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How do you approach the counters?

You might remember me posting a while ago about what makeup to use for once in a while stuff. Your advice really helped me and I've been really pleased with the things I have for when I want to dress it up a little!

So, now I am thinking about making another step up! I finally am clear (yay!) after using Spironolactone & Tazorac. I have plenty of scars and I am going to talk to my derm about scar treatment next time I'm in. In the meantime though I am hopefully starting an internship in the Summer and I NEED to give myself a makeover. My jeans and hooded sweatshirt aren't going to cut it for the workplace. So, I'm starting to explore ideas for a more 'professional' look.

I would like to go to one of those department store counters and get my colors matched and get some tips on how to apply foundations, etc since I've never used them before. However, I am really nervous about this because if they ask me questions about anything make-up related I'm not going to have any answers for them! It's hard enough for me to go get my hair cut because they always ask me how I want it cut and how I usually style it and I'm like, "Just do whatever you think looks good", which is a really stupid answer! My mom, like me, is a total tomboy and so are all my friends so I have noone to turn to in hopes of helping me figure out how to look like a professional woman instead of a college student.

I'm also worried about them giving me things that will take me an hour to get right in the mornings. I need something that is pretty fool proof and I can put everything I need on in like 15 minutes. Can you guys give me some advice so I can go in to get some help from a make-up counter without getting suckered into a lot of stuff? I'm not too worried about the money part, if it doesn't break me out and it looks nice and doesn't need me to fuss with it 10 times a day then I'll pay more for it.

Thanks so much you gals, you are such a great help to me!!

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I first went to a makeup counter as a birthday present from my grandma at 14. At the time I thought nothing of it and wasn't intimidated because I was only 14 so everyone assumed I knew nothing about makeup. however I can see how you would be nervous at college age. I would tell the lady doing your makeup that you're new to the whole thing and say that you don't want something that takes a lot of time in the morning. They'll appreciate you saying what your needs are. I would suggest saying that you want a natural look if they ask you what look you're going for. If they ask you what colors you want be honest and say you're not sure. They'll figure it out for you! And then you'll learn more about what you like and don't like and will have more of an opinion after a while. Also I would think about what finish of foundation you want beforehand like matte, dewy,etc. so you're not talked into something you don't want just because it may the product they're promoting at the moment. Don't be intimidated. Just go in with the attitude that makeup is supposed to be fun. Also, go to a makeup counter during a weekday morning or afternoon, NOT Saturday! They'll be much more patient and willing to take their time if they're not busy.

Good Luck!

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Just another hint.....buy nothing at the time that you have the makeover done!! Say that you want to see how it looks in different lightings (ie natural sunlight) because the lighting in the stores does not always tell the truth. Get the lady's card who gives you the makeover, maybe buy a skincare product or two, but DO NOT Buy any foundation or concealor until you have seen it from your car's rear view mirror. Lipstick and eye color are ok to buy, but I personally prefer Loreals eye color.......smooths on just as nicely and doesn't crease even without that stuff they try to sell you to put under the eyeshadow.

Clinique would be a good counter to go to...they have a Pore Minimizing line with 3 products which are great for scars.......you can use them without a foundation too if you don't have any redness/hyperpigmentation to cover up.

And whatever you do, always remember to keep the receipt in case you do give in to the pressure and buy something that doesn't work for you. You CAN return things.

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oh, and don't be fooled by their overly made-up looks. Most of the women at those counters are nice and will work with you to make sure you get the look you want.

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Just go there knowing exactly what you want to buy. Tell them what you don't like about other ones, and what you want in this one: what coverage, the feel, what type, etc. Don't buy anything else they suggest unless you really want to (ie they show you something, and it really does turn out to be the perfect color, or have an ingredient list you've been searching for, etc). If they actually do a makeover, it's good manners to buy something. Otherwise, wait until you see yourself in several different lighting situations, and can make sure the makeup lasts all day. For that reason, it's good to stop at the counter in the morning. If you're only there to buy foundation, go there wearing your base (moisturizer or whatever) and no makeup; or if you wear makeup, bring your skincare stuff with you..makeup will behave differently over difft bases. If it's a liquid foundation, ask for a sample...then you can try it in the comfort of your own home. Otherwise, I usually apply it myself there...if you only want to buy foundation, there isn't much reason for a makeover and kinda having to buy something. If you want an entire makeup look, than a makeover is the way to go..you'll be buying eyeshadow anyway, and this usually doesn't have problems with wear, etc, so is safe to buy if the color is good.

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if you're clear, I'd suggest giving powder foundation a try. I use Shiseido powdery foundation, and it has excellent reviews on makeupalley.com. The coverage isn't enough for active acne, but will likely be enough for you now. Powder foundations need a base (some oil or a moisturizer) to stick to though...I add some emu oil to my morning topical otherwise little powder would stick to my face. I was ecstatic when my skin got clear enough that I could switch over to powder foundation. Other people like mac studiofix, but the reviews I've read on makeupalley.com seem to be quite mixed (some love it, an equal amount of people seem to hate it)...you'll have to try it to see for yourself

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Thank you so much ladies! There is lots of advice in here I hadn't even thought of, such as time of day to go! It would make sense to catch them when they're not busy. I am definitely going for a natural look, so there's one thing I can say now. I didn't realize you could take stuff back! How could they sell it to other people once someone else has used it? Seems like a health code thing or something, I don't know, but VERY good to know that you can.

I wish I could go in there knowing exactly what I wanted, but that's the problem! I don't know what dewy, matte finishes are. I don't know what colors or products or types of coverage work for me. I don't wear makeup and never have so I'm the definition of clueless, hehe. However! I think if I can just find the right lady at the counter to help me feel at ease and who is patient all should go well. Now I've just got to find time to go during the week.

Thanks again ladies, I'll let you know how it goes and then you can tell me if I could swindled or not, lol.

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A few more tips:

- If you take a current picture of a model or actress who has a look you like, then the cosmetician has somethng to start with.

- If you have the opportunity, watch the makeup shows on QVC or HSN. Don't get bogged down with all the hundreds of products they are pushing. Just listen for techniques and what is the current trend. Remember, when in doubt, it's always safe to go conservative.

- If you have access to them, consider trying pure mineral makeups. There is more pigment in these products so you don't need to apply as much and they usually don't aggravate acne. They are also almost foolproof and when the interact with the oils in your skin, they look very natural.

Good luck.

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