There’s a very fine line between trashy by-the-pool beauty and… well, classy lounging. For the former, think Snookie circa 2000. Super chic summer makeup isn’t hard to pull off, but then again, neither is her bikini top. Here are my secrets to complete glam, vaguely French-girl poolside beauty, with no roller-ball glitter or grease allowed.
I try not to harp on the French beauty ideal too much, because I think we’ve all had enough of that, but I’m still a sucker for the wildly chic French women in their navy bikinis and soft tans. And their jewellery, at the pool and the beach! They wear stacked bracelets and statement earrings effortlessly, at the beach!
The right makeup is not tacky when it’s done right.
No to green nail polish and YES lots of nice things, which make you look vaguely French, like an adult but still flirty, flushed and super natural poolside look. For starters, mix your sunscreen in your foundation for subtle, protected skin. SPF above 30 and mix it half-and-half. You don’t want a heavy base by the pool! Remember that regular concealer will melt, so attack the shine and flaws with pressed powder. Be specific with your application-powder on zits and your T-zone only.
Think plenty of matte bronzer, but NOT in a darker shade of your skin tone. Think tawny shades close to your natural skin colour, and when in doubt, buy lighter, always! Bigger the fluffy brush, better it is, and most importantly — SKIP THE SHIMMER. Really, it just looks tacky in the bright summer sun. Sorry, I try not to judge, but I will!
While the 90s might have made a comeback, the greasy glossy lips haven’t and it will hopefully stay this way. There is nothing less attractive than you making come-hither eyes at the hottie in the recliner next to you, soft wind billowing… and strands of your hair flying and getting stuck to your greasy lips. Hard pass. A matte or stain finish is what you’re after, and it won’t slide off, even if aforementioned hottie actually comes over for a little steamy session. Bright cherry reds are always good, think nudes, not too brown, fuchsia, and pinks. I’m a fan of poppy — but not too bright for the pool. Shiny brights are overkill in the pool side. Save the plums for another occasion.
YES to waterproof eyeliner and mascara — in moderation. I like to use clear gel mascara and sable brown shades by the water. Skip the shadow or it’ll be all over your face. No sexy punk rock liner, and trust me this is hard for me to say because I propagate unlimited eyeliner at almost all other times. Try not to be so glaringly obvious and look like a hungover reality star stuck in 2002.
And take this with you to the grave — skip the belly necklace thing. Only Beyonce could pull it off. It’s the tongue piercing of midriffs. CIAO! (I’m aware that’s Italian – whatever!)
(The writer loves to over-share, drink wine and watch period dramas)