Coming of Age


I live with a budding makeup enthusiast. The brighter, the sparklier: the better. And applications that would make an avant-garde artist proud. No it's not my husband, it's  my "almost" eight-year-old daughter. Of course being a makeup artist myself, I encourage her. She even has her own makeup kit with not just the standard kit, but theatrical makeup as well. I know what you're thinking: Are you crazy? There will be time for that when she's 13 (or 21). But the fact remains that there's makeup everywhere in our house. I have a baker's rack with boxes labeled and organized by type of makeup and even color. I am always working with, ordering, or talking about makeup, so I decided that it makes for good opportunities to teach her about what is appropriate and when.

In light of my views, I had a chance to practice what I preach in front of my daughter this weekend. My friend Katie's daughter Caroline turned 13 on Saturday. For her birthday her mom decided she wanted Caroline to receive a makeup lesson. Perfect, I thought. Now my daughter can see what 13 will look like.

I arrived with my assistant (my daughter) and talked to Caroline about how much time she has to get ready for school (not much), what is realistic for her to wear on a daily basis, and what would work for special occasions. After we came up with a plan, the makeup lesson began.

Caroline doesn't need much makeup. She has beautiful skin, gorgeous eyes, and she just wanted to look a little more grown up and polished. Here she is, before we began:

First we talked about skin care and how important taking care of skin is. Then we did a little brow arching. Caroline was surprised what a difference removing a few little hairs makes.

As for her makeup routine, the best plan is to keep it simple.

First, a little concealer just where she needs it (at 13, she really doesn't need foundation). Using a synthetic brush (best for creams), we applied at the lower inner corners of the eyes, lower lash line, and anywhere there was discoloration. Then a little powder to set the concealer so it doesn't crease. I know I recommended it before but the Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda concealer palette is perfect—everything she needs in one small palette.

The next step is adding a little color to the face. I recommended my favorite Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Rose. Caroline can use it on her cheeks and lips, and it's the perfect complimentary shade to her natural lip color. One product, two features: couldn't be easier.

Last but not least, we focused on the eyes. This is Caroline's most stunning feature, so we worked on enhancing them in a way that she'll be complimented on her eyes and not necessarily the makeup. I chose four products she can mix and match to get different effects. Even when wearing all four, as she is in the after photo, it still won't look like too much makeup.

First, MAC Eye Paints in Bamboom to be used alone or as a base shade from lash line to just past the crease. For a little more color, MAC Paradisco eye shadow, a bright pinky-coral that brings out the beautiful aquamarine of Caroline's eye color. This shadow can be layered over the eye paint/base as well as be worn alone for a sweep of color.

And what girl doesn't like a little sparkle? I recommended Sonia Kashuk's Eyeshadow Quad in Shimmering Sands. It can be layered to add sparkle and be worn alone. And the icing on the cake—mascara. This step really makes a dramatic difference, especially on blondes. Voila!

I created a chart so Caroline remembers what I used and where to apply:

When we were finished, my daughter told Caroline, "You look beautiful." I added, "and beautifully appropriate for a thirteen-year-old." I wish Caroline a wonderful birthday and a lifetime of loving who she is on the inside as much as the outside.

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