How To: Make-up Like You've Got Your Life Together (When You Absolutely Don't)

Here’s the stuff I’ve been slathering on in spite of feeling like I can’t really be bothered to brush my teeth.
Publish date:
November 26, 2012
depression, make-up, olivia singer, depression and beauty

I’ve been mopey as fuck the past few weeks. I kept meaning to write an article on my favourite shower gels or party makeup but then thinking a) nobody cares and b) I don’t care.

My food plan has fallen into pieces, which has in turn shame-spiraled me into not talking to the people who care about me, and I’m (yet again) working through some vitamin deficiencies so my hair and skin are like crap.

I keep forgetting whether or not I’ve taken my medication because every morning just feels like every other morning. I don’t feel particularly depressed, I don’t want to die, I don’t even really want to use drugs, I just feel numb and bored and sick of my head and I want to eat only Milky Bars and candy.

I know what my triggers are. I know it’s winter, and it’s a few misery anniversaries and it’s nearly Christmas and having to put on weight, whether at the request of my consultant or not, spins me into a headspace that I am uncomfortable with. I am spending money like I’m Ivana Trump and (surprise, surprise) it’s not fixing me.

Nothing is really fixing me because I’m not really trying very hard at fixing myself and that’s the only thing that works.

In spite of this all, I’ve been working like crazy. Working in fashion means that, even when I feel about four million miles away from glam, I’m at least trying to fake it a bit.

At the very least, I can get my shit together enough to tell you what products I’ve been using to do that. I mean, how believable is a how-to on how I use an eyeshadow as efficiently as an SSRI anyway? Not very when I feel like I want to just stare into space for seven hours listening to the same Daniel Johnston song on loop (I never said I was a particularly original moper).

There isn’t much of a narrative to this post, but here’s the stuff I’ve been slathering on in spite of feeling like I can’t really be bothered to brush my teeth. I’m all aspirational glamour at the moment.

NB – I have used many of these products in the dark, because I am too lazy to change the lightbulb by my mirror. That is how easy to use they are. You don’t even need to see your face to put them on, and nobody freaks out when you get on the bus.

I’ve been using the MAC Beauty Balm Compact, which is fucking great. I can’t be bothered to put on five different things at the moment to make my perfect foundation combo, so I’ve been using this and my fingertips and it’s both amazing and portable. It’s the perfect level of coverage – a little heavier than some BB creams I’ve tried so I can use it instead of a foundation with just a bit of undereye concealer.

Then I’ve been using Jouer’s tint in ‘Petal’ on my cheeks because it’s pretty and sheer and delicate and rosy and it comes in a little box that is cute and hard to open so I feel like I’ve won a little victory every time I get it onto my face. You apply it with your fingers (easy) and it’s the best cheek tint that I’ve found, so I’m going to hunt down all the different shades and try them on my lips, too. Stay tuned.

On top of this, I’ve been using one of the best beauty products I have found of late, Make Up Store’s High Tech Lighter in ‘Stardust’. I might have put on a stone, but in order to engage with the illusion of razor sharp cheekbones, I wipe this across the top of where I want my cheekbones to be and it gives beautifully subtle definition.

Also, I have been prone to bursting into tears in between meetings and wandering around aimlessly through rainy London. I swear to god, Lash Genius Waterproof Topcoat by Anastasia has sorted me out the past few weeks like nothing else. You do your mascara normally and then schlap this over the top and it holds fast until you take it off at night (I’ve been using Queen’s eye makeup remover). I usually hate waterproof mascara, so this has practically changed my life and it's not clumpy or gross, it just coats your mascara perfectly.

In honour of vaguely acquiescing to an Autumnal beauty trend, I’ve been into YSL’s Volume Effet Faux Cils Mascara in Blue which is a little more subtle than a black and it comes in a shiny tube (cheery!) and, combined with Lash Genius, it’s my new favourite beauty combo.

I’ve also been using Urban Decay’s Vice palette which has the best variety of shades I’ve found in one place so far ever. I’ve been carrying it around in my laptop case because I keep going to vaguely festive events in the evening and I am too indecisive to pick a single colour to take out in my makeup bag to apply on the tube.

It’s got some rad shimmery ones (emerald-y green ‘Junkie’ is my fave) but I am obviously caking on the depressing looking grey that they’ve called ‘Desperation’ (LOL), sometimes pared with a little of the turquoise called ‘Unhinged’ as an eyeline accent. I’ve been picking the colours I wear based on how much I like the name of the shade. So fashion. And it’s got the best version of Yves Klein blue (‘Chaos’) which is so on trend. Whatever. I like Yves Klein.

My ultimate tip for looking like you’ve got your shit together when you just want to watch romcoms on Netflix and eat festive-size boxes of chocolates is matt red lipstick. MAC Mattene in Eden Rouge will save your life/career when you need it to.

The one benefit to being single during the holiday season is that I can wear lipstick and not freak out that my SO is going to want to make out. So I’m wearing it every day – I’ll take my wins where I can at the moment.

Finally, there is one shower gel that has cheered me right up and that is Korres’ cinnamon and vanilla one. It makes me smell like a delicious pie, and I am showering multiple times a day just so I can smell more like it. That is saying something considering ordinarily when I am miserable my personal hygiene falls to pieces.

Voila. My how-to-look-like-a-person-even-when-you-don’t-feel-like-one. What do you do when you just can’t be bothered? Do other people feel like this at this time of year? Do you have anything I can put on my face to liven me up?

I'm moping on Twitter, too, @oliviasinger.