Just sitting here thinking about those days waaaay back in my twenties when there was all the time in the world to sit in front of a mirror and apply make up. Nights out, shopping trips, even just meeting friends; you’d never find me without a full face. But getting out the door on workdays was always a struggle. I chose that extra ten minutes in bed each and every time, then ended up juggling my make bag about on the train, sitting next to a random stranger trying to apply liquid foundation and eyeliner!
As a cosmetics consultant/make up artist for twelve years I’ve seen it all; the trends, the colours, the wacky new ways to apply make up. But none of the brands got it as bang on as they did when they delved into the world of stick makeup. For me, the stick addiction began when I was just thirteen. Armed with my pocket money and a cut out from a magazine, I nervously approached a cosmetics counter and bought my first Clinique Chubby Stick (does anyone else remember the original? A fat pencil with a fat sharpener! Genius!). My colour choice was of course the deepest purple/wine, I was a nineties teen after all, and used it right to the end! Twelve pounds definitely well spent…
With that memory in mind it kind of makes me happy that sticks have made a huge comeback and look set to stay. I believe there’s no quicker way to make up than using sticks, so if you’re that person who does your make up on your commute to work, wants to be out the door in minutes, or juggles make up whilst holding a baby, keep reading…
The order I will use the products is what I learnt during my time at Bobbi Brown, it’s an effective and easy way to apply make up as you can really see the look coming together.
Right, let’s get cracking! This is my version of a look thats easy to accomplish using just sticks and gets me out the front door in far less time than it would otherwise take. I hope you find it helpful!
Here’s my bare face. No filters! Scary stuff right?
So lets get some make up on quickly!
Firstly I’ll start with concealer. Cheap is cheerful for me as concealer is my arch enemy. Tried them all, and the one I’ve found easiest to apply and covers well is by Make Up Academy. It’s a brush on formula, so just twist the end and sweep where you see darkness. Blend with the ring finger and you’re good to go with foundation!
As you’ve concealed the under eye first, you my find that you don’t need as much foundation, that’s why its great to start by concealing!
The foundation I use is the one and only Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick. There are some things I can scrimp on but foundation has never been one of them (mainly because I’m not naturally blessed with great skin). Bobbi Brown Skin Stick Foundation comes in as a close second. Due to the price tag of this foundation I give it a very light swipe across the forehead, inner cheeks and chin, then blend outwards with the Bobbi Brown Full Coverage Face Brush. This brush is the bees knees and comes highly recommended as its the only brush you’ll need for this look.
Personally I do need a bit of powder, so here is my one and only deviation from the stick! Clinique Superpowder Double Face Powder is a pressed powder foundation and just offers that bit more coverage where needed and is great for the handbag for touch ups. Use with the sponge provided.
Right lets move on to bronzing, highlighting and blush!
Again I’m using Clinique for bronzing and highlighting. They have really gone to town relaunching the “Chubby Stick” range over the last few years and there’s pretty much a chubby everything available now.
I love this duo, bronzers are hard come by in a decent colour, but Clinique Chubby Stick Sculpting Contour is spot on. The highlighter leaves you with dewy, glowing skin without being all “oil slick” (no one wants that). Simply suck in your cheeks and swipe the bronzer just under the cheekbone, one swipe is usually enough but then I’m super pale. Again I use the Bobbi Brown Full Coverage Face Brush to blend this in.
If you’re looking for a multi-tasker, look no further than Nars The Multiple In Orgasm. This stick has been out forever but it just the perfect colour for lips, eyes and cheeks! A quick sweep on the apples is all I use, then its quickly blended in with fingers.
Use the Clinique Chubby Stick Sculpting Highlight across the top of the cheekbones and finger blend. Easy as peas. I always find a quick sweep along the nose gives a really healthy glow. This is one of my top make up products and wouldn’t be without it!
For lips I always use Bobbi Brown Rich Lip Color in Bikini Pink. Bobbi Brown really is the queen of lip colour and whilst her range has always included the most fab nudes, there are now some beautiful pops of colour added to her collection. A lip liner is not needed here, the colour is rich, long lasting and won’t feather.
Brows are a big thing at the moment! You’ll find sticks, powders, pomades and all other kinds of brow products. But still I go back to MAC Eyebrows. It feels like a powder in a pencil, there’s no need to sharpen and it is so quick and easy to use. Personally, my brows just need a little colour through them, filling here and there and bringing in at the middle a bit. If you find you need more, this product will still deliver as a great all in one for shaping, colouring and filling in any gaps. I brush the hair up with a spare mascara wand I got given at a counter, fill through, shape the inner brow for some definition and sweep the brush back through to finish.
You’ll notice I’ve left eyes until last. This is because if you apply your other make up first, you’ll find you need less on the eyes to make them pop, therefore making the eyes a whole lot easier to do!
In my experience eyes are without a doubt the most asked for make up lesson at a cosmetics counter. Whether it’s a natural daytime look, a smart work look, or a smokey evening look, there are many tips to be had (I will hopefully blog at some point on different eye looks). I’ll be showing a super simple eye look that can be used in the daytime, but also as a template to build on for more of an evening look.
Let’s start with base colour. The easiest way to pick a base is go for the colour closest to your natural skin depth of colour. This will be enough to reduce any uneven colour on the lid (let’s face it, most of us are tired!) and generally even out the lid ready to build more depth of colour if needed.
I’ve used Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint For Eyes in 01 Bountiful Beige. It’s a twist up stick so just use across the whole lid and blend with the ring finger.
To add depth of colour I’ve used Charlotte Tilbury Colour Chameleon in Dark Pearl. I’m quickly becoming a big CT fan. Her counters are so approachable you can find what you need right in front of you as everything’s displayed as a “look” telling you whats suitable for your eye colour, skin tone, hair colour etc. Genius! As i find out more about this brand I’ll be sure to share! Use this eyeshadow pencil along the lash line (like a thick eyeliner) and quickly blend upwards a little with the finger. They set quickly so get to work fast!
As this is just a quick daytime look to get out of the house, I just use a lick of mascara now. Mascara is massive. There’s thickening, volumising, lengthening, you name it, it’s out there. I simply love Chanel Inimitable Intense Mascara in 01 Black. It doesn’t clog and it just enough length, curl and separation for a soft day look.
And here’s the finished look!
I hope this all makes sense and thanks for sticking with me (excuse the pun), its probably taken longer to read than actually applying the make up itself!