before, after, & some thoughts

So I got a makeover … just a little one. For your edification, I documented the process with my netbook’s camera:


This is the day before the makeover so you could see me with my regular makeup.  I accentuated the before-ness of it by taking advantage of bad lighting and afternoon fatigue 😉


Here’s my morning-before shot.  I had my regular powder on my face but no other makeup.


And here is the “after” shot!  Read on if you want more details, or skip to the bottom for some quick thoughts on beauty and happiness.

For SB friends: where I went … almost solely due to the fact that they used to advertise during episodes of What Not to Wear (how I loved that show!), I went to Camellia makeup store, at Heritage Square in Granger.  Overall, I was pleased with the staff & service there.  I had my eyebrows trimmed (more on that in a moment) and did an “eyes only” makeup lesson.  The cost of the lesson went toward any products I decided to purchase, and my goal was not to spend much more than the base cost of the lesson.  I get the feeling I’m not the only customer who’s had that strategy: at the end of the lesson, they clearly laid out which products cost how much, and didn’t pressure me in the least to buy more than what I chose.  I was also pleased that they listened to what I wanted – a good, everyday, stay-at-home mom look.  I wanted to look put-together, but not “made up,” and the look they gave me was spot-on.  Bottom line: I would recommend them!  Between the eyebrow work, the lesson, and the products, I spent a little over fifty dollars.  Definitely a birthday treat and not something I would do often, but I think it was worth it.

So, what did I learn?

  • Getting my eyebrows waxed & trimmed was worth it.  It seemed almost silly because I do NOT have thick, dark eyebrows to start with.  But every day when I filled in with my brow pencil, I was uncertain of what my perfect brow shape would be.  Do I fill in a little here, or a little there … I was kind of lost.  When the gal at Camellia did my eyebrows, she told me she would just “perfect the shape” of my brows so that I could fill in & darken, but just follow the natural shape of the brows and not have to even anything out.  It’s definitely been easier to do my eyebrow pencil the last few days.
  • During the makeup lesson, they recommended a lighter shade of eyebrow pencil than what I normally use, due partly to the “salt and pepper highlights” in my hair.  Haha, I liked that phrase a lot, although I usually call my gray hair “natural silver highlights.”  In any case, once they put it on me I immediately agreed that the lighter color was a good choice.  The brow pencil they used was also one of the products I decided to purchase; it has a nifty brush on it that can kind of draw through what I fill in to make it look more natural, more like individual hairs.
  • They also recommended a whole different eye shadow color scheme.  I’ve been using nothing but brown for several years now, but I learned that brown shadow can actually make your eyes look red and tired.  She brought out a gray shadow for the main color, with a neutral, but slightly shimmery, kind of peach for a highlight color.
  • I went into the lesson wondering whether I should be using eyeliner, but before I even asked about it, she told me I could use the gray eye shadow as liner.  She used a small brush to apply the shadow along my upper & lower lids.  I’m really happy with how it looks, and the simplicity of it.
  • She then used a larger brush to apply the gray shadow to my whole “eyeball area” and a medium brush to apply the highlight color from the crease up to the eyebrow.  Then, to extend the gray slightly beyond the eyeball, she went back to the small brush and used it to draw a tiny line extending out from the lower lid – following the curve from the lower lid – and then brushing it inwards towards the eyeball.  I don’t know if that makes any sense written out like that, so if you live in SB I can show you sometime 🙂
  • I actually did not like what she did with my lashes.  I have a dear friend who swears by curling her lashes, but I didn’t think it made any positive difference for me, and I didn’t like how the product she used came out.  I’m sticking with my tried & true Cover Girl mascara.
  • I also was not interested in using “primer” on my lids & brows before applying shadow and pencil, and I’m mostly skipping concealer under my eyes too.  I did decide to use both those tricks (just using my old Cover Girl liquid foundation) this weekend when we had a family photo taken, and I might do it on occasion if I’m going out to a nice event, but for everyday, I just don’t like to have that much makeup on my skin.

On beauty … why would I want to do this anyway?  Why spend extra time and money on makeup?  Lord knows I have enough other things to do with my time and money.  Was this frivolous?  Well, I could be wrong, but I mostly think – God gave us a beautiful world, and He’s pleased when we make it more beautiful, with art and music … and maybe even makeup.

On happiness … this trip was a birthday treat, and I did it on my actual birthday.   A friend watched my girls for me, and between drive time, and dropoff/pickup time, and the actual makeover, the trip took up several hours of my day.  Was it the best use of time for my birthday?  I had mixed feelings.  The morning of my birthday, some other friends made spur-of-the-moment plans to take their kids to the zoo, and part of me really wanted to do that instead.  I enjoyed the lesson, but it was a self-focused activity, and I did it alone.  Those two things don’t bring me that much enjoyment!  In the end, I’m glad that I did it – I’ve been happy, doing my makeup the past few days, to feel prettier & more confident – but if I had to do it over again, I don’t think I would do it on my birthday.  And I would try to bring a friend.

Wow, this was a super long blog post for such a superficial topic.  I hope it was enjoyable for all three or four of you who have read this far.  Thanks for reading, friends!  See you next week!


2 thoughts on “before, after, & some thoughts

  1. Love it! Last year, or was it the year before, I didn’t know what to ask for for Christmas, and so my husband and a friend’s husband gave us a spa day coupon, and made dinner afterwards. It was fantastic mostly for the time spent together, but also to get some beauty tasks accomplished. I actually don’t think it’s frivolous- it’s a To Do List worthy item (in moderation, of course).


  2. Not superficial! A moment to show how we can live every part of our life in the kingdom of God, including how we approach our physical beauty. God cares about the little things too.


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