in Harajuku. The mascara is called Escalator Mascara... which is a great name... because it gets taller! There is a knob on the handle and when turned 'escalates' the mascara head (see arrow). In it's short form it gives volume to lashes and in it's longer form it lengthens.

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The Dinoplatz collection by too cool for school has won awards for design. Here's a look at a couple of their products and designs. afterlight (6)

While I loved everything in the collection, the mascara was the coolest!afterlight (5)

The packaging looks like a skyscraper! The mascara fit into the aqua-green box, and that fit inside of the skyscraper box. ADORABLE.  photo (7) afterlight (3)photo (8)

While I saw some pretty cool makeup pigments and tools....

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(Above, various make-your-eyes-bigger/deeper/crease-ier contraptions and adhesives, and below, MUJI makeup In Shibuya!!! That Muji there also has a cafe! Obsessed!) afterlight (12) ... Asian skincare is where it's at. They love their masks, cleansing oils, moisturizers, tonics, etc. For example, after my 14 hour flight, Air Japan handed out under eye rejuvenating and soothing pads. What a wonderful, wonderful treat! It felt soooo good on my puffy, tired eyes!

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But it was THREE cosmetics, a Japanese brand, that truly came after my heart. If these images below don't make you swoon, surely their website will (Facebook too)

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Incredible visuals. I decided to purchase their most popular product, balancing cleansing oil. I bought a seasonal package that came with some other goodies, including 3 masks and balancing foam. afterlight (8)afterlight (9)

Oh man... did THREE hit the nail on the head with this packaging. The paper is a light grey that looks like it's recycled, and there's a beautiful drawing on the outside. THREE is imprinted... pressed into the paper. Creating a feeling of simplicity, elegance and natural beauty. afterlight (10)

Have you ever used a cleansing oil before? I've tried Bobbi Brown, La Mer and Muji, and they're all great.  I also picked up the alleged reigning champ of cleansing oils by shu uemura. The best technique is to apply the oil to dry fingers and massage into the skin. After 10 seconds run a little bit of water onto finger tips and massage the skin again. The oil will emulsify and turn a milky color. Rinse the face with water. Your face will feel so clean but not too dry. It's incredible how much makeup will come off. Interesting tid-bit... while I thought cleansing oils originated in Asia... apparently, cleansing oils were used in LA first? Hmmmm...

If you are ever in Tokyo I highly recommend taking the cultural cycling tour (route B) with Tokyo Great Cycling Tour! Here are some pics and more on Instagram!

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afterlight (13) afterlight (16)Restaurant, Imperial Palace, ginkgo grove at the University of Tokyo and the Skytree.

How to Apply a Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Hi Lindsey,
How are you? I just moved to Colorado and I'm sad I can't come see you anymore! After all, you did completely revolutionize my look by making me grow out my eyebrows!
I had a quick question for you. My friend bought me a Laura Mercier anti shine translucent matte powder. Another friend told me that using it with my Bobbi foundation will make me grey!! Is this true? I want to make sure I can still return it, so I'm afraid to try it!!
Hi Kelly,
How are you? Thank you so much for writing! So here's the deal with the Laura Mercier powder- it will look grey is you pack it on with a brush- and the brush will wipe off some of your concealer and foundation anyway- which is no good. You have to go grab the Laura Mercier Velour Powder Puff to apply it- very lightly. Shake it once and open it up- the powder in the lid is all you're gonna need. Make sure you rub the powder around on the puff before you apply. I would just apply it to your T-zone, or wherever you get the shiniest. I'm totally going to make a video of how to apply it when I get back home to NY from my vaca! I love it! I'll make it on Wednesday! :D
And thank you soooo much for writing that review of me on Google! You are soooo sweet! It's people like you that make my business so amazing!!! Without you my business would be no where near where it is today! 
And Here's the tutorial:
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/30239946 w=500&h=281]
Also, Laura Mercier has this new powder, Invisible Loose Setting Powder. Nicole Wittman, a makeup artist that lives in LA and works at Laura Mercier, says that this is the new and improved photo ready powder. It's just a better version of the older, thicker translucent powder. The original powder doesn't work on Espresso skin tones on camera. Maybe this one will! I hope I can try it soon and let you know what I think! *UPDATE I think the original translucent formula is better that the new invisible formula. The new formula coagulates really strange underneath the eye on top of concealer.

MAC Dark Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder

Bobbi Brown's Bronzers are the BEST! The reason being is that they never look too orangey. But what happens when you need an orange bronzer? Whether it was a very light golden orange girl with African Decent or a very tan Nordic girl, maybe with a little self tanner on, I didn't know what to do! None of my Bobbi bronzers were cutting it. Hmmm… I was stumped. Bobbi's golden light and even deep looked so pinky/ red on some of my clients that were truly more golden/ orange. 
I went to Bloomingdale's in SoHo to see my girls and chat it up about some bronzer. I made swatches on my hand (and arm) of all the bronzers in the department.  MAC's Dark Mineralize Skinfinish Natural, which isn't even a bronzer at all but a medium coverage powder, made the cut with the best color, texture and price. And I couldn't be happier with my purchase. 
The color is a dark almond/ golden/ orange/ light brown color. The texture was very silky and easily blended with a very light shimmery finish that's barely noticeable. Not a light coverage but not a lot of pigment either. Really exactly what I was looking for! With my Mac pro discout the total price was about $15. Perfect! 

My Makeup Artistry Kit's Secret Contents:

 1% Hydrocortisone Ointment- yep, that's right. 
Hydrocortisone Ointment is a steroid in a petroleum base that numbs the skin while also hydrating. It is an awesome quick fix for when your model needs her irritated skin smoothed and calmed. 
In between makeup appointments last Saturday I was at brunch with my Makeup Artist BFF, Cassandra, who was suffering because of her bug bites! Mosquitos just love this girl! They just think she's so sweet <3 I offered her some Hydrocortisone Ointment that I keep in a very small plastic jar in my tools/ skincare/ mascara bag in the ZUCA. She was delighted because it numbed those bites so it wouldn't itch so badly. Brunch Saved!
The reason why I carry Hydrocortisone around with me is actually a sad story… I was doing a wedding in June and the hairstylist burned my brides forehead (!!), it was almost a disaster! And the hairstylist was completely unapologetic. "You can just cover it with makeup…" was his only response. Which was true, but really? Wow! He didn't even say sorry. I could cover up the burn with makeup - but that wouldn't mean that it would stop burning her! Man did I wish I had some hydrocortisone on me then! I just had her ice it while I was doing the rest of the bridal party's makeup and by the time I got around to her it wasn't burning any longer. Thank goodness! 
She sat in the chair for me to do her makeup and she says, "Like really, on my wedding day?" I nodded sympathetically. I immediately covered the burn. I used a corrector first and then a perfect skin tone correct concealer on top. Is was untraceable. While doing her makeup I gave her a big smile and told her, however tragic, this is going to make the best story in a couple of months. She laughed really hard and totally agreed! In that moment it's the worst thing in the world, but in the future- it's going to be just a funny story. 
Thankfully I haven't needed to use the ointment on any burns! I have used the ointment on my client's bug bites, especially when you're on set outside in the woods. Or if they get some kind of itchy allergic reaction from who know what. I have had to use it on a model's eye lid when a stye was forming. It totally stopped the itch and the puffiness went down almost completely. 
*For burns it should definitely be used only in an emergency situation (like your wedding day). And it should be used rarely on the face because it thins the skin over repeated use. It's a great emergency quick fix for irritated skin!