Ask the Skin Sisters: Sarah Riley Rose

Welcome to our very first “Ask the Skin Sisters!” We are thrilled to get started with this fun, and informative, weekly session. We invite you to submit questions through DM on our Instagram page or email us at Our readers are constantly asking us questions by DM, email, or in person; our feeling is that if one person is asking, there must be others with the same question. Thus, ‘Ask the Skin Sisters’ was born.

Each week we will highlight one of the questions we have been asked, along with a thoughtful and interesting answer. No question is off limits, so reach out to get your question answered.

Our first “Ask the Skin Sisters” question comes from one of the Twin Cities’ most compelling fashion bloggers. Sarah Riley Rose features amazing outfits and fabulous combinations on her fantastic fashion and lifestyle blog Her Instagram account @sarahrileyrose  is gorgeous and not-to-miss if you love fashion like we do. However, Sarah is not only a fashionista, but also a makeup lover just like the rest of us! Her “Ask the Skin Sisters” question is a great one for every woman! She asked us:

“What is the best way to prepare my face before applying makeup?

This is an amazing question that literally anyone who wears makeup has asked themselves at least once or twice. Creating a perfect smooth canvas for makeup application starts with a solid skincare routine.

The key to preparing your face for makeup is to care for your skin every day, so that it remains healthy and smooth – allowing makeup to look natural and give you that glowing look you are looking for. We recommend cleansing first thing in the morning; there are numerous cleansing options, so choose one based on the individual needs of your skin.

Micellar water products are a great option for sensitive skin types. They have been quite popular in Europe for some time, but are finally easy to find here in the States. A little bit used on a cotton ball and gently wiped over the skin leaves it clean, without stripping the skin of its natural moisture. Keep your eyes peeled to The Skin Sisters for an upcoming post on micellar water cleansers.

A gentle toner (nothing with harsh alcohols) can then be used to prep the skin further, by removing residue left on the skin after cleansing. Those with sensitive or dry skin may want to skip this step!

Twice a week, we recommend adding an exfoliator to your routine. Exfoliation is the best way to get rid of dead skin that results in makeup appearing clumpy and skin looking dull. You want to avoid harsh abrasives (skip the apricot and walnut shells!), but there are many safe options for removing that layer of dead skin cells.

We love Eminence Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant with Lactic Acid. It helps you achieve bright, radiant, and smooth skin by using lactic and salicylic acid to remove dead skin cells – it also contains rice powder to absorb oil. Mix a small about of the powder to your gentle cleanser twice a week.

After cleansing, the next step is to apply a moisturizing cream. Many people skip this step, because they think it makes their skin greasy; but the truth is that, if you choose the right moisturizing product (for example, a lightweight lotion for oily skin during the summer months and a thick, creamy moisturizer for dry skin during the winter months), it will sink right into your skin and give you that smooth texture that will ultimately make your makeup look fantastic.

Our favorite drugstore moisturizer is CeraVe PM lotion. It is truly a drugstore gem! The ceramides in this product attract water and trap that moisture into the skin, keeping you hydrated all day. Don’t be fooled by the ‘PM’ in its name – you can use it anytime!

One more thing to consider, is when your sunscreen gets applied. We recommend applying chemical sunscreens first after cleansing and toning, so that they can absorb fully into your skin and give their listed SPF benefit. However, if you’re using a physical sunblock (with titanium dioxide or zinc oxide as the active ingredients), these products can be applied after moisturizing.

Lastly, daily skincare is really the key to having your makeup look great on a day to day basis. If you’re cleansing regularly and using any necessary products or prescriptions to keep your skin clear, then adding in an antioxidant and/or retinol can help to shrink pores, even out the texture of the skin and improve skin tone – all of which ultimately will make your makeup look the best it can!

Thank you to Sarah of the Fashion Blog SarahRileyRose ( for participating in our first “Ask the Skin Sisters” feature. Send us your skin, hair, or nail questions for a chance to be featured on “Ask the Skin Sisters” in the future! DM us on Instagram at @theskinsisters or send us a note at

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