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Fashion / Beauty

Pretty City

Carly Lee

BY Kathleen Jennings // 12.31.14
photography Alison Schwamkrug

Carly was gracious enough to invite me over to her gorgeous 1940s New England-style home in Memorial to play makeup and dish on her beauty routine. Just as refreshing and down-to-earth as her online persona, C. Style has become one of Houston’s most popular fashion bloggers and sought–after personal stylists.

STYLE IS ALL ABOUT A REAL, PRACTICAL APPROACH TO FASHION. DO YOU HAVE THE SAME ATTITUDE TOWARD YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE?

I’m pretty practical with my skincare and use a lot of Neutrogena products, but I splurge a little more on my cosmetics. It’s all about mixing high and low. Everyday I use Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisturizer SPF 35 and follow it up with Dr. Jart BB cream. This fantastic BB cream evens out my redness and gives some coverage without ever looking cakey. Six months ago, I blogged that it was my new beauty must–have, and I still use it every single day. That says a lot, coming from a person who loves makeup (even though I don’t always have time to put a lot on!). I put two pumps in my hand and apply it all over my face like a moisturizer.

If I still have some dark circles under my eyes or need additional coverage for any redness, then I will use the Bobbi Brown Foundation stick in Porcelain just on those areas and blend out. The Bobbi Brown is the closest thing I can find to a former favorite foundation stick by Shu Uemura that they discontinued. Then I set it all with pressed powder applied with a big fluffy brush (Nars Liquid 2 in Montblanc).

For a pop of color on cheeks, I prefer a cream blush and have been loyal to Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Raspberry for like 10 years. I just don’t think powder blushes last as long or look as real on the skin.

I’M REALLY IMPRESSED — IT’S 9 AM, AND I THINK I SPOT LIQUID LINER ON YOU.

Holiday Gifting

  • Oscar De La Renta - Earrings
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Loeffler Randall - Shoes
  • Bond No 9 - Candle
  • Nocturne Studio
  • Bond No 9 - Perfume
  • Oscar De La Renta - Clutch
  • Cle Du Peau - Lip Gloss
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Loeffler Randall - Clutch
  • Cle Du Peau - Nail Polish
  • Casa di Lino

I only did that because you were coming over! [Laughs.] It’s really a cream liner that I apply with a brush (Laura Mercier Caviar Eye Liner in Black, applied with Bobbi Brown Travel Eyeliner brush). Then, so it’s not so stark, I go over the line with Bobbi Brown Espresso Eye Shadow using a Nars eyeliner brush. The Nars brush is better with the powder eye shadow and really lets me get into the lashes better.

I finish the look with mascara (alternating between L’Oreal Voluminous and CoverGirl Clump Crusher). If I bother to curl my lashes, then I use that Shu Uemura curler everyone has.

WHAT DO YOU CHANGE UP FOR NIGHTTIME OR SPECIAL OCCASIONS?

For dates with my husband, I keep everything else the same, but just add a little more drama to the eyes. First I apply the shimmery nude color from the Nars Eyeshadow Duo in Tzarine from my lashes up to my brow. I’ve tried a million other colors that are similar to this one, but they are all too pink or yellow. This nude shade is the best one for my skin tone — it’s just unfortunate that it only comes in an eyeshadow duo. Next I’ll use my finger to apply Bobbi Brown Eye Shadow in Stone all over my lid. And I’ll try to do a little more of a cat eye with a gel liner — recently I have been using Nars Gel Eyeliner in Ubangi, which is dark but has a little bit of shimmer.

I WON’T ASK YOUR AGE, BUT ARE YOU DOING ANYTHING ON THE ANTI-AGING FRONT? I’M PARTICULARLY JEALOUS OF YOUR UNDER-EYE AREA — NO BAGS OR LINES.

Honestly I don’t do that much. My dermatologist got me to start using Glytone Hydrate Eye Cream. And I use Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash to wash my face and Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair to moisturize at night. Nothing fancy here — just good ol’ Neutrogena.

ANY TIPS FOR GETTING SHINY, THICK HAIR LIKE YOURS?

I’m not really loyal to any particular haircare line, and each time I run out, I just pick out something new to try from Target. Right now I’m using Oscar Blandi Instant Volumizing Shampoo and Conditioner. And once a week, instead of my usual conditioner, I apply Frédéric Fekkai 3 Minute Mask. Before I blow-dry, I apply Purology Root Lift to the roots just to give me a little more body.

MORNING RITUAL?

I simply splash water on my face and moisturize. I find that my skin does not do well if I wash it more than once a day.

SUPPORT STAFF?

Robert Moore at K. Renee Salon has been taking care of my hair for over 10 years. I sit in the chair and let him work his magic. I have no fear letting him do whatever he thinks will look good. I’ve been going to the same dermatologist since I was in high school, Bradley Beckman at Memorial City. He is a no-nonsense kind of doctor, and I love that about him. Plus, you’re in and out of the office in less than 45 minutes. As for manicures and pedicures, I go wherever is most convenient at the time. Most of the time that’s on the bathroom floor of my house — ha!

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE TREATMENTS?

I don’t have any favorite treatments, but I do use the Clarisonic when I feel like my skin is looking dull or when my skin is flaking. I find that my skin looks younger and dewier after I use the Clarisonic.

CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT MY …

Red lipstick (any shade will do)

SECRET WEAPON?

My secret weapon is a red lip. I can look so tired in the middle of the day when I’m out and about, but then I put on a red lip and it’s like I gained four hours of lost sleep. It’s becoming more and more essential these days. I find it works better than wearing sunglasses indoors -ha!

MOST RECENT BEAUTY DISCOVERY?

My most recent beauty discovery is NARS’ bronzer in Laguna. Since I’m fair skinned, I have always stayed away from bronzers. I didn’t think it was possible for me to wear one without looking orange. But, this bronzer allows me to have that natural, sun-kissed color that I get after a summer vacation or a day on the slopes. It also allows me to fill in the spots where I didn’t get color.

SIGNATURE SCENT/FRAGRANCE?

Honestly, I don’t have one. My husband gets headaches from perfume, so I’m always on a never ending search for THE perfume. Since I don’t have one of my own, I’ll default to my mom’s favorite fragrance, Lauren by Ralph Lauren. I love it because it reminds me of her. When I have a special event, I’ll spritz it on.

FITNESS?

My fitness routine is whatever I fit it in when I can. That may look like heading out the front door for a run when I get 20 extra minutes or doing a workout video at home before the kids wake up. I get really excited when I am able to go to the gym for a good weight routine.

ANYTHING ELSE THAT KEEPS YOU LOOKING GORGEOUS?

SLEEP! I’m serious, I look so much better when I’m rested. I prioritize sleep for my physical health and beauty, but even more so for my mental health (which, to me, is even more important).

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