Monday, 22 August 2011
How I... wear difficult colours – in my case, that's mustard!
I have been meaning to write this post for simply ages, but for one reason and another kept POSTponing (see what I did there? Ha. Ha.) it, so I am really pleased to be doing it at last. Finally!
I'm sure most of us love colours that might not be the best choice for our colourings. For me, that colour is mustard. I love it. It's bold but not poppy, it's quirky, intelligent and has plenty of vintage kudos too.
Yep, I read that much into colours.
Unfortunately, it doesn't actually suit my colouring. I could be sensible (read: boring) just avoid wearing it next to my face, but that's all a bit limiting, and rules like these are fun to break. I have a few mustard tops in my wardrobe, and I love to wear them – and do so!
My natural colouring is fair hair, very pale skin, blue eyes; a mostly cool colouring with the one hint towards a warmer one in that I have freckles; I used to have them on my face, but they seem to have faded now, and I only really have them on my arms. Obviously I dye my hair very dark brown (almost black, but not quite – the cold blues in jet black hair look absolutely hideous on me) and this helps with wearing stronger colours. I then help things along more by wearing warm colours in my make up. Easy!
Altering your make up's colouring slightly to suit your clothing is nothing new. In my 1930's book on beauty there is section dedicated to it. It's almost the same things wearing makeup shades to match, but not quite. I've been doing it for years, and it was nice to read that my techniques have such a history. Here is how I do mine, for wearing mustard and rusty, terracotta colours.
First up: skin I don't go as far as they did in the '30s, and don't use a different coloured powder for my base. I stick with my usual foundation, MAC's Studio Tech in NC15. It is the perfect shade for me, as it is very pale without being pink. Splendid. I then apply concealer under my eyes as per usual, too.
Next, the eyes: part one I always emphasise my eyebrows. My brows are really fair and already on the thin side, and one has a big gap (oh, hooray) in the outer third. This would look kind cool in a battle scar kind of way, except my brows are so pale you can't really see it. I usually just tidy them up rather than reshape them, but lately I have worn them in a much thinner way, with a good nod to the '30s. This is a tricky look and could so easily slide into pretty dodgy territory, but I think it works well with my face and general look. It has meant I've had to change from the Benefit Brow Zings (which you apply with brushes) to a dark brown pencil by Australis for a more accurate line. Both have enough warmth to be flattering without being scarily orange, as so much eyebrow makeup can be. I always extend my brows outwards in a classic '30s and '40s way. It's really flattering, especially on a wider face, like mine. If you haven't tried it I highly recommend it!
The eyes, part two I use a soft gold-y, apricot-y shade all over the lids, and a little above the crease in the outer halves. I then use a black liquid liner (I find stronger colours need stronger eye definition) and black mascara, on the top lashes and the bottom outer third. Very quick. Easy.
Cheeks I love blusher. In fact I could go so far as to say it is my favourite part of my makeup! I do have quite an expanse of cheek on my moon face so I think it makes sense to enjoy it. I use a peachy, orange-y shade all over my cheekbones – no sculpting attempts here, just a nice warm, healthy – and by no means natural! – swirl of colour.
Finally, the lips I use a red liner with a little more warmth to it than my usual. I only have two lip liners, one warm and one cool, as they work with all my lipsticks: Brick and Cherry, both by MAC. After outlining my lips with the Brick shade, I use MAC's Lady Danger, an orangey-red lipstick shade. I love it; it's very warm and vibrant without being too over the top – or just plain wrong, as orange-based reds often can be on cool colouring. The orange of this shade picks up on the yellows in my mustard blouse.
And… that's it! It is a little longer than I expected but there was so much I wanted to chatter on about. I am wondering if there is a better way to do it; bullet points? I am getting a new lens soon that will make taking close ups easier, so I can do more detail shots – although I'm not sure if I really want such close ups of my face, ha! It might illustrate things more clearly though, rather than just have me smiling at you at regular intervals ;) Let me know what you think of the post, which I hope you liked and maybe even found helpful!