My Beauty Commandments

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{After 5 hours of sleep, a bright lip (Topshop's 'Rio Rio') goes a long way in making me look awake.}

{After 5 hours of sleep, a bright lip (Topshop's 'Rio Rio') goes a long way in making me look awake.}

I didn’t get into makeup much until after college, but over the last eight years of blogging (thereby experimenting with hundreds of looks and having my photograph taken daily), I’ve developed some mantras I live by when it comes to beauty. From skincare and nails to hair and a general feel-good philosophy, here are my 10 beauty commandments.

  1. Be Prepared. I’m never without a few key essentials in my purse because you just never know when you’ll need a pick-me-up. The things I always have on me: hand sanitizer (there’s nothing grosser than sticking a dirty finger into a pot of lip gloss), concealer, multi-tasking blush/lip duo, kohl eyeliner and a roll-on perfume. 

  2. Hands-Off. Never pick at your face (and touch as minimally as possible). If there’s a blemish that truly needs to be taken care of, do so with clean hands and apply ice afterwards to reduce swelling.

  3. Just Say No. To sleeping in your makeup. Face wash is best; makeup remover wipes count, and are better than nothing. If you do skip a day of washing, make sure to exfoliate the next morning.

  4. Manicure Matters. Showing up to an interview or any outward-facing event with chipped, uneven nails that are half-peeling and worse for the wear conveys something about yourself that you probably don’t wish to convey. There’s a reason it’s called nail polish -- because having well-groomed nails with a fresh paint job looks polished and professional. It doesn’t have to be a salon mani (doing my own nails is a hobby of mine), but do make sure they look presentable.

  5. Pillow Talk. Change your pillowcases every few days to avoid skin problems, since hair product, skin products, and dirt, grease, and oil quickly build up and can easily lead to clogged pores and stubborn breakouts in the same place.

  6. Don’t Sweat It. Never exercise with makeup on, it’s just not worth it.

  7. Fake, Don’t Bake. Though everyone says it, the importance of it cannot be overstated. In my younger days I used to spend hours at the pool in the pursuit of a tan, but quickly became wiser about the health of my skin, even when wearing sunscreen. Now I rely on Tan Towels to give me a believable faux flow without any skin damage.

  8. Sunscreen Routine. Always wear SPF 30 or higher -- 24/7, 365. Don’t forget to put it on the back of your hands, neck, décolletage, and ears (one of the highest risk areas for cancer since they’re so often neglected).

  9. Ease The Heat. I typically only heat style my hair once or twice a week (and never on back-to-back days), and do a leave-in mask every few days for extra nourishment.

  10. Know What Works. We all have those days when we feel less than glamorous even after applying make-up. For those times, make sure to know the tricks/little things that will make you feel better. For me, I spray a perfume that elicits happy memories (Byredo’s ‘Inflorescence’), apply a bright lip (Maybelline’s ‘Coral Crush’ or TopShop's 'Rio Rio') and throw on a bit of extra bronzer (Giorgio Armani ‘Maestro Liquid Bronzer’).