Part II: Hannah Baxter, Beauty Editor


More Hannah! In Part I of the beauty editor’s Top Shelf, she walked ITG through her career path and over-the-top skincare routine. Now she’s on to makeup, hair, nails, and fragrance. Get comfy! It’s going to be a long, but very good ride.

I don’t really wear foundation and concealer that often, but when I do, I really like Glossier’s Stretch Balm Concealer. It’s very lightweight and easy to sheer out, and it works well for under the eyes and doesn’t settle into creases. I use shade Light 2. I’ve also seen so many makeup artists use the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, so when I think of concealer, that’s what comes to mind. It’s the OG. I use shade Light 2.5. When I want a more full-coverage option, I grab the Kulfi Hydrating Concealer. It perfectly covers any breakouts and smooths everything out. It’s creamy without being greasy, which is hard to accomplish.

A few years ago I brought ILIA’s Super Serum Skin Tint to a friend’s wedding on a cruise ship, even though I’d never used it before. I remember putting it on in the really horribly-lit ship bathroom, and it looked fucking amazing. It’s so easy to apply and doesn’t require a technique whatsoever. I use shade Formosa. If I have a big patch of melasma, I use Westman Atelier’s Vital Skin Foundation Stick in Atelier 0.5. It took me a while to figure out how to use it, but it’s a really nice formula that’s buildable and doesn’t settle into fine lines. And while I love to be super shiny, sometimes I need to tone it down. Tatcha’s Silk Setting Powder is great, but I recently discovered Ware’s PoreBoy. It’s a stick formula that tampens down the shine. It’s so easy to use.

Blush is my favorite makeup product of all time. I like putting a little bit on my forehead, so it looks like I’m sunburnt without actually being sunburnt. I have every color of the Westman Atelier Baby Cheeks Blush Stick and I just rotate them based on how sallow my skin is looking. Merit’s Flush Balm Cream Blush is also nice to apply. I especially like Mood, a really dark burgundy color that gives you this post-sex sort of flush. Clé de Peau Beauté’s Cream Blush in Joyful Pink is another blush pot and lasts a really long time. The only powder blush that I have is Dior’s Rosy Glow in Coral, which is low-key a favorite color to wear of mine. It looks bright orange in the palette, but it’s flawless and looks great in the summer.

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I love bronzer because I love being tan. The Chanel Les Beige Healthy Glow Bronzing Cream in 390 Soleil Tan Bronze? I use that shit everywhere. It looks really natural and the pot lasts such a long time, too. I do a little bit of contouring on my cheeks with the Westman Atelier Face Trace Contour Stick in Truffle. The position of our contour changes with every trend cycle, so I’m still trying to figure it out, but I have good cheekbones and I’m just trying to make them pop a little bit.

In middle school, I was emo to the core, so my eyeliner look very much was like a racoon’s. Now I only line my upper waterline. Lisa Eldridge’s Seamless Glide Eye Pencil is so pigmented. It’s like a Sharpie—but safe. And the Victoria Beckham Satin Kajal Liner? Let’s be honest—Posh made a good liner. I like it in Navy Noir. When I was bartending full time at Webster Hall, I would go in with a full cat-eye, so I’m pretty decent at getting liquid liner on me. The Danessa Myricks Beauty Linework Paintbrush Fluid Eyeliner is excellent. It has a thin tip and goes on super black.

I didn’t use an eye primer for a long time, but I saw the error of my ways when my shadow started to crease. Urban Decay’s Primer Potion is my go-to. If I’m going for a ‘fancier’ makeup look, I swear by Urban Decay’s 24/7 Eyeshadow Stick in Freak, an acid green that I like to apply around the inner corner of my eye to halfway down my lids. I have hazel eyes, so it brings out the green. It also takes two seconds. The Pat McGrath Labs Mothership V Palette also has an iridescent green shadow that I wear. I’m almost out of it, and I’m so bummed that you can’t buy her shades in singles. I don’t know what it is about green, but it makes me feel interesting and confident. I’m a real believer that makeup is supposed to be fucking fun. While I love sculpting my cheekbones, I also want put on some fucking glitter. I want color. I want fun. I want silliness.

Joey Healy shapes and tints my brows every six months or so. I do like a bushy brow look, and I like Joey’s Brow Structure Clear set to keep them brushed up. I think that the Kimiko Super Fine Eyebrow Pencil Automatique is a sleeper hit in the brow industry. Danielle Kimiko Vincent, the founder, does Sandra Oh’s brows, and she is so talented. The pencil only comes in one shade, a sort of gray, but it’s super fine. You can draw individual hairs very well. The KS&Co Tinted Brow Gel is also a dream. It doesn’t deposit too much color, but it thickens up the hairs.

I have blonde eyelashes, so I need to darken them. Armani’s Eyes to Kill Classico is my little black dress of mascara. It lengthens. It gives you Bambi eyes. I like it so much that I didn’t want to like Gucci’s Mascara L’Obscur, but it nails it every single time. It pains me to say it, but it’s worth the money. The same goes for Victoria Beckham Beauty’s Future Lash Mascara. When it comes to ‘clean’ options, getting rid of all of the nasties in mascaras has come so far. I bounce back and forth between Tower 28 MakeWaves and Saie’s Mascara 101.

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I feel the most myself with a lip. I hate to be such a cliche, but it feels very French to me to just have a bold lip with a bare face. Hermès’s lipstick in Orange Boite is a sheer-ish orange-red. It looks crazy in the bullet—like a carrot—but it’s perfect. Rouge Casaque is my bad bitch red. If I need to close a deal, that’s the one I’m wearing. Meanwhile, Byredo’s lipstick in Divorce is my sexy red. I love the whole Chanel Rouge Coco Baume line—the balms are super moisturizing. Dream is my flawless color. It’s a perfect burnt rosy—like your lips but better. Merit’s Shade Slick Tinted Lip Oil also has a beautiful formula.

I discovered Sunnies Face when I was in Korea shopping in Myeongdong. Their Lip Treat in Girl Crush, a warm rose, and Poppy, a reddish orange, are perfect. They have a lovely consistency. I have every single color from Sisley’s Lipstick Phyto-Rouge Shine line—they’re fucking flawless—but I especially love Sheer Blossom, Sheer Petal, and Sheer Ginger. For balms, they stay on so long. Every woman in my family uses the Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Rose. I have one in every bag I own, and they’re only $5. Chanel’s N°1 de Chanel Lip and Cheek Balm helps me look not dead, and I also have the Zelens Lip Enhancer. It’s one of those balms that adjusts to the pH of your lips. Remember when Smashbox had the O-Gloss? It’s like that but a little bit fancier.

My mom went gray extremely early. My entire life I only knew her with silver hair, which is amazing because it reminds me that going gray is not the worst thing in the world. The pandemic really sparked me going gray very rapidly though. I had one or two grays that I could pluck up until that point, and now, I have a full on silver streak—I call it my power streak. I’ve been going to Colleen Flaherty for my blonde for the past five or six years. I see her every four months or so, and we’re slowly starting to let my gray come through a little bit more because there’s no stopping it.

When I had a bob—I had one for five years—I went to Erickson A at Bumble and Bumble. I love him because he’s great at working with textured hair. Lately though, Dhiran Mistry has been my go-to. My hair grows out really well anytime I go to him.

I’ve been going to the Harklinikken Clinic because I lost a lot of hair last year. I was having a really stressful summer, and I was losing a Pomeranian’s worth of hair every time I showered. Then, of course, losing your hair makes you more stressed and your cortisol levels rise and it becomes a vicious cycle. I use Harklinikken’s serum when my hair is 90 percent dry. I also use their Stabilizing Scalp Shampoo and Daily Hair Conditioner, which is sort of a bummer because I want to test a bunch of stuff, but I do feel like they’re working. My hair’s starting to grow back, especially around my temples. That said, I’m generally not loyal to a lot of shampoo and conditioners. I love the Crown Affair Ritual Shampoo and Conditioner. The conditioner in particular is so creamy.

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I love how accessible Odele is as a whole. Their Clarifying Shampoo is so good. The Oribe Hair Alchemy Resilience Shampoo and Conditioner are really great for blondes in particular. I also use the Olaplex No.4P Blonde Enhancer Toning Shampoo once a week because my hair tends to get brassy really quickly. Plus, my dad’s a redhead, so I have some red undertones and I don’t like that. And because I live in New York and the water is hard, I have the Canopy Filtered Showerhead, which I feel like helps keep my blonde really bright.

Because I have textured and colored hair, it can get really dry, so I always use Crown Affair’s Leave-In-Conditioner or Living Proof’s Restore Repair Leave-In when I get out of the shower. The process goes: I get out of the shower, add a leave-in, put in some JVN Complete Air Dry Cream, which helps with frizz, and Ceremonia Pequi Curl Activator. It’s my holy grail curl product. I have really fine 2A-2B waves, and everything that I’d come across for curls up until that point was too creamy and weighed down my hair. The Activator is a sort of gel-serum hybrid. Honestly, I love everything from Ceremonia. Babba Canales, the founder, did such a beautiful job catering to people with curlier hair. I use the Guava Rescue Spray for heat protection, too. And then I use the Rōz Santa Lucia Styling Oil on my ends.

I’m really lazy with hair masks, but they’re nice to have as an extra treat. Odele’s Moisture Mask is a favorite. It took me a long time to get on the K18 Leave-in Molecular Repair Hair Mask train because you can’t use conditioner with it and that feels like sacrilege for textured hair, but I do feel like it helps with split ends and preventing breakage since I’m bleaching it all the time. I use it once a month.

I feel very elegant and put together when I have a snatched, Bella Hadid bun, even though it is really bad for your hair. But because I have rogue baby hairs from all of the regrowth, I have a lot of frizz. I swear by the Mielle Organics Honey & Ginger Edge Gel. That shit will shellac your hair down. Just use an old toothbrush, and it fucking works. It can be windy, it can be raining, and your hair’s not going anywhere. You do have to shampoo really hard to get it out though.

I only properly brush my hair before I get in the shower. Cim Mahony gave me a Mason Pearson pocket brush when I was in Copenhagen. Actually, that’s a funny story. I went on a press trip to Stockholm, and then I flew from Stockholm to Copenhagen for eight hours just to get my hair dyed. It was probably the best blonde I’ve ever had in my life. Now I'm obsessed with this new French brand, La Bonne Brosse, for a very chic alternative to the Mason Pearson.—I use the No. 2 brush. On my wet hair, I use Crown Affair’s Comb No. 002 to brush my leave-in through.

I’m a big proponent of air drying, but it’s not always feasible. Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer with the diffuser attachment works the fastest. It minimizes the frizz. And the Amika High Tide Beach Waver Curling Iron is my secret weapon for getting my waves—it lifts up the roots and it’s easy to use. I rarely enjoy getting my hair blown out because it looks too precious, but Mark Towsend always gives me a great blow out. He does Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen’s hair, so he just gets it. If I flat iron my hair, which is very rare these days, I use the T3 Smooth ID Smart Flat Iron.

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Getting my nails done is one of my favorite affordable luxuries. I live around the corner from a cute nail salon, Elements Beauty Lounge, which was always a goal for me in New York. For a fancier manicure, I’m the biggest fan of JinSoon. It’s so calming.

I like doing my own manicures—not pedicures—and I got really good during the pandemic. Generally, I like a shorter, oval-shaped nail. When they’re too long, it’s too hard to type. I love the Chanel nail file to shape them. The Bare Hands Dry Gloss Manicure Kit is perfect, too. It comes with a glass file and cuticle oil.

In terms of colors, I love JinSoon’s Palma. It’s an electric Kelly green. JinSoon’s Cool Blue is an Yves Klein blue. Actually, I really like getting ugly colors on my nails. JinSoon’s Charme looks disgusting—kind of like baby vomit—but in a fashionable way. It’s like an electric yellow, slimy green, and I really, really love it. Chanel’s 953 Essentiel [discontinued] is like a toffee brown. And every time I get Essie’s Yes, I Canyon, I feel flawless. It’s the perfect orange-red.

I switch up my scent depending on the season, my mood, and the time of day—what I wear in the morning is not necessarily what I'm going to wear at night. I gravitate towards woody scents. I love amber, salt, and rose. I think rose gets a bad rap as being an old lady scent—it can be really sexy when done right. In the summer, I love Ellis Brooklyn’s SALT. It smells like the seaside, like if you’ve just been outside playing by the beach. And it gets better when you sweat into it. Fueguia 1833 is a recent find of mine. All of the brand’s scents are beautiful, but Cactus Azul is a very sharp but earthy scent. It’s clean and dry and smells better the longer you wear it. Actually, it reminds me of what a post-sex smell would be—in a nice way—like just something from inside your body. I really love the ethos behind D.S. & Durga’s Bistro Waters. It has green pepper, mandarin, moss water, and nutmeg. It’s savory and complex.

L'Eau Papier is one of Diptyque’s newer scents. People always ask me about it when I wear it. You wouldn't think that a page of a book would inspire a very attractive scent because, I think, you’d either love or hate that. But it’s very fresh and bright and lighter than you would expect.

I wrote a story diving deep into how smells and aromacology can actually affect your mood, so I love the idea of a functional fragrance. Mind Energy from The Nue Co. is really uplifting. I wear it a lot when I have a big day of events. Does it actually give me more energy? I don't know, but it appeals to something in me and I know that I should have more energy by wearing it, so I feel better.

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Lover by The Maker is the perfume that gets me the most comments. It’s just really cozy and delicious in a way that makes you want to smell it again. It makes you want to be in a dark hotel amongst velvet with soft candle lighting. Krigler’s Boudoir Renaissance 223 is really well-balanced. It’s somewhat floral but earthy. It’s rich but not too musky. It’s sort of slinky. It’s another good date night perfume. It’s a mouthwatering one.

I’m a fucking candle freak. I know that they're not the best for you, but you pick your battles. I mean, I inject botulinum toxin into my face on a regular basis, so yeah, I’m going to light a candle. I can’t even tell you what Nette’s Safari really smells like—I mean the notes are suede, violet leaves, and moss—but it’s just so good. And again, I love rose, and there’s something very elegant about Diptyque’s Roses. I also love Baies. That’s the classic one.

I love Matthew Herman and David Kien, the boys behind Boy Smells. I remember writing about them when they launched their Kush candle. It was one of my first big beauty profiles that I did, so they're very near and dear to my heart. I now really love the Spirituous candle, the votive especially. I like that it's lit up by the flame.

I’ve gone through a lot of Byredo Woods candles. I grew up on a farm and having any sort of land around me makes me feel very humble, and I love carrying that feeling through a candle. The same goes for D.S. & Durga’s Big Sur After Rain. I have the hand soap of it, too.

It's always a conversation piece to have a cannabis candle in your home. I'm a cannabis user, and you can elevate that shit and make it into a candle. It’s earthy and blends well with the smells of a home. I love Malin + Goetz’s.

—As told to Daise Bedolla

Photographed by Alexandra Genova in Brooklyn on December 2, 2023