The Clock Stops Here...

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Getting to Know Charlestongirl from Best Things in Beauty

This week, we meet the lovely Charlestongirl!  I am always curious to see what she is excited about each week and what I now cant live without!  In addition to gravitating to all the best things in beauty, she is  extremely tech savvy.  When I blew up my blog over Christmas, CG spent hours trying to unmuck my mess...I will never forget her kindness.  I am thrilled to discover her daily beauty routine is actually more complicated then my own... I didn't think that was possible.   Without further ado, meet Charlestongirl:

Tell us a little about yourself.
I'm in my early 60's and single. I live in a fabulous home in Northern Virgina, and I love my garden, which I built from nothing, with love. I have two cats, Charleston and Savannah. Charlie is a gorgeous Snow Marble Bengal. Savannah, equally gorgeous, is a rescue cat. She is definitely schizophrenic, and, unfortunately, she has epilepsy. I love antiques, art, books, and great food!

I was frantically busy when younger, earning a Ph.D. in psychology and subsequently running my own management consulting business for many years. Now, I work for a large financial company in compliance and ethics.  I have always been a volunteer, and much of my "spare time" and money have been spent on local and state issues, including land use and conservation and environmental/animal causes. I have also been active in many horticultural societies.  That's one reason I write Best Things in Beauty under a pseudonym. If you Google my real name, many pages of results from local civic association activities will be returned, including some of my most-famous mouthy quotes from public hearings. I decided to keep my various lives separate.

What's your daily beauty routine?
It's relatively complicated. Every morning, I get up and wash, condition, and style my hair (using a mousse and hairspray to set the style). I try to use hydrating products. I am always testing products, but I return to my favorites unless a new product has knocked my socks off (that happens fairly often).  Before work, my regular beauty routine starts with a cleanser for my face and neck in the shower. Then I apply one of my favorite serums and an eye cream (I've been using Cold Plasma Eye, but I'm always on the lookout for a new one). After they absorb, I add a moisturizer (or two) and makeup. There has to be sunscreen in one of them. My makeup always includes a concealer, eyelid primer, eye shadow, mascara (I love Maybelline Define-A-Lash), foundation (usually Giorgio Armani), blush, lipstick, and lip gloss. Sometimes a highlighter too. Before I'm out the door, I add fragrance.  During the day, I re-apply lip color/gloss/lip conditioner repeatedly, and I often use a hand cream during the day.  Before bed, I always cleanse my face thoroughly, using an eye makeup remover if I need it after the cleanser. Then I do skin care: serum, moisturizer, and now Chantecaille's new Biodynamic Lifting Neck Cream. Morning and evening, I use a body moisturizer. I also use a hand moisturizer after I give Charlie his evening treats. Right before I go to bed, I apply Lisa Hoffman's Spa Facial Lip Moisturizer). I supplement my regular products (some of which I rotate) with whatever my skin "tells me" it needs.  For special occasions, I add products, such as eyeliner, which I don't wear every day.  I know I should, but I prefer to beat the traffic rush into DC. Another product I use is scented hand soap. I love it and have a nice one at every faucet. Then there are the home fragrances (diffusers and candles), which delight me.

How many lipsticks/glosses can be found in your handbag at any given time?
Too many! More than I'll ever use in a day or week. I'm bad at subtracting - really good at adding, though. Recently, a Clarisonic rep held my handbag for me. It was heavy because it had my camera in it. I roared at his response, "Girl, no wonder your back and knees are bad! This purse is ridiculously heavy!" Well, of course! It had a full face of makeup in it, with every shade you could imagine. I pared it down after my knee surgery, but I doubt it will remain spare.

What's the best beauty advice you've ever received?
From my dermatologist who told me to stay out of the sun and always wear sunscreen. He should know. He's had to use liquid nitrogen to remove a lot of actinic keratoses that have resulted from my unbridled attempts to become a bronze goddess when I was younger.

What's the most surprising thing you have learned since staring your blog?
My readers have become a second family - definitely my friends! People warn that cyberspace is "dangerous," and I've seen some pretty nasty comments on blogs. At first, I was reluctant to "expose myself" to that. I feel so privileged, though. I have never experienced anything but warmth and love from my readers. I'm sure I have the best readers (and friends) in the world. I've formed lasting friendships with so many wonderful women (a few men too!). We e-mail, we call, we comment back and forth on the blog. Blogging has been an enriching experience. I'm also thrilled with the many beauty bloggers I call friends now. Our roundup team is amazingly talented. I check in on each of their blogs every day. I hope all my readers do too.

And mine...


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