It’s 8:00 am on Monday morning and Estée Lauder makeup artist Alan Pan has just flown into Vancouver from London. And I, well, I drove all of ten minutes to meet him downtown at the Metropolitan Hotel. But still, it’s early.
So naturally my first question for this makeup maverick is: what can I do to look bright-eyed and bushy tailed so early in the morning?
“Start with your skin,” says the energetic Pan. “We wake up looking dull, so skin is always the first priority.” He recommends Estée Lauder’s soon-to-be-released Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator because it reflects the light and “Instantly picks you up.”
“Then focus on definition – a good mascara, a touch of gloss for a radiant, illuminating effect,” Pan says.
“And avoid browns.” Wait, what? Brown has been my go-to eye colour for as long as I can remember. I’m not alone, apparently. “A lot of women choose browns because they’re warm, natural,” he says. “But skin looks dull first thing in the morning so you need a touch of colour.”
And if you’re applying makeup before you’ve had your double shot of espresso, Pan recommends starting with darker shades of shadow. “You’ll make fewer mistakes that way,” he says.
Turning to me with a tube of their upcoming Idealist Cooling Eye Illuminator in his hand, he asks “Can I attack you with this?” Well, when you put it like that…
“You’ll look like you’ve slept for 25 hours,” he says, as he pats the serum under my eyes and sweeps it over my lids. Its fancy patented tip actually does feel cool as a cucumber. And my eyes look brighter, a little sparklier, like I might actually be a morning person.