I'm a little obsessed with Meryl Streep's makeup in It's Complicated, which hit stores today on DVD. It's so fresh and simple -- the makeup, I mean. Granted, Streep appears to have wonderful skin. Still, her youthful makeup can't have taken more than a few basics, really.
Here's how I see it:
1) Moisturizer -- very important. Try Burt's Bees Naturally Ageless Line Diminishing Day Lotion ($27.79), Neostrata Intense Daytime Anti-Wrinkle Repair SPF 15 ($57.49), RoC Retin-Ox Multi-Correxion Day and Night Cream ($41.89) or Olay Definity Refining Lotion with UV Protection ($35.99) which adds a glow people will think is all you (for reals). If your skin is dry, first apply a moisturizing serum such as Burt's Bees Naturally Ageless Intensive Repairing Serum ($27.79), on patted-dry skin post cleansing, and follow with moisturizer; wait two to five minutes before the next step.
2) Liquid foundation, such as Origins Youthtopia SPF 15 Skin Firming Foundation ($33 at The Bay), or for more coverage, Smashbox Camera Ready Full-Coverage Foundation ($44 at Shoppers and Sephora). Another option is CoverGirl & Olay Simply Ageless Foundation ($16.89) -- it'll surprise you. (I gushed to journalist pal Doris M one day about how smashing her skin looked; she swore her light application of Simply Ageless was the reason.)
3) Concealer, and honestly, my go-to is MAC Select Moisturecover ($20) for its creamy liquid texture, so I have to recommend it again. If you have really dark circles in contrast with your pale skin, consider Conceal FX Camouflage Concealer ($27 at Shoppers). You need one shade lighter than your usual, it's a little stickier to work with, but disappears right into skin and covers beautifully.
4) Ultra-fine setting powder if you have oily skin. Try MAC Select Sheer/Loose powder ($27); dust over T-zone with a big fluffy brush.
5) Brow pencil in a blonde-friendly shade -- a must for pale or sparse brows. Defined brows sharpens the appearance of your bone structure and gives eyes framework. L'Oreal Paris Wear Infinity Eye Shadow Quad in Earthscape ($9.99) is brilliant for all brow hues from light to dark and neutral eye makeup, too. Benefit Browzings in Light ($35 at Shoppers, Holt's and Sephora) is another genius shade for blondes; if you prefer pencil, try Benefit Instant Brow Pencil/Light-to-Medium ($25), which has a spooley on the end for blending.
6) Rather than eye pencil, plummy eye shadow -- Streep has green eyes -- applied with an angled shadow brush. No harsh lines here. Try MAC Folie ($17.50), which will also work for hazel eyes. If you have blue eyes, if you already have the L'Oreal Paris quad in Earthscape, you win. If you have brown eyes, go a deeper plummy, like MAC Mystery ($17.50).
7) If you have colouring like Streep's, brown mascara is where it's at. Again I happily recommend CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Blasting ($8.99), or Clinique Lash Power ($18) which has a get-every-wee-lash brush and a tube-technology formula that stubbornly stays put even during your spinning class, Bambi's mother's death scene or your ninth viewing of Truly, Madly, Deeply, yet washes off easily with really warm water.
8) Cheek glaze, obvs -- Mary Kay Cheek Glaze in Pomegranate ($20). Guaranteed brilliantly natural for any skintone, and limited edition so get. it. NOW. Then send as many make-cheek-glaze-permanent emails to Mary Kay, or tweets to @marykaycanada as you can.
9) Tinted lipbalm, such as Burt's Bees Replenishing Lip Balm with Pomegranate ($4.49) or just balm if you have naturally rosy lips. Streep's lips look bare -- so un-vain.
See? Not so complicated. Less complicated than most relationships, guaranteed. And maybe less complicated than you -- take this quiz to find out.