Nicole White is the brilliant editor of Sapling, a finance site that actually makes money-related matters easy to understand. From how to save money to how to rebound from a money mistake, she breaks it all down with a sense of humor that, dare we say, makes finance fun. Today, Nicole talks about the skin care routine that's transformed her skin, the bold lipstick shade she's loving right now and the splurge-worthy body cream that's worth every penny.
Tell us about your skin care regimen. What products do you use?
A friend recently turned me on to oil cleansing, and I was instantly hooked. I use baobab oil to both wash and moisturize my face. It seemed counterproductive to me at first, but on a chemical level it works — oil dissolves oil. You remove your eye makeup with the oil, gently massage a small amount into your skin, then put a hot washcloth over your face and let it steam clean you for a bit. Then you gently rub your face with the cloth and ta-da! You're a goddess. I've been doing this for a few weeks and my skin has never looked or felt better. No dry spots, no oiliness, a few of my fine lines are even disappearing. It's like some very affordable witchcraft.
What makeup do you wear every day?
Every day, I wear concealer, foundation, blush and mascara. I have a few standard looks that I rotate and they all require different makeup. Some days, I'll do a nude eye with lots of highlighter and a bright, bold lipstick shade (Bachelorette by Kat Von D is a current fave). I also like a cat eye and a blush lip. If I'm heading out for the night, I'll do a Kim K style smokey eye which always makes me feel super chic and slightly crazy, my favorite way to feel.
How do you typically style your hair?
My hair is naturally very curly, but not the kind of curls that I like, so like a truly difficult person I blow it straight and then curl it. I am basically a dry shampoo cult member at this point, so a style will last me several days. When things start to get greasy I just powder up with Bumble & Bumble's Prêt-à-Powder and do a high bun or milkmaid braids. Right now, I'm working on growing my hair long, long, long with blond highlights. When I get bored of this, I'm going to do a dark inverted bob.
Are you trying out any new products you don't normally use?
I never buy full-sized mascara because it dries out so fast, so the little samples are my jam. Sephora has great deals on sampler packs that I'm loving right now. Better Than Sex, Yes, They're Real! and, obviously, Diorshow Blackout are the best new mascaras I've tried lately.
What's something you haven't tried yet but would love to?
Most days, I'm going in 20 different directions and never do everything I set out to accomplish. Like every other woman in the world, all the self care stuff falls pretty low on my list of priorities and just never seems to get done. I'd love to check myself into a body shop and just get a tip-to-toes maintenance update: haircut/color/blowout, massage, facial, eyebrow magic, body soak/steam/slough/buff/moisturizing, spray tan, waxing, mani/pedi, etc. Does that exist?
Can you tell us a little bit about Sapling?
Sapling is a personal finance site that offers a witty and relatable take on money and how it works. Personal finance is the most boring passion that anyone can have, and I've got it (C.R.E.A.M). I think we do a really good job of making a dry subject matter enjoyable.
Do you have any favorite cheap beauty buys?
Honestly, no. I am too old to mess around in the drugstore aisles. My skin is super sensitive and getting wrinklier and slacker every day — it just doesn't have that same "bounce back" that it used to, so I have to treat it well. As a rule, I'm more of a quality over quantity person anyways, but especially with the stuff I put on my face.
What was your last beauty-related splurge?
A large bottle of Kiehl's Creme de Corps. It's the best! My skin has never been smoother and the smell is divine.
What's one thing you do every day that makes you feel great?
Cook for my family. My husband takes care of breakfast, but I do the rest. It's such a good feeling to know that my children (Damien, 5 and Lucy, 3) are eating all the good stuff the world has to offer. We follow a plant-based diet and I cook most of our meals from scratch. I'll often spend a few hours on Sunday prepping good stuff for the week so we can get weeknight dinners on the table quickly, but it's all homemade and all made with love.
If you could grab cocktails with anyone (dead or alive), who would it be and what would you order?
Steve Martin, George Carlin, Louis CK, Tina Fey, Chris Rock, David Sedaris, and Rod Serling. Is that too many? Then just George Carlin. I'd just order whatever he's having and we'd get along famously. Magically, we'd stay in the super funny and witty two-cocktail zone despite drinking all night. Then, I'd wake up with no hangover (that's the real fantasy).
When do you feel most comfortable in your own skin?
Never (sad trombone). I guess the closest I would come to being comfortable in my own skin would be after a few flutes of champagne deep on a huge boat. Also, I'm wearing a fabulous long DVF gown and shoes that don't hurt. And my children are quietly demonstrating how bright they are as my husband looks loving at me. And I just make a quip that cracks everyone up.
Who do you look to for beauty inspiration?
I love everything about Emma Stone's style, both on the red carpet and off. She is my go-to for hair and makeup ideas.
Be sure to follow Nicole on Instagram (and Sapling, too, while you're at it)! Check back next week for the latest installment of 52 Faces, a weekly series that spotlights a real woman's beauty routine. Last week, lifestyle blogger Caroline Burke of Burkatron shared the homemade lip scrub recipe she uses to cure dry lips and the face mist she swears by for achieving a dewy glow.