Polished for Fall

Labour Day is officially behind us, and though I scoff at silly rules about when to wear white and how to wear it, I have my own set of guidelines for post-summer looks. One significant change has nothing to do with the items hanging in my closet, but involves instead only the real estate between my neck and the tip of my head – i.e. hair, makeup, the works.

Every year around June, without fail, my freckles start to blossom and my hair get light and airy, and it stays that way until Fall. (I like to think of them as the Katherine Hepburn months.) When that time comes around every year, my hair and makeup routine drops noticeably, well it’s noticeable to me at least. The beachy look prevails with sun-kissed complexion and messy hair. I pack away my makeup and hair straightener, where they belong – out of sight, out of mind. But as tans fade, freckles subside and hair droops, I go hunting for my cosmetics bags and I dig out the small, coiffing machines that take my hair from ‘textured’ (or, mess of knots and cowlicks) to silky smooooth.

Come September, I fill in the uneven, patchy parts of my eyebrows. As my skin tone returns to its natural, pasty, Irish hue, it starts to feel more necessary to pluck the errant eyebrow hairs that, during the tanned months of summer, I managed to convince myself blended in with my skin. I sharpen my eyeliner pencil for occasional use, and I even use foundation to smooth over the blotchy areas.  I paint Benetint, a liquid blush, across my cheeks, warpaint styles (well, then I blend it in – I’m not thaaat adventurous!). It’s a whole new set of morning tasks and there’s a lot of balls in the air, from paint to pencil to powder.

In short, it’s a hassle. I always dread working the extra effort into my routine. So, why even bother? The truth is, it’s satisfying, fun even, to know that I’m putting on my best face (literally) to tackle my day. In the summer, the joie de vie spirit that’s in the air, and the humidity-induced layer of sheen that coats from head to toe, make the polished veneer of hair stylin’ and make-up wearing both unnecessary and pointless. As the days get shorter (the sun was low in the sky at 6:30 yesterday!) and the humidity sinks back into Lake Ontario, we layer our bodies with plush suede and wools so it’s only fitting to start layering on the face as well.

My favourite looks for fall:

  • The Heavy Brow – Eyebrows have been getting thicker and thicker over the last few years and this fall might be bushier than we’ve seen in years. Some runways showed androgynous brows, and others are maintaining a more feminine look but filling the brow with colour.
  • Au Naturel – In an effort to hold on to the effortlessness of summer, I’m looking to Rodarte’s Fall 2011 hair and make-up philosophy of less is more. Long loose tresses won’t work with my short crop, but I definitely subscribe to the soft, pink and golden hues they’ve used on cheeks and eyes.

Can I pair heavy brows with barely there make up? This might take a little trial and error. But I do look forward to being polished, well until the winter comes and disheveled ways reign because we’re once again at odds with the crazy Canadian elements.

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