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November 19, 2018

How to Survive Thanksgiving With Your Makeup and Skin (If Not Your Patience) Intact

Yes, it’s that time of year, when impossible deadlines and holiday prep and family bickering take a toll on even the best of us. One thing this season doesn’t have to take a toll on is our skin and makeup look. So don’t bite your tongue at the dinner table; smile with your perfectly applied pout and let your candlelit glow do the talking. Here, some skincare and makeup tips you need to survive Thanksgiving.


The holidays are upon us, and it’s now time for the first leg of the “There’s no way I can get out of this one” marathon that is Thanksgiving and Christmas family get-togethers. Tensions are high, we’re all a mess deep down inside, but I’ll be damned if I’ll let Aunt Eunice and her very wrong political opinions make you look shook this season. I’m going to put together some essential products you need to show up looking unflappable, even if you’re secretly dying inside.


In these highly contentious times, chances are there’s a big family divide at the dinner table this Thanksgiving. If you’re one of the lucky ones with a sane loving family, cheers to you! You probably still have a long-running unspoken competition with an overachieving cousin though, so here are your secret weapons that let her know that that Ivy League degree may make Grandma proud, but looking at my dewy skin makes her pass me the best cut of turkey with a sparkle in her eye.


survive thanksgiving


Take a minute (or 20)


First things first. We have to start with a gorgeous canvas. The only thing dry allowed at Thanksgiving dinner is the wine. If you want to make absolutely sure you’re coming in with guns blazing, I have some hardcore mask weaponry that is guaranteed to be a heavy hitter.


The 23 Years Old Rose Gold 24 Masks are a thick, cottony, essence-drenched comfort blanket for your face. The Rosa centifolia flower water (at a crazy high 20,000 ppm) and Centella asiatica extract will soothe your skin — and your jittery nerves. This is my personal go-to mask when life, and my skin, are doing the absolute most to make me crazy. There’s never been a skin situation that this mask hasn’t handled. It always hits the spot. Your skin will be left juicy and dewy, even if you’ve been on a bit of a skin neglecting streak. The results are instant and totally noticeable.

survive thanksgiving

The best part? The 23 Years Old Rose Gold 24 Masks ships in 3-5 business days and for FREE! Like, bruh, in three short days your skin can be drinking up the nectar of the skin gods.


Actually, now that I think about it, the best part is this mask is $20 for a 4-pack. Given that this mask doesn’t include a mouth opening, that $20 can buy you at least 20 minutes of peace during your holiday gathering when you pass them out for your mouthiest relatives to try. “Oh? Immigrants should be set on fire? That’s interesting, Uncle Charles, here why don’t you try this amazing new mask I brought with me and go relax on the couch! Oh wow, cousin Jackson, you’ve joined the communist student union? Huh. You know what’s awesome communist praxis? Self-care! Here, I also have the Cocoon Willow Silky version of that mask Uncle Charles is wearing — have a whirl at it!”


Try a little tenderness


We all need a little healing right now, and my favorite skin healer is Purito’s Snail Repair Advanced Serum. It’s got a 93% concentration of skin healing snail filtrate, and it’s fermented! Fermentation means the particles are smaller and therefore should theoretically be able to penetrate easier into the skin and work their magic.


I discovered this serum last summer and completely fell in love. It’s great for all skin types since the clear gel formula sinks right in and doesn’t leave behind a heavy film, and it layers nicely with my other serums and ampoules. I might even like this one more than my beloved COSRX. I find this formula, although it’s a budget brand, to be a little bit more elegant and exciting.

Klairs Rich Moist Soothing Serum survive thanksgiving

Another great healing serum option is Klairs Rich Moist Soothing Serum. It’s a great option for those of us looking to rebuild moisture levels and soothe the damage we’ve caused by depleting them. It’s also cruelty-free and vegan friendly, unlike most Thanksgiving dinners! If you need rescuing in a hurry, it’s also available with free 3-day shipping. So go ahead, plump up and heal up with these serums! If only it could heal the sting of Aunt Sharon pointing out that your parents should prepare your childhood bedroom since robots will soon take over your job.


Cover your bases


It’s time to lay down the foundation of glow that’s going to burst through the clouds like sunshine on a gloomy November day. But we’re also going to temper it, like the way we make sure our nephew doesn’t have any sugar until it’s time to send him home with your sister. My friends, it’s time to pull out the stops and go big or go home.


While I love the soft, subtle glow and complexion uniformity I get from my everyday cushions like La Muse and SanDaWha, we’re going full coverage for this feast. The stakes are too high and our sleeping hours have been too low. We’re sallow, we’re red, we’re mad, but we refuse to let it show. Nah baby, we are going to be the star at this table.


survive thanksgiving


Hera UV Mist Cushion Cover is just the thing we need to get major coverage, major glow, and major elegance, because after this year you freaking deserve it. This higher end cushion is worth the price in my opinion. It gives a powder soft finish and still leaves you with a soft candlelit glow — not too matte, not too dewy. It’s totally the skin a rich woman in a K-drama would sport, and damn it, that’s the vibe we’re serving our family this year. It’ll be a lot more delicious than that canned cylindrical cranberry nightmare you’re going to have to suffer through.


If you’re oily or just want to ensure this BB sets in case you sweat, strategically dust the T-zone with a little Innisfree No Sebum Mineral Powder. Five years into my K-beauty deep dive and I’ve still never found a better powder in either Western or Asian beauty. It absolutely cannot be beat, and the price is so modest the money you’ve saved can be carried over to your Hera cushion budget. That’s the kind of smart thinking that makes you Grandpa’s lowkey favorite.


Glow your way


Now onto blush — and it’s not just what your face does when your mother asks you loud enough for the table to hear if you ever outgrew your crush on the neighbor that’s come to deliver a pie to your family. Blush is what gives your face a little life, even when you feel like you’d trade yours for student loan forgiveness.



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Depending on how conservative your family is, I have two options for you. If you want to have a bold look that lasts, go for the Snou Beauty Creamy Lip and Cheek in Peach Pink. I’ve written about how much I love this blush before and how it gives a bold 18th century royalty/harlot look that translates into modern makeup really beautifully. However, I know that kind of cheek probably wouldn’t fly in ultra conservative families, holiday festivities or not.


survive thanksgiving


If puritanical subtlety is the name of the game, you and Grandma will love Iope Air Cushion Blusher. It gives an absolutely beautiful “No, I’m totally a virgin, why do you ask?” flush that looks as natural as that organic pie the hot neighbor brought by. You’ll look like a pretty little snack with this cushion-y blush. It gives just enough of a color wash to make you look cute without going overboard. These are the cheeks of the innocent best friend in a K-drama that the leading man can’t ignore. No one has to know that you like your partners like you like your grapes — sweet and 10 at a time.


Keep your lips sealed


We can’t make it through a holiday based on a marathon of eating and drinking without a lip color that won’t quit. Since we went high on the BB cushion, let’s go budget on the lips. But don’t think that means you’ll be skimping on performance!


survive thanksgiving


I don’t think it gets any simpler, cost effective, and reliable as good ol’ Etude House Dear Darling Water Gel Tint. I recently rediscovered these tints while trying to de-stash my makeup collection and ended up keeping all of them. I had forgotten what a wonderful popsicle-berry eating natural tint it gives my lips and how long-lasting and transfer-proof they are! For this season, I recommend RD305, as you can mask the copious amounts of wine you’ll be downing in the kitchen to get through dinner with this darker red stain. But at $3.50 a pop you can buy several that can be tailored to whatever look you want to go for.


And don’t be frightened by the darkness or brightness of the colors in the bottle; it can easily be tamed with a finger pat application. Just be aware that you need to immediately clean that finger thoroughly with an oil cleanser or you’re going to have a red finger for the whole ass day and even into the night. This stuff is tenacious!


survive thanksgiving


For a bolder look you can apply it directly with the doe foot wand. You can also do a light wand application with lots of lip blotting with tissue. The gel formula is runny, but not as runny as a straight water tint so you have a bit more control over what you’re doing. There’s a great deal of versatility and flexibility in this tint! If only I could use that descriptor for my family. Until then, K-beauty is going to carry me through this crazy season! Well, that and the pie. And the soju, can’t forget the soju.


All jokes aside, I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. There are many things to be thankful for, even your crazy family.


What are your holiday plans this year, and how do you plan on getting through the holidays? Do you have any advice on how to survive Thanksgiving? Let me know in the comments!



Coco Park is an author, beauty journalist, blogger, podcast host, and all around oddball living in Montreal Quebec with her family. Originally from the southern USA, she worked for several years in the makeup industry as a professional makeup artist and holds a certificate in esthetics. She is a proud member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. Want to know more? Check her out on the Beauty Beyond Basics podcast, on her blog, on Instagram @thebeautywolf, and in her book "Korean Beauty Secrets: A Practical Guide to Cutting-Edge Skincare & Makeup."




Will be at our south coast store in LA for black friday weekend. Will be around skincare all weekend...please stay tuned on our Instagram @beautytapofficial for real time updates of the shopping craziness!


Happy T-day! OMG I'm actually so jealous because I want to go there so bad! T_T


Already thankful that I am only hosting a total of four people at my house (myself, my husband, and my wonderful in-laws!) and we all are on the same page politically. I will have a relaxing, makeup free day of cooking with a glass of wine in hand, and I will get to wear comfy pants while doing it!

I need to try the Purito Snail serum next, as I love the Cosrx and the reformulated Benton Snail Bee left me disappointing. I'm on my second bottle of the Klairs Rich Moist Soothing Serum though, and I LOVE it!


Ahhh, you're so lucky! Wearing comfy clothes are the best. While I don't have to cook, my husband's family has a huge get-together, and dressing nicely is a part of the deal. At least there's always plenty of wine!

So far so good for the Purito Snail serum for me — it's still a little tacky but nothing unbearable. But I'm still determined to give the COSRX Snail one more try, this time mixed with the Purito Fermented Essence. I liked the Klars Rich Moist Serum, too, but my fave HA serum is Pyunkang Yul's Moisture Ampoule. I just love that... Read more


Thankfully my family nor his family are the "dress up" types for holidays. My friend was complaining that it's her day off, she doesn't want to have to dress up, but the family who is hosting her sort of takes a little offense if you don't!

I like the Klairs Rich Moist because although it gives me a lot of hydration, it doesn't mess with my makeup application down the line so I can use it morning and evening!


That sounds heavenly!!!
I'm currently using both the Purito snail serum AND the Klairs serum in my routine and they really work nicely together!


I'll definitely have to pick up the Purito - I'm using and loving the Centella serum so I want to check out more from them.