Libby Gray, Photographer

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'I'm Libby [@libby _gray] and I'm a photographer but have also been working as a digital producer over the last several years. Those lines of work are not usually related which I've found to be a nice way to balance out heavy creative efforts with something quite the opposite. I'm obsessed with photos though and spend a lot of my non-working time shooting and traveling. Regular yoga to unwind but also energize is also a must.

I've lived in New York City for nine years, but I recently took an extended break to live and work in San Francisco for six months. I was working with Apple, which was a great experience. So many smart, creative people.

Fashion is a big part of what I shoot—and thus a lot of women—so I'm constantly thinking about ways I like to see women portrayed, and what I find beautiful. I've found myself drawn towards a natural, slightly unpolished approach. Recently, I've been loving these old black and white portraits of Julia Roberts taken by Brigitte Lacombe. Her hair and skin are very natural and I just like her easy, slightly unkept, effortless vibe. I have loads of references like this because it's usually at the core of the art direction for many of my shoots.

My older sister has always been way more knowledgable about makeup than me. I remember always asking her to do my makeup for school dances and things like that. She really showed me the ropes.

At this point, I like to keep things fairly low-maintenance. I usually stick with a product for a long time as long as it's working. I have sensitive skin so I don't use a lot of products or makeup on my face. I've been a longtime user of Oil of Olay, which for whatever reason has always just worked well for me. I use the Total Effects Cleanser and Fragrance Free Moisturizer. I also recently started using serums under my moisturizer, which makes my skin really smooth and even. I really like Lancôme Génifique. It's a bit expensive, but totally worth it. When I need to reset my skin with something not too harsh, I use the Glossier Mega Greens Galaxy Pack. I used to use Aztec Indian Healing Clay but found the Glossier one was much gentler. I try and do that at least once a week.

In terms of makeup, Clinique Long Last Lipstick in Watermelon has been my go-to for years. It's bright pink which works well with my complexion and it's an easy way to pull things together without too much effort. For my lips, I've also used Rosebud Salve Strawberry Lip Balm since high school. It lasts forever and just has the right amount of balmy-ness to it. Then I just use baby oil to remove any makeup at the end of the day.

My hair is probably the area that I experiment with products the most because it's really thick and textured so I'm constantly feeling like I need to find ways to keep it calm and smooth. I recently discovered Alterna Caviar Shampoo and Conditioner, which is working great and leaving my hair well moisturized but not weighed down. Prior to that, I had used Terax Crema Conditioner for 10 years and rotate it back in occasionally. It's incredibly light, but really moisturizing as well.

In general, I've found that it's best to switch shampoos and conditioners every couple of weeks and also use a cleansing shampoo every once and a while to avoid too much buildup. I like Terax Latte Clarifying Shampoo for that. In terms of finishing product, I use Kerastase Oléo Relax, which is a light oil that helps with frizz. I've also recently learned to not touch it while it's drying. Amazingly, I didn't realize this until recently but it's really changed the way my hair dries. I used to always touch and play with it to get it to calm down, but apparently that just makes it frizzier!”

—as told to ITG

The #ITGTopShelfie series puts the focus on the lives and beauty routines of Into The Gloss's lovely, accomplished, and loyal community of readers. Show us your own Top Shelfie on Instagram—tag us @intothegloss, and include the hashtag #ITGTopShelfie.

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