inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #26 of 141: Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 7 Oct 01 02:44

That would be my concern also, as demonstrated to me by the women with the
tattooed lips.

As long as we're talking about going under the needle, let's talk a bit
about going under the knife.  In your book, Cynthia, there's a paragraph
that reads, in part "...we've been looking for the Fountain of Youth at
the cosmetic counter.  We spend untold millions, no make that billions, of
dollars yearly on potions, salves, gels, and creams in the hope of slowing
or reversing the wrinkles and lines of time.  Here's the real skinny:  
There is no magic bullet or miracle cream.  You cannot turn back the clock
or undo what years of gravity, indifference, sun exposure, and
environmental pollutants have done to your skin - unless, of course, you
have an intimate and ongoing relationship with your plastic surgeon..."

So, when is plastic surgery the solution?
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #27 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Sun 7 Oct 01 10:30
Fawn: Yes, Retin-A is very very drying and, as you know, since it is
basically resurfacing your skin over time, it means that the top 3 or
so layers of the Stratum Corneum (the top layer of the epidermis which
is about 10 layers thick or the ply of a piece of Xerox paper in
microscopic terms) are being removed by this chemical. And the means
that yur skin is terriby sun-sensitive.

I would ask the dermatologist who prescribed the Retin-A what kind of
moisturizer they would recommend as not to interfere with the action of
the Retin-A. Primariy, it would have to be pretty benign, ie. no AHA
or BHA or retinol in it because that would be redundant and overkill.
Just because these moistuizers with AHAs, etc. in them seem fairly low
in active incgredient percentage, doesn't mean they don't work.

So: to tell you the truth, I would get something very very plain and
wear it to keep your skin protected. Like Clinique's yellow lotion. But
then, I seem to remember that you have very sensitive skin, Fawn. So,
go to the cosmetic department of the brands you'd like to try and get
samples. If you can handle the smell, weight, feeling of the product
after 2-3 days and if they don't impact your skin in any way: like
causing pore blockage or break outs, then that's what you should buy.
Sampling is realy a godsend when it comes to skin products because the
last thing you want to do is to inest $15-200 in a moisturizer only to
hate it and never use it.

The days that your skin is reacting to the Retin-A, moisturizer,
mascara and lipgloss. Works every time.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #28 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Sun 7 Oct 01 10:35
Tracy: My last book, "The Eyebrow" was written for a makeup artist
that plucks them named Robyn Cosio. She believes in having a brow shape
to fit the face, not the current trend.

when I think about the flying commas of the 70s an d the rook Shields
forests of the 80s, it makes me laugh. I don't know what the current
brow fashion is now, but my eyebrow lady heard me when I said I wanted
my brows to be a little thicker -- and she let them grow in. They've
neer looked as good since the 50s (which I think is the most perfect
brow of all. it was groomed, arched in the right plae and made the face
look absolutely stunning and chic).

Women who has sparce brows (a lot of Asian women, for instance, or
African Americans) or very light ones (blondes and redheads) can get
theri brows tattooed, specificaly, the frnt part of them and then add
pencil or powder to shape the ends. The front part of the brow really 
never changes all that much.

I like to see women who are classic, for whom trends manifest
themselves in maybe a new lipstick color or a kind of blusher or the
on-going see-saw between matte and moist foundation. But a brow: that
is different. It's find the shape that works the best for you and keep
it regardless of what the fashion is. 

I can remember when Kevin Aucoin was dying eyebrows blonde. Ick.
Horrible. I hated it. Thank goodness it passed.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #29 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Sun 7 Oct 01 10:46
I'm very serious, Linda about plastic surgery. For those who know me,
they also know that I had my eyes "done" two years ago. The surgeon
asked me: What do you want? And I said: "To look rested." And he did't
take too much. And the job is fabulous and I feel wonderful.

Plastic surgery is a solution if: You are looing older than your years
because of some hereditary eye stuff -- bags, deep colorations,
eyelids that have fallen over your lash lines.  also: if you're in a
busienss where younger people are charging in and you want to stay in
the game. Which is why a number of men in their 40s and 50s, not to
mention 60s, are getting eye jobs and their necks worked on. To stay

It is a sad commentary on our society thatyouth in some cases, wins
the day, that experience gets thrown out like the baby with the
bathwater. We are not a society that reveres age, sadly enough.

I once wrote an essay for the S.F. Examiner magazine (two years ago, I
think) about questioning vanity: Why did I want surgery? I talked
about shopping for plastic surgeons (the consulation does't cost
anything) and being traumatized by this one surgeon who wanted to
parlay me into a full face lift. He criticized evertying on my face
that was aging: drooping cheeks and eyes; the "marionette lines" that
go from mouth to chin, all that crapola that can make a women crazy.

I went home and sat down and cried. All I wanted was to have my eyes
done. The rest was a function of the weight I was carrying and the fact
that I was born "several" years ago. So I wrote. And wrote. And
realized that you have to be very clear about why you want plastic
surgery. Those women who want to keep their men whose interest has
wandered to youinger women, are not going to be happy with the results,
because their men are basically gone; those women who were gorgeous
when they were younger have to realize that even with the best of
surgeons (like Dr. Sherrel Aston who worked on Pamela Harriman, which
was the best face job I've ever seen) are never going to get "it" back.

Time, liquor, smoke, sun, environmental pollution and gravity have a
way of sapping the radiance and plyability out of skin. Character and
the life we've lived should show on our faces. Plastic surgery is
expensive. But if you're a well-adjusted person who has carried cystic
acne scars all your life and you hate them, laser dermabrasion (which
can turn your face into raw meat and reaquires abouat 3-4 weeks of down
time) may be the answer for a new complexion. If you've been flat
chested all your life, then have implants. If you've never liked your
nose, go for it. 

Just know that there are physical and emotional prices to pay for any
change. The emotional adjustment is really fierce, both from how you
feel about yourself and the reaction of others. There are some women
(and men) who are never going to be satisfied; others view plastic
surgery as "maintenance." You just have to be very clear with your
heart of hearts about why you're spending the money on a proceedure
that will last only 10 years, max.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #30 of 141: Linda Castellani (castle) Sun 7 Oct 01 23:32

All plastic surgery procedures only last ten years?  Is that due to aging,
or the wearing of the materials, or what?  Do they recommend repeating
procedures in that case?
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #31 of 141: Casey Ellis (caseyell) Mon 8 Oct 01 00:02
CYnthia: I once heard some make-up guru say that blondes should never
leave the house without mascara and brunettes should never go out
without lipstick. Your reaction?
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #32 of 141: Martha Soukup (soukup) Mon 8 Oct 01 03:54
I'm brunette-ish and I think I look off-balance with lipstick.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #33 of 141: Mike Godwin (mnemonic) Mon 8 Oct 01 07:14

'Time, liquor, smoke, sun, environmental pollution and gravity have a
 way of sapping the radiance and plyability out of skin.'

Can you say more about what liquor does, Cynthia? Do moderate drinkers have
to worry? (I know moderate smokers do.)
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #34 of 141: Laura Proctor (proctor) Mon 8 Oct 01 07:42
cynthia, I think the two of us have discussed this before, but the one
piece of advice you give that I can't get my mind around is that people
with oily skin should still use a moisturizer. My skin almost literally
drips oil by noon--why on earth should I put *more* product on it? (My
problem is exacerbated by the fact that I use a sunscreen every day--I
can't see piling a moisturizer on top of that).
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #35 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 08:39
No. 30: Linda 

Just because your face or body has been cut or lipo'd doesn't mean
that  natural aging stops.

When a face ages, a few things happen. First of all; wear and tear,
excessive sun or other things that will create free radicals or rogue
oxygen ions will erode the collagen fibers in the dermal layer of the
skin. Healthy, fresh, young collagen fibers stand up straight; damaged
collage mats and lays down and in the areas where it is the most
collapsed, you get sagging, wrinkles and fine ines. Consider the
collagen like the skin's bedsprings.

Free radicals. You hear a lot about these. Oxygen atoms have pairs of
oxygen ions. When the sun or chemicals affects the s in, these ions can
split apart, making each one "free." what they want to do is pair up
again and they will attack healthy oxygen ions to do so. The chemistry
of this produces erosion of collagen and some cell mutation both in
existing skin cells and in the formation of new skin cells, ie:
pre-cancerous and cancerous conditions. 

Sun, therefore, is the biggest cause of aging and cancer in skin. And
it is an on-going process.

So, to get back to your original question; plastic surgery is not a
static procedure that lasts for all times (unless, of course, it is
something like a nose job which can involve more than just soft tissue
and skin).
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #36 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 09:22
Casey: That's some makeup guru. Hummmm.

Well, I try never leaving the house without lipstick and I used to be
a brunette. Now, I am partially blonde.

I feel more dressed with lipstick, to tell you the truth.

Some blondes are not natural blondes and if they aren't chances are,
they have dark lashes. If they are, their lashes are very light and
look non-existent. In that case, a nice brown mascara (not black on
light blondes; it's a very tough look -- unless, of course, they're
going Goth or are going out for the evening -- but I think brown and
navy are better choices, softer) can emphasize an eye and take away the
scared rabbity look of no eyelashes.

As for brunette and mascara: even the darkest lashes are lighter on
the tips and a great black/brown is a good day thing. 

Me? If i'm going to work out, I sort of avoid all makeup; but if I"m
running errands, then I'll do moisturizer (always) and maybe a little
concealer, mascara and lipstick. I'm too old to worry or care what othr
people say. It's a habit of a lifetime and to tell you the truth, I
feel better and look better with some color on my face.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #37 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 09:24
Martha: Your eye can get used to anything.

I'll bet that a little lip color, whether it's a gloss or a sheer or a
lipstick will make your eyes pop. Red lipstick (my favorite) is hard
to get used to if you're not used to wearing any; but a nice pinky
coral gloss can do wonders to brighten up your complexion and emphasize
your eye color. 
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #38 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 09:27
Michael: What liquor is, like cigarette smoke, is a diuretic. It dries
the skin. And dry skin looks old and certainly doesn't have that glow
of youth of what facialists like to call "radiance."

Rule of thumb: For ever drink a person has, they should follow it with
"water back." A shot of liquor; a glass of water. 

There is nothing wrong with having a nice glass of red wine with a
meal or a cocktail, but excessive drinking, like excessive anything,
has a seriously negative influence of how your skin will behave. And
when you deplete your natural water levels, the first place it's going
to show is on your face. 
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #39 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 09:31
Laura: Moisturizers do not have to have oil in them. There are
oil-free moisturizers on the market. What a moisturizer does is help
the skin retain it's natural moisture and that is not oil.

Excessive use of hot water and toners can strip the natural oils from
the skin and in the case of oily skin, it will urge the oil glands to
produce even more oil because they will be in siege mode: Oh, golly,
there's not enough oil there. Guess I"ll pump out more.

Oil-free moisturizers usually have a water base; they're also very
good for really sensitive skin. 

Other things that prompt oil production: Spicey food, stress, putting
dirty hands to your face.

If you have oily skin: wear a hair style that keeps your hair off your
face; wash your cosmetic brushes often to keep bacteria levels down;
wear a headset if you do a lot of phone work and don't touch your face
with dirty fingers. 
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #40 of 141: Linda Castellani (castle) Mon 8 Oct 01 11:19

I think we are beginning to get the picture regarding sun damage, alcohol,
tobacco and free radicals, and especially keeping the skin and body
hydrated by drinking lots of water.

But, let's say the damage has been done.  In your book you mention
high-tech delivery systems and products that actually affect the skin on a
cellular level.  Could you tell us about those products and how they might
work - for men and for women - to repair the damage once it's done?
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #41 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 13:08
There is really no magic bullet that can completely cause a reversal
of sun damage. But, there are some recent developments in skin care
that can mititgate at least some of it.

First of all, there is Retin-A, developed by a Univeristy of
Pennsylvania physician named Dr. Kligman which is a derivative of
trentinoic acid, or Vitamin A. It is very very strong and therfore, is
available by prescription only. For people who have acne scars, extreme
sun damage and who suffer from things like rosacea or extreme flaking
of the skin (seems to happen to people of English-Irish or Scandinavian
descent more because their skin is totally not geared for warmer
climates closer to the equator and will react badly to sun), Retin-A
will start to retexturize the skin. It is very very strong and performs
a kind of dermal peel. Over use or using it without a physician
checking on you can really damage the skin. This stuff, if used
incorrectly, can make sin red, raw and very sun sensitive. If you use
Retin-A, do not go in the sun unless you are fully protected, ie: at
least a 30 spf sunblock, a hat and sunglasses.

There are chemical and laser peels and a violent form of dermabrasian
that will turn the face into raw meat (Mirabella ran a very alarming
photograph years ago of a face being dermabraided: ie, using what
looked like an emery wheel on facial skin to remove the top 4-5 layers
of skin, or at least deep enough to get the entire acne scar or
discoloration from too much sun. The down time is extreme -- it takes
at least 4-5 weeks to heal.

Laser resurfacing is not quite as violent, but it is like an extreme
sunburn where the skin will redden and then peel. Downtime is about 2-3

These are, for the most part, mediocal proceedures. Anything less will
present a minor effect in comparison. 

If you want to use an over-the-counter preparation, AHAs, BHAs,
Vitamin E, C and some Vitamin A derivatives called retinols can be
useful. It takes a while to see any improvement but they do work.

AHAs are meant to be used at night; they are usually glycolics and
sugar acids which chemically assist the slsoug-off action of dead skin

All skin cells come wrapped in a microscopic keratin (protein) shell.
Healthy, new skin cells are plump and full of natural moisture. As they
migrate to the surface of the skin, they collapse and flatten out,
leaving the keratin shell which appears on the surface of the skin as
flaking. As a person ages, the process from birth of cell to slough-off
slows. In youthful skin, it takes 2 weeks from creation to slough-off.
With people over 35 or with people who have had an inordinate amount
of unprotected sun, the process takes 3 weeks to a monmht. And then,
the dead skin cells tend to congregate in bunches, attached by a
chemical bond. The AHAs and BHAs help disengage3d those bonds so that
the deadcells will slough off the face.

this hurries up the natural process which happens when you wash your
face, dry it with a rough towel or even scrape your face against your
pillow case. 

Did you know that probably 40 percent of all the dust and particle
matter in the air is comprised of dead skin cells?

High tech delivery systems like nano-spheres, timed release and mild
chemical action have made these products much more effective and

But: there is a problem. American women have this terrible philosophy
that less is not more; more is more. If a little bit works, then a lot
much be really fabulous. Not.

So when they use AHAs, or rather, over use them -- like every night --
and their skin turns red, raw and patchy looking,they can't figure out
why that's happened.

So, follow package directions and err on the side of caution. 

If your skin is very sensitive or super oily, you do not have to use
this stuff very often, if at all.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #42 of 141: Martha Soukup (soukup) Mon 8 Oct 01 13:40
Maybe it's because my mom was the type who never went out without lipstick:
it was her one essential makeup, probably the only makeup she wore most of
the time.  So not me!

But it still just looks wrong to me.  The only time I ever wear lipstick is
when I'm really really dressed up, a few times a year, and what I do then is
kind of a lipstick wash, not a full layer of the stuff, which feels so
strange.  The only thing I wear less often is mascara, speaking of things
that feel distracting!

The one thing I wish makeup could do for me is even out the rosacia-like
reddishness in my skin, & also the circles under my eyes since I was a kid.
It doesn't do a really great job of that but it does a little....
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #43 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Mon 8 Oct 01 14:45
The way to even out skin tone is to try one of the newer makeups that
you can "build" like the Armani foundation or thenew Prescriptives
stuff called Traceless which is marvelous, weightless and which really
evens out skin tone; and then, OVER your foundation, use correcting
concealer on the spots that are hard to cover.

Laura Mercier makes an incredible concealer that you mix yourself with
varying amounts of red or yellow to get the exact shade. Also, there
are correcting palattes from Lancome which can neutralize the red of
rosacea or the deep blue of under eye circles.

You'd probably have to go to the makeup counter and have a lesson in
how to use the stuff, but it would be worth it.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #44 of 141: Martha Soukup (soukup) Mon 8 Oct 01 16:39
Mix yourself?

You have to understand, if I spend three minutes putting on makeup I start
getting resentful at all the time it's taking.  I unreasonably want it to be
so easy I barely have to think about it.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #45 of 141: Linda Castellani (castle) Tue 9 Oct 01 00:14

How about this:  I don't like to spend a lot of time, either, so I like
the look of moisturizer with translucent powder over it.  What do you
think of that recommendation, Cynthia?
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #46 of 141: Da Beauty Queen (cynthiar) Tue 9 Oct 01 06:48
If it works, do it. The problem is: you do not even out your skin tone
with translucent powder. You just cut down on the shine. 

I really like the new foundations because they are as sheer or have as
much coverage as you need.

The latest trend has been to "even" skin tone -- ie. to make it the
same all over the face -- without hiding your natural skin color.

When I was a kid, the trend was to "natural beige" foundation that had
a lot of pink in it. Yellow or tawny skin was not considered pretty,
so we would wear this mask of pinky beige foundation that ended, of
course, at the jaw line. I had to use French products to find a
foundation that had a lot of yellow in it, just like my skin.

These days, we try to get foudnation to match the exact color of the

Go to the makeup counter and have the beauty consultant (modern term
for saleswoman) put stripes of foundation color on your face close to
your nec (where, presumably, you have not had a lot of sun damage) and
the color the most disappears into the n atural color of your skin is
the one you use. Most of these new makeups come in a wide color range,
at least 15-16 colors. Enlighten is a good one at Lauder; Traceless at
Prescriptives (which is my current favorite along with the new Giorgio
Armani foundation which is very very sheer). 
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #47 of 141: Casey Ellis (caseyell) Tue 9 Oct 01 07:21
Re: fingernails, the growing of.
Cyn, do you think the various nail strenthening products really helpo
any more than just putting some clear polish on your nail every other
day or so would?
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #48 of 141: abbe (abbecohen) Tue 9 Oct 01 08:15
I'm another of those who almost never wears makeup.
And again, like Martha just asked, when I put on some lipstick
or some shade of eyeshadow that isn't the color my eyelids already
were, I look in the mirror and think "excessive makeup alert!"
or even "ack! I look like a twelve-year-old playing with Mom's
makeup!" (This latter is possibly because when I was 13 and
14 I typically went to school in silvery-gray and/or 
powder-blue eyeshadow, brightly colored blush, and fairly
dark lipstick - all applied reasonably well, so that it
would have looked fine, for the era, if I'd been ten years 
older at the time.  So my association with my face having
all that makeup on it is that I look like a confused 13-year-old,
because that's the last time my face *did* have all that makeup on

I don't think it's that I don't know how to use it right.
I've had a similar reaction to having it professionally applied
at one of the makeup counters in a department store - Certainly
there were a few things she did *better* than me (I am incapable
of applying eyeliner and just avoid it, for one), but it was all
in the realm of things I knew how to do.

Cynthia, what you've said so far implies that my "but it looks so
WRONG!" reaction is pretty much psychological.  Do you have
tips for getting out of that, while still being able to objectively
judge what looks good on yourself and what doesn't? 
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #49 of 141: Jerry Garcia & Martha Stewart's Conflicted Love Child (cynthiabarnes) Tue 9 Oct 01 10:50
Cynthia, my derm prescribed Renova but basically gave me no
instructions except "Follow the package insert." Renova recommends
nightly application, and no other products. I find that it makes my
skin a little too dry, and would like to apply a night cream after. My
skin is not too sensitive. Any recommendations?

And you are right on about brown or blue mascara flattering those of
us with fair coloring. Black just looks HARSH with my blond hair and
Swedish skin tone.
inkwell.vue.124 : Cynthia Robins: The Beauty Workbook
permalink #50 of 141: Dr. Leda Horticulture (leroy) Tue 9 Oct 01 13:50

Inspired by Cynthia, I went to the dreaded mall today and let total
strangers put makeup all over my face. Today I chose the Prescriptives
counter because it has a tasteful, clean, appealingly restrained look about
it. Plus, there was nobody else there so i got the nice young woman all to
myself for over 20 minutes.

When she finished I thought I actually looked pretty good in the mirror. Not
quite so washed-out or tomboyish. I bought a little tube of concealer, some
earthy olive green eye shadow, and some stuff called Liquid Powder that
looks dry but feels wet and seemed to do good things over the concealer.

But when I got home and looked in my bathroom mirror (I have three windows
in there, so natural light from three sides)....aaaiiiiyyyeeee! It looked
like she'd caked a ton of orange gunk all over my face. My eyes looked
horrible. I was just about to get out my cleanser and start wiping it off
when (of course) the doorbell rang. I went to the door and damn if it
wasn't a couple of well-scrubbed young Mormon missionaries. And there I was,
looking like a fifty-year-old whore of Babylon with my bullet-proof orange
foundation and slutty black-ringed eyes. They couldn't decide whether they
should hand me a Bible or a bar of Ivory soap. This was actually
exhilirating for me, who usually looks so wholesome that strnagers approach
me on the street to place Girl Scout cookie orders.

The good news, besides the fact that they left and I'm still an infidel, is
that the orange stuff came off easily with some mosturizer on a cotton pad,
and what's left looks pretty good. Why do they pile it on so thick? And why
did it look so good in the store? Was it the light, or could the foundation
have actually changed color and caked up and stuff because of my skin
chemistry? Or was I just looking at it through rose-colored glasses of
optimism and denial?

Maybe this is why I've always been so turned off by makeup: the "experts" in
the department store were laying it on way too thick. Why, why do they think
this is a good thing? Ok, maybe I bought a couple of things at the time (the
damn Liquid Powder was $32!!). But now I'm much less likely to go back to
her. What kind of training do they get?


Members: Enter the conference to participate. All posts made in this conference are world-readable.

Subscribe to an RSS 2.0 feed of new responses in this topic RSS feed of new responses

   Join Us
Home | Learn About | Conferences | Member Pages | Mail | Store | Services & Help | Password | Join Us

Twitter G+ Facebook