Friday, February 19

Late to the party

Beth at The Stories of A to Z is hosting a "Get Your Face On" party this week. Beth originally wrote a post called "Decorating My Face" that demonstrated just what a difference make-up can make to a woman's appearance. This week, she gave her readers a chance to get in on the fun and show what a difference it can make to decorate their own faces.

I read Beth's original post with interest, and I checked out several party participants, never planning to join myself. But then I realized that perhaps there was something I could contribute to this party. Because I noticed that most of the party participants were young. Not many older girls were participating. Now, please note: my definition of "young" has changed over the years. I conveniently upped the age of "youngness" to coincide with my own age. As sad as it is to realize it, though, I must now admit that the only people who consider me "young" are senior citizens. I like to think I'm young at heart, but the calendar says I'm 46, and that's past the point of youthfulness.

So here I am, an older party guest.

And here I am fresh from the shower:

I am not the person to consult for make-up advice. I am fairly fickle and awfully cheap when it comes to beauty products. Currently I'm using L'Oreal mineral makeup for foundation and concealer, but that may change soon. Still, I get the job done. So on to the "after" shots:

Wait. Am I the only one who struggled with taking photos of herself? First I did this:

Duh, Richella.

Next I took a lot of shots that cut off my head. Then, once I found myself in the lens, I struggled to get the light right. Although I must say that this one shot taken with the flash makes me look as if the presence of God is nigh:

Kind of a Song of Bernadette look, don't you think?

Finally I reached the point of frustration (or silliness, as the case may be):

And I finally came up with a couple of shots that work fairly well:

So that's me. And although I can't offer you any great make-up tips, I can tell you a few things from this vantage point:

  • Wear sunscreen. Believe me, when you're in your mid-40's, you're going to wish you had worn sunscreen. It doesn't have to be expensive--I use Olay Complete, which was recommended by my dermatologist. It contains a physical barrier to sunlight (micronized zinc) along with a chemical barrier.
  • Wear mascara. In my opinion, no other product makes as big a difference in the overall appearance of your face. Most women can wear black mascara and look great. With my fair skin, I opt for black-brown mascara. And curl your lashes before you put the mascara on. If you've never used an eyelash curler, don't be scared. You can do it.
  • If you have great eyebrows, be thankful. When I was 15 years old, I tweezed my eyebrows to the point that they were pencil-thin. And they have never fully grown back. Please, if you have daughters, help them with their eyebrows. Don't let them get tweezer-happy. I have to use a stencil and eyebrow make-up just to get the rather thin result you see here.
  • Just do it. I know how sometimes it feels as if you just don't have time for make-up. When my kids were very small, I quit wearing make-up for awhile, thinking I didn't have time for it. But then one day I stopped in front of the mirror and realized that I wasn't looking my best. So I timed myself doing an everyday routine, and I discovered that it took less than six minutes to complete. A pretty small investment of time for such a big impact, really.

Does all this talk of make-up seem frivolous to you? I don't think it is. Looking one's best can be a huge spirit-lifter. And for someone like me, who has battled life-long insecurity about her appearance, make-up can be a real help. Of course, all the make-up in the world can't cover a heart full of discontent or a spirit of ugliness. Real beauty is found within.

But a quick lick of mascara never hurts.


  1. I love the angelic pic the best because you truly look like an lovely!

  2. i have written this before to you however... you are beautiful... your inner beauty shows through to the outside!
    are you irish?
    my hubby says irish women get younger looking and more beautiful with age... at any rate, you are so not looking your age!

    have a wonderful weekend

  3. Hi Richella! I am so happy to see someone else around my age posting!.. Well, I am a year or so older... But anyways, here I hear about mineral makeup AGAIN! I am not happy with my foundation makeup anymore as it seems to only accentuate the lines I'm trying to conceal! I want to try mineral makeup, but are you saying you want to try a different kind of mineral makeup, or just a different kind of foundation makeup altogether? Well, whatever the case, you really do look great, and yes I had trouble with the camera too! Nice to meet you today! This has been fun and quite the experience to remember! Enjoy your weekend! ~tina

  4. Hi,
    I think you look wonderful and your skin is really radiant and wrinkle free. I'm 50, and spent way too much time in the sun when I was in my teens and twenties, and I'm now paying the price! I have crows feet and lots of freckles even though I'm a brunette with dark brown eyes. So... good advice you gave about the sun screen. I use it now, but wish I would have been wiser in my earlier years. And you are absoulutely right about inner beauty.
    Caroline in CA

  5. You look beautiful in both pictures. :-) I agree about mascara.. for fair skin people like myself I look like a ghost with no makeup, especially eye-makeup. I was blessed with blonde eyelashes.. which is NOT a blessing. Mascara=must have! Have a great weekend!

  6. Richella- you are SO beautiful and you look 30 years old. Seriously! I hardly ever wear make-up right now - not b/c I mind taking the time to put if on but b/c I am so tired at night I don't want to mess with taking it off!

  7. You're a natural beauty Richella and look beautiful. Thanks for taking the time to link up! And yes, taking pics of yourself is no easy task unless you have an iMac that has a camera inside. (That's how I did it. :)

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. I was so happy to see your post! I too am in my mid-40's with fair skin and red hair. You have a beautiful, natural, youthful and healthy look about you. I spend about the same amount of time on my makeup as you. Glad you shared your favorite products...especially the sunscreen. I have to agree with you about the mascara. (As a teen I once had mono. I was sick in bed, wearing no makeup and a guy friend came to visit. He took one look and gasped..."you have no eyes!")

    There is no doubt, the best beauty radiates from within...and in that respect, you glow! = )

  10. Richella you are gorgeous! You have the prettiest green eyes and long lashes. Thank you for the beauty tips and at 44 I'm right behind you.

    ~Blessings, ~Melissa :)

  11. Great post! Love your pictures! You have great eyes and gorgeous hair!

  12. You are natural and beautiful inside and out!! I wish I looked half as good without makeup. LOL at your glow and the presence of God is nigh!! I need to pick up some Olay complete. I used to use it, then tried something else which I'm not crazy about, and now I need to come back. Love ya~

  13. Your before and after were both stunning! Thanks for the reminder to protect skin from the sun and the encouragement to put forth the effort. With small kids, I struggle to make the time for myself some days. Miki

  14. i have the same eyebrow issues...overplucked in high school as well. mine grew back kinda patchy and VERY sparse...sooo annoying! interestingly, i've read that rogaine (yes, rogaine) works on eyebrows. i've never gotten around to trying it, though!

  15. You're my SITS Saturday partner -- and I just blogged this week about my Georgio-armani make-over! Kismit! Please go over and read it for his tips and to see my experience/result. You are so pretty! And btw, I also got too tweezer-happy at 15...

  16. Dear Richella, you are beautiful, inside and out. :)

  17. Richella, you are so beautiful, even without makeup! I just kept looking at your before picture just thinking, "She's so beautiful!" : )

    You seriously cracked me up with the "presence of God" thing.

    And I TOTALLY agree with you about curling your lashes and using mascara. I have okay lashes but they are stick. straight. I mean, STICK. STRAIGHT. If I didn't use an eyelash curler, even if I used mascara you couldn't see my eyelashes! When I asked my husband for a $17 Sephora eyelash curler for Christmas in 2008, he thought I had lost my mind. But Oh, the joy of having a decent curler!

    You are so right about looking our best having a positive impact on our attitudes. Even when I stay home all day I like to put makeup on, just so when I look in the mirror I'm not all, "BLECH!" at myself. :D

  18. You're full of beans. There's no way you are 46! You are so pretty. :)

    I started using a sunscreen each day on my face when I was 22 or 23, I think. It's a habit I am fairly religious about. I like Clinique's Super City Oil Free sunblock (I think that's what it's called). It has a slight tint to it, and is very very lightweight. I like it b/c it doesn't feel greasy.

    I am very late returning visits this weekend. :s I laughed about the "decaf hazelnut" comment from your son. Too cute!

  19. Thank you for your comment on my blog. Yes, small world, re your husband being an Arkansan! I read your profile earlier, and had to smile b/c we also share the same movie list. My top 10 movies include 'To Kill--Mockingbird" "Rear Window" (my fave) and -- of all discrepancies - WWII movies -- "Best Years of Our Lives" "While You Were Gone" up to "Battleground" and more, anyone? I'm such a movie fanatic, though, I have top 10 genres rather than lists...I will be back....

  20. You are beautiful! And I love your tweezer wisdom...I got tweezer happy when I was younger too, and I am still trying to make up for it! Thanks for sharing your lovely face with us!

    Blessings, Grace

  21. You do look very angelic :) I love all the pictures and you have just the right amount of make up on to really show off your beauty and flawless skin!

  22. You look beautiful :) I just put make up on today, not something I do every day but I feel much better for it, so I should start to do it more.
    Have a lovely Monday, it's so good to be back home.

  23. Well, girl, you are beautiful, with or without makeup. Bravo to all of you who braved Beth's challenge. You really look great!

  24. Great post! I loved the pictures - even the silly one. I think this is terrific advice. And a great post! Marija

  25. Well I am 43 and I am glad you posted your tips because you are gorgeous! I do very little with my face but a few careful precautions and tips like you shared go a long way! I have pretty thin eyebrows too, thanks to my low thyroid. Fortunately I still have hair on my head! But I used to have TWICE as much. Ah, the joys of earthly bodies and aging!

    You are so lovely, your before picture is equally as stunning! And the one with you in the presence of God, you had me laughing!!



Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I read every one; they make my day. If you have a specific question, please be sure your email address is attached to your profile or leave your email address in the comment; I'll get back to you as soon as I can. Every blessing!