By Betsy Aaron


Clichés are useful because they provide shortcuts to the truth; when it comes to achieving a natural look, less is more and life is indeed short. I enjoy my daily face time for the minutes of meditation but I have my limits and, like the ingredients in the new Haagen Daaz, they come in fives: five products that can be applied in five minutes.

I have not always been a makeup minimalist. At age 12, I begged my parents for lipstick; at 15, I wore pounds of black eyeliner; by 17, I was recovering from an addiction to eye pencil in the particular hue of marine. And then I blossomed into a delicate flower with sensitive skin and allergies to all kinds of chemicals and dyes.

I am now a fan of a natural look because it is consistent, comfortable and does not create cosmetic bag clutter. I love pampering products but at the start of my day, I want to think less about what face to put on and more about what challenges I will be facing.

After being burned by countless creams and discarding dozens of mascaras, I have at last found my fab five and they are all from Jane Iredale The Skin Care Makeup. These products are mineral based, easy-to-apply, feel great on and have real staying power.

I began with Circle/Delete in #1 (yellow) to cover up the blue crescents that greet me each morning and remind me that, yep, I still have allergies. The concealer comes with two shades that blend together and work like magic.

Next, I applied Dream Tint, a tinted moisturizer with UVA/UVB SPF 15. It feels light, blends well and the color I chose, Medium Light, matches my warm skin tone.

I lined my lids with a bit of Black/Brown eye pencil, applied Longest Lash Mascara in Black Ice and voila! Softly smoky eyes that don’t itch, tear or smear. Big plus: this mascara comes in a squeezable tube so you can control how much you brush on and also use up every last bit.

Like dessert, the best part came last. Lip Fixation is a double miracle. I chose Desire, a terra cotta stain with a sponge-tip applicator and on the other end, I found a sheer apricot lip gloss that comes with an easy- to-use brush and creates a soothing shine and plumper pout. It’s technically two products but they come conveniently packaged as one and I call that sweet.

One last detail – the products are accompanied by delightful illustrations so you can apply the makeup like a pro and just like that, you’re good to go.


Originally published May 2010

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