Friday, 5 February 2010

The Foundation Course

Who is that masked Skoolgirl? Outlaw teen showcases the ideal foundation.

by Miss Justine Brown (photo by Sandra Prehara)

It's tempting to spend our Skooltime on extracurricular activities. We have the Foreign Affairs Club, the Pep Club, the Bee-Keeper's Club and so on. After Miss Brown's last post, London Hair Trends Redux, someone started up yet another group-- the Topiary Club. This club attracted half the Skool. We see them all over the halls, garden shears at the ready. Fellow Skoolgoers, we can sometimes spread ourselves too thin; we have to think of our grades! That's why Miss Brown is offering a special guest lecture for the Foundation Course.

Now, Miss Brown doesn't want to take anything away from our fantastic teacher-- what's that? No, she is not a "teacher's pet"! She feels a special affinity for Foundation, that's all. For what is foundation, if not paint? And Miss Brown does like her paint.

Some lunatics contend that we don't need foundation. Miss Brown says this: not only do we need foundation, we need PRIMER. No, just settle down and listen up. And you can STOP rolling apples down the aisle, Miss Green! For your information, Miss Brown has plenty of "street cred." Yes! She has even been caught shoplifting. Twice-- once at age six, and once at age thirteen. What's the point of this shocking revelation, you ask? Read on.
At age six, little Miss Brown was passing a candy shop on her way home from school. Naturally enough, she went in. She didn't have any money. And because she had neither money nor candy, she stole a bit of both: a single gold foil chocolate coin. The shopkeeper tried to pry it from her hand, but she would not give way. She did give up her telephone number, however, and he contented himself with phoning Miss Brown's mother.

At six, few things are more enticing than chocolate coins. At thirteen, few things are more alluring than makeup. Miss Brown was keeping company with a fellow thirteen year-old-- let's call her Mandy-- and they together they fell briefly into a life of crime, getting light-fingered in the makeup aisle at the local pharmacy. Disaster struck when  Miss Brown's cohort got collared by the store detective. Miss Brown got away with her treasure, but not without first whispering a piece of terrible advice to her friend-- don't let them make you cry. And precisely because Mandy did not cry and show remorse, the store detective phoned the police. Whoops. Sorry, Mandy.

Miss Brown got away with her swag because she stole with cool determination. What was it? FOUNDATION. Foundation, that miraculous paint that seemed to magick away her nascent teenage skin problems. The following week, Miss Brown's crime spree skidded to a halt when she was caught shoplifting makeup in, of all places, Army and Navy. Fellow Canadians will know this place. It's big and cheap, full of practical gear, and most often frequented by lumberjacks and fishermen just down from the bush to buy a new set of hobnailed boots or woolen longjohns. It's also flooded with florescent lights and studded with security cameras. 

Miss Brown didn't care. She was giddy with stealing success. She even remembers noting the store detective tapping an impatient toe beside her as she scrabbled on her knees through a bin of cut-price makeup, pocketing random stuff that she didn't even want. Soon she found herself in the cramped, frightening office upstairs. Luckily for Miss Brown, her mother alerted a dear family friend who also happened to be a lawyer. He dashed into a phone booth and emerged in a flawlessly tailored suit, turned up at Army and Navy in a jiffy, and smoothly persuaded the store detective to release the young felon into his care. It was scary and embarrassing. And so ended Miss Brown's life of crime.

The point of this sordid story is this: young Miss Brown stole foundation and got away with it because foundation was important. She later got caught (and just as well) because she got sloppy. She didn't need or want those random pots of disco glitter and bronzer in the bin. 

Today, foundation remains a crucial part of her makeup routine. Then, it helped to camouflage spots and (provided one could find the right product in those olden days) whiten the skin. Nowadays, it evens out skin tone and texture and provides a canvas for additions like blush, highlighter and powder. Miss Brown will recommend her two current favorites, a cheap, wintry one and a pricey, summery one: Maybelline Dream Creamy Foundation and Bobbi Brown Oil-Free Even Finish Foundation SPF 15. But first, a few words in favour of primer. Now, some of you think primer is just another plot launched by the military-cosmetic industry to get you to shell out big bucks for something you don't need. In that case, try an inexpensive but excellent brand of primer-- Avon Magix, which can be worn alone with just a little concealer. Worn like that, it creates a soft-focus effect and smooths the surface of the skin.

Class, Miss Brown prefers to go whole hog: apply primer because it makes the paint stay on all day, then a little concealer where needed. Finally, without creating an inch-thick mask, she dots foundation on her forehead and chin, strokes a little down her nose and cheeks, and, using a foundation brush as all painting students should, she stipples from the nose outward. Blend, blend, blend. Inspect at close range. You are ready to add whatever colours you desire! And so ends this student's contribution to The Foundation Course. Thank you.

1 comment:

  1. I am thrilled to be a regular reader of the Kool Kids at Skool. In honour of your wisdom and sharp intellects, I have made a Youtube video series.

    Here is episode one: