Step Away From the Smoky

This season, the eyes don’t say it all

Paris’ 2009 fall/winter collections spotlighted fine tailoring, lots of lace and all the extra touches that come during a fashion show in the “City of Light.”

Beauty-wise, pair after pair of bold, bright shiny lips traipsed down the late Alexander McQueen’s catwalk, followed by a similar concept at Givenchy, Lanvin and Ann Demeulemeester. Pale, nude foundation coupled with an intensely hued pucker (red-brown, red-orange, blue-red, the variations go on) has been a popular palette with Hollywood starlets for years. Who could forget Gwen Stefani? She has been a fan of deep red lips since her Orange County days. And while Las Vegans are not accustomed to taking their beauty cues from Paris, this is a trend not to be missed.Statistics show that during economic recessions, lipstick sells. It’s an easy fix, less than $20 and can immediately turn a glum woman into a new woman. To fully realize such a look, everything else on the face must be uber flawless. Ditch the smoky eye. Scrap the black eyeliner. Prime up with a good concealer, foundation and a subtle highlighter. To make a dark, pouty lip work, the face must be a clean slate.

How to get the look

Desert skin craves moisture. Do a little epidermal spring cleaning with an exfoliating and hydrating skin treatment. If spending $200 isn’t in the budget, create an at-home, twice-as-fun mini event for a few girlfriends or book an appointment at a local school for estheticians. For a more glamorous day, book a facial at a spa (many Strip spas offer locals discounts Monday through Thursday).

Achieving a flawless face requires a secret ingredient: foundation primer. A good primer will create a flawless matte base and will ensure foundation and concealer stay in place. That means no bumpy caking around the eyes and lips. Highly recommended: Apply primer with a foundation brush for even, allover coverage; then gently brush on foundation. Color matching is key, and foundation shopping is not a science to be tackled solo. Whether you shop the beauty counter at CVS or at Neiman Marcus, it is imperative to find the right match. If a sales associate is not available to help pick out the perfect tone, bring a friend and get an extra set of eyes on the color before purchasing. Also remember that skin tones vary by season, so make sure to find a product that fits in the budget—taking into account that an eternal shelf life is about as probable as the fountain of youth. After the base is set, dust on a bit of translucent powder and spritz with a light mist of mineral water.

Time for the nude eye

Eye pencil, shadow and mascara are a great place to save a few dimes. Affordable brands such as Revlon make shimmery nudes at a wonderful value. Worth a splurge: Nars’ palettes capture not only top trends but the staples that everyone needs in their makeup case. To finish, load on mascara and make sure those brows are waxed to perfection to create the perfect frame.A word to the wise: This look requires touch-ups throughout the evening. An occasional trip to the powder room will keep the face fresh, vibrant and well put together. The extra effort and maintenance are well worth the compliments.

Suggested Next Read

The Fantasy Tour

The Fantasy Tour

By Marvin Lucas

Angelica Bridges may be the star of Fantasy at Luxor, but her personality is drawn from ancient history. “I’m a redhead, and I’ve always felt like I’m a siren,” she says, alluding to “that loud, proud, wild fierceness” depicted in Greek mythology. The sexy starlet is all those things both on and off the stage—and this approach applies to her lingerie collection as well. From La Perla stockings to lace triangle bras, bold, passionate styles and colors rule her wardrobe.