CONVERSATIONS WITH OLD PEOPLE: What is the Best Highlighter?

Perhaps your Facebook feed is full of important issues, but recently mine has become nothing but sponsored videos of people applying contours and highlights to their seemingly “ordinary” faces, transforming into runway models right before my very eyes.

Obviously it’s all entirely fascinating. And what is even more obvious is that these people are using product far superior to my occasional drugstore bronzer/sparkle blush combo impulse purchase (those never work, by the way). These aged eyes cannot make out the products these vloggers quickly wiggle in front of their open palms, nor do I care enough to read through the comments for the answers to my questions. I watch the videos in a Facebook auto-played loop and then check my Instagram for the fiftieth time and go to bed.

Best makeup highlighter 2017
illustration by Molly Marcucci

But I KNOW some of you must have the answers to my shiny (in just the right places) face questions. What do you use? How much does it cost? IS there a drug store option worth trying? And where do I, with my very long oval face, apply it?

THANK YOU IN ADVANCE.

ADULT CONTEMPORARY: I No Longer Wear Under-Eye Concealer

The eyes, no matter how lovely, are the one feature that will always give away your age. In the darkness of night, your 20-year-old Lyft driver might, at first glance, assume you are as young as he and needing an introduction to such fringe bands as Green Day and Maroon 5 (*TRUE STORY*), but in the light of day … if you’ve lived your life … no amount of Botox (or alternatives), will completely mask the wisdom held within.

Yes, my dear boy, I have heard of Green Day.

“WAIT,” he said confusedly, “you’re not in your … THIRTIES??”

How Old is Too Old - I have stopped using under eye concealer

And so eye creams and under eyes masks and cucumbers or whatever. But I’ve decided to focus less on keeping mine plump and bright and am instead embracing the fact that I have, indeed, seen some stuff, and that these peepers hold a depth of knowledge within.

“Here, darling, try Velvet Underground instead.”

I recently read in Vogue that French women apparently do not wear under-eye concealer. And instead of rolling my very concealed eyes, I was genuinely thrilled with the concept of letting your weariness and experience show on your face in just this one area. This was the first bit of advice that, to me, ACTUALLY could make a person look more interesting and “French” (aside from “Boul“, obviously). And I immediately stopped applying concealer on the inside corners and just beneath my eyes. I still use a little in the outside corner – where I have dark pink spots – but everything else is kept natural.

Can I tell you that I LOVE IT??

I doubt anyone notices, to be honest, but it makes me feel like I’m carrying around a little secret. I’ve even started darkening my eyelids a bit with a smudge of bronzer and covering that with a sweep of Vaseline, to play up my naturally shiny eyelids. It’s like I’m daring the world to guess how old I am – just look at all this very apparent mileage and wisdom.

As I stepped out of the car, breeze billowing my shirt up around me, I heard that baby boy subtly turn up the New York Dolls album I had suggested just before he sped away into the night, and I smiled to myself.

Guys, he thought I was in my twenties.