Friday, March 5, 2010

FASHION FAQ: Attack Of The Zit

Dear Budget Belle,

I have a gigantic zit on my face. Not only is it above the surface, but it's radiating red, making it look like an atom bomb was dropped on my chin. Sorry to be so graphic, but it's horrible! What is the correct process to cover this up so that I can be seen in public?

- Pocked and Panicking

Dear Pocked And Panicking,

Don't panic - zits happen, and in this day and age with the increasing toxins in our environment and the large amount of processed food that we're eating, they're happening more and more. Here are a few tricks that can help minimize the appearance of zits:

First of all, skin care. If your breakouts are on the serious side (or are just too frequent for your comfort), you should see a dermatologist. They can provide prescription medication to clear up problems and, in more serious circumstances, give you a cortisone shot to clear up the zit immediately. If you just get the occasional zit, try using an over-the-counter product with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. I like Clean and Clear's Persa-Gel-10.

Now that we've covered how to treat the zit, let's cover it up. If you don't normally use foundation, I recommend you keep one for use in these types of circumstances. Why? Because foundation can double as a concealer - two products in one! First, you want to match your foundation color to the shade on the inside of your wrist (not the outside of your wrist, as that tends to be a little darker than the skin tone on your face.) Since foundation color can be tricky, I recommend purchasing foundation in a department store or beauty boutique where you can try out the different shades.

If you normally use foundation, apply the foundation with a brush as usual, then use a concealer brush (not your fingers) to spot-treat your zit. Put a tiny bit of foundation on the brush and apply it to the zit, just as you would a concealer. Don't forget to blend it in - the last thing you want is your zit to stand out even more because it's darker/lighter than the rest of your face.

If you don't normally wear foundation, you have two options. You can apply the foundation all over your face and follow the steps above, or you can try to simply spot-treat the zit. I recommend applying foundation, since it creates more of a clean finish, but I know that some people are rather finicky when it comes to wearing foundation.

As a final step, I like to use a finishing powder to set everything - I like Make Up For Ever's High Definition Powder. It's pricey, but I've been using the same one for quite some time now and it still does the job perfectly. Also, it's a High Definition powder, made for people working in movies or television - which means it looks great in pictures. Use a powder brush to dip a little bit of the powder onto the inside lid of the jar, then swirl the brush around the lid, tap the excess powder off and blend it onto your face. For zits, I also like to spot- treat them with a little bit of the powder to make sure that the cover-up stays put.

There you have it - simple steps to make your complexion look clear and radiant.

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