The #ITGTopShelfie series puts the focus on the lives and beauty routines of Into The Gloss’s lovely, accomplished, and loyal community of readers. Show us your own Top Shelfie on Instagram—tag us @intothegloss, and include the hashtag #ITGTopShelfie.
“Hi, I’m Caitlin McAvoy [@caitlinmcavoy] and I currently live in Nashville, originally from Overland Park, Kansas. I work as a dancer in the Nashville Ballet’s second company. I love the feeling of dancing—it’s hard to describe what it’s like to be on stage and to trust your body and your training to do their jobs. A lot of times, it feels like work. Other times, it just feels so freeing.
The costumes, makeup, and hair are always exciting, but beauty in ballet is interesting—dancers are beautiful not because of the way they look, but because of the way they move. I think ballet has really broadened what I consider beautiful. People can bring so much more to the table than by being conventionally ‘attractive.’ At the same time, it makes me hyperaware of how I look, just because we spend so much time looking in the mirror. I’m definitely particular about how I want to look, because if I don’t like my hair or my makeup, I’m stuck looking at it all day.
My earliest exposure to makeup was through dance. My mom would do my makeup for all of my recitals and performances, and I always thought it was fun to wear. Now I really enjoy doing it myself. When you’re doing stage makeup for 12 performances and eight dress rehearsals a week, you have to be efficent, so my routine is almost methodical. For a full face, I’ll put on Laura Geller Spackle Primer in Champagne first because it makes me feel glow-y, and then I’ll use Tonymoly Panda’s Dream Brightening Eye Base under my eyes for my huge dark circles. Then I’ll apply Dr. Jart Beauty Balm in Light/Medium and Cover FX Cream Concealer in Extra Light, which I blend with a Beautyblender under my eyes and around my nostrils. I have to set my undereye concealer with powder or else it tends to crease, so I use a T.LeClerc Powder in Banane. It’s a mess when I open it, but the product is great.
I’ll use the darker side of Nars’ Contour Blush in Olympia to contour my cheekbones, and I like Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Palette in Champagne Glow to highlight. For blush, I love Too Faced Love Flush in Love Hangover and Justify My Love. They’re super pigmented and go on so evenly. I’ll blend those in with a kabuki brush. I’ve also gotten really good at finding products that keep my makeup in place… If you know you’re dancing a role that makes you sweat a lot, apply your foundation and then use a loose powder on a sponge and press it into your face. You can apply your blush and contour on top and it won’t slide all over the place.
For my eyebrows I use Anastasia’s Dipbrow Pomade in Medium Brown, which is easy and lasts all day. On my eyelids I’ll start with Nars Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base. It’s seriously the greatest primer and one of my favorite products maybe ever. There’s no one go-to eyeshadow for me, but I love Colourpop’s Nillionaire, Weenie, and Mixed Tape shades. After eyeshadow, I’ll mist with Make Up For Ever’s Mist and Fix Setting Spray. I like to set my eyebrows with NYX Control Freak Eyebrow Gel and will do a coat of mascara with Too Faced’s Better Than Sex. It’s the best for length and volume and doesn’t clump at all. Finally, I’ll use a lipgloss or lipstick. Lip color is important on me because I look really pale without it, and Lipstick Queen’s Jean Queen is one of my favorite pinks. I really like Revlon’s Rose Velvet for an everyday look because the color isn’t too red or too pink, and the texture is really silky on your lips.
I only wash my face when I shower in the evening, and I use Glossier’s Milky Jelly Cleanser along with a Simple Micellar Water for my eye makeup. After I wash, I spritz my face with the Herbivore Botanicals Balance Toner that I’m completely obsessed with. I’ll follow with Mizon’s All-In-One Snail Repair Cream once the toner has dried. You can put a ton of it on and your skin completely absorbs it! Before I go to sleep I’ll put on Mario Badescu’s Seaweed Night Cream and Glycolic Eye Cream, and if I have any pimples, I use Mario Badescu’s Drying Lotion on them overnight. In the morning I just use the micellar water on a cotton ball, then toner spray and Mizon cream before I do my makeup. I break out really easily and have struggled with acne, so my skincare routine is probably the most important part of my beauty regimen.
My hair is always up [for dance], so I wash it one to three times a week—it’s really fine and it dries out if I wash it any more than that. I use R+Co’s Sunset Blvd Shampoo and Conditioner, but if it’s cold and my scalp is dry, I’ll use Neutrogena’s T/Gel Shampoo. I also love to use the Fekkai Technician Color Care Hair Mask in place of a conditioner because it’s so hydrating. Before blow drying I’ll spray some R+Co Dallas Thickening Spray on my roots to give me some volume. I always have to use hairspray because my hair will slip out of my bun without it, but I’ve found that R+Co’s Outer Space Flexible Hairspray doesn’t build up a gross layer and make your hair look filmy. It really holds!
To stay fit, I eat a lot of protein and try to drink a ton of water—even though I’m pretty bad at actually doing it. Depending on what I’m rehearsing, which can change drastically month to month, I’ll go on the treadmill and add more cardio to keep my stamina up. When we rehearse ballets like Swan Lake or the Nutcracker, the work is pretty aerobic and you’ll be in rehearsals all day, so your stamina will be up and you’ll be really in shape. But when we’re not rehearsing for a performance, I’ll add in additional cardio workouts. I also love to get a lot of sleep. Napping and going to sleep early are things I have to do. When I’m tired, I’m not functional in any way.”
—as told to ITG
“I moved to New York when I was 17 to model—I actually grew up as a local in Southampton. Right when I was signed there were a lot of jokes that I needed some…finesse with my look. I was a surfer so my hair needed some love, things like that. They sent me to Julien Farel on Madison and I would sit there to do hair treatments for hours. They’d give me all sorts of products to use to get my hair in shape. Back in the apartment, I’d even take an egg and olive oil and coat my hair in it, then wrap it in Saran Wrap. When I booked a Pantene job, they cut 11 inches or something off, and my agent was so happy because my ends were finally gone! [Laughs] I remember it was at this Japanese studio in a nondescript building in Chelsea, and he just cut the whole thing dry—this Japanese guy with like a Samurai sword. I was like, ‘Is this life? Like, where is my hair?’
When I turned 22, I made the abrupt transition to do something else. It was such an intense world and I needed to leave it behind. It was hard—I didn’t have a college degree or a resumé so I really had to dig in. I started interning in windowless fashion closets, getting exposure, and then I transitioned into event planning. I did special events with Gucci and brand partnerships with Everlane, which really inspired me to do what I’m doing now—my line of handmade ceramic products that I’m making myself, called The Setting.
I’ve always erred more on the tomboyish side, but I think as I’ve gotten older—I’m 28—I’ve started to look at beauty as a way to be nice to myself. It’s less about being social or superficial. Working with clay is so drying, so everything I do now is about moisturizing and investing in that process. My boyfriend’s mom gave me a tub of Kiehl’s Creme de Corps and that just started me on a tear… I go through so much of it now. And hand cream! Lots and lots of hand cream after working with clay all day.
Cleansing is where I’m most basic. For my rosacea, I use Avène Antirougeurs Redness Relief Dermo-Cleansing Milk with my Clarisonic. It’s this blue-green color and I think it’s the same as the La Mer Cleanser but about an eighth of the price. For exfoliating, I love the Nivea Gommage Lissant—it’s drugstore but I got it in St. Barths so it feels very French to me. Nivea is one of the brands that always works, no matter where I get it. If I’m wearing a lot of makeup, I love the Klorane Floral Water Makeup Remover. It’s very gentle.
As far as toning, I get very into sprays and mists—that’s what I do probably the most often to stay moisturized. It’s really good for when I come home from the studio and feel dry but don’t want to reset everything on my face. I have the Glossier Soothing Face Mist, the Avène Eau Thermale, the May Lindstrom Jasmine Garden Botanical Mist… Every time I go into a place like CAP Beauty, they show me a new one. But I use them all! I’m basically out of the Caudalíe Beauty Elixir. Then I have the Chanel Silky Soothing Toner, which is a little more astringent, so I can’t use it every day.
My friend got me the tub of Aztec Clay but my skin is so sensitive, I can’t even do it for 10 minutes. After eight, I’m like ‘OK! Get it off!’ But I love it because it’s so powerful. There’s also Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic Acid and Retinol Brightening Solution, which is basically like retinol—you’re not supposed to use it all the time, though. I bought it because I know so many people that love this brand, and it’s like a clean brand while still being pretty scientifically advanced. But again, it’s strong—I wouldn’t use it during the day. I put it on maybe once a month and only at night.
My all-purpose oil is the Caudalíe Divine Oil. I use it on my face, hair, body, scalp—it’s heavy but it feels right during the winter. I also have the original Crème de la Mer. Some people are like, ‘I can’t use that in the summer…’ I’m like, ‘I can use it all year round. Twice a day. Morning and night.’ I love this Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado, too. It’s so nice, I’ve been using it for years. My routine is essentially, ‘If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.’
My lipstick is like my security blanket a lot of the time. I feel like, with lipstick, I don’t need anything else. My friend works at Tom Ford and whenever I see him, he brings me one of the mini Lips & Boys lipsticks—it’s always a funny little surprise. My most used one though is Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Very Victoria. I actually didn’t pick it out for myself either… I was in Selfridges with someone I worked with and she picked it up and said, ‘This color I think would be really nice on you.’ I was trying to be a woman but I thought it was too mature for me anyway. But then I put it on, and if you just do one layer of it, I feel like it just darkens your lip a little, plus it’s moisturizing. Her products are beautiful—I have the Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder, too. It’s a ‘daily luminous tint’ with SPF 15 in it that takes your natural skin and puts like a very light sheen on top of it. I’ll still do a highlighter on top of that—Benefit Watt’s Up. It fits right in the crook of your face. One time, I put it on and went out and took a photo, and it looked like I had a UFO ring under both eyes. I was like, ‘Whoa, that’s when happens when you don’t blend it in…’
I just started playing around with liquid eyeliner. I bought the Chanel Stylo Eyeliner Pen in Noir after I saw this woman on the street with the perfect little flick. She was in shopping mode, so I stopped her and said, ‘I’m so sorry, I need to ask you like a) what that product is and b) is it hard to do it?’ And she was so nice! She walked me through a tutorial. My mascara is also Chanel—it’s got a rubbery brush. But I also have Diorshow, and I was using the Givenchy one for a while. It’s the packaging that draws me in to all of them.
My brows are huge and the only thing I’ll use on them is the Bobbi Brown Brow Pencil. Other than that, I’ve never known what to do about them. Part of it has to be because one time when I was younger—and I think every girl has a horror story about this—I took a razor and tried to clean them up. I shaved half of the end off and a girl at school told me, ‘You know, they don’t always come back…’ I was so horrified.
Right now, my hair is the longest it’s been in years. I wash it every five days consistently with Garnier Fructis Sleek and Shine for ‘frizzy, dry, and unmanageable’ hair, so it’s made for me. To condition, I use the Kiehl’s Olive Fruit Oil Deeply Repairative Hair Pak. Actually, to wash my hair, I’ve been going to Drybar more frequently, especially when it’s cold and I don’t want to let it dry on its own. So I’ll go once a week—it’s $49 plus tip, which I don’t think is that bad. Blowout’s the new manicure.
When I first started modeling, I was doing a lot of Pilates and yoga to sculpt because I was a broader girl. Now one of the biggest benefits of starting The Setting—outside of all of the creative and professional rewards of doing something for yourself and on your own—would be my ability to create my own schedule. And I am somebody who works late at night and gets up early and writes emails, but I can still go for a workout class at 9:30am if I want to. It’s so nice, and it also makes me work even harder, because I really now believe in being strategic with my time and my energy and being as efficient as possible. Now I go to Modelfit on Bowery, and I sometimes train one-on-one with Noosha who’s amazing. Don’t let her beautiful face fool you—she is extremely hard. I do that three to four times a week, and then I also do Pilates at Plank. It’s beautiful and I work mostly on the tower. Then when I get home and shower, I use Aveeno Body Wash Stress Relief, which I love.
Obviously Santal 33 is my jam. And then I used to work at Bond No. 9 when I first moved to New York, and it’s so funny because Laurice Rahme, who’s the founder, hired me because of my handwriting. I didn’t have a college degree and I was interning and had just left modeling, and so she was just like, ‘Who are you..?’ So I did a handwriting test for her, and she was a really cool person to be around, and I would just watch how she ran her business. I would do a lot of customer relations for her and a lot of gift-wrapping… Their Nuits de NoHo fragrance is the one I love. It’s a really nice sort of nighttime scent with jasmine. It’s strong, but it’s also so simple. I also like to wear this oil from a boutique called Warm—the oil is called Warm, too. The owner is from Hawaii and when you put it on, you feel that.
A lot of the times, I’ll just use essential oils. I have a Muji diffuser in my bedroom that I’ll use every day with whatever I’m feeling. And then sometimes I’ll put a few drops in the bath. My go-tos are sandalwood, jasmine, and neroli. Together I just feel like it’s a bit of a moodlifter. Everyone has a mixture that they like, I feel. And I think it’s nice to get back to basics and smell things that are pure and raw.”
—as told to ITG
Amanda Shine photographed by Tom Newton at her home in New York on October 8, 2015.
More like this: Meta Flora’s Marisa Competello talks the best Whole Foods hair buys, Jennifer Fisher shares her high/low brow routine, and Meredith Melling has bronzer recommendations for days in The Top Shelf.
A little over two weeks ago, I got married in front of 37 of my nearest and dearest in the Bahamas. It was a truly magical weekend—one I’ll be reporting on in my next ITG post, once the pictures come in.
The real story, seeing as though this is a beauty website and I’m a beauty editor, is in the prep. Months of prep! So much prep. Not of the venue, guest list, or seating chart—that was fairly easy—but of my limbs, skin, wanted hair, unwanted hair, nails, muscles, digestive tract, lashes and brows. Did I go overboard? Perhaps. Was it high maintenance? Maybe. I did spend an inordinate amount of the fall on my back. But, it worked. I was 8/10 happy with how I looked…pretty good!
The Clean Program. I’d taken Dr. Alejandro Junger’s 21 day challenge five or six years ago, and came back for more on the first day of November 2015. I can’t say it enough—I love this detox/overall good-common-sense program. No dairy, gluten, sugar, alcohol, coffee, or pretty much any of my other favorite foods…but, let’s put it this way: What cleanse have you actually wanted to continue at the end? I’m eating 75% clean still, because it feels so damn good.
Hydrocolon therapy: Yes, you guessed it, colonics. It’s recommended during the Clean Program. Tracy Piper and/or any of the ladies at the Piper Wellness Center have your back.
Trainer. Key Son. I started weekly training sessions with Daria Werbowy’s former trainer Key Son about 3 months out. The focus is on what tiny movements to elongate and tone. In between our meet-ups, Key suggests daily hour-long walks. In the end, I did not look like Daria (shocker), but I was in way better shape than when we started.
Gym. A month out, I jumped on board the Physique 57 barre method bandwagon. At the Soho location, I took three or four of their signature and mat classes. This place is legit: They guarantee results in seven to eight classes; I saw them after one.
Massage. I like a semi-stressful massage—one where I can really feel something being worked out. After an hour-long session with private practitioner LouLou Piscatore, complete with aromatherapy and acupuncture, you will basically melt off of the table. Highly recommended to do bi-weekly before the wedding.
Microcurrent. It’s been around forever—one of those things that was invented for serious medical reasons and then reappropriated for vanity purposes (see: Botox). Shamara Bondaroff is NYC’s cool-girl practitioner; at her studio SB Skin, she uses a combination of wands and pads to jolt sluggish face and body muscles into action and stimulate collagen production, thereby lifting and sculpting. It’s not uncomfortable, it takes roughly an hour and a half, and I believe in it. Body is where I noticed the biggest difference after our six sessions. Butt = higher.
Facial. Several years after our initial encounter and my subsequent fan-girling out, I went back to Isabelle Bellis two weeks before the wedding. This woman is a goddess and I only wish she were half as expensive and available again before July 2016. This is a must-try facial for brides/anyone who wants a holistic total-package experience.
Laser Hair Removal. I’ve had some not-great experiences with laser hair removal, probably because I haven’t done what they told me. Anyway. Myriam Vasicka’s office is very Park Avenue, her demeanor is very soothing grandmother, and, most importantly, her technique/machines/what have you are swift and painless. My upper lip is on the road to permanent smoothness, at last.
Gels. Paintbox, for me, lives up to the hype. I only see Julie Kandalec who is incredibly precise and focused. Gels aren’t a forever jam, but they definitely help those looking to grow their nails. CND’s Powder My Nose is my perfect nude. Shout out to Annie Kreighbaum for turning me on to that shade.
Mani/Pedi. Iris Nails on University Place is my jam for a quick in-and-out. I specifically ask for Lisa. Also, kudos to Florence for giving the best 10-minute-chair-massage this side of Houston Street.
My pal Celia Ellenberg at Vogue told me about Soul Lee, who runs her own operation, Beautiful Soul Makeup Studio in Flatiron for lash extensions and brow jobs. I showed her an Instagram selfie of west coast babe Caroline Vreeland who gets super subtle extensions that make her eyes look like anime almonds, and said I wanted less “glam hooker” and more of the Vreeland look. Nailed it! Warning: Soul is more expensive than the competition like JJ or Ebenezer. But she is good.
A week before the big day, I spent 30 minutes with Jimena Garcia who has a residency at another one of my trusty nail haunts, Tenoverten. Jimena creates a slightly more trim, tailored look than my West Coast favorite, Kristie Streicher of Striiike.
You know what? I didn’t do a thing! It’s the first time since middle school that I’ve been my natural color, and I wasn’t going to fuck with that before the wedding. Jon Reyman at Spoke and Weal gave my now-husband and I bang-up haircuts several months ago, and I’ve just been letting it grow. Save for a test with my wedding-weekend stylist, Teddi Cranford of White Rose Collective, the hairs on my head were largely spared from bridal preparation. I swear they grew two inches to thank me.
Photo courtesy of the author.
Getting married? First of all—congrats! ITG has tips for you on all things nuptial over here.
This is not Crossfit. This is not Soulcycle. Hell, this isn’t really a workout—or at least not a strenuous one. Because we’ve long been supporters of the less-is-more fitness category, we figured there had to be a way to incorporate some movement into a standard morning routine without requiring a trip to the gym. So we created one! Think of it more like active multitasking that’s easy enough to do immediately upon waking up, developed with the help of Traci Copeland (title: Nike Master Trainer). Literally anyone—the running haters, the nothing-but-Modelfit crew, the Pilates reformer converts—can do this and actually enjoy it. Cute pajamas help. Here’s how to start:
Traci says: “Getting out of bed, the thing that tends to be the most tight are our hip flexors. That’s the thing that allows us to walk and run, so doing things like knee hugs help warm them up right away. Hugging one knee at a time, you can go for 30 seconds each side 2-3 times to wake up your legs.”
No, don’t get up yet—do a couple of quick crunches first. Bed crunches won’t get you a six pack, but you do get points for engaging your core first thing.
Leg lifts suck less when your mattress is supporting you.
Traci says: “Your quads, glutes and hamstrings are also going to be pretty tight, so a good thing to do is wake up those core muscle groups. The way you can do that is by thinking about getting out of your bed and standing up and doing that 5 times. It’s like a chair pose, but assisted.”
For a bit of real fitness, here come the tricep dips. “Do 10 or 15 of these on an incline, using your bed—now you’re waking up the upper body.”
Instagram break! Scroll while practicing your wall sits.
For anyone who wears heels or is actively avoiding their barre class, calf raises make great multitasking. Start brushing your teeth and you’ve got two minutes of these.
Hydrate while balancing on one leg, hitting your core, your glutes, and your brain (it takes some concentration). Traci also recommends a more strenuous version: “You stand and balance on one leg and spell your name with your foot for ankle mobility. If you want something to wake up your core, you can lift your leg a little bit higher and go through the alphabet. Do that on both sides.”
Job well done. Get some coffee, go to work, or get back in bed. At least you’ve already gotten something done.
Rachel Tabb photographed by Tom Newton at The Standard High Line. Rachel is wearing a pajama set from Olivia von Halle.
Keep going! Read up on ITG’s guide to low-impact ballet exercises for better posture here.