Beauty over Forty

Keeping up appearances when age is just a number



5 Minute Makeup for a Rough Monday Morning

If you are anything like me, your body time clock relaxed by the weekend rebels on a Monday morning and you are chronically late. Here’s how to have great looking makeup that makes you look totally rested and healthy in just 5 minutes

  1. Be a fan of BB cream, get yourself the best BB Cream for your complexion. Put this on quickly with your clean fingers for medium coverage and a healthy glow. As it absorbs it is very unlikely to be streaky.
  2. Own a great concealer that matches your skintone. When you are late, it is not the time for Kim K highlighting. Cover the flaws you have seamlessly and quickly. I recommend either Tarte Shape Tape or Nars Soft Matte (I prefer Soft Matte, it is harder to mess up in application)
  3. Use pressed powder for setting, that way you won’t overdo it and get cake face. Less errors to correct means less time used.
  4. Use the perfect reliable easy to blend bronzer. Ideally one that is not too heavy on the pigment, when you are in a rush you don’t want to overdo it and have to fix what you have done, better to be required to build. A dependable favorite of mine for fair skin is Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer.
  5. Get yourself the perfect neutral blendable long-wear blush (not over pigmented). The Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushers are a great choice
  6. Skip Contour and Highlight. You don’t need it, if you have bronzer and blusher on, you have already added dimension to your face.
  7. Have a one shade satin or shimmery go-to neutral eyeshadow. Ideally something that might not need primer and where if you mess up no one will notice. Champagne, Caramel and Taupe type satin can be awesome for this. Whack it on your eyelids with a good brush you can blend the edges out with and blend it below your lower lash line.
  8. If you need to do your eyebrows; use powder, it is fast, natural looking and more forgiving. Essence has great powders for under 3 dollars.Great higher-end options include Anastasia Beverly Hill and Benefit.
  9. Use a mascara with an easy to use wand, such as Benefit Roller Lash or Tarte Lashpaint. Use it, drop it in your handbag for additional coats if needed.
  10. Lips: opt for a sheer natural nude. That way you won’t need lip-liner. Or have this in your bag for applying on the go.
  11. Run!

Have a Great Monday!


Best of the Best: Makeup 2016

The year is coming to a close and what an exciting makeup year it was. I thought it fun to list out the very best products I have enjoyed this year. Do note that I am writing from the perspective of a pale skinned, cool toned person, who has fine lines and some wrinkles. My requirements of products may be different to yours. When I list products ranked, it means that I think all the products listed are great, I just have a slight preference for the higher ranked product. Disappointing products are not on this list. So without further ado, let’s get started in the order I would normally apply products.


Joint 1st place to Guerlain’s D’Or (non-silicone based) & Becca’s Backlight Radiance Primer (silicone based). Both are beautiful. The Guerlain L’Or was overhyped earlier in the year on YouTube, but still a lovely product in its own right. Just pricey, but great for experienced skin and who knows, maybe it really does have a lifting effect. The Becca primer is amazing, wonderful glow. I wrote a post about my favorite product combinations with it. An absolute must-have in my opinion.


#1) Shiseido Synchro Skin. This stuff is a dream, looks beautifully natural, stays put, wears beautifully, no creeping into fine lines or wrinkles, great coverage, extremely lightweight, medium to full cover, easy to build, can easily be sheared out. A miracle!

#2) Estee Lauder’s Double Wear Extreme Cover. The limited Shade Range and weirdness of the shades delegates this to second. Apart from that it performs just as well as the Shiseido, with full cover. This is extra great if you can’t find a good concealer for the under-eye area. With this foundation you shouldn’t need one.


Under Eye: Maybelline Age Rewind. Of all the concealers I have tested (18 so far) this outperforms even the most high-end in cover and in its ability to restrain from creeping into fine lines. For hiding blemishes: L’Oreal Infallible stick concealer stays put for a very long time.

Finishing/Setting Powder:

Laura Mercier Candleglow Sheer Perfecting Powder. I don’t need a powder to bake, just to finish and this powder is beautiful. Wonderful glow, almost impossible to overdo it. A discovery of December, I thoroughly enjoy it.


Smashbox Contour Palette. I have been using this for 3 years and did a lot of research to see if I could find one better, but I failed. The contour shade in the light/medium palette is just perfect for my skintone and this remains my go to.


Physician’s Formula Butter Bronzer, in the unimaginatively named shade: “Bronzer”. I own a lot of bronzers, so making it to the top is a great achievement. Lovely smooth application, natural looking shade and stays put all day.


Joint 1st to Milani’s Luminoso & Lancome’s Blush Subtil in Brun Roche. Luminoso is such a beautiful peach shade, it suits so many skin tones. Being a drugstore brand it’s also very affordable, even from Europe via Amazon (it’s a US brand).  Brun Roche is a brown toned Rose, very subtle and very natural looking with great staying power. Wouldn’t want to give up either of these.


Becca Moonstone Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed. Just perfection.

Eyeshadow Palette:

Tarte’s tarteist™ PRO Amazonian Clay Palette. Having hooded eyes, I am not to bothered by reports of 5 colors muddying together when blended, because on hooded eyes you really don’t use that many colors. I may use up to 4 and they are not all the same tone, meaning I don’t experience those complaints. What I do experience is great color payoff, blendability and staying power and a very attractive shade range for a cool toned person like me. Love it.


Too Faced Better than Sex. I have lost count of the mascara’s I have tested this year, but I always come back to this one. Great volume and lengthening. Manages to make me look like I am wearing falsies and believe me, my natural lashes are nothing to write home about. Maybelline’s The Falsies Push Up Drama nearly upstaged this one, except I seem to be slightly allergic to one of the ingredients. I would still recommend that others try it out. At that price point, if it turns out you are allergic it’s no biggie, but if not; it really is a fabulous mascara.

Liquid Eyeliner: still searching for a holy grail

Pencil Eyeliner:

Cargo Swimmables. Formulated for the water ballet, in lovely shades these stay put on the waterline all day.

Liquid Lipstick:

TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Hughes. I dedicated a whole post to these fabulous liquid lipsticks. Love, love, love, beating these would be a tall order.

Traditional Lipstick Favorite formula:

Mac’s Satin. I love this formula, it doesn’t feather out and has a nice smooth application & finish, not glossy, but also not thoroughly matte. My favorite shade is “Amorous”, beautiful for the fall/winter.

Best Lipliner:

Mac’s Pro Longwear Lip Pencil, as the name says, a long wearing dependable friend, it applies smoothly, no skipping or tugging.

Best Lipstick Primer:

Guerlain’s KissKiss Liplift plumps, fills in fine lines, cancels out pigment and keeps your lipstick on about twice as long. A great product.

Gloss: still no holy grail

Lip Plumper:

Glamglow Plumprageous Gloss Lip Treatment gives me the plump without the pain. This year I tried 4 plumpers and this is my winner. This product will not be suitable for everyone as everyone’s lips react differently to different plumpers. I experienced no real pain with any plumper. Too Faced Lip Injection Extreme did a slightly better job of plumping, but around 2 days later my skin would peel. I do not experience with the Glamglow product, where I get a minty tingle and my lips actually get conditioned and plumped.

Setting Spray:

Urban Decay All Nighter keeps everything on from dawn to dusk until it gets taken off. I only use this if I am out for the evening.

So, that’s it folks! I am excited about the new discoveries I will make in the coming year, thanks for reading along and making them with me.

Laura Mercier Candleglow vs Hourglass Ambient Lighting

The title of this post could have been “Same, same, but oh so different”. Laura Mercier recently came out with illuminating finishing powders which immediately makes beauty aficionados think of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting powders and the question is are they copycats, are they dupes? Quick answer: nope, they have important similarities but also so relevant differences.

The greatest similarity of them both is that they are both illuminating finishing and setting powders, both take their inspiration from the way the skin looks in different lighting settings.

The greatest difference in the products is apparent is when you look up the shade range online.

Hourglass has six shades, each representative of a different lighting setting the shade names are  Dim Light neutral peach beige powder, Ethereal Light opalescent sheer, cool white powder, Diffused Light soft, warm pale yellow powder, Mood Light soft, sheer lavender pink powder, Luminous Light champagne pearl powder and the darkest shade is Radiant Light golden beige powder. I bought Mood Light, a pinkish powder for the purpose of comparison, which as it turns out is the most incomparable shade to the Laura Mercier Products.

Laura Mercier also has six shades, they go by the rather unimaginative names of fair, light, light to medium, medium, medium to deep and deep. The Laura Mercier range focuses more on matching skin tones and the advertising suggests, the lighter skinned users can use the darker shades to bronze with. Here a comparison of Hourglass deepest tone with that of Laura Mercier.

Contrary to common misconception, both these products are finishing powders, not highlighters and both impart radiance. Both products are also sheer, but the difference in the shades does mean that they will appeal to different consumers. The Hourglass shade i picked up “Mood Light” is pink and great for addressing any sallowness, the Laura Mercier shades are more neutral and also with their deeper shades more natural looking on deeper skintones.

At touch the Hourglass powder appears to be silkier, it lifts out of the pan easier. The Laura Mercier powder has less kick up, at first it appears grittier, but it actually requires a little more effort to lift product as it is baked very well in the pan. The actual consistency of the powders if you rub them between the fingers feel exactly the same.

To the price point, a full size Hourglass product is 46 USD for 10 grams, Laura Mercier retails at 38 USD for 8 grams meaning that Laura Mercier is slightly more expensive per gram. (Sephora prices). I don’t however think pricing is going to be the deciding factor regarding purchase here.

Both powders apply well and have really good staying power, I do not see either of them as performing better than the other.

Had I not been particularly interested in the pinky shade by Hourglass (as Laura Mercier has no comparable shade) and had I not been interested in doing a comparison, I would not have bought the Hourglass product. The reason being something you probably don’t expect: Geography. Hourglass products do not openly retail in Germany and many other countries, and getting your hands on them is a real pain.

If you live in a country where you can not easily get Hourglass but can easily get Laura Mercier, go for Laura Mercier, you are not missing anything except for the one pinky shade, infact you may be doing better due to the deeper shade range available with Laura Mercier, which given the skin tones represented across the world makes Laura Mercier the more versatile range.

Watch this and you will immediately see why Guerlain Les Meteorites works…


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