1. How old were you when you started wearing makeup?
Probably 13 or 14. I used to have very oily skin and my Mom got me a simple face powder to keep the oil at bay. I used it a few times a week – not to school, but to family functions, dinner, weddings, etc. I also liked lip balms so I had a few of those. As I started university in Australia, I had a MAC Studio Fix my mother got me. I used that most of the time – almost every day as long as I stepped out of my room as a method of oil control and to even out my skin tone. I never wore eyeshadow until my sister’s engagement party (I was 22) I think. That’s when I got my eyebrows threaded (hurt so bad!) and my cousin applied some makeup for me.
2. How did you get into makeup?
I’ve had face powder for a long time, but real eye makeup and such – I only got into that when I moved to Norway and realized that to look professional in an office, you have to apply some makeup otherwise you’ll look drab. This might come as a surprise or sound a bit harsh, but I work in a male dominated environment and I’m always surrounded by some men who don’t exactly dress up.
There are guys who wear the same T-shirt for 3 days in a row, don’t wear proper fit jeans/pants, don’t shave, don’t get monthly hair trims, don’t use cologne and such. I worried (and still do sometimes) that if I didn’t look different and take care of my appearance, I might one day forget how to and end up being a girl who behaved like one of these guys. So in a desperate move to be different and to look polished enough to be mistaken for somebody who did not work in that environment, I walked into MAC one fine day in April 2007 and asked the MUA if she could teach me how to apply eyeshadow and eyeliner. I didn’t buy anymore eyeshadow after a few visits to MAC that year. But, early this year I started getting into eye makeup again.
3. What are some of your favorite brands?
I’m a big fan of MAC mainly because they have stuff that suit my skin tone. I have been to a particular brand’s counter in Berlin, Germany and was told “We don’t have that for your skin tone” straight to my face. So I kind of clung to MAC until I discovered Laura Mercier, Clinique, and Bobbi Brown. Now I use a mixture of brands – but mostly still MAC, Laura Mercier and Clinique.
4. What does makeup mean to you?
Makeup – to me at least – is my war paint. I wear it to face the day. I don’t have very good skin so when I wear proper makeup: concealer, foundation, some powder, I feel better. It gives me confidence. Of course if I have on some eyeshadow, eyeliner, and mascara I have even more confidence. But I do leave the house without makeup if it’s just to go to the gym or run to the supermarket to pick up some groceries. I still wouldn’t mind putting on some makeup when I leave the house though – like tinted moisturizer to even out my skin tone.
5. If you could only wear 4 products on your face what would they be?
- Laura Mercier Oil Free Foundation Primer
- MAC Studio Fix Liquid or Powder
- MAC Pro Longwear Concelear
- MAC MSF Natural
6. What is your favorite thing about makeup?
The sheer variety – the brands, shades, colours, sizes, packaging – it’s like a whole new world out there. I mean, makeup has it’s own language. Have you heard women speak it? “Oh that’s too sheer.” “This is too dewy for me.” “That concealer is too cakey.” “Your mascara gives really good volume.” “Her foundation ages her.” “Your tightlining skills are amazing!” “You should use a stippling brush instead.” “Try this colour, it’s a got a better finish.” I could listen to this type of conversation all day
7. What do you think about drugstore makeup vs high end makeup?
I grew up with drugstore makeup. Johnson’s Young White Face Powder to be exact. That’s what my mother got me as a teenager Nowadays I find my skin very sensitive so I try not to use every brand I see. That’s why I cling to stuff that is working for me right now, which is not exactly high end makeup, but more middle range stuff. I like looking at high end stuff but I can’t justify the prices, e.g. Guerlain, Lancome, Armani, YSL, etc. I’m sure these products work great though. My minor weakness is for Chanel eyeshadow: I have two quads from Chanel but that’s it. I got them moderately priced, like slightly more expensive than MAC quads, so I cannot complain. I’m going to resist buying more until my existing quads are put to good use.
8. What is one tip of advice you can give to a beginner?
Don’t buy everything. You think you need all of the shades and colours and textures – but you don’t. If you want to replicate a particular look, you don’t need the exact shades, similar shades are good enough. It’s very easy to go overboard with makeup purchasing because the package size is so small that they look so innocent and inexpensive – but these little tubs add up. So, purchase wisely.
9. What is one makeup trend you never understood?
Orange tan. Some women walk around looking like human carrots – so much bronzer/tan. That’s something I will never understand though I will admit that I grew up wishing I was fair. Now that I’m a somewhat-comfortable-in-my-own-skin adult, I don’t really mind my skin tone. But, I don’t know why some women want to tan themselves till they are orange – especially in winter. A subtle tan to look like you just came back from a Beach vacation is understandable, but more than that is weird.
10. What do you think about the beauty community on YouTube?
The only makeup videos I watch on YouTube are the ones that I search randomly when I’m trying to find out how to accomplish a certain task. I don’t follow anybody in particular so I wouldn’t know much about the community.