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Where were we on the lovely Sonia? Oh, yes, here.
When Sonia mentioned bronzers, I almost told her not to bother, it's another one of those products that just wasn't around when I learnt how to do my make-up routine aeons ago and I didn't much like the sound of it. I mean, I equate bronzers with Victoria Beckham ish tan levels and Jordan-style subtlety, not for me AT ALL.. "That's what lots of people think!" said Sonia incredulousy, "but applied to the right places it does wonders for older skin and really adds warmth and depth".
The trick is to be very careful about where you place it, and how. The one Sonia recommends is the Guerlain Terracotta one (£32.50), but use any brand, just avoid muddy shades and anything too orange. Aim instead for biscuity shades. get a good fat brush, which you swirl around the colour, tap to remove the excess powder, then softly brush on at the edges of the face in a figure of three (backwards three for the left hand side). Start at the temple, curve out around the eye and back in just below the cheekbone, then curve out again and sweep down the outer edges -just above- the jaw line. Don't go too close to the eye sockets as it can make you look tired, you are just tracing the outer contours of the face.
Well surprisingly...it definitely does something -very very subtly- it sort of warms you up. And the REALLY clever trick Sonia suggests is to hide any flabbiness under the chin, sweep a brush from left to right under the chin and it disguises it. Clever. I am now a fan.
Lipstick. Jane isn't going to like this, but Sonia reckons strong red can be a bit ageing, so advises looking for approachable reds, not so full on, but still full of interest. For anyone who's stopped wearing lipstick, she suggests easing yourself back in with a lip stain, it's easier to control the colour and if you feel brave you can layer up the applications and go for a more intense hue. I haven't bought this Laura Mercier (£16.50) one Sonia says is good yet, but I already want to try it from the picture.
The trick here is to add a sense of fullness to your lips by building up the colour in the middle of the lips, (don't fret about the outer edges) finishing off with a touch of gloss to the middle too. That way your lips look much fuller and plump. This works well if you use a matt lipstick (very now according to Sonia) then blott and add a touch of gloss to the middle, then press your lips together.
Finally, Kohl. Essential in my make up tool kit, actually it's about the only thing in my tool kit (before I met Sonia) I am still dragging the pencil around the upper and lower lids from corner to corner, as I've always done. But Sonia reckons this is making my eyes look small and because my skin has changed (got more soft and crepe-y) the effect is less long-and-lean line, more mountain-range-cycle-path....Instead, we are to draw a soft line from the outer eye just for about one cm, on the lids close to the lashes,towards the centre, but don't go all the way to the other side. This makes the eyes open up more by drawing attention to the outer edges, making them appear bigger, and it adds definition to the outer eyes. Whack on a layer of mascara and you are good to go.
Sonia's starting her own blog soon, but until then, anyone have any other make up issues they want to ask her?