My Guide to Elegance..Part Two – Skin

Today I share with you my tips on achieving flawless skin. As image plays a big part in elegance, this is an important factor. From sleep, to cleansing,here is a detailed guide to achieving a flawless complexion

Skin

Skin is very important when it comes to looking elegant as it is a telltale indicator of how one is feeling. An elegant lady should aim to achieve flawless skin that shines with a radiant glow as this shows that she is well rested and healthy. Taking care of the skin will help you to achieve this. Some people are lucky enough to have a good complexion and others will need to spend time to help their skin be as best as it can be, either way my advice will help to keep the skin looking fresh, clean and beautiful.

 Sleep.  

It is a proven fact that sleep is critical to looking and feeling good. It is during our sleep time that the body repairs the damage that has been done to the skin by stress, harmful rays, dust, and other day to day traumas that our skin is exposed to.  During sleep, the body produces protein, which is important to our cells. The more sleep we get, the more protein our body produces which ultimately provides rejuvenation and repairs the skin. If you are not getting enough sleep this will be visible by dull skin, red eyes, and dark circles, which are almost impossible to cover with make up. Do whatever you can to try to sleep for eight hours each night, and your skin will look noticeably better. 

 Cleanse, Tone and Moisturize. These three words are essential to keep the skin looking great at any age and if you don’t already have a CTM routine, I would suggest that you start now and make it a firm habit. It is important to use products that are going to work in harmony with your skin type. For example it would not be wise to use an oily moisturizer if you already have oily skin. If you visit a department store, the beauty section will be able to help you and recommend the products that are best for your skin type. With your CTM routine you only need to set aside 20 minutes each day, 10 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes at night. 

  Cleansing forms perhaps the most important role of the CTM routine. Thoroughly cleansing the skin will get rid of any dirt, pollution and harmful chemicals that are present in makeup. Cleansing will unblock the pores and prevent spots from appearing on the face. As mentioned above, visit a beauty department to find the best cleanser for you and remember to take care not to rub the skin too vigorously as this will strip it of its natural oils making dry skin even more dry and oily skin even more oily. Always ensure that you cleanse your face of makeup before you sleep. 

 The next important step in the CTM routine is of course Toning. A toner is simply a product that you apply to the face that will tighten the skin to close the pores and form a layer of healthy skin cells. Toning also helps protect the skin from the dirt, pollution and harmful toxins that have been mentioned previously. I would avoid any toner that has alcohol present as it will destroy the collagen in the skin which is not good for aging.

 The final, but not at all least important step is Moisturizing. Moisturizing the skin has always been important as a well moisturized skin will reflect a healthy glow, look supple and prevent aging. Moisturizing is also a good base for makeup as it will prevent the skin from pulling and ensure that your makeup is distributed evenly. Daily moisturizing will prevent water loss and retain the skin’s moisture and texture. When applying moisturizer use the tips of your fingers and use sparingly. Applying too much will cause the product to sit on top of the skin and prevent your skin from breathing. I would highly recommend buying a moisturizer that has at least SPF 15 as the Sun’s harmful rays are very damaging to the skin even on a cloudy day.  After you have been moisturizing daily for a few weeks you will notice how tight your skin will feel until you give it the moisture it needs.

 

Makeup ( To learn which products I use, Click HERE )

 An elegant lady will always want to look her best and this includes the use of makeup to enhance the features of the face. Applying makeup correctly is an art form that requires skill and time. It is important to aim to achieve a look that is both elegant and natural. It is a good idea to visit a beauty counter as they will be able to show you looks that will suit you and which products to use. I have already talked about the importance of maintaining the skin to achieve a flawless glow, makeup really can compliment your skin to give a radiant look and enhance your features. Here are my tips for a naturally flawless look and the products I think every lady should invest in. The products are listed in the order that they should be applied.

Primer

 A Primer is a lotion or cream that should be applied to the face before other cosmetics as it’s purpose is to help give the makeup longevity and staying power. The two types of primer I would suggest investing in are the foundation primer and eyelid primer. Both of these will act as a good base and improve the application of your makeup, reducing lines and blotching. Apply the foundation primer to the face and forehead and then apply the eyelid primer to the eyelids and under the eyes where you will apply concealer. Leave the primer to settle for a few minutes before applying any makeup. 

 Foundation

 Foundation is applied to the face to create an even, uniform complexion and to cover any flaws. The perfect foundation will match your skin tone and give you a flawless finish. It is normally acceptable to go one shade darker than your natural skin tone but try to stick to the notion of looking natural and elegant. You will also need to find a foundation that works for your skin type; If you have dry skin it may be worth investing in an oil based foundation, if your skin is oily then you should consider a matte based, water based or mineral based foundation to soak up excess oil. Another aspect you will need to consider is the amount of coverage you are looking for. If you have good skin and are only looking to enhance your skin tone then a sheer foundation will be the best product to invest in. If you feel you need more coverage to hide spots, freckles and discoloration then you should invest in a medium cover foundation. All of this can be discussed with a makeup artist at a beauty counter who will be able to advise on what foundation will be perfect for you. The foundation should be applied to the whole face except for the eye area using your finger tips or foundation brush. Ensure that you blend well and have no visible lines around the neck and jawline. A good tip is to mix an illuminator (see below) with your foundation which is really going to give you an amazing, radiant glow. 

 Concealer

 Concealer is applied to the eye area to diminish dark circles, brighten the eyes and hide any discoloration. It can also be used to cover any other blemishes that may be present on the face. I believe that every lady should invest in a concealer even if it is the only product you are going to use. Unless you are under the age of ten it is extremely likely that some discoloration is present under the eyes and this can really affect the way you look. Concealer will freshen the face and instantly make you look awake, alert and healthy. The basic rule of thumb is to choose a concealer that is yellow based and a shade or two lighter than your skin tone. If your concealer is too light you may end up with the dreaded ‘raccoon’ look! Apply several dots of concealer under the eyes close to the lash line and a dot to the inside corners of the eyes. I would also use the concealer on any other area of the eye where there is discoloration such as the lids.  You can use your fingers for application but for best results I would suggest a small headed brush with firm bristles. Using the pad of your finger, gently tap in the concealer. Always tap and never rub. The eye area is very sensitive and rubbing will just cause redness and you will rub the concealer off your face. You can then apply the concealer to uneven spots and blemishes on the face. 

 Illuminator

 An illuminator normally comes as a pen or stick and is used to highlight areas of the face and give optimum radiance and glow. The illuminator is often overlooked as many women do not know how to use it correctly or to its full potential. Many people mistake the illuminator for a concealer and are often disappointed when they do not get the coverage required. Whilst the concealer conceals the darkness of the skin, the illuminator highlights areas of the face. For the eye area, the best way to apply the illuminator is to draw a triangular shape starting under the eye from the inner corner under the lashes to the outer corner of the eye, and then from the outer corner of the eye down across the cheek bone to the lower outer edge of your nostril and back up the sides of the nose to the inner corner of the eye. This may sound confusing but it works with practice! The whole of this triangular area should be covered with illuminator by blending the lines to meet in the middle remembering the tapping motion. The illuminator should then be applied to the inner corners of the eyes and brow bone. This will really make the eye area stand out and look flawless. The illuminator is also a good tool for contouring. You can use it down the bridge of the nose to make the nose appear more narrow, above the eyebrows to lift the brow, under the nose to eliminate redness, and on the cupids bow and around the lips to make them appear more full. After you have applied the concealer and illuminator you should apply a mineral powder which will ensure your makeup stays on and help to keep it fresh. 

 Mascara and Eyeliner

 A good mascara will lengthen and darken the lashes to enhance the eyes. It really does alter the whole appearance of the face and is a product for some that they cannot live without. My advice is to use sparingly and not overdo it. Clunky lashes are not a good look and the aim is to create a look that is natural and elegant. Eyeliner is also a good way to enhance the eyes but again it is important not to overdo it. To widen the eyes you should apply the eyeliner on the waterline above the lashes of the lower lid.

 Blusher and Bronzer

 Blushers and Bronzers can be used to put color back into the face and give a subtle glow.  Various colors can look elegant but it is important to choose a color that will match your natural tone. Bright red may not look good on a light skinned person but could look fantastic on someone with a dark skin tone. The best way to apply is to suck in the cheeks as this will reveal the apple of the cheeks, the round area above the cheek bone which is visible when you smile. Apply the blush to the apple area and blend along the cheek bone. For the most natural look, always concentrate the color on the apples of your cheeks. Remove excess dust from the brush before blending to avoid excessive rosy cheeks.

 Lips 

 It is best to keep the lips simple for an elegant look. Lip liner should be used to make the lips appear fuller if necessary but do take caution as liner can easily look cheap. Coat the lips with a gloss to finish off the face.

skin

Join me tomorrow where I will be discussing the art of elegant dressing

Yours,

The Countess x 

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