+ Makeup

Makeup Tips for Conventioneers

Anya Hindmarch Remedies Makeup Bag ($31.50) // NARS Pro Prime ($32) // Benefit Erase Paste ($26) // Urban Decay Eyeshadow Potion ($20) // Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush ($25) // Bobbi Brown Intensifying Long-Wear Mascara ($24)

Polyvore Set Here.

Whether you’re headed to Charlotte for the Democratic Convention or to Tampa for the Republican Convention, you’re going to be combating the heat and humidity.  You’re also going to be logging a lot of 16-18 hour days.  So not only do you need to prepare your wardrobe, you need to prepare your makeup bag.

First order of business, primer.  Primer will hold your makeup in place during long days, through any kind of weather.  I am partial to NARS Pro Prime in Oil Free because it provides a strong, matte surface for the makeup to adhere to.  If you’re looking for something a bit less expensive and/or something with SPF, I also like Clinique City Block ($21).

Once your face makeup is glued in place, you need to think about your eye makeup, because nothing’s more attractive than thick creases in your eyeshadow.  Several of my friends and readers swear by Urban Decay Potion for long-lasting hold.  Personally, I’m all about NARS Eyeshadow Base.

Under-eye circles are unavoidable when two cocktails turns into ten, and an early night turns into four hours of sleep, so be prepared to conceal your indiscretions.  Benefit Erase Paste and a strong application of translucent powder gets me through the day, but if you need something cheaper, a number of commenters love Maybelline Age Rewind ($9).

During a long night out, the first thing that seems to fade from my face is my blush.  I don’t know what it is about cheek color, but it seems to break down after a stretch leaving my skin slightly ruddy looking.  Luckily, one of my Birchbox’s contained a sample of this Amazonian clay blush and I love it for long days.  It’s perfectly pink color also brightens my face and helps me fake that well-rested look.

Lastly, we need to talk about mascara.  Nothing makes you look like you’ve spent too many hours socializing like the “raccoon eyes” generated when your mascara wilts.  But this formula, from Bobbi Brown, hold on strong for all-day lashes.  She also makes an eyeliner for those of us who need a bit more oomph. 

And if I could offer one more piece of advice for conventioneers?  Hydrate.  Pack a refillable water bottle and drink like a camel lost in the Sahara.  Between the A/C, long days and alcohol consumption, your body needs the water.

Need more tips on combating humidity?  Check out this post.

P.S. If you think you’re in for a lot of late nights, it doesn’t hurt to put together a travel-sized makeup bag for your purse.  I usually fill mine with samples from my Birchbox.  I pack Bobbi Brown’s concealer/powder duo, a retractable brush,  a convertible lip color/blush, some oil blotting sheets and a roll on perfume.  But you should tailor yours to suit your needs.

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  1. XF says:

    Y'all, I'm from Tampa so believe me when I say to heed Belle's tips on good mascara and primer…August in Tampa is no joke. And make sure to get some Cuban food while you're there! You wont be disappointed. Great places for food and shopping (happy to give recs if anyones interested) too.
    -Shameless hometown plug ­čÖé

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  2. lexi says:

    This is just the post I needed. I'm going to both, and potentially doing TV interviews at both. My makeup staying in place and looking fresh will be a must!

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  3. Parker - Boardroom Belles says:

    I always carry a basic makeup bag around in my purse. That way, no matter where I am or how long the day has been I can manage the transition into an evening event or pop into a short-notice meeting looking at least a bit refreshed. I pair it down a lot (retractable brush, double up blush/lip color, concealer, mascara) but don't use travel sizes. I just wait until my makeup products are down to 20-30% content, then re-order and use the not finished up ones as my travel products.

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  4. Belle says:

    Just noticed all of the typos, i'll fix them when i get home.

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  5. JulieY says:

    good tips

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  6. BN says:

    Belle — what is the consistency of Erase Paste? One of my big problems is cakey, dry under-eye makeup (and yes, I do dab on some aquaphor every morning).


    August 15, 2012/Reply
  7. L says:

    If you need industrial-strength undereye concealer, I recommend Bobbi Brown's corrector.

    I actually own both undereye products that Belle mentioned. For reference, my skin is ultra-fair, and I use a mixture of Bobbi Brown's Alabaster & Porcelain shades (the two lightest).
    Maybelline– Thin consistency, so cakeiness isn't a problem. I use the “brightener” color. It's pretty pink. It works because I have very fair skin, but if you're olive- or dark-skinned, you'll probably need to go with one of the colors (Fair, Light, Med, Dark, etc). Be gentle with the twist-up part because it breaks easily. This is a medium- to full-coverage concealer.

    Erase Paste– To me, this is the tinted moisturizer or light-coverage foundation of undereye concearlers. If you just need a little boost, go with this. This will work on darkness caused by a late night, but it's not quite strong enough if you have hereditary darkness or darkness caused by allergies (I'm in both of these camps).

    I really like Erase Paste for touch-ups since it's emollient and not completely opaque. BB corrector gets extremely cakey if applied as a touch-up product on top of makeup.

    Bobbi Brown corrector– This is industrial-strength, full-coverage undereye concealer. When applied, it's nearly opaque. If you have undereye darkness that has nothing to do with lack of sleep, this is what you need.

    Definitely go to Sephora or a Bobbi Brown counter to determine if you need a color from the Peach or Bisque range. You can find info online about which goes with what color darkness, but actually trying it is the surest way to know.

    Do not attempt to use this for touch-ups, or your undereyes will quickly become a cakey mess. Either use a dab of foundation or Erase Paste for touch-ups.

    I use my finger to apply the Maybelline concealer and Erase Paste, but I prefer this brush from Sephora for the Bobbi Brown corrector since it's so thick:

    Actually, all of the “Pro Airbrush” brushes are fantastic (and I own hundreds of dollars' worth of well-recommended brushes from high-end lines). The #56 brush is fantastic for creme blush. If you're going to buy both brushes, you could just take the plunge for this:

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  8. L says:

    Oh, and put a Ziploc bag with a few makeup-remover towelettes in your touch-up kit. Why? See Belle's next post about underpinnings. Just in case…

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  9. L says:

    So… I'm really into long-lasting makeup, and I can't resist sharing more tips.

    Creme blush + Tarte Amazonian Clay blush = hours and hours of wear
    I own and like Bobbi Brown's pot rouge in Pale Pink and use it with the exact blush that Belle recommended.

    I have oily lids and find that creme products last a very long time. For a professional, neutral look, I use Benefit RSVP + Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream in Taupe.

    If you do use powder shadows, I agree with Belle that primer is essential.

    Bobbi Brown's is fantastic but pricey. Sephora's Waterproof Smoky Cream Liner is a great alternative for $12 instead of $22. Don't let the “smoky” throw you. I have no idea what's smoky about a cream liner.

    Not makeup, but still beauty-related: definitely carry a travel hairbrush and your preferred updo device (ponytail clip and bobby pins for me). Finger-combing only works so well.

    “Emergency” items that I carry at all times: 2 safety pins (pinned inside the little pouch), a deodorant towelette, a compact tampon, and a tiny pill case containing 2-3 breath freshener mints, a few ibuprofen tablets, and a single-use length of floss. If you really want to be prepared, buy the Minimergency kit.

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  10. BN says:

    Thank you, L!

    August 15, 2012/Reply
  11. Moose says:

    Belle, a Birchbox question. I know you get more than one, and maybe that is my solution, but I am having the hardest time finding a setting that gives me consistently good products! I have fiddled with them from month to month trying to find the sweet spot, but on one extreme I wind up with lots of anti-aging face cream and scented soaps and on the other, blue eyeshadow and glitter powder. For ex: I would love an Amazonian clay blush sample or some other nice middle-of-the-road, not 55 but not 15 yrs old options. Suggestions??

    August 16, 2012/Reply