Reader Write-In: Mineral Makeup (In Memory of Joan Oliver)

Dear Ashley Evelyn,

Help! I need a new liquid foundation and powder! I’ve been using Mary Kay but I’m just not feeling it anymore and my aunt isn’t selling anymore. I’m in between normal and oily skin. And I like to hide my blemishes! I bought cover girl powder and it made me break out, so I need a good brand please and thank you!


Dear S.B.,

In my opinion, mineral makeup is the greatest thing since sliced bread and is good for all skin types. Not only does mineral makeup provide an array of coverage (from light to heavy), but it also allows the skin to “breathe.” However, the skin doesn’t breathe like our lungs do. In a nut shell, when properly functioning, the epidermis is constantly regenerating cells, sloughing dead cells, and expelling impurities. When dead skin cells, dirt, and excess oils are trapped within the follicle (pore), the tribulation of the common blemish occurs in three stages: Comedones arise (blackheads); white blood cells rush to fight underlying infection and form Pustules (whiteheads); finally, Papules (cystic acne) develop as a result of severe infection. Good skincare practices such as cleansing the skin, twice daily, and developing frequent exfoliation regimens can lessen these occurrences. However, switching to a mineral foundation also helps the skin to breathe easy– and function as intended.


Making the switch from liquid foundation, to mineral powder, isn’t always easy for users. Before I became an Aesthetician, I suffered from severe cystic acne and loaded my face with thick, liquid foundation on a daily basis. When my Aesthetician suggested that I switch foundations, I told her that I couldn’t rely on mineral makeup to cover up my blemishes. She countered with the fact that my makeup wasn’t doing me any real favors in that department (the jig was up– my face was covered in pustules & papules) and my formula of choice perpetuated the problem.


At the time, Bare Minerals Makeup was known as Bare Escentuals– and only available through QVC. Today, the line may be found at department stores across America and specialty makeup stores such as Ulta. However, the Ashley Evelyn of yesterday picked up the phone and ordered the Bare Minerals starter kit. I was amazed by how beautiful my skin looked and felt under mineral makeup! No longer did I feel like I was wearing an oily mask of paint to the world. Instead, the light formula allowed my clear skin (forehead, nose, and chin) to shine. The concealer brush added heavy coverage where I needed it most (cheeks). And, because Bare Minerals foundation acts as a dual concealing medium and foundation in one, my blemishes virtually disappeared upon application.

Today, Bare Minerals appears in its traditional loose powder (my medium of choice), but is also found in pressed powder and liquid form.

1. Jane Iredale Makeup
2. Pur Minerals


This post is dedicated to the late, Joan Marie Oliver. She taught me how to be a great Aesthetician and provided me with skincare when no one else wanted to–or thought they could– help my problem skin. I am eternally grateful to Joan for her help and insight. Rest in peace, Joan. And, thank you.


Reader Write-In: False Eyelashes

Dear Ashley Evelyn,

I want to wear fake eyelashes but I can’t get them to go on right and if they do stick on they never stay on. How do I know what kind to get because they are always bigger than my eye? Help!!!


Dear A.T.,

False lashes appear tricky to master, but it’s much more simple than you think. Promise.

1. Gently remove lashes from the tray with a pair of tweezers.

2. Hold lashes to your eye to measure. You want them to basically match up with your natural lash bed. If lashes are too long for your eye, trim off a section or two until you reach the desired lash breadth.

3. Run a thin line of lash adhesive along the band and allow to dry for 30-60 seconds. This is the real secret.

4. Don’t apply the lashes to your eyelid. Rather, press into your lash line.

5. Repeat for other eye.

6. Finish the look/lock lashes in place by curling and swiping with mascara.

Reader Write-In: How to diminish the look of puffy eyes?

The time has come for my first Reader Write-In response. In my treatment room, all information shared by my clients, concerning their body or otherwise, remains confidential. In the interest of maintaing a sense of privacy, I will keep Reader Write-Ins anonymous.

Our fellow follower, who is in her twenties, writes to us with one of the most universal–and fixable problems pertaining to beauty and the body. She writes:

Dear, Ashley Evelyn

Can u do a post on puffy eyes? I have perpetual bags (so I’m good at concealer) but sometimes when I wake up the lids are so puffy it changes the whole shape of my eye!¬†It was the worst it has been in weeks this morning… I pretty much looked like Rocky at the end of the first movie! Haha!


We all suffer from puffy eyes from time to time. Swelling often occurs as a result of: Staying out late, alcohol consumption (dehydration), stress, crying, allergies, and lack & surplus of sleep. Sometimes, under-eye inflammation seems to happen for no reason, but a closer look at our diet usually acts as our first step toward skin health.

1. Hydrate & Limit Sodium: Often, external problems are due to the result of an internal imbalance. Sufficient hydration reduces swelling and increases cellular & organ function. Remember, the skin is the largest organ in the human body! Likewise, limiting salt & alcohol intake reduces the body’s need to hoard its water supply. Although 8, 8oz. glasses of water/day is the generalized minimum, has a hydration calculator which is more specific to individual needs.

2. Spooning: This is one of the easiest and cheapest methods of soothing puffy eyes and was passed down to me by my grandmother (she also advised that Preparation-H reduces the size of under-eye bags, but I’m not necessarily condoning this). Before bed, place 2 metal spoons in the freezer. When you wake, place the curve of the spoon under your eyes for about 5 minutes. The cold reduces inflammation and constricts blood vessels– just like when we ice sore bodies after working out.

3. Facial Cleansing: Once you’ve applied the cold compress spoons to your eyes, execute your morning cleansing routine with cold water. Cold cleansing reduces inflammation and reinforces the spoon method, but also shrinks the size of dilated follicles (pores). When pores are contracted, they create a nicer finish for makeup application.

4. Cucumber Slices & Tea Bags: This remedy is similar to spooning, but is boosted by the power of antioxidants. Cut several cucumber slices and refrigerate–or, moisten 2 tea bags and let them chill instead. Apply to the eye for about 5 minutes or until the bags reach room temperature. Tea contains, tannin, a natural astringent proven to tighten the skin and reduce inflammation.

5. Aloe & Vitamin C/E: Aloe is one of the best sources, natural anti-inflammatory relief. Although it is soothing to the skin, aloe oxygenates and increases blood flow. Vitamin E protects the skin from free radicals and pollution which can age the skin over time & also works as a natural anti-inflammatory. Vitamin C, my favorite, stimulates collagen production & increases blood flow.

Image Skincare’s Vital-C Hydrating Eye Recovery Gel works beautifully and is what I use on my own skin.

If your swollen eyes cause pain, discomfort, or blurred vision, please contact a doctor; you may have an eye infection or condition requiring medical attention.

Do you have a beauty or skin related question? Email me at