How to Cover Acne Video Plus Best Full Coverage Foundations

My friend Cassel sent me this video last week (below) about a girl with severe acne who bravely takes all of her makeup off (for almost 3 million people and counting) and starts from scratch showing every step she takes to make sure her red welts are well hidden. Though my skin is temperamental at times, I don’t apply nearly as much makeup as she does (I think she has 7-ish steps!), because one good full coverage foundation should do the trick in most cases. Here are a few of my favorite full coverage foundations for when your skin just isn’t cooperating.

I never really fell in love with Armani’s Luminous Silk, their signature foundation that was all the rage a while back – I found it to be too light in weight to do any serious covering. Their new Designer Lift Foundation however, is like a delightfully thin coat of paint (I mean this in a good way) that covers the worst of it while maintaining a natural finish. The bases for most foundations are white or even black, then pigment is added in to create a skin color – but this one begins with blue pearl giving it a beautiful base to create luminosity and cancel out dullness. It’s one of the best foundations I’ve tried in a long while – worth the $65 especially when you’re serious about coverage.

Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover $40 is what she uses in the video to get her liquid coverage, it’s a great foundation that I’ve used it in the past for a before and after post. Its medium to full coverage and luminous finish is best followed up by their HD powder so you can enjoy the glowy look it gives the skin. Blending is your friend, use tiny dots at a time and work it in as you go around each section of the face to build up the coverage you’d like until all of your redness is gone.

Cover FX gained fame when it was rumored to be the foundation used to cover Angelina Jolie’s tattoos on a movie set years ago. Good enough for me. Their Natural FX Water Based Foundation SPF 15 $37 is the one I carry in my kit for when I need to bust out some super serious coverage on the most challenging skin. It’s oil, fragrance, and paraben free and will outlast your desire to wear makeup for the day. I’d say it gives the most coverage of the bunch and it’s especially formulated to cover acne, eczema, rosacea without adding additional irritation or causing breakouts.

Check out the video below, click HERE to see the video if you’ve received this post in an email.


Makeup Before and After: Mom of the Bride

I was the Makeup Artist for a bridal party over the weekend with a great group of girls and a gorgeous mother of the bride. I mean seriously, her skin rivaled that of most 30 year olds, it’s near perfect and completely natural – a combo I don’t normally see after a certain age.

Anyhoo, I had to share her before and after photo with you because (as I’ve said before) you don’t need to pile it on to get a beautiful result. I got to use my decadent La Mer Treatment Fluid Foundation and The Powder, both of which get a ton of use in my kit. They have ideal consistencies, the foundation is creamy with a hint of luminosity so the skin looks bright and full of life while their powder is virtually undetectable on the skin. It’s so airy light that it doesn’t settle which is why I use it to set eye concealer all the time.

Treatment Fluid Foundation

The Powder

Now a look at the pics.

Janet, gorgeous even before

…And after

After evening out the skin, I brought out her eyes using grayish plum shadows, Ardell Demure lashes and gray liner along the top lash with a rich brown for her lower lash line for a subtle contrast that keeps the darker color on top where it’s needed most. Top it all off with some pinky cheeks and lips and you’ve got a full on glam look that’s wedding-day beautiful.

Ellis Faas Skin Veil Pen; A Truly Fantastic Foundation

Finding a new foundation you love can be as challenging as finding a new pair of jeans. At least it is for me. My skin changes from combination to dry to a total broken out mess depending on what I’m testing out that particular week. I often change my entire regimen every few days so I never know what skin issues I’ll wake up with. I need a foundation that covers well and responds to whatever state my skin happens to be in that day, bonus points for something easy to apply and take along for touch-ups. Three cheers for my new favorite go-to foundation that does it all; Ellis Faas Skin Veil Pen.

First, let’s admire its futuristic look – cool right?

Loading the pen for its first use is easy, just pop the top off the foundation container and slide it up.

Give it a few pumps and voilá – a small amount of foundation appears. It’s slow to ooze out and the formula is on the thicker side so it doesn’t run into the cap. Nothing wasted.

I wanted to show the fantastic coverage and beautiful finish of Skin Veil, a task made easier given the current state of my splotchy skin – a perfect time to try out a new foundation actually.

I pumped the foundation into the brush and swept a little over my whole face (shade S102), patting it in with my trusty Beauty Blender. I could see a huge improvement in my skin right away because it did an excellent job of covering my red splotches and evening out my skin tone. It’s a wonderfully instinctive foundation that finds a way to just morph into better looking skin. It’s undetectable and has some pretty amazing staying power. It kept its coverage all day without fading or separating and even gave my blush something to grab on to so it didn’t fade out either.

Why so serious? Click to enlarge.

I have to say that Skin Veil is one of my top 5 foundations of all time just because of the coverage without weight factor and its long wear time. The price ($65) is in line with a Dior or Armani foundation but it blows away those two and most of its other high-end competitors – well worth checking out.

Available at Bergdorf Goodman, Space NK, and

Osmotics anti-Wrinkle Vitamin C Patches

Nothing like a straight shot of Vitamin C to get your skin livened up. I’ve been using these Anti-Wrinkle Vitamin C Patches from Osmotics, their answer to lifeless, lined skin. In the kit you’ll find 12 sets of 2 patches infused with straight Sodium Ascorbate and Ascorbic Acid that adhere to the skin overnight delivering a big dose of C into targeted areas where you’d like to see fewer wrinkles.

I’ve been using them around my eyes to lessen my crow’s feet which are more pronounced these days since I’m off Botox again**.  They are a short-term solution, but a good one nonetheless. I can see a softening of lines and improvement in clarity in the morning after I wear them especially after a couple of wears a week. If you’re looking to stave off Botox (or make the most of Botox injections), or to target-treat facial wrinkling for special occasions, this is a pretty solid solution for a reasonable price ($48).

** This update is subject to change depending on how wrinkly I can tolerate seeing myself.

Osmotics Anti-Wrinkle Vitamin C Patches

Chanel Double Perfection Compact Foundation

Another day, another great foundation. I recently went swimming in the cool waters of the Chanel pond with my mother in law, a die-hard Chanel junkie whose name the girls at Nordstrom know well. You’d think with all of the stuff I have that I’d be immune to the shiny compacts filled with makeup goodness, but my flesh is weak and if left to my own devices, I’ll buy makeup as long as I’m standing in its vicinity. Whether I need it or not.

Take Chanel’s Double Perfection Compact Foundation for instance. I technically don’t need another foundation but hunting for the perfect foundation is a life-long journey. There are a few (maybe 3) powder foundations (mineral formulas excluded) that I like and this has quickly become one of them. Its silky texture and invisible-yet-there- coverage sets it apart from the pack of chalky powdered foundations that shouldn’t be worn by anyone over age 16. I’ve been brushing this on for some quick coverage that conceals all sins and wears really well. It’s a wet/ dry formula but it will never see water as long as I have it, too heavy I think.

And now for the bad news. It’s $50. On the high end for foundation but justifiable when because great looking skin is largely what makes a great looking face. How was that for justifying buying something I didn’t need while I was supposed to be Christmas shopping for other people?

I can’t help it if I’m enchanted by finding a perfect foundation, it’s just a problem of mine. There’s another recently discontinued stick foundation I bought last week as well that I’m really loving, more on that soon…

Chanel Double Perfection Compact Foundation

Body Hydrators for Every Need

It’s a post-shower tradition most women never neglect, slathering on your favorite body hydrator to keep skin and especially those freshly shaved legs soft. Beyond the Jergens you’ve used for 20 years, there are some great choices out there made especially for your specific needs.

For Babies, Kids, and Sensitive Skin:

THe Healthy Baby Lotion from Lavanila looks, feels, and smells like a run-of-the-mill body lotion, but it’s not. It’s formulated without Parabens, sufates, mineral oil, and synthetics so you can use it on newborn or your own sensitive, post-shaved skin to get some great moisture without the red bumpy reaction.

For the Year-Round Sunscreen Diva:

Even in the winter here in Denver, I’m catching rays. My desk is positioned in front of a big window so when I sit and write everyday I can feel the sun, this sun accumulation adds up to eventually cause damage. Don’t put away the sunscreen just because it’s chilly outside, I use an SPF 30 year round. Erno Laszlo’s Total Face & Body Protection SPF 30 uses shea butter and green tea to produce a cream that’s so light and elegant, you forget it’s also a sunscreen.

For Bronzy Hydration:

Because I’m so depressingly pale, I like a little glow even in the wintertime. Alba Botanica Very Emollient Sunless Tanning cream treats your dry skin to a healthy dose of moisture, streak-free color, and a light yummy scent that reminds me of the beach.

For a Sure Thing:

Everyone loves the line Yu•Be, it’s been the best selling formula in Japan for years and it’s now catching on over here thanks to Sephora (finally) carrying the line. Their Moisturizing Body Lotion is a cult favorite for a reason. It packs a powerful hydrating punch in a light weight lotion. No heavy fragrance, no greasy feel, no fancy packaging. Just a long-lasting, super hydrator that is said to help with eczema, psoriasis, and those little bumps on the backs of arms.