Makeover: Go forth and be fabulous Image by: Alvara Goveia
"It's been an incredible journey, and the outcome has made me feel confident and happy."
On the eve of her 40th birthday, Government of Canada employee and mother of two Andrea Faraj was ready to reprioritize herself by refreshing her look from top to toe.
With two young kids and a hectic job (she's a border services officer at Toronto Pearson International, Canada's busiest airport), Andrea Faraj has little time to primp or keep up with the latest trends. "I do a lot for the family and not much for myself," she admits. But with her 40th birthday fast approaching, she was energized by the thought of finding a chic upgrade to her yoga pants and T-shirts and transforming her tresses—which hasn't been cut in close to a decade—into a stylish new 'do. It was time for Andrea to start taking care of herself again.
Andrea before her makeover
The first thing Roger Medina, Garnier hair ambassador, tackled was removing some of Andrea's waist-length hair. "Before I started her colour, I took off about five inches," says Medina, "and we added long layers to give her hair movement and body." For colour, he chose a French technique known as balayage—the dye is painted on to create a graduated, natural-looking, sun-kissed blond. This method ensures that Andrea won't need to be back int he colourist's chair every six weeks. For the photoshoot, Medina used a one-inch-barrel curling iron—his go-to tool—to shape small sections in alternating directions. He left the ends straight to give Andrea a more relaxed look. "I call this the lived-in curl."
Andrea's daily makeup regimen can be summed up in two words: low maintenance. "I've had the same routine since my 20s—moisturizer, then lashes," she says. But Plutino Group makeup artist Jodi Urichuk wanted to give her a more polished system that would work with her busy lifestyle and respect her innate practicality. Genetics have blessed Andrea with a beautiful canvas for makeup. "She has great skin to work with, so I wanted to make that a focus," says Urichuk. She kept foundation very light and added luminosity by strategically blending highlighter on the cheekbones, down the centre of the nose and along the upper lip. "A golden highlighter helps keep the skin a little warmer, and it's more natural-looking," says Urichuk. The results: glowing skin, a wash of sunset colour on the eyes and a berry-toned sheer lip stain.
Caudalie Moisturizing Mask, $45, caudalie.com. Garnier Pure Clean Dry Shampoo, $5.50, garnier.ca. RMS Beauty Magic Luminizer, $48, sephora.ca. Essie Nail Colour in Designated DJ, $10, essie.ca.
"We've taken the French manicure and dragged the polish down to the side of the nail so it's asymmetrical, which makes this look a bit more interested," says Essie Canada lead nail artist and global lead educator Rita Remark.
"My style is very plain and basic," says Andrea. As a mother of two children under age eight who wears a uniform to work, she hasn't had time to break out of her sartorial diet of stretchy pants and tees to discover a fresh new style. Melissa Evans-Lee, the marketing director for Bayview Village shopping centre in Toronto, set out to find an outfit that would flatter Andrea's six-foot frame and inject versatile pieces. "Fashion has a lot to do with proportion; if you are blessed with height, you can break up the visual line by adding a jacket to create a waist or using a statement accessory like a necklace," says Evans-Lee. She paired a fitted striped mid-length dress with a gold-toned oversize shrug. To accessorize the look, Evans-Lee went for a bohemian feel with a wide-brimmed hat, a large tassel necklace and suede ankle booties.
The main issue Alexandra Weisseneder, senior esthetician at Miraj Hammam Spa by Caudalie Paris in Toronto, noted during Andrea's skin treatment was clogged pores—but it's an easy fix. "That's just from lack of exfoliation," she says. Moving forward, she recommended Andrea exfoliate twice a week with an enzymatic (chemical exfoliation) peel mask, which will help her slough off dead skin cells while washing away dirt and pollution. The next step in Andrea's new skin-care routine should include plenty of hydration. Weisseneder suggested adding a daily hydrating serum and a weekly moisturizing overnight mask.
Joseph Ribkoff jacket, $195, Marina Rinaldi dress, $360 and TwoA necklace, Toni Plus. About Accessories hat, Your Choice. Bag, Browns. Booties, Ron White. All clothing and accessories available at Bayview Village shopping centre in Toronto.
"On my way home from the shoot, I went to get my passport pictures done because I wanted to capture this look for the next 10 years," says Andrea. "Melissa introduced me to new lengths and patterns, and Jodi made my eyes and lips pop." But the biggest transformation was Andrea's hair—a whopping 12 inches shorter with a brilliant new colour. "Roger added so much style and dimension to my hair, and it's much easier to style now."