So I kinda have an obsession (or two) to confess: next to Italian culture, I am sick over French women and their sense of beauty. From Juliette Binoche to Brigitte Bardot to Catherine Deneuve, I am fascinated by the way these effortless women carry themselves. I come from a strong Latino cultural background (my family hails from three different Latin American countries) that has its own vision of what is beautiful (in a nutshell: many Latinas might as well be married to makeup :P (though not all share this view)). However, despite growing up with this specific mindset, I've always been intrigued by the minimalist yet glamourous way French actresses and women present themselves to the world. The initial spark of interest might come more from movies than anything else, but it has compelled me to do a little research into how the everyday woman in Paris might look while carrying out her daily routine. I've done almost everything short of going to Paris myself and watching the locals (which I'm DYING to do). The tutorial I'm going to be teaching you how to do today will show you what beauty look a woman from the City of Light would choose to wear for her daily rituals. There is an overall emphasis on natural beauty. Foundation is used minimally, as well as all color cosmetics. The idea is to enhance what's naturally there, not transform it.
Eyes: MAC Taupe Brow Pencil, MAC Cream Colour Base in Rubenesque, Korres Eye Liner in 1, YSL Faux Cils Mascara in Burgundy
Lips: Eve Pearl Climax Lipstick
Cheeks: MAC Instant Chic Blush, MAC Bronze Bronzer
Skin: RMS Beauty Un-Cover Up Foundation in 33
Here's your step-by-step process on looking très chic:
- First, work on brows. Use brow liner, preferably a taupe liner (nothing too dark or matchy-matchy, if you will), to fill in any sparse areas. You only want to enhance the shape of the brow.
- Next, apply a neutral base onto eye lids. I prefer one that won't budge, but you can even use a creamier one if you like. RMS Beauty makes a variety of neutral and very nicely pigmented eye shadows that are creamy. Even though your base might crease a little, it won't matter. The look will be subtle enough that it won't be seen easily unless you look quite closely. The easygoing nature of this eye look is key. It'll fade very naturally, and it'll still look like something is there.
- Next, apply eye liner, but only apply it to fill in the lash line. Smudge any that might have gone onto the top of the lash line. Also apply a thin line of liner to the bottom lash line and waterline. Smudge this as well with a Q-Tip and wipe it down until it becomes more of a shadow than a definite line.
- Finish with a coat of the YSL mascara. French women have been found to obsess over pricey mascaras, choosing DiorShow, Yves Saint Laurent, and Guerlain over Maybelline, Lancome, or L'Oreal. But whatever mascara you might have on hand should be fine. As long as you look the part, as it has been said. ;)
- Work on skin. Apply foundation only as needed, preferably one that is not matte or too flat. There should be a definite glow to the skin. I use bronzer only because I need it to match the color of my face to the rest of me, but go ahead and skip that if you don't need it. Generally, the French are definitely not obsessed with tans like some Americans and Latin Americans can be. Do apply a little blush, preferably one that matches the color of your cheeks when you laugh or blush or even a shade lighter. You don't want too much color.
- Lips should be kept close to their natural color. I love Eve Pearl's Climax Lipstick because for me it's just that, maybe with a little more shimmer, but not much really. No gloss. No liner. Just lipstick. Don't even reapply it over the course of the day. The effortlessness of this look is it's secret.