3 Successful Women Dish On Their Beauty Favorites

Growing up a competitive figure skater, I was exposed to beauty early on. And I like to think it's those years of getting primped with MAC Pigment, unicorn glitter (yep, figure skaters did it first), and a lifetime's-worth of hair mousse that led me to be the beauty editor I am today. While I have fond memories of my mom pulling my hair back into flyaway-free buns, I now get to tell readers to embrace their texture, frizz, and all. And I've replaced the aforementioned glitter for (more subtle) rose-gold highlighter.
There's no doubt that my beauty history has influenced my routine today. And if you asked any woman on the street, she'd probably laugh at the thought of her own beauty evolution. So, in an effort to feed my own nosiness curiosity, I spoke to three beauty and fashion moguls about how their routines have changed over the years — from a designer who heeded her mother's advice to take care of her skin to a stylist who traded sparkly purple eyeshadow for daily Olay Complete Lotion All Day Moisturizer With SPF 15. Read on, and tell us about your beauty evolution in the comments section below.
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Solange Franklin
As a New York-based fashion editor and freelance stylist who works on everything from editorials to runway shows, Solange knows her way around the beauty aisle. (It pays to rub elbows with the pros.) Here, she dishes on everything from how she protects her skin — SPF, always — to the beauty advice she'll never forget.
Some Treatments Are Found In Nature
"My older sister was your typical '90s chick who loved experimenting with dark lipstick and all things girly. I used to play with her powdery eyeshadow palettes [full of] 50 different shades. My mom, on the other hand, was never really into beauty, [but she would] apply lemon halves to her elbows to brighten dark spots. It's actually something I do to this day after I'm finished making lemonade!"
Do What Makes You Happy
"There are some women who [won't even] go to the gas station without red lipstick on. I used to never understand that, but now I get that it’s part of an identity. The same goes for fashion choices. For me, my beauty look [revolves around] my hair, so my makeup is on the simple side. I believe in doing what makes you feel good."
Take SPF Seriously
"I was reluctant to use sunscreen at first because I thought that my dark skin was unlikely to burn. But I've since learned that just because you're not burning, doesn't mean you're not getting sun damage. Now, I apply Olay Complete Lotion All Day Moisturizer With SPF 15 every single day. I love it because it doesn’t leave a white tint or residue behind."
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Christine Alcalay
Brooklyn-based fashion designer and founder of clothing boutiques Fig and Kiwi, Christine likes to keep things simple with a natural skin-care routine and minimal makeup. She loves a good face oil (tbh, who doesn't?) and believes that prevention is the key to healthy skin. Teach us your ways, Christine.
Take Care Of What's Underneath
"When I was a freshman in high school, I started wearing a lot of makeup. One day I even scared a little girl — that's how much makeup I was wearing. From then on, I realized that who I am is beautiful, and I don't need to cover up my face. I started paying attention to my skin and listening to my mom's skin-care advice. It took some time, but I learned that natural beauty is the best for me."
Indulge In Little Luxuries
"My time is really limited, so everything that I do is truly a luxury and self-care. I take [my skin-care] seriously, because it’s the only time I really have for myself. If your skin looks good, then anything you put on top of it — like makeup — will look that much better. I literally won't leave the house without at least my SPF and moisturizer on."
Keep It Simple
"I love face oils because they're moisturizing and contain vitamins and minerals that help replenish what the day takes away. I gently tap four drops of a grape seed oil-based serum on my face, down my neck, and along my décolletage, then let it absorb for a minute or two. It's the only oil I’ve found that has evened out my skin tone. As for makeup, after being so adventurous in high school, I don't use much. Depending on the day, I'll wear Nars Velvet Lip Pencil in Cruella or Dragon Girl and Anastasia Beverly Hills Perfect Brow Pencil to define my brows and frame my eyes without heavy eye makeup."
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Hayley Mason
As Refinery29's senior beauty editor of brand experiences, Hayley's skin-care routine is an ever-evolving one. Each morning, she takes a look at her skin and customizes her routine based on what she sees in the mirror (which is probably a lot more than most of us get done in the wee hours of the morning).
Go Straight To The Source
"Growing up, my mom and sister didn’t do much other than wash their face and wear lip balm, so I had to learn about beauty elsewhere. I'd devour the advice I read in magazines like Seventeen and Cosmo (when I was too young to be reading either). I'd make mental notes to always wash off my makeup or to mask both my face and my hair. Now that I'm a beauty editor, I regularly interview expert hairstylists, makeup artists, and dermatologists for tips, so I get my advice first-hand."
Balance Is Key
"I’ve gotten a lot better about reading my own skin. Now, I don’t just use a product because it's trending or new. I use it because my skin 'wants it.' In the warmer months, my skin tends to be more reactionary, so I try to find a balance between acne-fighting products and products that will hydrate, protect, and brighten my skin. I try to avoid anything that feels too heavy or suffocating — I like full-coverage base makeup, so I want everything to blend together well and feel as light as possible."
Change Is Always A Good Idea
"Since I work in the beauty industry, I get to experiment with lots of new products. But at times, that can be a negative. Last year, I visited my dermatologist for acne-related issues, and he told me that I was 'overexposed.' Sometimes the best thing to do is strip back your routine to a bare minimum. Now, my routine changes from day to day depending on what my skin needs. If it's parched, I'll use a hyaluronic acid serum or a heavier moisturizer. And if it’s looking dull, I'll use a brightening vitamin C serum. It's all about balance."
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