5 Tips to Be Fabulous in 5
We all want to have that French magic of effortless chic. Below are my tips on how I learned to be #fabulous in 5.
We have probably all heard men comment about how they like women who look "natural" who don't "wear a lot of make-up". We can blame the French who are famous for the "no make-up" look for instilling this standard. But don't be fooled this is a very carefully managed appearance of effortlessness. It is quality combined with their culture. This is the same reason that the European closet is so small. They not endure the agony of having an entire closest staring you down as you realize you have "nothing to wear". They don't go on binges in Forever 21 buying enough outfits for the cast of Mean Girls. And although French women may want you to think they fall out of bed with that perfectly tousled hair it does take a bit of maintenance to get there. However it is the result of a few high quality trusted products and a few tips and tricks to fool you into thinking it's natural. Below are my tips on how you can be fabulous in 5.
1) Skin Care: The most precious accessory you wear is your skin. It is hard to give recommendations across the board because climate, genetics, and routine have so much impact on your skin. In France you would have headed into the local Apothecary (Pharmacy) around puberty and had the Pharmacist look at your skin and make recommendations. Some of the best skin care advice I have ever received to this day was from one of these interactions. In the United States it is rare to go to the demonologist unless there is an obvious issue such as acne. If you can't hop on a plane and head to France go to an esthetician. Get a facial and talk to them about skin types and recommendation. I say this with slight hesitation because often times they are trying to sell you on the product line sold in their location. But if you find a great esthetician you will not only have found your source for skin care knowledge, but a vital part of your skin routine. My advice: Save the money you would have spent on make up and get a facial. Invest in Skin care products that make it something you are proud to be in. When you don't have to spend time covering up the outbreaks, discolorations, and uneven tone you will look and feel better.
2) Wardrobe: Europeans have famously small closets. Their living spaces in general are small. This combined with an uncanny desire to have quality over quantity is the perfect recipe for ease of dressing and looking fabulous fast. What if everything in your closet what something that you felt fabulous in? How easy would it be to go your closet and quickly put together a staple outfit that you feel and look wonderful in no questions asked? Spend time cultivating your collection. You really only need a few basics that fit you perfectly (plus your signature piece) to sparkle. I have 15-20 outfits fully put together in my mind at all times. Depending on how I feel that day, the weather, and if there are any special circumstances (special occasion, theme, or I am just feeling bloated that day) I can quickly deduce which outfit of my go-tos I should wear. Go through your closet. Try on your clothes (do this on a day you feel particularly good about yourself so there is no self-loathing about not being the same size you were 10 years ago when you bought those jeans). If you don't feel fabulous in it donate it or bring it to a trade/sell shop if not damaged. You could get some cash or trade for a great find that does make you feel fabulous #upcycle.
3) Hair- I have a few tricks of up my sleeve for hair. Of course this does depend again on style preferences, hair type, and occasion. Find what works for you and your style. Here are my go-tos for almost any occasions:
1- The low pony: This is chic and fast. Use a smoothing brush and either part in the middle or sweep it straight back depending on how dramatic you want the look to be. A smoothing brush helps alleviate bumps and gives you a sleek polished look. Secure the pony about 2 inches from the end of your hairline in the middle back. Use fun colored ties, plastic "invisible ties" or a piece of hair wrapped around and secured with a bobby-pin to spice up the look.
2-French Braid: A classic look. With either long or short hair this is great for working out ( I particularly like to do it for yoga as I can lay my head flat in savasana without a pony tail forcing my head to one side).
3-Secured twist: OK do not laugh...well maybe a bit but listen too! I use a banana clip to help give me the perfect 1 minute updo. Not joking. Use a smoothing brush to bring your hair to the center middle of your head. Secure with a banana clip vertically. Split your hair in the banana clip into 3 sections. Loop the first section around the top of the clip covering the top of the banana clip. Secure with a bobby pin on either side. Repeat this process for the middle and bottom making sure to cover any visual of the clip. That's it. I know what you are thinking but this literally takes 1 minute and looks fantastic. Have a look at the image below and tell me when you think.
4) Make-up- After my soap box like stance on skin care I will say that I do use 5 make-up products. These are my staples I use everyday for a natural glowing look. I can apply these all within 3 minutes and be ready to walk out the door!
1) BB Cream: I use the Chanel CC cream because I love the way it melts into my skin and matches my coloring perfectly. Already have a brand you love great! If not go to a department store and ask them for a sample of the Chanel CC cream. Everyone who has tried mine has been a convert! If you love your foundation mix a bit of face lotion in to help it sink into your skin and give it a more natural feel.
2) Blush: I use Orgasm by Nars (the most popular blush sold for a reason) but find what works with your coloring.
3) Highlighter: This is an odd one I know but I like the bit of added glow without having that sticky feeling of foundation or creams.
4) Mascara: I have blonde lashes so this was essential. Truthfully now that I have gotten older I am turning into a lash extension convert. The application of Mascara takes the most time both applying and removing and frankly I am over it #imtoooldforthatshit. As I have gotten older I could not find one (long wear, water proof, you name it; I tried it). That didn't deposit black under my eye during the day. So I get my lashes dyed now or lash extensions. In Europe they sow them in, here in the US it is glue. Experiment and let me know what you like!
5) Lip color: I love a strong lip and a natural lip. It completes my outfit and acts as an accessory. I have so many brands and types it is hard to say a favorite. But it is the last and most important step in my make-up routine for me to feel ready to go.
5) Fragrance- My last and favorite step. I bough my first bottle of #Chanel perfume (Chance) in Paris when I was on Spring break there my freshman year of college. I fell in love with the scent and it is now part of my signature style. Although some days I cheat on my perfume I always go back to it. When applying it I channel the experts at #queereye "spray, stay, walk away." Never spray perfume directly on the skin. It is a chemical reaction it has with the air that activates the scent. NEVER rub perfume into your skin. This damages the scent. Seriously. #thingsyoushouldknow
Those are my five steps to be ready in 5. When your skin is clear, your outfits all make you feel good, you can make your hair glam in a flash, your make-up 5 products or less, and your signature scent can attach as you blissfully walk towards the door with confidence you will find yourself strutting with a smile. Looking and feeling fabulous from head to toe.