Hi Eva. I love your Tumblr; your personality and aesthetic really brighten my day. So my question is really thorough. I have always treated my skin quite terribly - I don't take my makeup off at night, I don't ever use any treatments or masks, and I pretty much just use an acne cleanser and maybe Dove moisturizing cream. It was all OK until I turned the big 30. Now, I feel like my skin is parched and sad looking. Could you recommend a routine and products to help me. I know I have sinned deeply.
someone call me a cardiologist because your question just gave me heart palpitations. well, first of all, I’m glad you’re acknowledging your skin sins. although, first of all, there’s probably nothing wrong with the acne cleanser you’re using or the Dove cream you’re slathering on your sad, parched face. what is a major problem, though, or as Julia Roberts would say in Pretty Woman: “Big mistake. Big. Huge”, is that you aren’t removing makeup at night. that is not good. I’m picturing it seeping into your pores right now. seeping into your eyelash follicles, making your lashes sad and puny. okay, enough lecturing! here’s a basic skincare routine I recommend: *remove your makeup every night (even if it’s Yes to Carrots makeup removers. which I like a lot, by the way) *wash your face every night (it can be with something as simple as Cetaphil) *use a serum for your skin type (since you said “parched”, I’m going to recommend this one—it’s a splurge, but it’s worth it. I think serums are worth their weight in gold) and *night cream (this one is good for sad-looking skin). use an SPF during the day. this alone will make your skin happier and less arid. and, when you see a difference in a few weeks and want to graduate to masks and treatments, drop me another line ^_^
“I see beauty everywhere”—the late, great Kevyn Aucoin. I never got to meet him, in all my years as a beauty editor, but he seemed like such a beacon of positivity and light—rarities in the fashion industry, to be honest! anyway, lately I’ve been obsessed with his eyelash curler. love that it’s red, so you can see every.single.lash.
Dear Eva, I am planning on majoring in median and communications at one of SUNY universities in New York. I am torn between going to university or going to pursue my passion for modeling. I feel like I have what it takes and can manage it but either way what are my chances if growing up and sustaining a family's yet on? I don't want to be only a housewife and I want to be a good contribution. What do I do?!
if you’re lucky enough to get in and afford it, go to university, please. modeling is an amazing career—but, in my opinion, it’s not really a career path you can choose as readily as, say, medicine, banking, or, um, lawyering. there is no core curriculum, no majors, no minors. someone has to “tap” you, effectively choose you, to be a model. and that could ostensibly happen while you’re in school, interning in NYC or Paris over the summer at a swishy fashion PR firm. there’s the distinct possibility, also, that you’ll find something you want to do in school that opens your eyes to the possibilities of fashion/glamour/travel (I imagine all the appealing things about being a model) but—as you point out—with a longer lifespan. I think people should follow their dreams, but do research and homework to prepare for them. I applaud you for having big dreams—and asking the right questions before. but definitely, definitely, definitely go to college. it’s a foundation and base for the rest of your life.
ps: if you’re not following Kelly Mittendorf on Tumblr, you should. great, smart advice from a great, smart, successful model
“you have to be tougher. you have to learn the way to beat your path through, to make yourself felt, and make yourself necessary”—very true words spoken by Grace Coddington in The September Issue. I wish I had learned this lesson in my teens and in college instead of being a wee shy lass. girls (and guys), never be afraid to speak your mind. you have nothing to lose
Hi Eva! So this is kind of random question but I'd love to hear you opinion because you're really good at doling out advice. I know what I want to do with my life after I graduate from college, but I'm terrified to tell my parents because I know they won't approve but waiting to tell them is really weighing on me and I'm just stuck in a rut. I can't wait to go for it, even though I know it's going to be hard, but I just don't even know where to start or how to approach it with them. Advice?
sigh, I can totally sympathize with you. I specifically remember calling my parents when I was in college and telling them I was switching majors (from pre-med to English, the horror). my dad was silent. my mom was hysterical and basically didn’t speak to me for a month, and then entered a denial phase that she’s only now—like, a decade later—is thawing out of. it can be hard but you should absolutely do it because why should you hide what you want to be (and therefore who you are)? so, here’s what I would do: tell them in person. don’t just say “Mom, Dad, I want to be a blahdeblah. isn’t that great? k, bye!” tell them your plans—and make them exactly that: plans. explain the career trajectory for the path you’re choosing: people start with this job, then they do this, and then are promoted to this, etc. I think 99 percent of my parents’ freak-out was due to lack of understanding of the industry I was embarking out. the more I fill them in, the more understanding they are (note the present tense—they’re still learning to embrace it). in any case, congratulations: you should be happy you found your calling. you’re lucky, really! so many people don’t know what they want to do with their lives, like, ever. if you know, you owe it to yourself to do it.
I'm in my senior year of high school and I'm torn between taking a year off before I start university, or starting straight away and not wasting any time. In your opinion, is it a better idea to get your education before you travel, or the other way around? Would greatly appreciate your views on this! Thank you x
take that gap year! and take one (or some time) before you start your first real post-uni job. take it from me: it is really hard to take time off once you start working. it’s something, to be honest, that you have to explain a bit—no one will quite understand. “take time off to travel/live life/explore/have an adventure?” they’ll ask, furrowed brow and puzzled look on their faces, “why would you do that?” if you can take a gap year, in my opinion, you should. when I graduated high school, I couldn’t wait until college. when I finished college, I couldn’t wait to start working. and when I had my first job—and was ready for a new challenge—I couldn’t wait to start that job. do you see a pattern here? my personal stance is to enjoy being young—take a gap year before university, take time off before starting your first job, take time off between jobs. it’s not being lazy, it’s rekindling your imagination, your sense of adventure, your stance on the world as a whole. it’s worth it, trust me ^_^
What advice do you have for someone that wants to move to New York?
first of all, congratulations. even though I’ll be living in LA for part of next year (eeek), I really and truly feel that living in New York City at some point in your young adult life—whether you end up falling in love with it or detesting it—is a life-changing experience that everyone should have. you’ll be surrounded by people from all walks of life, from all countries, from all orientations and cultures… all united by the common experience of trying to make it in NYC. so, my advice: a) start saving now. it is ridiculously easy to spend money in NYC (you’ll want to meander into every little cafe in the West Village, browse/shop in every indie boutique in Nolita, etc), harder so to make it. b) establish a network of friends from college, high school, whatever who are also planning on moving to NYC. it’s good to have that support system in place early on c) try not to get too swept up in the “wooo, party time!” scene. I have seen it time and time again—deeply ambitious and together and talented people who get sucked into the NYC nightlife scene. have fun, of course, but don’t be utterly frivolous either. remember, NYC is the city where you Make It. dream big, have fun, and make it happen
Hi Eva! You're always on the go and traveling often as I have learned from following you on twitter, instagram and tumblr, so I was wondering how you manage to get a good night's sleep when in an unfamiliar bed/place because I always have problems sleeping at hotels and such. And are there any products that help you to do so? Thanks!
over the holidays this year, I’ll be visiting five cities in three weeks (London, Manchester, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Seoul)—my weary back misses my fancy organic mattress just thinking about it. but, after so many years of travel, I’ve gotten used to it. but nevertheless, there’s almost always that point in the evening where I bolt up, hair and limbs akimbo, wondering where I am, haha. in any case, my top tips for travel-sleep: 1) try to acclimate to the time zone you’re going to, whether that means snoozing on the flight or going to bed as soon as you arrive (if you land at, say, midnight). 2) recreate the rituals of home as much as you can. for me, that means my extensive (and exhausting) seven to nine step skincare routine every night. 3) I tend not to take pills. I do try, instead, to wear myself out during the day. whether that means sightseeing, shopping (whee!), or family time, I try to max out my energy on day one so I sleep well. happy travels!
Hi Eva! Recently I feel like I've been in this funk of compulsive shopping. Truth is, I've been in this state since I realized that I have a debit card and money at my disposal. I don't want to be a shopaholic, but it's just so easy. I see something online and I would accidentally splurge on it, but I always end up hating it or not using it later on. What should I do?
oh dear. I went through a phase like the one you’re talking about in my early twenties (and all throughout college, if we’re being honest). it was hard to break out of the cycle because, well, what girl doesn’t love to shop? now, though, I have a much more pragmatic approach to shopping. I really (try to) take time to think about the things I’m buying, asking myself how and whether they fit into my wardrobe, am I buying it just because it’s inexpensive, and will I still be obsessed with it in three weeks, three months, or three years from now? for your situation, though, first of all, anything you haven’t worn yet and that you’re ‘meh’ about (the items that don’t make your heart race thinking about them), return them. like, now. secondly, I think you have to ask yourself why you’re in a shopping funk—are you stress-shopping because of school or family? are you competitive-shopping because you’re comparing yourself to friends? spend some time thinking on that, and whether there’s a way to cut whatever it is that’s triggering the spending out—or at least reduce exposure to it. you will be happier, your closet less packed, and your bank account will thank you!
Hi Eva, I just wanted to say I love reading your blog and seeing your tips/suggestions. But also, I'm curious about who/what inspires you? Do you have that one person who you try to emulate? Also, do you have any good movie/book recommendations? I know these aren't your usual beauty and style questions but I thought maybe you'd like a change-up in questions! And I hope the holiday season is treating you well. :)
well, living in NYC definitely does. the energy here is amazing—everyone here is here for a reason, striving for something. it’s an ambitious city and I love that feeling. who do I try to emulate? well, honestly, no one in particular. I find that the qualities I most admire tend to be value systems (I realize this will sound hokey but being kind, helping others, etc), not personality or style. it’s funny, this fashion/media industry I work in… there are so many people trying to be someone else—people trying to be frosty to act one editor (who in fact is not frosty at all), people peacocking to try to get the attention of street style photographers to be just like a blogger whose style truly comes naturally to them. it’s a lot of work to try to be like someone else. I find that it’s always just best to be yourself. as for books, I’m reading anything and everything about Diana Vreeland right now. love her voice! check out this book. and happy holidays to you as well—I love getting offbeat questions, actually! thank you for asking!
Hi Eva! I found a video of you talking about Boscia BB cream when I was shopping around for a BB cream to try, and based on your recommendation, I bought it and love it! Now I'm curious, do you use eye cream? Are there any you recommend? Thank you! P.S. Your bag collection is my ultimate Xmas wishlist.
hooray! I love a beauty recommendation success story! ^_^ so… eye creams. short answer: yes, I do. long, Eva-Chen-style rambling answer: yes, and here’s why. when I was a sprightly youth in my early twenties, fresh into my beauty career, an aesthetician scared the heebie jeebies out of me by telling me that by the time I realized I needed eye cream it’d be too late—and she then proceeded to show me about a hundred pictures of sagging eyes. ahhh! so I started using a basic hydrating eye cream then (something like this one). in my late twenties, I switched to one for fine lines (sigh). after that initial period of obsession, honestly, I came to realize that eye wrinkles are like the march of time/aging—you really can’t prevent it, you can only adjust to it. if you smile and laugh (and I hope you do often!), they’re inevitable. no one wants to be an expressionless zombie (well, some fashion people might actually). so until then, I wear sunglasses (just got these!) and do what I can—but not overly obsess!