Let’s face it, this winter in New York City has been obnoxious, to say the least. And it’s only mid-January! We still have at least another month and a half of this nonsense to suffer through. Apparently we are expecting yet another snowstorm within 24 hrs. Yippee. How much more is a city gal expected to take? Is it not bad enough that we have to tramp about town in heavy, bulky and (let’s face it) largely unfashionable winter gear? Should climbing filthy snowbanks the size of the Andes mountains just to get a coffee and random life sustaining essentials from the corner deli be considered an acceptable way to live? Well, apparently “Mother Nature” in her infinite wisdom seems to think that no, it is not bad enough, and yes, we should just jolly well accept it.
Be that as it may, this Examiner refuses to bow down and let her rip my face off. Literally. Between the constant blizzards, whipping wind, and extremely dry heat once one actually reaches ones indoor destination, one’s skin is charred to the max! Never mind the constant tearing from the wind and the cold! Oh yes, and the random bouts of rain thrown in for good measure. NOT good for keeping a gal looking her best. There’s nothing like getting to work with parched and chapped skin accompanied by (what you thought was waterproof) mascara and eyeliner streaming down your raw cheeks. Oh yes. Breakfast of champions. However, much to “Ma Nature’s” infinite dissapointment, there are a few secret weapons available to the New York City chicadee to thwart even her most “Disney villan-esque” attempts at making us even remotely less than fabulous! Mirror, mirror on the wall, we can still be the fairest of them all!
We all know that the basis of a fabulous look is the skin. It doesn’t matter if you’re going mega natural or doing some sort of Lady Gaga meets RuPaul sci-fi drag queen. The better the skin looks, the better the everything else looks. Period. And there are a few items that have come to light that can handle the challenge of keeping your skin in tip top shape during these wretched winter months. These are the results of testing endless products not only on myself, but also various clients and friends, etc. Is this a scientific panel? Hell no. Simply “real world” experiments conducted on willing victims (er, uh, I mean participants, yeah, that’s it,) by an aesthetician looking for the best reccomendations for her clients and friends.
The first of which is Kinerease Cream. Fragrance free and non irritating; it immediately took away the raw, red appearance and within minutes my skin no longer felt as if it were going to crack like a plaster mask. The same feedback was recieved from a client with thin, crispy, raw, pale skin with severe allergies. I dare say it’s a winner all around. Now, mind you, the stuff ain’t cheap at $119 per tube. But you do NOT need to use a lot of product to get results. One tube should easily last you from November through February. Available at your local Sephora or www.sephora.com.
Next on the list of winter weather beaters is Lierac Hydra Chrono Extreme Balm. This stuff is no joke. According to both the label and the testers results, this stuff is made for hydration, hydration, and hydration! If your skin is falling off in chunks, or worse, then this is the product for you. As long as you are not sensitive to fragrance. Of all the testers, only the ones sensitive to fragrance (myself included) had any complaint. It REALLY keeps your skin hydrated, but depending on your sensitivity to perfume (it’s a French line, what do you expect) you may be able to use it willy nilly, as needed, or not at all. Most people who are sensitive to fragrance have a reaction in about 30 seconds, i.e. me. So simply try a bit on your cheek and you will know in a hot minute if it’s for you. Hopefuly it is, because it’s fantastic stuff. Not cheap, but somewhat resonable at $50 per jar. Available in the Look Boutique or Skin Wellness Center at your local Duane Reade. Also available at your local CVS on 53rd and Lexington Ave.
And sometimes the budget just doesn’t avail itself of the top of the line remedies that we would like. God knows, most of us have been in that position where “beauty supplies” had to take back seat to the rent. But fear not, there is also a lower priced remedy/cure for the notorious NYC winter out there as well! Not as all encompassing a product as the two aforementioned (i.e. anti-aging,etc) but for massive benefits on the cheap, nothing can beat pure jojoba oil. Not the half assed stuff. It must be 100% pure jojoba oil. Even for oily skins, this stuff is a miracle. It hydrates and sinks in instantly without leaving a greasy residue. Unless you use WAY too much. Use the recommended pea size amount. It hydrates, calms, and soothes even sensitive, irritated skins. This stuff has been a staple of all my clients (including my mother) for many years. While it’s not a substitute for anti-aging products, it’s a great staple on it’s own and a fabulous addition to any beauty routine. Well worth the average price of $15. at any health food store in NYC.
That leaves us to the two basics of a fashionable NYC chicadee’s look. Lipstick and mascara. Well, I must say, there are MANY good waterproof mascaras on the market. However, the best by far is Makeup Forever Aqua Smokey Lash. That stuff will not come off during a monsoon, never mind a blizzard. It will take some effort to remove it. So if ultimate staying power is not your biggest concern, then don’t go for this. It has may other features; Volume, length, seperation, oh yes! But it is truly hard to remove, which is what makes it so good for this time of year. Reasonable at $22. Available at your local Sephora, or www.sephora.com.
Now for the last winter quick fix! While it may be something we don’t often think about quite as much in winter, our lipstick says volumes! Just wearing a tinted balm doesn’t always cut it. It’s great when it does, but when something more is needed……..A secret treasure is Milani Lipstick Pencils. They have somehow managed to merge the long wearing capabilities of a pencil with the metallic/cream formula of a lipstick. This particular formula has only been tested on myself and two other females. None of my Drag Queen friends have stepped up to the plate yet. Just wanna throw that out there! However, it is an absolute bargain at $6.99 At CVS.
Well, we have yet another bloody blizzard to overcome early tommorw. Yep, welcome to New York City, kids! Hop on the sled and join the ride!