About Me

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I'm a mom, a wife, a best friend. Sick with CFIDS/ME/CFS and Fibromyalgia since 1975 as a result of a nasty flu while still in grad school, it wasn't until the late '80's that I received a diagnosis. Until that flu I'd never really been ill before. With each year I get progressively worse and add to the bucket load of symptoms I'm living with. I've been blessed with an incredible family and best friend who've stayed with me through my struggles as we continue to find a way out of this monstrous illness and its complications. We've tried seemingly every approach to find my way back to health. Often I think our best weapon in this undesirable and unasked-for adventure has been laughter.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Brushing Up On Your Makeup Skills

Laura Mercier and Chanel brushes and cosmetics

Since starting on one of my newest medical adventures, that of the hypothyroidism, (and another one of the battles described at this link as well) I've had a real problem with my face, the color of it, that is.  Fortunately (I suppose), I've always had to use foundation, so it hasn't been a problem to use a foundation now.  When I was young I needed it to cover my (many) freckles.  As I've aged it's been to cover freckles PLUS the hyper-pigmentation.  (OK, it's "age spots," shudder!)  The final nail in the coffin has always been that I've needed foundation to cover a bit of redness anytime I've ever been exposed to the sun in any shape, way or form.

However, since the thyroid problems began, my skin has been playing even more tricks on me.  Too often I turn ghastly pale.  Other days, I seem to have a yellowish cast.

Another however: a biggie!  I'm finally happy that in the past decade or so I haven't been able to make it to any store to buy foundation.  I need to order over the Internet and THAT becomes iffy at best, not to mention a bit expensive.

But finally, I have an upside!  No matter what color my skin, I have a shade I can work with.  Talk about an extreme case of making lemonade out of lemons!  Now I no longer need to feel guilty about having so many foundations.  Furthermore, because my skin is dehydrated one day and too oily the next, I have all the types of foundations to choose from as well, from powders to creams to liquids.  My only problem: making the right decision as to which foundation to try on my face on any particular day.  As many who are plagued with CFIDS/ME/CFS and/or fibromyalgia, I have a huge problem with decision-making.  (I can just hear hubby breaking out into hysterical laughter when he reads this last statement about decision-making.  Hey, Hubs! I'm a Libra who has to analyze everything ad nauseum, remember?)

At any rate, I had an appointment with my GP the other day.  Understand (if you will, please), that since I almost never go out, I try to make going to any doctor's appointment a dress-up day if at all possible.  But as I said, my face has been tricky lately. Too often I find that my foundation looks like a mask on my face. I've always maintained that makeup is only flattering when the skin underneath looks good and that bad color or pallor makes for Halloween-type looks.  And if you want to try to get away with the "no-makeup" or "flawless" makeup look, well, fuhgeddaboudit, as Robert De Niro would say.

However, yesterday was a success with the makeup job and yippee!  I'm delighted because by all rights it should have been a "mask" day.  However...

I love and have an obsession with makeup brushes.  (Yes, I've always maintained that I'm an odd duck!)  To make things worse - or much to hub's chagrin - I have an embarrassingly large collection of brushes, especially for someone who doesn't go out very often.  But I suppose where some people love crayons, I love brushes. While some can paint on canvas, I can't replicate a drawing of a basic tree.  So, makeup?  That must satisfy some sort of wish-I-were-an-artist part of me.  (Get back on topic, I know!)

Yet of all the brushes I own, I've never had a proper foundation brush. I've always thought my fingers were superior to any brush out there.  And I've been so very wrong.

I finally broke down and bought a couple of foundation brushes, stippling ones, and have used them three times thus far.  The verdict: I absolutely love them.  No mask-look on my face!  Each time, with the "before," my skin looked horridly pale or awfully red.  By the time I got the foundation on and blended, blended - and then blended some more, as Laura Mercier would say - the foundation became part of my face, only vastly improved.

So if you're having the same problems I've encountered and:
  • want good coverage because of discoloration (breakouts, freckles, acne scars or *agh* age spots)
  • want skin which looks rather youthful despite the DD
  • want an even, air-brushed finish
  • want a "fail proof" application despite shaky or inexperienced hands
  • want to look age-appropriate without any wrinkles getting caked (*agh* again!)
  • and want that "flawless" and "no makeup" look...

... Then consider getting a foundation stippling brush.  I'm "over the moon," that I finally did so!  The stippling brush is the one which has the little light ends and because of the combination of natural and "faux" fibers, it consequently has a light touch which lends itself to layering foundation, if need be.  It gives a very well-blended look with a wonderful sheen, with no streaks at all, of course!  I was naughty and treated myself to a Chanel foundation brush and I just happened to "find" another stippling brush in the Laura Mercier Ten Essential Brushes Collection which I purchased earlier in the year.  I'm sure any good quality stippling brush designed for foundation will give you great results as well.

So, if you're well enough to get out to go to any Christmas or New Year's Eve parties, even though your skin is telling you to stay home, these foundation brushes may be just the ticket to make yourself look and feel awfully special!  If your skin needs tender loving care, a foundation brush may be your best friend for looking even more "invisibly" sick!  (Groan?)

As always, I hope everyone is feeling their very best, only better.  Ciao and paka!

(NOTE: Top picture background is Laura Mercier's Ten Essential Brush Collection makeup kit in red, which included the gorgeous translucent handled brush pictured as well.  The black handled brush is the Chanel foundation brush.  The CC cream (review here) and one of the Chanel liquid foundations are also pictured, review of the Chanel foundation coming up soon.)


  1. Hi there, awesome site. I thought the topics you posted on were very interesting. I tried to add your RSS to my feed reader and it a few. take a look at it, hopefully I can add you and follow...


    1. Hi, "gastrosurgery"! I'm afraid that my techno skills are so lacking that I have yet to figure out what RSS feed readers are, Google Plus 1 and any number of "gadgets." I've tried figuring them out but seem to be a lost cause. However, I can think of one teen who loves nail polish who seems to know her way around the computer, is a blogger and perhaps she might be able to give me a couple of pointers.
      I'm especially glad you like the site. Yes, please sign up as a follower and I'll be 7th heaven. Thanks you. xx