One of the most incredible things my gastric bypass surgery…
I love it when my readers reach out and let me know they’re reading and where they’re at. I do this for anyone who is going through or thinking about pursuing a bariatric journey because I think it’s really important to get real stories out there in the world about what it’s like to live with long-term. I love comments and interactions with readers that give me blog post ideas, if there’s ever something you want to suggest to me please comment on a post, email me from the contact form, or send me a message through one of my social media accounts, the links are in the top right-hand corner. I don’t talk about it much here but I have a wee bit of an obsession with beauty products, skincare and makeup!
I got an awesome comment on one of my old posts the other day and it sparked off a brilliant idea for a blog post. This was the comment, “Hi Melissa, I am 9 months out and 40+ kgs down and have been thinking about using some makeup, especially, as I am looking so gaunt and washed out. I only ever used eye liner and mascara when I was younger as I never really felt comfortable with too much makeup. Since surgery I have invested in some good moisturiser, some Thin Lizzy concealer which I use on the dark circles under my eyes and the Thin Lizzy powder. I would like to use a bit more but I am at a loss as to where I should start, is there somewhere I could go where I could get some advice or try some makeup? I wish you lived in Hamilton. Thanks in advance.”
First of all, I started imagining myself as some sort of beauty consultant taking people around to spend their money on awesome products and then I realised that there’s maybe two people in the entire world who would pay me to do that and it’s not a viable business. But then I realised I had been through this myself and thought I could share my tips with you all. I think many of us stop wearing makeup, especially bright attention grabbing colours in an effort to blend in and not be seen when we’re really overweight. Many of us get to the point after losing a lot of weight where we start wanting to be seen and noticed by those around us. It’s almost a post-op right of passage!
Here are my tips and ideas to figuring out beauty, skincare and makeup!
Make a start at Beauty Review.
I first registered with Beauty Review because they were sending out free beauty products, all you had to do was submit an honest review by the due date they gave you. As well as this they have new articles each week and I cannot begin to tell you how much I have learnt from spending time on Beauty Review. If there’s something you’re considering buying but not sure if it will suit you or be easy to use you can look it up on Beauty Review and see what a heap of independent reviewers (everyday people like yourself!) have had to say about the product. The message boards are great too and there you have access to lots of beauty obsessed people who are more than willing to share their thoughts, experiences and tips with you.
Go to a beauty counter and have a makeover.
I have had quite a few makeovers at beauty counters and every single time I learn so much from the makeup artists. If you let them know that you’re starting to try and figure out the beauty world they will help you with the basics. In most cases the cost of the makeover is redeemable on product. If there’s a few products they used on you which you really loved this is a great way to get them to add to your kit but also learn how to use them correctly. This is a great way to figure out the perfect foundation shade, pick up some great application tips and get advice on what lipstick colours suit you and your skin tone best. Somewhere like Farmers has a great range of beauty counters and you should be able to pick the brand that most appeals to you. If you don’t have beauty counters in stores near where you live try to track down a freelance makeup artist to come over and give you a makeover. You won’t be able to redeem the cost on product but they will be a fountain of knowledge and will be able to give you some great advice and makeup application tips.
Beauty bloggers and vloggers.
I have to admit that in one sense I’m a really bad blogger. I don’t closely follow too many other blogs and while you should expect me to be able to rattle off a huge list of beauty bloggers for you to chase up I can’t! My fave NZ based beauty blogger is Cassandra Myee, she takes amazing photos, her Instagram account is beautiful, and she shares all that’s hot and new on the NZ beauty scene. YouTube is a great resource for tutorials in terms of actual makeup application and you just need to search it for whatever you are trying to do. You will have endless videos to watch.
Just have a go!
There’s only so many products you can put on your face at once right? Start small and work your way up from there. For my basic, everyday makeup all I use is moisturiser, translucent powder, beauty powder (an awesome MAC product), mascara, a brow kit, a contouring palette that has blush, highlighter and bronzer, and lipstick (pictured above). If I’m going all out all I will add is a primer, a liquid foundation base under my translucent powder, some eyeliner and maybe some eyeshadow. Get a few things and play around. See how they work for you and your skin and over time you will get better at using them and knowing what will work for you.
Ask a friend.
If you admire how one of your friends or colleagues does their makeup ask them about it! If they are anything like me they will be only too happy to talk about it and give you their best tips. For example I would tell you that my fave makeup brand is MAC and that their lipsticks can’t be beaten. I’m currently using MAC translucent powder, beauty powder, liquid foundation, mascara, lip primer and lipsticks. I love my Urban Decay Flushed palette which has blush, bronzer and highlighter in one. If you really want to splash out on lipsticks Charlotte Tilbury lipsticks are divine!
I can’t stress how important a good skincare routine is. I have been blessed with amazing skin but I really think, now that I’ve left my 20’s anyway, that my skincare routine contributes so much to my awesome skin. While my everyday makeup might not seem over the top my skincare routine will. In the morning I wash my face with a gentle cleanser, after I’ve washed my face I apply a serum (depending on which one it’s daily or 2-3 times a week) eye cream, do a lip scrub and then a daytime moisturiser. If I’m wearing makeup that day I apply it over this base.
My morning skincare products.
At night time I remove my makeup with a wipe, spray toner on my face (I should probably wash it here too but at least I’m taking my makeup off right?) put a different eye cream on, another serum (if I have two on the go), apply a few drops of facial oil, and then put a night cream on top. I do this routine morning and night every single day! Once a week I do an exfoliating scrub (face and body), face mask and moisturise my whole body (I should do this more often!)
My night-time skincare products.
One of the most important things to note is that if a product isn’t working for you then you should try to find something that works for you and your skin. I use mostly Antipodes and Essano products for my facial skincare. They are both NZ brands that do wonders for my skin so I stick with them. Lush is another fave brand but unless I order online it’s harder for me to get my hands on. I was sent some Wild Ferns Manuka Honey skincare products recently too and that’s why I have two serums on the go. Trial and error is important but with a few tries I’m sure you will find things that work for your skin and fit into your budget.
Was this post helpful? Can you see any of your favourite products in the pictures above? Let me know if you’d like more beauty focused products it’s something I love to talk about!
You can purchase Essano in NZ from most supermarkets but here’s a full list of stockists.
You can purchase MAC in store there’s a directory of their stores here.