It takes more than a dab of an interesting color to complete a fabulous makeup. When you get everything just right – and that could take a couple of hours for evening or photography – you want it to stay put. Compare it to slaving over a most bounteous Thanksgiving feast. Later, are you going to prepare Beef Wellington? No! You want your artistry to last a while. Years ago, there weren’t good products to achieve a long-lasting makeup. You had to wet a sponge and drag it over this super-pressed, cakey powder. When you smiled, you looked like some sort of over-baked cookie cracking. Now, there are new things on the market to get you ready for the ‘gram or in-person! I was happy to be hosted to experience them.
After your put on your foundation, you have flat, even color. That’s your canvas. But then, you have to go back in and create shape: planes, peaks and contours. You do that with a combination of color, texture and tone (warm or cool). Shaping products come in every formulation you can imagine, from gel to powder to glitters. One of the first books I read to learn how to apply makeup was Way Bandy’s Designing Your Face. He certainly considered that one of the easiest ways for mere mortals to re-create or further define bone structure is through use of creams or tints to adjust your foundation accordingly.
Ruby Kisses 3D Contour Cream is an 8 color kit that comes in three ranges: Light, Light-Medium and Medium-Dark. Within the kit, you’ll find cool and warm concealers/creamy foundations to help hide blemishes and discolorations, a color corrector for dark circles, a shimmery highlighter, as well as a warm and cool toned contour cream. The kit comes with a little picture/map to give you a start on placement.
These are not heavy, densely pigmented creams that you’ll need two professional applicators to get on and blend. They are sheer and silky to the touch; just do 3 light dots on wherever you want to apply color. They’re even easier to blend than cream rouge. The coverage is buildable, so you can do super-subtle looks for daytime.
I realize there are different schools of thought behind color correctors. The kits have an orange-toned one for assistance in covering the deepest, darkest of under eye circles. Color correctors must have a concealer on top – for every 1 dot of the orange, use 2 dots of a concealer shade. Blend carefully: you don’t want to mix the 2 colors. Because you’re looking at a few layers of makeup, I’d say this is best for low lighting or photographic situations.
We can’t say there wasn’t fair warning: there was a lot of discussion several years ago when HD screens came out. It was well known that makeup was going to have to keep up with the intense scrutiny that the new technology brought. I remember realizing that a star of one of the longest-running soaps was recovering from a facelift: her coverup makeup looked like Silly Putty spread all over her face. I couldn’t understand it: this show had brought in billions of dollars to the network over the years and won countless awards. Why couldn’t their makeup artists get with the times?
So, it’s important to set your makeup with a high-quality powder, to keep creams from shifting, to help blend powders. Here’s an eye-opening fact: you want a colorless powder, not one matched to your foundation/skin tone. Otherwise, you look too mask-like. Really. It’s true. Ruby Kisses HD Set & Forget Setting Powder shakes out. I just learned from a Robert Welsh makeup artist video that is exactly what you want to do – don’t put your applicator in the container. It’s much more hygienic to shake some onto a tissue and dip your brush onto that. They do offer it in a few colors, including banana, which might help you if you have severe discolorations. Once applied and buffed in a teeny bit, it leaves a matte veil over your makeup and sets it like crazy! I used the most impossible to set product: a very flaky, glittery eye shadow. This is how well it set: do all your blending before application of the powder, because nothing is going to move! I wore it in humid conditions, for hours. It stayed put like an oak tree.
Do you have a special outdoor occasion – wedding, sports, cheer, photo shoot – where you don’t want to look shiny or greasy? Kiss New York Professional Matte Finish Setting Spray takes the matte level even past powder. You get a velvety look that stays that way. I would definitely suggest it for any gender who wants to look cool, calm and collected in photos. Lightly spritz it away from your face a few inches and give it a good minute or so to dry.
Now, sometimes you want to set your makeup without any additional effects. You just want to look “normal”. Perhaps you have layers of acne medications and concealers that you don’t want to disappear. Maybe you wear a medical-level full coverage foundation. Possibly you have some form of alopecia and would be embarrassed if your drawn-on eyebrows disappeared. I feel your pain! As it turns out, just about 30 years ago, I had a gas stove explode in my face. Thank God, I healed. But when the weather is harsh or I’m exposed to the harsh sun, those burn scars come right back, as if I were just a month out of the accident. I’m fairly skillful at covering it up now – there are better products with a broader range of colors out now – but if the cover-up disappears, I can’t bear to face anyone. Only a few people have seen me like that. But Kiss New York Professional ProTouch Setting Spray comes in very handy. You spritz it on and let it dry for a minute. It does not change the finish of whatever you’ve applied, whether it’s creamy, dewy, eggshell, matte. You can’t see it, even in unforgiving phone selfies. You can’t feel it, either. It’s a great tool to have in your arsenal.