Our daughters would say not. They can tell when we have slapped it on and they don’t like it. There is a lot of high performance make-up out there and our expert, Fiona Embleton, has already told us what pitfalls to avoid and how to wear foundation for maximum performance in her article Flawless Face at 50.
But many of us have simply given up and have resorted either to old favourites that may no longer be right for our ageing skins or to the lighter coverage that a tinted moisturizer offers. It’s why we’re delighted to have come across an entirely natural new foundation and make-up range from Kjaer Weis.
Kirsten Kjaer Weis is a New York based Danish make-up artist who launched her natural organic make-up brand in 2010. As an in-demand make-up artist with over 20 years experience and countless covers and fashion shoots behind her, Weis noticed that most women she worked with reacted with breakouts, redness or irritation to conventional cosmetics with chemical ingredients. Yet she could not find a natural alternative that delivered professional results, nor did they come in stylish compacts. So, she set out to create a line that had it all – a combination of high-performance natural and organic ingredients in sleek, jewellery-like silver refillable compacts packaged in elegant, lacquered red boxes.
I speak to Kirsten while she’s visiting London about her range, particularly about her foundation. ‘So many conventional products contain silicone that could irritate so I was looking around for more natural brands but they just weren’t performing,’ she says. ‘Also natural brands tended to be so brown baggy and I don’t see why just because something’s natural you have to compromise on the kind of luxury or elegance that a brand like Chanel would bring.’ Kirsten teamed up with a manufacturer in Italy who had been in the green world for 40 years and after a lot of trial and error over eight years, launched her now cult brand. ‘There’s no magic ingredient to replace silicone,’ says Kirsten, ‘but Michelin chefs are always mixing new ingredients to fine-tune their recipes so I thought why can’t we do that with organic ingredients like shea butter, oils and vanilla wax?’
Kirsten’s sister suffered from rosacea and was frustrated having to wear thick layers of synthetic foundation to cover it so Kirsten wanted to create a foundation that could be as sheer as a tinted moisturiser but could also provide the coverage of a concealer where needed. Most important of all, her foundation lets the skin breathe because there are no parabens, silicone, petrochemical emulsifiers or synthetic fragrances, just plenty of luxurious, anti-ageing ingredients like Sweet Almond Seed Oil, Coconut Oil and Jojoba Seed Oil. Having tried the foundation, I can vouch for its smooth, buttery-soft, moisturising and velveteen texture that leaves a poreless, porcelain finish.
‘It’s basically your skin but better,’ says Kirsten. ‘My philosophy on make-up is less is more. I think it’s beautiful when make-up is an extension of you and not a mask.’ Our daughters would agree whole-heartedly.
High50 readers are eligible for a 10% discount (for the first 100 customers) – please use eu.kajerweis.com to order and quote the code kjaerweis10.
Almost all KW makeup has been approved as “Certified Organic” or “Certified Natural” by Italy’s organic inspection body, CCPB (Controllo e Certificazione Prodotti Biologici). Kirsten will be launching her first skincare product in February 2017. Currently her make-up is available in the UK from Net-a-Porter.