Breaking into the Beauty Game

words | Laura Jane Schierhorn

photography | Steven Khan @ikhanicphotography

Smashbox Global Pro Artist @ljsbrand


I‘ve loved beauty products for as long as I can remember. My life with products has had many hits and quite a few misses—dark brown lipliner + frosty lip gloss = what was I thinking!?  

So, here I am, ready to share some beauty fundamentals. Hopefully, they’ll help you avoid repeating the mishaps of countless beauty rookies before you, myself included.

#1 Start With Your Skin

Adopting a skincare ritual early on in your beauty game sets the stage for a lifetime of good skin.  A clean, hydrated face is a happy face. Cleanser, toner, and moisturizer for your skin type is the foundation of every beauty routine always and forever. Toss in an exfoliator and a mask every once in awhile and you’re golden. Serums and eye creams can wait until college.

PRO TIP:  Keep makeup wipes handy.  Stash a pack in your purse, locker, gym bag, even your night table. This way if you’re too pooped to do your entire routine, you can at least have a clean face.  Do not go to sleep with your makeup on. This is a MAJOR beauty foul.

#2 Dry Legs + Shaving = Disaster

As an 11-year-old dance student, I was tired of my hairy legs peeking out of my pink tights in ballet class.  My mom didn’t forbid me to shave, I just never thought to ask her, or any adult woman for that matter, any advice on shaving.  Pink Daisy Razor + Dry Legs = Cuts for Days. I still have a scar on my ankle to prove it.           

#3 Leave Your Brows to the Professionals

Brow trends will come and go, but your brow hair will not.  Wax, tweeze or shave your brows away, and they’re not guaranteed to grow back the same.  In fact, they are not guaranteed to grow back at all.  Imagine if Cara Delevingne or Brooke Shields, before her, buckled under pressure to change their big, beautiful brows? Embrace the natural shape of your brows and groom accordingly.

#4 Sharing Product = Sharing Germs

Yes, this is gross.  Makeup can carry bacteria, especially things that are put in or near your eyes.  Bacteria can cause infections.  So before you and your besties start passing around that black eyeliner and mascara in the bathroom, consider buying a pencil sharpener.  Better yet, don’t share your mascara, foundation sponges or eyeliner.  And always clean a store tester before you use it—ALWAYS!

PRO TIP: Carry travel size mascara and eyeliner in your bag.  They’re great for touchups and practically every beauty destination has travel size freebies at some time during the year.

#5 Practice Makes Perfect

The first rule of the makeup game = there are no rules.  Go for that glitter, rock a winged liner and sport a goth lip.  It’s not a tattoo.  It will wash off.  Wearing makeup, or choosing not to wear makeup, makes a personal statement.  It helps express our individuality and has a unique ability to reflect and even change our mood.  Try different looks until you find what makes you feel your most beautiful self.

PRO TIP: Try out new looks at night before you wash your face.  Better to perfect that smoky eye or new eyeliner technique during a practice run. This way, when getting ready in the morning or for a big event, you’ll be an application All-Star.


 Smashbox Try-It Kit $22

Smashbox Try-It Kit $22