Tuesday, May 21, 2013

How To Cover Bad Skin With Make-up

Our beautiful daughter, Bethany, was troubled by really quite bad skin as a middle to late teenager.  I used to feel awful for her, and frankly, I sometimes wondered how she might feel about going out in public at times when most of her face was so very red and inflamed.  (I never said that to her of course.)  But then Bethy would appear on her way out the door, looking like the gorgeous young girl she was, and you couldn't see a pimple or spot in sight!  We all knew that her self-worked-out routine required some mysterious time factor, because Bethy always worked her days around the time that she needed to begin applying her face, but the truth is that I don't think any of us ever really asked her for the actual details of her routine.  We were just all in awe at the incredible result!
I thought that it's finally time for us to find out Bethy's secret.  Thank you Bethany! :)

I have added a couple of photos of Bethy from that time period.  I know that looking at these photos, you will probably not believe that she was suffering from acne.  That was the magic of her routine!   She was actually so good at covering her bad skin that when Bethy looks at these photos now, even she thinks that she couldn't have had a too big a problem back then after-all - but she really did :)  

I have included the photo below, not only because it was a bit hilarious, but because if anything shows Bethy's awesome face-saving make-up skills, this is it.  Not only was Bethy in the middle of a break-out, but she had just returned from a trip to the Great Barrier Reef in time to be a bridesmaid at her sister's wedding.  Of course she had thought that it would be great to have a suntanned glow for the big day, so had managed to burn her face to a crisp a few days earlier.  It didn't look too bad the day before, but on by the morning of the big day her skin began to turn a very dark brown (think multiple layers of dying skin), and begun to peel.  By midday she had thick, bark-like layers practically dripping off - and later spent half an hour in the bathroom removing her nose, forehead and upper cheeks, after which things looked slightly better.   (This photo was taken heading in to the drippy stage.)  Yet she still managed to look completely beautiful!   She is a bit of a make-up genius, our Bethany :)


I've always had the bad skin in the family (yay for me :S) and I remember all through my teenage years hating my skin and thinking it was awful. I hit the lovely age of 20 however, and that's when my skin decided to show me what awful really was!! What?? I thought when I finished teens my skin was meant to get BETTER, not WORSE! I thought I was meant to feel MORE confident in myself, not LESS!
*sigh* So not fair :(

Now I look back on photos of that clear, lovely skinned 17, 18, 19 year old girl that I was and am jealous. Didn't know how good I had it!
Now, even though I know that my skin was way better back then, mum says I still struggled with it, it's just that I can't see it in the photos because I covered it up so well (woohoo :))

So anyway, mum asked me to write a post about how I apply my make-up.
I'm really not in any way a beauty artist. I can only seem to cover the make-up basics on my own face and would be horrible at even attempting to apply somebody else's make-up.
But for some reason my mum and sisters have always talked with admiration and wonder about my foundation-applying abilities. Maybe it's just because none of them have ever suffered the self-loathing phenomenon of bad skin (blessed things! :P) and so they've just never had to try that hard to look good. But they seem amazed that one minute there's an ugly red blemish, and the next minute it's gone! Viola! :D
I just figured that's the whole point of foundation. But apparently, I "do it well"  :) (go me!).

If I have to stop and think about it, there is something I do a little differently to the other females in my family. It's a little technique that has earned me the nickname 'Spotty' from my siblings throughout the years :) I don't know if others out there do it, I'm sure they do, but this is what I do:

I cover my face in spots.

See, I have this theory about letting foundation 'soak in'. Let me explain...

  • I start out by using liquid foundation on my face to give it a bit more of an even tone all over. 
  • Then I get my concealer stick, and dot all my pimples or blemishes with spots of concealer.
  • I then leave it there and continue with my day, letting the make-up kind of 'soak' into the skin a bit. 
  • A little while later, I might come back and lightly pat my finger over the spots or around the edges so it blends in with the rest of my face a bit better, but not too much, and then go about my business again. Still soaking.
  • Every now and then I'll repeat this, until it's time for me to actually get ready. Then I'll lightly pat around the edge of my concealer spots so that they blend in completely with the rest of my face.
  • After that I brush my face lightly with foundation powder. Done!

I don't know if this makes any sense at all. But this is how I do my make-up.
The more time I have to do it, the better the end result! So the nicer I care to look, the earlier I start my spotting routine :)
If I only have 10 mins to get ready and do all my make-up, then there's less time for the 'soak' to happen and it won't look as good. If I want to look nice for, say, a formal or something then the initial make-up and 'spotting' applications begin in the afternoon so it can sit and soak for a lovely length of time :)
(I'm sure letting make-up really soak into your skin is probably not good for your pores and stuff (probably contributes to the whole 'bad skin' thing)...but hey, at least I wash it off every night before bed! :))

This morning I only had about 15 mins to do my make-up for church, so it's not the best job, but I took a couple of photos. Now I'm really wishing I had stopped to check them because they are not in the least bit flattering!! But hey, we're all women here....maybe...so what the heck. No shame.

After the foundation I put my first concealer spots on. Not sure if you can really see them from this angle. Yes....I really do need to deal with my eyebrows...   And I don't know what sort of expression I was trying to pull :

After the mid-way pat. The spots are a little less obvious now (at least that's the idea! :P) Normally it's best to have time to do this a few times. Still don't know what's up with that expression :

Finished. Did a bit of a final smooth of the spots and put powder on. At least this time my smile isn't so creepy.. :

I guess the fact that I had earrings in and was dressed in real clothes instead of daggies in this photo helps also :)

I know I didn't show you a before photo of my skin. I'm willing to put some hideous photos up here, but not that hideous :)

Anywho, so that's that. Happy pimple covering :)


  1. I've done the spotty thing several times now, but I still can't seem to achieve the same results that you do, lol! You're a makeup Genius bethany.

    Oh, and a 'my-sixth-sense-tells-me-there-is-a-camera-pointed-at-me-I'd-better-smile-at-it' genius. But I suspect that's a story for another post.... :)

    xo Tammy

  2. .. I know Tammy! How does she do that?!

    Bethy, thank you! You are hilarious, and gorgeous as ever :) I am going to use these secret women's business tips next time I need to cover up. I don't ever expect to reach your greatness however..


  3. Bethany I find your facial expressions hilarious love it!
    but with all seriousness I have watched many make up tutorials on youtube from many professional make up artists around the world and I am positive you have invented somthing extraodinary lol.

    Unfortunately I don't wear foundation though but your face looks amazing I honestly never even knew you wear foundation.