For a major part of my life I have been ignorant towards the value of looking good. My focus was primarily on developing my skills and gain recognition for my capability. My perspective simply said that – Be known for what you do, not for how you look. I have always been a follower of the minimalist policy where personal grooming was important but that was the bare minimum necessary. Make-up was never my thing until I got married and was compelled to deck myself up for family gatherings. I should be extremely thankful to my mother-in-law for not forcing me into becoming a ‘Bahu’ (daughter-in-law) who should put sindoor, bindi, lipstick all the time even when at home. Even while going to my workplace, other than a sun-screen and a lip-moisturizer I would stick to a no make-up regime.
But motherhood brought about a change here too. Once Nik started going to playgroup and I had to go pick him up or visit the teacher for a parent’s call, I became conscious about how I looked. I wanted to be presentable as well as pleasing to the eye. I started experimenting with my looks beyond the basic grooming. Initially I felt extremely hassled by the entire process of putting on make-up, yet continued doing so just for the sake of looking good at my kid’s school/activity classes. Slowly I got the hang of it and began to use make-up while going to other places too such as while visiting a friend or going out for a dinner or movie date with my husband. My confidence got boosted when people did not react strongly to this sudden change in me. Thank goodness, that I did not receive any mocking or sarcastic comments from family or friends. Rather there were several compliments with a subscript that – I should use make-up more often. This made me really pleased with myself and encouraged me further.
But come the second child (he’s called Lucky) and everything went for a toss again. There was hardly any time for myself. To be able to dress up properly was an achievement in itself. Yet I had got used to “make up” now. I thus started looking for a bare minimum make –up regime that gave me enough satisfaction in minimum possible time. And after a lot of trial I have come up with one must have make-up kit that will ensure that I am ready to take on any party, gathering or a meeting at my presentable best. Here I share, what I would define as a minimal make-up one must have in their vanity bag to take on the world on the go:
A Cleansing Face Mist Spray
This is that one thing that will come to your rescue when you have been sweating yourself out while running around the house doing chores for your kids. You could cleanse your face with a face wash and then pat yourself dry, but then you will need to follow it up with a moisturizing cream in order to re-induce the moisture that went off in the process of washing.
Spraying the mist on your face a couple of times will not only cleanse your skin but also rejuvenate the skin by making it visibly supple and soft.
Experts have a very strong theory on use of primers, but my experience tells me that a primer’s function is exactly that. It is the initial coating that you give your skin at places where the skin texture or tone is uneven. The primer helps camouflage these skin defects. As a result whatever you put up next helps you achieve that flawless look.
Soufflé / Mousse
I do not prefer to use a foundation other than on occasions that call for a heavy make-up look i.e a wedding or similar large gatherings. For everyday use I strongly recommend a daily wear soufflé or mousse. They give your skin a smooth flawless look yet keeps it natural and normal. You may choose among various options available in the market keeping in mind what you intend for a particular soufflé or mousse to do. For example – some of these products are water based or cream-based, while others claim to also act as sunscreens. Check diligently for what you are buying over the counter.
A colored lip gloss is the go – to thing when you want to do-up your lips and brighten up your face instantly. You may chose from among various shades available in the market. Lip gloss’ are available in various finishes such as , as the name suggests glossy or matte texture. I make sure that I have three primary shades in my vanity bag – pink, brown, red. These three shades are sure to go with 90% of your dresses and looks. If you wish to have five, add purple and orange. Until you have a specific shade in mind, ask for the neutral shades. You can top up one color with another to get different shades as per your preference. And you’ll be good to go anywhere, anytime.
While you may be an ardent fan of liquid kajal, I suggest that keep that for your party wear. For daily wear keep a kajal pencil which doubles up as an eye-liner. Keep handy long stay kajal in dark colors such as black, blue and green. It will give your eyes a bright effect and your face a lightened lift.
I am no expert on make-up regimes and I am sure there are many views on what should comprise in a vanity pouch of a super-busy woman especially a mom. I’d like to hear your views on what according to you comprises a minimal make-up kit.