The #ITGTopShelfie interview series focuses on the beauty routines of Into The Gloss' lovely, accomplished, and loyal community of readers. Submit your own on Instagram—post your Top Shelfie (tag us @intothegloss!) and include the hashtag #ITGTopShelfie for a chance to be featured on ITG.
"Hi, I’m Chris! (@tophcam) Nice to meet you. I live in Brooklyn, New York, but I’m originally from Houston, Texas. I am the Sales Events Specialist at Kjaer Weis where I head up the brand’s in-store events strategy as well as manage the influencer program. I love that I’m able to help bring the beauty of the brand to life and share it with other people. My job has really taught me to consider sustainability in how I approach beauty and my everyday life. I never used to consider the amount of waste that was made each time I repurchased a plastic compact of something I loved, but it really starts to add up.
I have learned a lot about myself through makeup—whether I was sneaking into my mom’s makeup drawer as a kid or learning the basics of theatrical stage makeup at performing arts camp. Halloween was always the biggest holiday at my house growing up, and I lived for the opportunity to play dress up. It wasn’t until I started watching beauty gurus on YouTube that I realized beauty was a world I needed to actively be a part of. I uploaded my first YouTube video in December of 2010 and the rest, as they say, is history!
I think beauty is between you and you, and that there is no right or wrong way to be beautiful. I love finding beauty in the unconventional. I turn to beauty as a way to reflect and heal. Nothing makes me feel more at ease than spending an afternoon indulging in beauty products alone or with my closest friends. My biggest inspiration has always been Marilyn Manson. His use of extremity to create beauty always spoke to me, especially when I was younger and just coming to terms with my sexuality. He taught me how to be brave. I tend to form an emotional connection with my products and the uplifting experience they provide. When I find a new favorite, it often sticks around for a long time.
My ultimate skincare quest is hydration. I love red wine, coffee, and neglecting my refillable water bottle, so my skin is dehydrated as shit most of the time. I love products that make my skin look and feel plumper. Hada Labo Gokujyun Lotion is one of my favorite thirst quenchers. I like that I can apply multiple layers of it without the product pilling on my skin. Josh Rosebrook Hydrating Accelerator is organic herbal hydration in spray form and it’s great to spritz on after an acid toner like Biologique Recherche Lotion P50 1970-which I also cannot be without. It’s addictive and equally effective.
Votary Super Seed Cleansing Oil has truly carved out a place in my skincare wardrobe. It always calms my skin down and nourishes it when I’ve been neglecting it. I love to slather my face and neck with it, and massage while binge-watching. It also comes with the best washcloth I’ve ever used, so that you can do a proper cleanse! Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser was my first foray into the world of green beauty and it’s still as delicious to use now as it was when I first tried it over four years ago. I like to apply a thick layer and leave it on as a mini-mask before rinsing off, and I find it really helps to make my skin look luminous and my texture feel more even.
Leahlani Citrus + Citrine Hydrating Toner is like Hawaiian sunshine and fresh orange blossoms in a bottle. It contains a citrine gemstone to inspire joy and boost energy. I keep the gem from each bottle I finish and move it to the new one. I’ve been using the Jordan Samuel Skin Hydrate Serum since I was in college and love how well-rounded it is. I can really depend on it to make my skin feel replenished and comfortable. I love mixing it with products that contain strong actives to make them a bit more tolerable. And I love oil serums because they’re quick, easy, and provide instant glow. MUN Aknari is far and away my favorite because you can use it on your face and underneath your eyes, and it instantly brightens both. I reach for it when my skin is looking especially tired. But African Botanics Neroli Infused Marula Oil is on another level. You can tell the oil has been fully saturated with all the nutrients from the neroli and it is a dream to use. It makes my skin balanced but also really nourished at the same time. Plus, it smells divine.
A few times a week I’ll use a hydrating mask. My favorites are Glossier Moisturizing Moon Mask and Origins Mega Mushroom Relief & Resilience. I love masks that I can leave on and more or less forget about while I’m getting other stuff done. May Lindstrom Skin The Blue Cocoon is my favorite skincare product of all time. It is a bright blue balmy relief for the skin and soul that has been hand-poured into a jar. I reach for it when my mind feels foggy or my skin looks inflamed, and it always delivers the ultimate comfort. If all of my skincare tragically disappeared, I would drop whatever I was doing to go pick up a jar.
For eye cream, I love to layer products in order to address all my concerns. I’ll start with Maya Chia's The Eye Achiever as an antioxidant base and then layer a separate eye cream on top. Tula’s Revitalizing Eye Cream is the perfect texture and really makes my eye area look refreshed. Dr. Dennis Gross’ C+Collagen Eye Cream is amazing when I want more of a potent treatment, and potent it is!
For lips, I can’t get enough of the Kjaer Weis Lip Balm. I love the chic black compact and the formula is very silky. I’ll even apply a little bit on my brows to make them look glossy.
HAIR + BODY
I never realized my hair was curly until I started growing it out—I’m trying to fully embrace the mane! I love the Bumble & bumble Bb Curl Primer because it makes my hair feel really lush and bouncy. I spritz it on while my hair is slightly damp and scrunch the ends. Ouai’s Wave Spray amplifies my hair’s texture without matting it down. I’ll add Windle & Moodie Invisible Day & Night Cream when I need more body and shine.
I feel naked if I leave the house without fragrance. My ‘core four’ are Serge Lutens Fleurs d’Oranger, Chanel No. 5 Eau de Parfum, Jo Malone Blackberry & Bay, and Tom Ford Black Orchid, but lately I can’t get enough of DedCool Velvet (Monroe) for its smoky creamy juniper-y goodness.
I conceal my undereye circles every day with a rotation of favorites. Kjaer Weis cream foundation in Feathery gives really creamy coverage that looks exactly like moisturized skin. I apply a few sheer layers over The Beautiful Oil to create the perfect texture. I love Glossier Stretch Concealer in Medium when the skin around my eyes is dry, and reach for Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer in Light-Medium when I need hardcore correction. If I have a blemish, I’ll use Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage in SC-3 and pinpoint conceal it à la Lisa Eldridge. I use bronzer across the bridge of my nose and on my forehead to create a bit more depth and warmth. Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base is still my favorite after all these years because it blends like a dream and never looks shimmery."
—as told to ITG