The nude lip.

In all my years of playing with makeup, I have never
paid attention to blush as much as I do now. My deserted island staple is still
lipstick, of course. Apparently for other women it’s either that or mascara, but
as I wear glasses, mascara just means black track marks on the lenses. Now that
my skin is better behaved, blush does not have to be the surefire way to
emphasize red zits on my cheeks.

blushes are still the best option for women who run after cabs and do not own
portable Photoshop blur filters. I own several powder blushes, and Shu Uemura
and NARS make the best ones, in my opinion, followed closely by Laura Mercier
and YSL. I would have given YSL top marks but the color selection bugs me.
Today’s cheeks are brought to you by Laura Mercier’s Sunkissed – a burgundy red
with gold flecks in the pan, which applied sheerly makes me look like I just
came from Boracay. More layers makes me look like I just came from an orgy in

Color on my cheeks means I
downplay my lips. Of course that means a search for YLBB (Your Lips But Better)
shades of lipstick. Many crumpled, stained tissue sheets and makeup
remover-saturated cotton pads later, here are the

1. YSL Rouge Personnel #4

2. YSL Rouge Personnel

3. Shiseido S2 Clear

4. Shu Uemura S506


They are all wonderful for
daytime, worn alone, and under a shimmery gloss (like Shu Uemura Banana Flambee
or NARS Sunset) for night, with defined

You’ll have to wait a little longer
for the kiss test results.

Any lipstick
that makes your partner gag is perhaps better saved for events nonconducive to
French kissing, like wakes and political rallies.