Getting Real: Lara Santini Tries the Defined Crease Tuesday 10 July, 2012

Bank examiner Lara Santini is put to the test to try out a throwback beauty trend that saw a lot of love on the Spring/Summer 2012 runways: the defined crease.

Welcome to “Getting Real,” a new series all about approaching beauty trends with a real-world perspective. Who better to ask to take on the freshest looks than real women (or “girls,” as I like to call them—who says we need to grow up!)? This is an ongoing series for Fear No Beauty, and the aim is to bring real girls out of their beauty comfort zone, and introduce them to trends and products they might not normally try. Plus, it’s fun to see how they fare!

 Lara Santini After Eyes Open

(Lara gets “into the groove” by defining her eyelid crease—a big ’60s trend that has been revived!)

Meet Lara Santini, recent transplant to NYC by way of Alabama: bank examiner by day; fun-loving social butterfly and avid juicer by night. It’s hard getting Lara to sit still and not laugh—which is amazingly charming.

I put Lara to the test by inviting her to try out a throwback beauty trend that saw a lot of love on the Spring/Summer 2012 runways: the defined crease.

 Lara Santini Before  Lara Santini Laugh  Lara Santini Laugh 2

(Lara needed to warm up a little to the camera…)

Her background: “I’m a bank examiner, so I work in an ultra-conservative environment and, generally speaking, I have a very natural beauty look when I’m at work. I’m in a ton of meetings each week with higher-level executives at large banks; they keep their beauty very straight, and I think it’s important to do the same. When I’m visiting banks and working with them—which can be for several weeks—I have to adopt their dress code to ‘blend in;’ you don’t want to stand out.”

Her makeup routine: “When I’m at work, everything is kept neutral: I wear natural-looking eye shadow, like bone or light brown, and black mascara, and I curl my lashes. I love eyelash curlers; they make my eyes look more open when I’m sleepy. You need to look awake doing my job!

“I definitely step it up on my downtime. I use eyeliner—but only on my lower lash line—and add in a couple of colors so I don’t look completely natural. I use a lot of pinks and shimmers on the weekend.

“I always wear Bobbi Brown Peony Powder Blush—very lightly during the work week—to add a little pop of color to my complexion. And when the weekend comes, I wear it darker. I kind of switch it up a bit, face-wise; I don’t have too much of an allegiance to brands. But I do use BB Creams—I love them—or a tinted moisturizer. Right now, I’m into Giorgio Armani Beauty Face Fabric Foundation Second Skin Nude Makeup.”

Her makeup mantra: Easy and carefree.

Her beauty fears: “Different kinds of eyeliner scare me—even putting it on. Like, I couldn’t pull off a cat eye—I just feel I couldn’t do it. I feel very shaky with my hands; it makes me nervous. It’s not that I haven’t tried; in fact, I’ve tried eyeliner for a long time, but the problem is I can never do it above my eye, I can only do it on the bottom. As you can tell, I’m not very good at drawing.

 Defined Crease Inspiration

(The beauty inspiration: Peter Som’s Spring/Summer 2012 runway look)

The Steps:

1. Brush a light shimmer shadow on the eyelid, from lashes to slightly above the natural eyelid crease.

2.  Select a crease makeup brush with stiffer, shorter hairs. This allows you to concentrate the color on the crease, rather than diffuse it over the lid.

3. Use a matte, high-pigment eyeshadow for your crease color and load only the very tip of your brush with it. Drag—don’t dot—the color just above your natural eyelid crease—otherwise the design won’t be visible when your eyes are open.

4. If you must, dampen a cotton swab with makeup remover and clean up any jagged edges. After the cleaned areas have dried, go back in with your base color to further refine the look.

5. Finish by highlighting the brow bone with a champagne shimmer shadow.

Tackling the trend: “I definitely struggled a little bit at first. It’s definitely easy to put on your base color, but the crease wasn’t a snap…naturally. To start, I was using a brush that didn’t allow me to really concentrate the color where it needed to be. After I switched out to a thinner synthetic brush (a lip brush!), the pigment was easier to keep in the places I wanted it. And, I wet the brush a little, which also helped with placement. I’m actually surprised I didn’t have to do too much refining of the crease shape—though, if I’m being honest, one eye came out way better than the other; that was annoying. I had to completely restart it from scratch. Annoying!”

 Defined Crease GloMinerals  Lara Applying Eye Shadow  Lara Santini After

(Lara would definitely wear a defined crease as part of her daily makeup—but would adapt it to her work environment…which means no purple.)

Yay or nay? “I would definitely wear this everyday, but adapt it to my patience level and to my work. I can’t sit there making it perfect; that’s too time-consuming. And I think, for day-to-day, I would use more neutral colors. I am pretty impressed with how it makes my eyes seem larger; I’d never really concentrated a darker color just above the crease—it really does make a difference!”

Fear No Beauty Scale (1 to 10, 10 being easiest): “I’d give this a 6. I think with practice I’d be able to master it, but I don’t see myself as the type to sit there, refining the shape over and over to make the two eyes match. I might just leave the creases a little off if they don’t come out perfect on the first few tries.”

Products used: Base color: gloMinerals Eye Shadow in Lilac; crease color: Sormé BioNatural Eyeshadow in Amethyst; base color brush: Make-up Designory #800 Crease Brush; crease color brush: TIGI Cosmetics Lip Brush

Why you too should have no fear: Let’s look at this in a different light: The defined crease isn’t simply a fad; it’s actually a clever way to create depth and help open up the eye. Think of it as super-exaggerated contouring—which makes it far less scary. After all: Most of us contour our eye shadow to some degree. In this instance, the effect comes down to the intensity of the pigment being used for the crease; how heavy you apply it; the contrast between your light and darker eye shadows; and how far above the crease you place your deeper color. The “2012” defined crease is about being obvious, about having the crease hover somewhat superficially above your actual crease, about high-contrast colors. Push your darker arc a little further down, yet still above the crease so you can see the definition when you’re eyes are open; keep your color intensities close; blend in your darker color so the line of demarcation isn’t as rigid; and you’ve adapted the trend to be more wearable. But where’s the fun and fearlessness in that?! Methinks you should just “get into the eye groove”…

Would you try out a defined crease? Do you think Lara aced it?

Karie L. Frost Signature


(Photos by Karie L. Frost/


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