OK, so it’s been an eye-opening few days, and not just because I sneaked in 10 hours of sleep Thursday night and feel like a new person.
(Side note: You know you kick it with a toddler 24/7 when the thought of eating a bowl of ice cream with your pants off and going to sleep at 8 on a Thursday night sounds VERY exciting.)
The breakthrough moment
So I’m still doing the no under-eye concealer thing (here was Chapter 1 of this adventure), and I think I mentioned this last week, but I had a revelation about a week ago while I was wearing a pearly brightening under-eye cream by Tatcha. It happened right after I took a few before/after pics of myself wearing The Pearl in Softlight, and I do believe I had what they call in the movies “the breakthrough moment.”
I realized what’s reflected in the mirror is *completely* different than what I see in my head.
“This two-in-one makeup and treatment formula breaks upon application to deliver both refreshing moisture and natural coverage for a healthy, well-rested look all day. Light-refracting pearl pigments work with Akoya pearl extract to restore radiance by helping to address the three causes of under-eye darkness: thinning skin, blue undertones, and pigmentation. The Pearl works to address dark circles, fine lines, and wrinkles by supporting natural collagen production and inhibiting hyperpigmentation. It is boosted by niacinamide, which is known to visibly brighten and firm.
“Silk powder smooths the look of fine lines and imperfections, while a blend of botanical extracts protects from makeup and pollution that can cause signs of aging. The lightweight cream is powered by hadasei-3, a proprietary trio of Japanese anti-aging superfoods, and hyaluronic acid nourishes and hydrates for a plump, refreshed appearance.”
The camera told a different story
Because straight-up…right before I took these pics, I wasn’t happy at all with the results. I looked in the mirror, and all I could see was a very tired woman with dark circles wearing a super sheer under-eye brightener that looked about half a shade too light, and in my head I had this whole narrative going about purposefully posting bad pics of oneself on the Internet and how those pics haunt you for years (otherwise known as the typical Karen spiral).
But once I uploaded the pics and started going though them, I didn’t think the pics looked bad at all.
It took me a few times going back and forth, looking at myself in the mirror, then examining the pics and wondering, “What the heck is going on?”
That’s I realized that — oh, my gosh — it’s all in my head.
The dire situation I saw when I looked in the mirror? Not so dire, according to my camera lens. My under-eyes actually looked, dare I say it, pretty darned good. My perception of reality is completely skewed.
I can’t help but wonder…
How is it that we can perceive ourselves so differently than what mirrors and cameras reflect back? Is it because we’re just so accustomed to perceiving ourselves a certain way? How did I get to the place where the picture in my mind is so wildly different than what the camera sees?
I don’t know, and I don’t know if I ever will.
Which brings me to The Pearl
The genius of The Pearl is that I can’t really tell it’s there, but only when I follow the directions to a tee. You have to use the smallest amount — about the size of a grain of rice — and swipe first, then pat. If you use too much, you risk patchiness and losing the product’s magically subtle brightening ability.
I like to use it after applying foundation/BB cream/tinted moisturizer because it’s easier to tell how little I can get away with, and I suppose you could also use a setting powder, but I think it looks better when I don’t.
The Pearl doesn’t have as much coverage as the It Cosmetics CC+ Illumination cream I tried a few days ago, but I think it looks a little less obvious because 1) the pearl in The Pearl is considerably subtler and finer (CC+ Illumination has bigger glitter pieces), and 2) The Pearl sinks into the skin, while CC+ sits on top of it, so it doesn’t look like you’re wearing makeup at all. I can see this working for a lot of people, but especially guys who want a little brightening but are nervous about looking like they’re wearing makeup.
More experiments to come…
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,