Showing posts with label beauty. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beauty. Show all posts

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Beauty Routines After 50

Many of you have written to ask for tips on makeup and hairstyles that respect our changing faces. I am sharing my step by step routine with you here.

Permanent makeup, fillers, and plastic surgery are not options I am considering. I don't mind the character and expression lines that my face has developed over the years. I firmly believe that healthy eating, lots of water and regular exercise are the best beauty routines one can follow.

After fifty, some things became easier and for me, a hairstyle definitely falls into that category. I stopped coloring my hair after my fiftieth birthday and found a great stylist who gives me a softly layered angled bob cut that frames and slims my roundish face. Ask your stylist for a cut that works with the natural tendency of your hair and one that complements the shape of your face. A good stylist will also consider if your style is complementary to the size and shape of your body. For example, a petite woman peering out from a huge bush of long hair is not in balance with her proportions.

In the photo above I have just returned from my stylist. She gives me low lights about twice a year which keep my hair from appearing to colorless and dull. The chrome glaze she adds every five weeks gives it a nice shine.

As for styling products, I don't use anything but a gentle sulfate-free shampoo about three times a week. I sometimes just rinse my hair in the shower and then reshape it for the day, but skip the products entirely on most days. My thinning hair and dry scalp do not respond well to most products. A build up of styling products adds too much weight making my hair flat. It also gets trimmed about every five or six weeks. I don't allow my hair to get too long or get it cut too short. Both extremes add years to my face.

Warm water and a gentle skin cleanser remove makeup in the evening. Liquid Neutrogena in the pump bottle is my choice for a cleanser. I splash some warm water on my face to rinse it and then pat dry. I find that eye creams add puffiness and night time moisturizers cause me to break out so I skip those. One of my all time favorite moisturizers for my whole body is Coconut Oil.

My makeup routine has also been streamlined. In winter, I use a heavier moisturizer but in summer, I use only a tinted moisturizer or very light foundation that is appropriate for the texture of my skin. I apply the foundation mostly in my T-zone. (The T-Zone is the center of your face from your forehead down to your chin where most of us were a bit oily when our hormones were plentiful.) Use a small makeup sponge or brush to blend gently away from your nose and skip the area around your mouth so that you don't emphasize lines. This technique of starting your makeup in the center of your face and blending away helps to avoid the dreaded line of demarcation where your makeup stops and your neck begins.  

Here is a blog post including a makeup video.

I use makeup brushes rather than sponge applicators. They allow for better blending and less tugging on the skin. I use a liquid eyeliner applied into and under the base of my upper eyelashes (on the waterline). I don't apply liner or mascara to my lower lashes because this looks very harsh on me. My eyeshadow is always the same in varying degrees of depth of color for the day versus evening. The palate includes soft beige, a very pale shell pink, gray and rosy browns that complement my cool skin tone. I start with the darkest brown in my lash line and just above it. In the crease of my eye and just above it I blend a medium brown. I blend the lighter colors up to my brow and then blend. 

For more definition and drama, I add a smoky gray color at the outside corner of my eye. I use a blonde eyebrow pencil to fill in my thin brows, but I'm careful to blend and brush that out as well. I use a brown/black mascara and that's it for eyes. 

I brush on a bit of blush in a rose tone high on the cheekbones, the bridge of my nose and under my chin. If your skin is very dry cream blush might be best for you. Once again blend, blend, blend! Note: Do not smile and put blush on the apple of your cheek as we were taught when we were younger. When you stop smiling the blush will be lower than you want and not have the effect you want at all. 

I apply a lip liner over my whole lip and then a very similar color of lipstick. After blotting, I'm finished with my daytime makeup routine. During the evening, I may wear a brighter lip color but I apply and blot it several times while I am applying my make up so that it stains my lips rather than sliding around on top. I will use a similar color lip balm to touch up during the evening.

I almost always wear sunglasses when I'm outdoors and if I will be in the sun for more than a few minutes I also wear a hat. Skin cancer is no fun and I hope to never have it again. 

Thank you for reading!
I hope these tips prove to be helpful to you.

Susan Street is the President of

Saturday, May 26, 2012

You Are Not Alone

One of the best things about turning fifty-five was finding the confidence to dress to please me again. My earlier corporate lifestyle wardrobe was influenced by my peers, meetings and the fashion industry I worked in until my early forties. Later in life experiences and being self-employed took its toll on my appearance. I had gained weight and lost social skills from spending many years working almost around the clock and being alone most of the time. I had become a sloppy dresser who tried to hide all the things I didn't like about my new body. While I knew a great deal about my industry, I had lost all touch with fashion trends and even what was right for my now not so great body. Many women have a similar experience when their children become adults and go out on their own. You've spent so many years devoted to them, you may have lost your "self" in the process. If you are also newly single during this time the journey becomes even more confusing and overwhelming. You are not alone! You will survive this and you will be stronger. 

Being able to get dressed without added stress might not seem very important at this time in your life but I know from experience it is. As someone who has stood in her closet in tears and exhausted from trying on clothes for a special event only to become more frustrated with every discarded piece, I can tell you it makes the difference in showing up and participating in life or staying home and eating ice cream alone.

Today's anything goes fashion trends don't even work for some young toned bodies so they aren't likely to flatter those of us who have had our fiftieth birthday party either.

Some of the hot trends we might not want to try are stacked platform high-heeled shoes with ankle bands. Honestly, I can't think of any reason for anyone to consider these but here is an extreme example for you. High skinny heels tend to make our calves look even thicker. Walking in high heels isn't easy. If you must wear them, be confident in your stride and wear cushioned insoles to help with the pain. When your feet hurt...everyone can tell at a glance.

Another trend that isn't right for most of us is the tiny top with skinny or no straps. Anything that shows too much of our upper arms and waistline may not be a good look for us. Tops are very important to your total look. Spend most of your clothing budget on nice blouses, jackets and lightweight cardigans worn open with a great fitting tank top to reveal only part of your body. I love the variety that comes from owning pieces that work together to create many looks rather than dresses. Prints and patterns are very limiting and memorable. Try solids in colors that flatter your skin tone and can be worn together.

Accessories will allow you to dress up or down that great white shirt and black pants for any occasion  in life. You really don't need to spend a lot of money on a lot of clothes.

Great for evenings!

Out to Lunch!

Strictly Business

Hear me Roar!

Be strong! Be beautiful! 

Be your best you everyday!

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Happier and Healthier

The person you see in the first photo is very unhealthy and unhappy with her body image on all levels. That's me in the Spring of 2011.

Spring 2011

Fast forward a year to the second photo. I lost more than forty pounds!

Spring 2012

I was about to outgrow size 12 pants in the first photo. In the second photo, I'm comfortably wearing size 4 pants. 

In 2010, I averaged two migraines per week. I rarely have even a headache now and the inflammation of joints that caused pain with every movement is gone. A backache that kept me from enjoying working in my flower gardens is gone. I no longer take medications of any kind. My lab test results are now perfect. 

Everyone who sees me for the first time in a few months is amazed at my transformation. The first question is "How did you lose so much weight so fast?" My answer is always "Read the book "Eat To Live" by Dr. Joel Fuhrman" to learn what to eat and why.


I am happy to report that I have continued to maintain my weight for more than seven years.


While doing research for the world's healthiest foods, I found that many of them were in what I have for breakfast every morning. This is a hot cereal breakfast that keeps me from thinking about food until late in the afternoon. I'm sharing the recipe along with my story in the hopes that I can inspire you to be a healthier happier more energetic person.

Susan's Power Porridge Breakfast

About 3 cups of unsweetened Almond Milk or Coconut Milk (add more if the mixture becomes too thick cook longer if it is too thin.)
2 Tablespoons of steel cut oats
1 Tablespoon lentils (I add a teaspoon each of three colors)
2 Tablespoons flax seeds (I grind them in a coffee grinder)
1 Tablespoon of amaranth
1 Tablespoon of millet
1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds  
2 Tablespoons of old-fashioned rolled oats (Added near the end of cooking time. Needs about five minutes of cooking.)
Optional items to add near the end of cooking time:
1 Tablespoon sunflower seeds and/or sesame seeds
1 Tablespoon of raw organic pepitas (no shell pumpkin seeds)
1 Tablespoon natural raw walnuts
1 Tablespoon natural raw pecans
1 Tablespoon Hemp Hearts (Sprinkle on top or add at the end of cooking.)
1/4 cup of cooked Teff and or Quiona
1 teaspoon of Red Star Nutritional Yeast (This is not brewers yeast.) It supplies B vitamins. 
3 Large dates (pits removed) cut in half
1 Banana or any fresh fruits you like.
Spices you might like to add, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, nutmeg or ground cloves. 

 (You may find these items on or if they are not available in your area.)

Heat almond milk to a gentle boil as you add lentils and chia seeds, grains, seeds, and then the oats. Stir well and turn down the heat to medium, continue to stir occasionally. Cook for about fifteen minutes until the lentils are tender. You may need to add more or less almond milk to keep the consistency creamy, not watery.

Add the Nutritional Yeast, nuts and dried fruit, stir and cover to simmer only until the dried fruits have warmed. Cut fresh fruit to add on top. 

This recipe serves two or saves well to refrigerate for reheating. I reheat with more almond milk in a saucepan and add the cold porridge to simmer for a few minutes until it is warm.

Packed with high nutrition this breakfast will help you feel satisfied well into the afternoon.

It's been more than six years since I began this journey. I haven't had so much as a cold since I started eating this breakfast followed by a large vegetable loaded salad late in the day. I drink a lot of water and eat fresh in-season fruits and vegetables daily.

I still have desserts occasionally and I still have a glass of white wine with dinners out with Mr. Mickey a couple of times a week. 90% of the time I eat whole real foods that have not been processed in any way other than perhaps being steamed. Mostly I just wash, chop, and enjoy. 

Countless people have asked me how do you continue to keep the weight off? This is my secret!