Don’t worry. You’re not about to read a surprising blog post with the revelation that actually Katie Marie is a dude – I already have boobs and a va-jay-jay, so fear not.
When I say it’s time for me to become a girl, I’m not talking about that kind of thing. I’m talking about a far more terrifying and complicated matter, well for me anyway.
For almost 40 years I have managed to survive completely without one thing that everyone of a female persuasion seems to know SO much about.
I’m talking about makeup.
The most I have ever applied to my own face is the odd bit of mascara before shows – which I started doing about 2 years ago. I can count on one hand how many times other people have applied full makeup to my face and when they do I always think I look silly. Whether I actually look silly or not is another matter. That’s how it makes me FEEL on the inside.
Figuring out what the bloody hell everything is and how to use it has always seemed like some super complicated math algorithm that only certain people seem to understand.
But after much deliberation – I have decided it’s time for me to knuckle down and get jiggy with some makeup math.
Part of the reason I haven’t ever thought about makeup is probably due me being a very outdoorsy, earthy kind of chick who comes from a little town (Totnes in Devon) known throughout the UK for its alternative ways.
I may not look like a hippy, but almost everything about me is hippy.
Heart = Hippy Heart.
Skin = Hippy Skin.
Blood = Hippy blood.
Hair = definitely Hippy Hair.
You get the general idea.
I’m a vegetarian of 30 years, I love animals, support local and indie places, drink green tea, buy organic food.
Blah blah hippy blah.
So when I lived in Totnes I would go surfing A LOT. I loved feeling the energy of the ocean and believe it or not, the water provided me with my daily hair and beauty regime.
Trying to catch waves meant water bashing into my face fairly often. The salt from the water made my skin feel so soft and cleansed (like a facial scrub). I also loved salt water in my hair because it meant I didn’t have tons of fly-aways and it used to feel so healthy and thick (I’ve replaced all that with hair spray) and if I missed it I had a however-high wave go right into my face and up into my nose, clearing out all my sinuses (like a netty pot).
I have deduced that the water, combined with living on a farm AND me not being terribly girlie are all reasons why I have zero skills in the makeup department.
But (hopefully) that’s about to change.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m by no means planning on having a daily makeup routine. Not to say that there’s anything wrong with that at all. If daily makeup works for you then that’s awesome. It’s just not my thing. To me it seems very exhausting / annoying / time consuming to do it aaalll the time, so this is purely for shows and photographs.
In order to figure it all out, I changed my mindset and tried thinking about makeup in exactly the same way as music. It’s just another skill to learn. I spent time teaching myself various things about the instruments I play, all I have to do now is apply that same mindset to makeup.
I knew it was going to take some very special person indeed to help me. Someone with Jedi-like knowledge. Thankfully that magical person was Phoebe at the bareMinerals shop in Austin.
The bareMinerals store is basically a giant room made up of multiple mirrors and extremely white lights that instantly make you take on the appearance of a creature from the underworld, asking yourself do I really look THAT bad without makeup?
Phoebe greeted me with a friendly smile and asked how she could help. I truthfully told her that I have NO idea what I’m doing and needed some advice on where to start.
I’m not sure if at this point she thought I was exaggerating a little about my makeup knowledge, but she replied reassuringly with ‘oh that’s ok, sit yourself down on that chair and I’ll bring out some things I think you’ll need’.
A few minutes later Phoebe arrived back, armed with an eclectic mix of brushes and stuff. Makeup stuff.
‘So!’ she said with much enthusiasm, ‘I brought out a few blushers and a bronzer you might like, as well as this primer which works amazingly well, aaaaand this is a really great eyeliner, oh and this is my favourite compact that has a selection of shadows that I use all the time. Also these are some of my go-to brushes, this one is great for foundation and this one here is great for under the eyes. Any questions before we start?’.
For a few moments I stared blankly at the mix of products spread out before me, trying not to feel utterly overwhelmed. I responded with ‘Yes, I do have a question actually. Sooooo, what’s that?’.
‘Oh, which one?’ she asked.
‘Well, all of it’ I replied.
Oh dear. Poor Phoebe.
I was expecting her to look at me like I was a complete nincompoop, or at the very least give me an extremely disapproving glare and retort with something like I didn’t know people like you existed!
Thankfully I was extremely wrong.
Phoebe just smiled and said ‘ok, let me go through each thing step by step – I’ll show you step by step how to use each and every item I have here so you’ll be able to do everything yourself just fine, if you have any questions as we go just ask’.
As you may have guessed, I had a TON of questions, all of which were probably very silly, but Phoebe was SO unbelievably patient and kind. I was sat there for a couple of hours while she showed me the ways of the Jedi makeup artist. I learnt about ‘bronzer’ and ‘blush’ and what type of brushes work best when applying them. I found out how to apply mascara without looking like a clown. I took mental notes on absolutely everything and at the end of our session Phoebe very kindly wrote down each step so I could do it all myself.
I then bought myself a fancy starter kit with everything I need. I would even go as far as to say opening the box was pretty exciting (now I know what the bloody hell everything is of course).
Thus far, my journey into Makeupland has been a lot less scary and more interesting than I thought it would be.
The photo below is all Phoebe’s handy work and my mission is to try and re-create it, armed with detailed instructions (of course!):
I chose bareMinerals because I wanted makeup that was paraben free and not tested on animals (see, I told you. Hippy). I also couldn’t have picked a nicer person to get me started. Not once did Phoebe laugh at me or make me feel stupid or inferior. She explained everything in a clear and concise way and even liked when I compared the Mineral Veil to washing your car and putting the wax on afterwards to keep everything on there 😉
And so, my makeup adventures have officially begun. Wish me luck! And if you have any hints and tips feel free to comment below, I will probably need a lot of guidance 😉