By Shelley Levitt for The Style Glossy
Gorgeous and athletic: What woman doesn’t want to be both? And with the Olympics in London approaching, we’re all going to want to get our sweat on. Whether you decide to try out an Olympic sport or rededicate yourself to jogging, two things you won’t have to choose between are getting fit and looking fabulous.
While you don’t want to show up on the track or court with full-on smoky eyes and matte lips, you also don’t need to reveal a blotchy complexion and lips that are so pallid they become invisible against your skin, says Belinda Moss, a makeup artist who’s worked with celebs like Beyoncé and Jennifer Lopez, as well as with the tennis stars that compete in the U.S. Open.
“You want to look fresh, pretty and clean when you’re being active”, says Moss. “But for most of us, when we’re not wearing any make-up at all, our faces lack depth and dimension and look dull and flat.”
Leslie Munsell has been a frequent make-up artist to Dara Torres, the five-time Olympic swimmer, and tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams. She says that for female athletes, “taking care of the beauty basics” means that “their complexion looks good, their eyes are beautiful and alive and their lips soft, pliant and moist”.
Here’s how to achieve that winning look.
Protect and polish your skin with a moisturising sunscreen. Munsell recommends trying a new kind of product called BB creams. Also known as beauty or blemish balms, these skin care and make-up hybrids go beyond the tinted moisturisers that have become a mainstay for many of us. Popular in Asia for years, the formulas combine the hydration of a moisturiser; the coverage of a foundation; the smoothing effects of a primer; an SPF of 30 or higher; and (depending on the formula) anti-aging, oil-control and pore-minimising benefits.
Swap eye make-up for grooming maintenance. Beautifully shaped brows are the ideal frame for your eyes, magically making them appear wider and brightening your entire face. Tint your pale brows and eyelashes, and you’ll no longer panic if you leave home without a brow pencil or mascara. Munsell suggests matching your brows to your hair colour and — unless you’re alabaster pale — dyeing your lashes black.
Skip the bronzing powder and choose a cream-based formula instead. “Creams blend with your skin rather than sitting on top of it the way powder does”, says Munsell. “Plus, when you work up a sweat, you’ll have a nice glow and not cakey make-up.” Too sweaty? Sop up extra shine with blotting papers rather than with a pressed powder. “Just roll the paper across your skin”, says Moss, “so you’re removing only the shine”.
Reconsider blush. Munsell applies bronzer just below the apples of the cheeks, skipping blush altogether. “When you’re running around, you’ll get flushed naturally, so you don’t need extra colour”, she says. Moss, however, likes to apply a soft pink to make the cheeks pop. She achieves that with a crayon lip stain in place of traditional blush. “It doesn’t move the way blush does”, she says. “The trick is to have a very light touch. Just run a quick swipe across the apples of you cheeks and blend towards your ears.”
Upgrade your lip gloss. Traditional gloss feels sticky and won’t last past your first tennis or volleyball serve. A tinted lip balm or lip stain is a better choice. Or consider another new hybrid: a cross between a balm and gloss. They condition lips while depositing a translucent veil of colour. You can find them in chubby pencil form or traditional twist-up bullets. Look for words like “glossy balm”, “almost lipstick” or “sheer tint” in the product’s name.
Shelley Levitt has contributed to a variety of women’s lifestyle publications.