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Irina Aleksander, Writer

Irina Aleksander
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Irina Aleksander
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Irina Aleksander
Irina Aleksander
Irina Aleksander
Irina Aleksander
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“I’ve always been into fashion, but beauty is something I completely don’t understand. Like, I don’t know how to do it and it’s not the same realm. I don’t like seeing makeup. If I knew how to do my makeup in a way that you wouldn’t see it, I would do it more often, but because I don’t know how, I just don’t do it. [Laughs] Unless I’m a professional makeup artist, I’m not sure can pull it off in the way I want it to look. So, I think, that’s why I like the bare look because you’re not advertising that you literally spent two hours in front of the mirror this morning. With fashion, you can look in a way where no one knows how much time you spent on it and you can look really good. With makeup, I feel like it is harder to pull off or you really have to know what you’re doing. During the day, I usually don’t wear any, but I’ll do mascara and lipstick if I’m going to meet someone or having lunch or something. For a while I was using the vibrating mascara, the Lancôme kind. It totally makes your lashes longer, but it turns them into these little icicles. And if you start picking at it, you can literally pick off the entire icicle. They’re little tubes because it spins really fast and it literally makes a new lash on top of your normal lash. I noticed myself having some sort of nervous tick where I’d start picking it off during the day and then I started having black things all over my face, so I don’t use that anymore. Now I have MAC Plush Lash which is perfect; it’s my favorite.

I’ll do makeup at night, if I’m going out. I used to have this amazing NARS coral lipstick but they don’t make it anymore, so I went to Sephora and got Sephora Rouge in Jealous which is what I’m wearing now. And NARS Red Square is the best lip color I use. It never comes off. I feel like they made if for me. I’m Russian—both my parents are and I was born there. So fully Russian, but now I live in Brooklyn. My favorite thing is Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer—it’s literally like airbrushing your face. It’s so lightweight and you don’t really feel like it’s on, but it smoothes everything out. Then I do NARS concealer around the eyes, light 3 in Honey. I went to the store and they told me that the big misconception is that people get concealer to match their skin tone, but for under the eyes, you have to get one that counteracts the undertones under your eyes. So if you’re blue, you have to get one that is pinkish color. Oh, and this is so embarrassing—you know when you go into Duane Reade and you see those bronzers that have the sun and the moon on them and have those weird designs? I’ve been using this since I was thirteen— Physicians Formula, Solar Power Light Bronzer. It’s the best. I feel like it’s a totally teenage thing to do. It’s for people who are pale and want to look a little bit better. It’s amazing. I’ve tried every bronzer from more expensive companies and none of them work as well. Every time I wear it, people are like, ‘Oh, you look so tan, were you away?’ It’s perfect for you if you’re pale. Sometimes I do eye shadow, but I just have cheap Sephora shit. Another Duane Reade buy, I’ve been using this since I was a teenager, is Covergirl black eyeliner. There’s no eye pencil that I’ve ever used that smudges as well. I feel like with more high-end eyeliners, they’re more precise and you can actually see the line, but I don’t actually like seeing the line; I feel like it’s better if you just kind work it yourself.

I don’t wash my face, ever. By the time I realized that it was something that I was supposed to be doing or should be doing, my skin had never broken out, it was always perfect, I never had any problems with it, so if I start washing it now, what if it starts acting up because of the different products I’m using? I know, it’s totally gross, but it works. When I’m in the shower, my face will get wet, but I never put soap on it. I think it’s because my mom never wore makeup—not an ounce of makeup—she never needed to wash her face, and you know, you learn those things from your mom. I go to bed with my makeup on. Sometimes, if I feel adventurous, I’ll use eye-makeup remover, the Lancôme blue bottle, but that is such a rare thing. If I had a wedding or something and piled it on then I’ll use it. But you know how sometimes when you go to sleep with eyeliner you get that nice little smudge underneath? I actually like it the next day. There is actually no natural way to get your makeup to look that way unless you’re going to bed with it. I’ll put sun block on my face, which is a recent development. I think two years ago a friend yelled at me for not using sun block, so I got something called Coola, it’s an organic sun block. It’s perfect. It’s so light, you don’t even feel it.

I don’t wash my hair that often—twice a week usually. And I usually don’t put that much product in it, I just let it air dry. I use the higher priced L’Oréal—you know, instead of $4 it’s $8. [Laughs] It’s called Everstrong Reconstruct Conditioner. It’s Rosemary Mint or something. It works really well because I feel like what separates the expensive shampoos from the cheap ones is the sulfate, so if you get something sulfate-free then that’s pretty much all I’ll need. So, that shampoo, plus air drying so it gets kinky—because I feel like to get that natural kink, it has to be air-dried; otherwise, you could braid it or you could blow-dry it and then do things to it, but it’s too much work. And then I use the Bumble and Bumble Thickening Spray. And I don’t comb it, ever. When I get out of the shower, I comb it, but that’s it.”

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