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Ask The Makeup Diva
Welcome to Ask The Makeup Diva™! Our resident expert, The Makeup Diva, answers makeup and skin care questions sent in by readers just like you.

Q: During the summer, my eye makeup is always the first to fade. By mid-morning, my shadow already is disappearing and I have circles under my eyes from mascara. Any suggestions?

A: Summer's sizzling heat and increased humidity can intensify a lot of beauty problems: Oily skin may become even more of a challenge, as cosmetics slip off more easily. Humidity causes many cosmetics to congeal; thus, shadow creases and gathers in tiny lines (most annoying and unattractive for older women).

I'm surprised at how few shadow bases are offered in comparison to the overabundance of other cosmetics. Ultima II's Fade Not, Crease Not (about $7.00 at many J.C. Penney and CVS stores or online at drugstore.com) will keep your color smooth and intact long after you've wilted. L'Oreal's new De-Crease (a small tube with a wand-also approximately $7.00 or less, available locally) functions beautifully as well. I've actually used a tiny bit as a long-lasting concealer on blemishes, with great results. Caution: Avoid use under eyes, as the ingredients may prove too harsh for the sensitive tissue here. Both come in crème form; apply over entire lid up to your brow and wait a few minutes to set; when completely dry, follow with makeup.

Although cream eyeshadows are popular, select powder ones for extended wear. When facing especially long hours at work or in the sun, opt for subtle, neutral shades (taupe, eggplant, grey), as fading is less obvious. If you like the luster of a cream, start with powder shadow and then dab a bit of cream under your browbone and above your pupil for a wide-awake, sexy look.

There are exceptional waterproof mascaras available: Some members of the U.S. Olympic Swim Team swear by Cover Girl's Marathon Mascara (found in discount/drug stores or ULTA for under $5.00). The curved brush helps to define each lash, and the formula can take you from a pool to a fine restaurant with no smears or smudges. If you want to personalize moisture-proof mascara, visit Reflect.com and "create" the version of waterproof mascara which suits your own lashes and personal style ($16.50 for a product you tailor and name - how fun is that?). It endures long hours while keeping lashes soft, not stiff.

A final note: Waterproof mascaras may be difficult to remove, but avoid the use of oil to do so (even baby oil). Once it contacts the eye itself, it can form a coating which leads to inflammation, irritation, and possible damage. Instead, use a great non-irritating, non-greasy remover such as Almay's Eye Makeup Remover Pads (about $5.50 retail or $2.75 at ULTA), Clinique's Naturally Gentle Eyemakeup Remover ($14.50), or Rinse-Off Eye Makeup Solvent ($14.50). Clinique products can be purchased at most major department stores or online at Gloss.com. An added bonus: These makeup removers also come in handy when taking off stubborn lip and cheek stains.


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