Double Agent

7 years ago by


Erik Melvin

We already know that during the hot summer months, makeup is best applied like clothes – as minimally as possible. However! When it’s 90 degrees outside and the humidity is that of the Amazon rainforest, there’s a thin line between the perfect bronzed, dewy glow, and the “I’m sweating in places I didn’t know existed please don’t touch me” situation.

And while I fully support the minimal makeup, sometimes a mid-day (and a post-work, pre-frozen-margarita) refresh is just necessary.

In an effort to keep it light (on my face and in my handbag), I set out to simplify my summer makeup routine and see how far I could stretch the basics. I’m talking 3 products, 6 uses…

1. Mascara as brow gel –

I first discovered this trick when I unexpectedly woke up to an empty tube of eyebrow gel. Sure, I might not win a Nobel Prize for the idea, but it’s a fairly reliable plan B. After swiping to coat your eyelashes, lightly comb your eyebrows with the same wand (just as you would with your actual eyebrow gel) in an upward direction. Ta da! You look refined, defined, and resourceful too!

2.Lipstick as blush

I’ve found that nearly any color works for this technique. Apply your favorite lipstick to the body part it was intended for, then lightly dab the highest parts of your cheekbones with the same color. Continue dabbing with your fingers until it’s blended and smooth. It works like a charm and is a lot less painful than the old “pinch your cheeks ‘til they’re rosy” trick.

3. Balm as…well, everything –

And I mean everything. Use it on your lips for a gloss, cheekbones for a highlight, eyelids for a shimmer, and all the other nooks and crannies for a little moisturizer. This is really the only product in which the “less is more” rule does not apply.

And voila! A full beauty look that you can fit in your mini purse. And here in the Studio, we’re really into mini purses.

How do you simply your summer routine? Any other double-use products we should know about??

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  • I use bronzer as eyeshadow and under eye concealer as eyeshadow primer esp. during travel. Most importantly, moisturizer with a really high SPF and a bit of tint!

  • vanessa la belge July, 26 2016, 10:18 / Reply

    Des sourcils noirs de jet… non merci ! Sur mes cils, ok mais ca s’arrête là.

  • Merci pour ces astuces!

    Julie, Petite and so What?

  • Great photograph! Good piece.

  • Ai-Ch'ng July, 26 2016, 11:39 / Reply

    Oh yes! Things that do double-duty, or that can be decanted into just two mini sized Sephora clear plastic screw top containers, that are about 2cm wide by 1.5cm deep… Then, it’s just lipstick in its tube you have to throw into your makeup pouch!

    My products that go the longest way in winter and summer are:
    – RMS Burriti Bronzer, as cheek and eye colour in winter (it is winter right now in Australia)
    – a small dab of RMS Master Mixer, or Living Luminizer on eyelids and Cupid’s bow
    – a pop of Becca Watermelon Cheek Mousse (so light, super-long wearing in the heat- lasts all day into night)- a warm, slightly orange-with-bronze-hints neutral on me; I never bring this out with me, as once it’s applied in the morning on well moisturised skin with a dab of Nars Light Sand highlighter mixed in, it doesn’t need re-applying at all
    – and a bright pink, deep red, or bright tomato orange lipstick.

    Everything fits into the tiniest pouch, as I decant almost everything into two of Sephora’s tiniest (about 2cm x 1.5cm) clear plastic (so you can see what they are) containers.

    Into the first of the smallest Sephora plastic travel screw top jars:
    – a small scrape (lasts about three weeks! The RMS products all go a very long way) of Burriti Bronzer
    – on the opposite side of the container, I place a scrape of Master Mixer, and last
    – a small scrape of the Living Luninizer

    In a second one of those tiny jars:
    – decant my face and body moisturiser for my dry hands, or to smooth stray hairs.

    The two tiny containers go into my small makeup pocket, with whatever tube of lipstick I’m wearing that day. If I wear a lipstick that needs more pink in it, I’ll just use the remainder of what pink lipstick was on my lips- as you do- lightly dabbed on cheeks.

    I also always keep one tube of Poppy King’s Frog Prince liptint (reminds me of the mood-changing lipsticks of the 90’s!)in my pouch as well, as once you apply that (even applied and then wiped off for a semi-permanent, flattering tint under other lipsticks) in my pouch, too: it’s moisturising and feels like you have nothing in your lips.

    Traveling so much lighter with a very small bag like this makes me feel more like a guy: freer and a whole lot less cumbersome. It’s a good feeling- especially as I get older and my shoulders no longer tolerate big, or heavy, bags.

  • Wow AI-CH’NG! You sound like a real expert! Do you have an insta account? Love your commitment to travelling with less! I am going to Bali in two weeks (I’m from Melbourne) so I’m wanting to pack less too in terms or make up and skin care! Mary Anne xx

  • One more summer tip for lip balm…. in a pinch, swipe it on parts of your feet to reduce friction from sandals, shoes, etc.! It works like a dream in lieu of friction block stick. :)

  • Martine July, 26 2016, 8:26 / Reply

    J’ai tout simplement, mon rouge à lèvres , dont la couleur est toujours le rouge , mon blush rose , et voilà..
    Quand je veux, je met le máscara , couleur bleu, le crayon …moins habituel, ce dernier, mais ça fait partie aussi du rituel de tous le matins, le corretif quelque fois,
    Le seul détail, inhabituel je dirais, ce serait le máscara transparent qui laisse les yeux comme sils étaient , quelque chose comme ça
    Je m’habille trop vite

  • Je suis pour le no make up en été ! Un petit coup de mascara, un baume pour les lèvres et voilà le tour est joué ;)

  • Now, I pay more attention to eyelids and keep my lips natural with lip balm (feeling Solange these days:

    As for what to do with lip balms, there’s one tiny thing that I do with and people start asking what I’ve been using because they don’t believe it, here it is ;)

  • Photo ultra simple, mais sublime!!

  • Merci Nathalie pour tes petites astuces beauté spécial été :) !


  • Plus ou moins ma façon de voir le make up toute l’année ! Beurre de Karité, mascara, rouge à lêvres… That’s it !



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