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Katie Trotter: Summer make-up doesn't have to melt away

Whatever else you do or don't do, please wear sunscreen. You are nothing but a fool not to invest in the best when living under the Middle Eastern sun

I have spent endless time trying to help you dress as best as possible for the summer heat, which in temperatures close to that of the earth's core can be something of a challenge. What most of us forget, though, is our make-up. None of us like to deviate much from our make-up routine, so changing products around for the summer months can be asking a lot. I'll get the boring stuff out the way - for goodness sake, whatever else you do or don't do, please wear sunscreen. You are nothing but a fool not to invest in the best when living under the Middle Eastern sun. For facial sunscreen (it should be different to your body lotion) be prepared to fork out - with the right texture you can even ditch the moisturiser if having both is too costly. Its primary job should be to protect against both UVB (the primary cause of skin cancer) and UVA (the one that causes wrinkles). I can personally recommend Shiseido, which does a super non-greasy cream with an SPF 50 that doubles up as a good daily moisturiser.

Our skin is somewhat of a disloyal friend as we age, but we have to work with our given lot the best we can. Start with a good hydrating cleanser, such as Estee Lauder Soft Clean Tender Creme Cleanser, which will get rid of all traces of make-up while leaving your skin feeling like silk, and follow with a good serum. After years of watching models slather the stuff on because of dehydrated skin from all the flying, I found the best to be Avène Soothing Hydrating Serum, which leaves the skin with a plumped, pillowy feeling - although make sure to pat it on so that the product is pushed right into the cells.

A foundation primer, something most of us choose to ignore as just another costly, unnecessary item, will dramatically help create an even surface and helps make-up last longer. Smashbox Photo Finish Luminizing works wonders on a dull complexion. In the height of summer, most foundations tend to run, so I advise moving over to a tinted moisturiser with the added coverage of concealer to help hide any blemishes. Laura Mercier's cult classic tinted moisturiser in "Illuminating" will keep the skin hydrated, even out the tone and is, most importantly, fuss free.

The problem with dewy skin is that it doesn't hold up well in the humidity. I normally go for glossy skin and spent a lifetime avoiding powder (thanks to a fear of looking like one of my chalky old teachers), but nowadays powders are so highly developed they are very much worth a go. Use a powder puff and roll the powder on your skin, or lightly brush with a large, soft brush on the areas you need things to stay put. Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder SPF 15, can be used over your final make- up for a soft, matt finish. Another trick is Laura Mercier's Secret Finish mattifying product, which can be used as an urgent repair job when things become undone.

Eye make-up, in general, is a tricky one, as it has the tendency to cake and melt, falling into the eye crease as soon as we step outside. So again, try to use a specific primer made for the eyes that will act as an adhesive before applying eyeshadow. When it comes to mascara, make sure, if nothing else, it's waterproof. As painstaking as it is to remove, nobody looks good with half their make up under the eyes. YSL Volume Effet Faux Cils, one of my favourites, also comes in a waterproof version, but be warned it can only be removed with oil-based remover or cream cleanser

I can safely say that everything begins and ends with good skin. It provides the necessary base needed to build on, and in the summer months, without the extra special attention needed, you will never get that flawless face we all wish for - so invest wisely.

ktrotter@thenational.ae

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