Make up your way through makeup

no make up

I don’t get make up. I don’t really know how to use it. Sure I wear it every odd weekend when I’m drinking and don’t want my bar rash to be visible… But that’s about the extent of it.

Contouring? What like the landscape of the South African mountain range?

I walked into MAC with a friend the other day and stood there frozen. The fear of putting on a “neutral” lipstick only to find out that it’s actually a cover up stick. Ahh… Yes, real story. It was awkward.

My “fear” of make up, cosmetics and anything else that falls into the “beauty” department probably goes back to my struggle with eczema. Juggling a skin condition all your life makes you anxious to touch anything that may set off a bad reaction. Sit on the grass… enter awful rash, touch something with fragrances… enter puffy redness, put on some cream…enter itchiness. And so on.

The problem stems from the fact that I’ll never truly know what will set my skin off. In order to work around that I’ve had to sift through products and make it up as I go along. The result of having tried hundreds of creams has made me more aware of the junk that’s out there.

The small bit of knowledge I have on the topic comes down to a few simple routines, that involve natural products, without fancy (but actually fake and harmful) ingredients.

To the millions of others who, like myself, make up their way through the beauty isles. Who battle with skin conditions and most of all need an easier approach to the biggest organ – your skin – I’m sharing my few “tips” and “experiences”.


Water is your friend, it’s also free (unless you’re silly enough to pay for bottled water) but most of all it’s the most natural hydrator.

I started noticing that when I went out drinking my ezcema on my hands would be terrible the next morning. After a while I realised that it came down to my skin being so dehydrated. It sounds too simple to be true but water really has improved my eczema, it doesn’t heal it but it helps prevent the extreme dryness.

The nightmare of ‘dry… and oily.. and sensitive skin’

Soft, fragrance free (my favourite word) cleansers are the way to go.

Dermalogica ultra calming cleanser

Dermologica ultracalming-cleanser_5-02_428x448Cetaphil

Cetaphil cleanserThe “agghh my skin is dry but if I put cream on it gets oily” problem:

Answer – use logic, use two creams.

A thin base for all over Proxera Body Emulsion

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 4.44.37 PM

A stronger oil based cream for selected area. – BioNike, Proxera Relipidizing Lipogel very dry skin creamI recently bought the Africology body balm (they’re having a sale online and in store right now). Out of the 13 different body balms there are two which are really good for eczema. The Frangipani and the Chamomile Body Balm, I got the Frangipani because I preferred the lighter natural smell.

What’s cool is that you can apply it to selected areas or you can put some in your bath and use as an oil. Great for complete moisture.

Africology body balmSunblock

No matter what skin you have you’re definitely don’t have the type that can fight the sun. Only Superman does.

I prefer a high factor for my face because essentially I’m ‘allergic’ to sun rays, sounds odd. If my face is in the sun too long it swells up, goes blotchy red and in the worst cases only calms down from an antihistamine shot. That’s also why hats are the best – all about that sun safety 🙂

Eucerin – It’s light and doesn’t have lanolin in / Africology SPF 30 – no artificial colouring or fragrances

Eucerin face sun block

Making it up..

Simple foundation with an SPF to give a matte feel and some powder if my cheeks are feeling especially red

Mac studio fix powder plus foundation Mac Studio fix

And that’s basically it, besides a bit of mascara and bronzer.

Point is, I’m all about simplicity and working around the skin condition I have. It’s not easy waking up with an allergic reaction to pollen or whatever else is in the air.

For the past 20 odd years it’s been about finding out what my skin feels better with and what it reacts badly to. What I’ve come to realise is that I have to treat my skin with the most natural and simplistic products out there.



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