Sunday, December 04, 2005

The Case for the (Holiday) Present

Here at Domesticity - where getting into the Christmas spirit means posting a link to NORAD's Santa-tracking site - we have nothing against giving and receiving presents. (Which is good, especially now that we also realize that we do have something against people who eat at macrobiotic restaurants. Oh, Peter. )

So when I was cleaning my place and found a tiny sample of Philosophy's The Present Skin Perfector, I just had to use it. A moisturizer and primer in one, promising "airbrushed skin"? I'm so there - and considering that I've been in the market for both moisturizer and primer (since I'm not going to give up on pressed powder any time soon) I knew this was the way to go. Besides, there was an outdoor reception that I had to attend that afternoon, which provided a perfect opportunity to test drive any sort of cosmetic product.

First things first: The application instructions for this product specify a wait time of two minutes before applying the rest of your makeup. Which is fine by me, since I was doing other things (like talking on the phone) but I personally don't think that this would fly if you're the kind of person who always puts on their makeup in a hurry. Nevertheless, the Philosophy product had a light texture - a cross between a cream and a gel - that went on smoothly and spread out pretty nicely without feeling like I'm spreading Elmer's glue on my face - more like a fast-absorbing cream that made my skin feel smooth in seconds.

But did it look smooth? Well, not exactly - some of the tiny blotches on my face still peeked through, which precipitated me sponging on some foundation. But the amazing thing about using a primer is that I didn't have to use too much foundation; all I needed was a light formula to even out my skin tone, and barely any powder to set the whole look. (In retrospect, I should've gone straight to powder, though, since having foundation AND powder on top of the primer felt heavy.) That's when my skin truly looked "airbrushed," like I was lit up from within and there was no traces of any stress whatsoever on my face. I not only looked like a well-rested version of myself, but a camera ready, well-rested version of myself .

And camera ready I did turn out to be, since there was some picture-taking at the event (okay, digital photos taken by friends that turned out to be candid) and the only thing I had to worry about was getting bits of broccoli on my teeth and spinach dip on my chin. Still, my makeup stayed flawless for those two hours I was out and about, and not once - not once - did my face get the usual itchy feeling it would get whenever I put on makeup. Not only that, but I still did not feel like taking off my foundation when I got home, because my skin was still very much "airbrushed"-looking after all was said and done. Fantastic!

Keep in mind, too, that this isn't exactly the first primer that I've tried - I used to be the proud owner of a tube of Laura Mercier Foundation Primer, which I had until... well, I don't remember why I don't have that any more, but I do remember being skeptical even when I did wear the stuff. I like the fact that at least the Philosophy primer did have moisturizing properties of its own, which would be nice for those days when I don't feel like wearing too much product on my face. In short, definitely a must-consider-buying kind of product.


And for those of you keeping score at home, here's what the rest of my makeup looked like:
  • All eyeshadows by Stila from my reliable 8-pan: Wheat as a base, Rain (discontinued) on lid and crease, and Twig smudged in with a Sephora short-handle crease brush on lashline over eyeliner
  • Rimmel Exaggerate eyeliner in Aubergine (kinda dry, but I like the color)
  • L'Oreal Translucide gel blush (discontinued) in Blushing Glow - not too much to overpower the rest of the face, since the foundation was already sheer
  • Can't say I remember the lipstick color (sorry!) but it was a medium rose in a creamy formula, possibly discontinued; besides, it was all gone by the time I got to the spinach dip. I'd imagine that this look would work with a rosy-mauve "your lips but better" kind of shade, like Maybelline's Wet Shine Fusion in Rose ' N Shine or MAC lipstick in Del Rio. A sheer lip stain would work with this, too.
  • No mascara, no hair product (I ended up tying my hair back in a ponytail) and a generous spritz of Bath and Body Works spray in Plumeria.

Stunning? Definitely. The only regret was that I didn't have this "face" on when we went out the night before, when I ended up at Aloha Tower with barely any makeup and the clothes I wore to clean my fridge.

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