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The Magic of Sleep for our Beauty Regime

Makeup artist, Lou Dartford, clues us in on the magic of sleep and the makeup up tricks she uses when sleep has eluded her.

issue four | the magician

Sleep seems to be a bit of a luxury these days, with our modern lives so many of us are missing out on our shut-eye. However we’re not doing ourselves any favours it seems; to summarise a recent article in The Guardian – “the shorter you sleep, the shorter your life”. Sleep is absolutely essential for our health and wellbeing. While we snooze our bodies are restoring, regenerating and detoxing all of our systems, muscles, skeleton, brain – everything! By the way, according to the article under 6 hours a night is classed as not enough!

 Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in the film Breakfast at Tiffany's.
Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in the film Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

I’m definitely not getting enough and I can feel it when I’ve had a bad night – my brain is less sharp, my memory is bad and I get tongue tangled too; to top it all off, I look rubbish as well. Ah yes, they don’t call it beauty sleep for nothing! Insufficient slumber will show on our skin. Like everything else, our skin is repaired when we sleep – just like magic – so if we don’t sleep it won’t get repaired. Toxins get caught under our eyes too, adding dark circles for good measure.

So, we need sleep, unfortunately it’s not that easy to get a lot of the time. There are so many factors today that affect our ability to get it – work, technology, children, the list could go on and on. I wish I had the remedy to get our full forty winks, but alas I don’t. I do however have a few tips that can cheat some sleep in the looks department.

Without doubt concealer is one of our best friends when it comes to disguising those late nights, be wary though as it can actually draw attention and make situations worse, if used with a heavy hand. My magic (and heavily relied upon) duo is a cream blusher and cream highlighter. These two products can lift and brighten a tired complexion in an instant.

 Makeup by Lou Dartford for Volt Cafe. Luisa Laemmel @ Elite, Photographed by Sarah Cresswell. Hair by Betty Bee
Makeup by Lou Dartford for Volt Cafe. Luisa Laemmel @ Elite, Photographed by Sarah Cresswell. Hair by Betty Bee

A touch of cream blusher up along the cheekbones adds a healthy glow that will help to wake-up eyes too. Pink is a universally youthful colour but think about peach and corals too. These are amazing for blue eyes and can help add sparkle, even if you don’t feel it. Tata Harper’s Lip & Cheek tint is a long-standing favourite of mine, with the shade ‘Very Charming’ holding residency in my personal make-up bag. It adds lovely colour while also boosting skin with lots of botanicals and anti-aging ingredients, so a treat for jaded skin.

Tired skin will look worse piled high with powdery products, so opting for creamier blends helps to add radiance. A cream highlighter can give the illusion of rested skin, beware of anything glittery or too shimmery though as these can be unflattering. The trick is to not see where your highlighter starts or finishes, it should be seamless and become part of your skin, so blend well. RMS Beauty’s Living Luminizer is brilliant at giving skin a natural glow, and is staple in my make-up bag.

So while a couple of products can’t claim to sharpen a tired brain (I wish) they can certainly make a difference to a tired complexion, which in turn makes a tired brain have one less thing to worry about!

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