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Time to refresh your beauty regime

January 11, 2012

A brand New Year begins and like many people, I begin stockpiling interior design magazines and motivational books with grand plans to renovate both the house and my mental state. I start chanting affirmations like crazy, inevitably quit wine for a few weeks and clear out my closet. I also run a keen, trained eye over my beauty cupboard, my skin and my beauty routine. You should too. Grasp that beautiful new year buzz and run with it.

We’ve begged some clever beauty insiders for their suggestions on freshening up tired makeup looks, tired beauty cupboards – and well, just tired faces in general…

Cosmetic clear out {yes that means you cosmetic hoarder}

Beauty & Health Director of Australian Women’s Weekly, Kelly Baker, insists it’s high time we all had a beauty clear out. “The New Year is upon us and now is the time to get your beauty routine into gear. Toss any cosmetics that have passed their use-by dates and while you’re at it, ditch any other skincare products that are broken, beaten or otherwise well, icky. You deserve better than that,” she says. And, just like clothing you never wear, Baker believes it’s a good idea to cull any unused cosmetics and give them to others. “There’s no point hanging onto beauty gear you never, ever use. Instead pass it onto a friend or, if it’s unopened, donate it to a charity that supports needy women,” says Baker.

Don’t panic if that leaves your beauty cupboard looking somewhat bare. “While there are countless big ticket products, there are also reams of top quality inexpensive items, many of which are every bit as lovely as their more pricey counterparts. My advice – go hard on your absolute favourites (think fragrance, foundation, lipstick) and save your hard-earned cash in areas where it won’t be noticed (like body cream, nail polish, mascara). Finally – have fun! Makeup, skincare and all things beauty are there to be enjoyed so make the most of it all.”

The skin savers

Why not kick off the year with a crystal clear complexion? Get your skin in the best possible condition for 2012 with a hi-tech treatment to rejuvenate your tired old visage. “After the holiday season people want to feel refreshed and clean out their skin for the new year,” says Lisa Sullivan-Smith, Co-Director of The Clinic, Sydney. For a fresh-as-a-daisy, rejuvenated face, Sullivan-Smith recommends a deep cleansing treatment like Microhydrabrasion and or a laser treatment like Fraxel.

Deluxe Microhydrabrasion, $250, is the latest way to get the cleanest possible skin. It’s a bit like getting a professional steam clean for your skin, where water is blasted out of a small diamond nozzle and all the debris is swished and suctioned up. Once your skin is pristine it’s finished off with an application of anti-aging serum Dermaquest Stem Cell 3D Complex which is infused into skin with a Dermaroller.

– The much fêted Fraxel is a little more expensive but the results also amazing. Fraxel laser treatments cover a fraction of the skin at a time and can cost up to $1500 for a series of treatments. A teeny laser beam precisely covers thousands of microscopic areas of the skin to eliminate old, damaged skin cells. It stimulates collagen production too and your skin will be revived and velvet textured.

The treatment only takes about 20 minutes but the topical numbing cream takes an hour beforehand. “Skin feels immediately tight with a warm sensation from the heat of the laser. The next day, pigmentation is darker and skin feels rough like sand paper. Skin hydration is essential to maintain your skin health,” explains Sullivan-Smith.

You’ll need to give yourself up to 5 days down time – you might get redness mild swelling, itchiness and mild peeling – but afterwards your skin tone will be clear as a bell. Visit

The makeup removers

It’s time to declutter your makeup. All those cracked eyeshadows and squashed lippies just have to go. Makeup artist Janeen Brown suggests sorting through all your lipsticks and eyeshadows first. Here are Brown’s top tips to get started:

Lighten the lipstick load
– Carefully take the top off each lipstick to keep it clean, then use the excess and mark it on a clean sheet of paper. Get a flow of colours together on the same sheet. This will remind you what you have and how the colours look.

– Keep lighter spring shades in one bag and darker shades for autumn/winter in another. Keep your sheet of paper somewhere handy so when you shop you don’t double up on colours.

The eyeshadow edit
Decide what to keep and what to throw out. Be brave and start experimenting. The best time to try out makeup looks is before you shower – if it doesn’t look any good you are showering it off anyway. You might find a forgotten eyeshadow that you love or you might decide to ditch colours that you never liked anyway. You just might find a whole new look!

What to keep
Everyone should have these makeup mainstays in their makeup kit, says Brown.

– Eye drops to keep eyes fresh, clean and whitened throughout the day.
– A light and protective tinted moisturiser or BB Cream. “My tinted foundation never leaves my side,” says Brown.
– Cheek tints for quick colour and contouring. “I love cheek creme applied over the top of tinted moisturiser for natural perfection and enhanced colour,” says Brown.
– Lip gloss to lighten and plump up your lips. “A girl needs a gloss in every bag,” says Brown.
– a good set of clean makeup brushes

What to throw out?
Any products that are past their expiration date.
– Any foundations or nail polishes that have separated.
– Gluggy mascaras past the point of no return.
– Eyeshadows or powder palettes that are cracked and crumbled.
– Old and icky application sponges or eyeshadow applicators – get some new ones!

Sharpen up
Don’t throw out your eye pencils! Give them a sort through and a good sharpen. “How fabulous do they look under the eye or placed on the inner part of the eye,” says Brown. “Bright or glittery eye dusts and eye pencils really finish off a look – every girl needs to sparkle.”


  • Decd

    Oh dear, I am a major offender. I think some of my older cosmetics date back to when your mum and I were teenagers – well, not quite but nearly. I will take your advice and get tossing.