On Beauty: Attack the tache without resorting to torture

Aisling McDermott: "Choosing whether to minimise facial hair or leave it be is every woman’s prerogative – but if you choose the former option, here’s how "

‘I could challenge Tom Selleck in a tache-growing competition.’ Photograph: Vince Bucci/Getty Images

‘I could challenge Tom Selleck in a tache-growing competition.’ Photograph: Vince Bucci/Getty Images

 

I have a thing about facial hair. Like many grandmothers, mine had an impressive face of fuzz that had to be razed into oblivion when it got out of control, and I am terrified of developing this beard. Just like her, I have thick, dark hair, pale skin and the odd whisker that seems to suddenly spring forth, fully grown, to be noticed with horror, usually when there are no tweezers nearby.

Forget Movember being just for the men; I know plenty of women who could join in and grow a full-on tache. Facial hair on both men and women is perfectly natural and choosing whether to minimise it or leave it be is every woman’s prerogative. I’m firmly on the facial-hair-minimising side of the fence. Without vigorous pruning, I could challenge Tom Selleck in a tache-growing competition.

Many of us wax, tweeze, laser, thread and even burn the faces off ourselves with depilatory cream, all in the pursuit of a smooth upper lip and chin. Some women employ methods that are barbaric, to say the least. Most hair-removal techniques are at best temporary (there’s no such thing as permanent hair removal, despite what the laser clinics tell you) and most of them hurt like hell.

Even if you have fair or red hair, you probably identify with at least some of this. Although your facial hair might be fine and downy and not immediately visible, putting on foundation will often throw any hair on your face into relief, thicken it and instantly create a “foundation moustache”. This is one of nature’s cruellest tricks. At least dark-haired women know all about their moustache and have had the opportunity to whip it away.

If you’ve noticed this happening and aren’t happy about it, then there are lots of things you can do to make it all less visible.

Application is crucial. If your normal method of applying foundation is to just rub it in with your fingers or swipe it on with a brush, then you’re probably applying foundation from side to side as well as up and down. This means hairs are coated fully from every angle and will stand proudly out, in a thick and luscious manner.

Use a stippling brush and lightly pat foundation in downward strokes. This will make hair lie flat and will only cover one surface.

Do not even think of applying powder on top of foundation to this area. Powder will bulk up the hairs even more.

Many people find that liquid foundation is too thick and sticky and clings to hair, so mineral foundation is a really good choice for the upper-lip area. You can still use your liquid base on the rest of your face and just use mineral make-up on your upper lip or sideburns. Buff in a minimal amount with a kabuki brush and make sure you brush downwards to flatten the hairs.

Twitter @aismcdermott

beauty@irishtimes.com

More at beaut.ie

 

THE PRODUCTS

 

zClarins Skin Illusion Loose Powder Foundation (€37)

I love the built-in brush and the smoothness of this powder. Great for chucking in your handbag for top-ups on the go.

z

 

BareMinerals Original SPF 15 Foundation (€28)

Buff on this mineral foundation very gently so it doesn’t cling to any whiskers. However, it does contain an ingredient called bismuth, which can cause itching, so if you’re sensitive try a brand such as Jane Iredale.

 

zLily LoLo Mineral Foundation SPF15 (£13.49 at lilylolo.co.uk)

Cult favourite Lily Lolo is loved for its pure, finely milled and bismuth-free powders. Available in 18 shades.

 

x

 

Real Techniques Stippling Brush (€7.70)

f you can’t give up your liquid foundation in favour of minerals, then a stippling brush will cut down on the amount of product you need to use, creating less bulk.

 

 

sAISLING LOVES . . .

Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer

The best way to describe this is as a liquid lipstick. It lasts much longer than gloss, is as highly pigmented as lipstick, and it feels soft and balm-like. Available in 20 shades.

 

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