My name is Mistress Ginger, and I’m known best in VegNews’ circles for my vegan cookbook Mistress Ginger Cooks!: Everyday Vegan Food for Everyone. However, I’m also a cabaret singer, dancer, and actress who has been vegan for approximately 15 years. And when you combine my expertise regarding plant-based living with my natural ability to be a diva, you’ve got yourself an expert on cruelty-free glitz and glamour. So I’ve decided to share five of my favorite beauty tips to bring out the star in you. These tips might not be for everyone, and not everyone needs to aspire to the glam beauty that I prescribe here. But if this is your thing, come aboard because I’m going to show you how to rock you. That’s right—we’re not talking about transforming into somebody else. We’re talking about allowing your inner beauty to shine through with a few tips from my treasure trove of beauty secrets. Ready? Okay. Now listen to your Mistress, and let’s get gorgeous.
1. Know that you’re beautiful
My number one beauty tip? Know your own worth. Your confidence in knowing your inherent beauty—the beauty of your spirit—is going to make you radiate more than any diet, skincare regimen, or new makeup trick. Whatever size dress you wear, you can be gorgeous. Move through space with grace because you have a right to be here. Your Mistress has spoken.
2. Do that plant-based thing
I make sure that I’m getting a variety of luscious fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Now you do the same. Make sure to get at least a couple servings of vitamin-packed green vegetables at lunch and dinner everyday. Also, don’t forget to drink plenty! Sadly, I ain’t talkin’ about vodka martinis (as glamorous as that sounds). Instead, lay off the booze, and stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Finally, eat a cookie (or two). Really, don’t deny yourself a treat now and then. Sure, you don’t want vegan scones to be the mainstay of your diet, but you can indulge now and then, whatever that means for you (I say this knowing full well that vegan scones are in fact a mainstay of my diet).
3. Extra virgin makeup remover
I’m known to cake on my makeup, but whether you’re applying a little or a lot, your makeup eventually needs to come off … at least when you sleep. Rather than using any kind of alcohol-laden wet wipes, I go all natural, baby. Just give me about a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and a moist, warm washcloth, and I’m good to go. Here’s what you do: massage the oil over your face and neck, wherever you’ve got the makeup. You might need to focus a little extra attention on your eyes and lips, which might be covered with those long-lasting liners, lipsticks, and perhaps even lash glue. Once I’ve given my face a good rubdown, I soak a washcloth with warm water and then ring it out. I use the cloth to wipe off the oil from my face, and the makeup goes with it. Voila!
4. Exfoliate that mug
Speaking of keeping your face glowing with utter queenliness, I’d like to recommend using an exfoliant a couple times a week. My favorite exfoliant is a make-out session with a bearded man. Not only is it all-natural, but you can also cross those two things off your list: vital exfoliation and nookie. Of course, if you’re not currently dating a dude with a scruff, you’ll have to find some cruelty-free skin care product that provides a gentle exfoliation of the dull surface cells and leaves you feeling smooth, bright, and rosy. I happily recommend ACURE brightening facial scrub, a moderately priced luxury skincare product that’s also free of animal products. Don’t tell anyone, but I get mine at Target.
5. Move like the goddess you are
So often I see people focused on losing pounds as a way to “look better,” but they pay no attention to their posture or movement quality. Please don’t underestimate the power of how you sit, stand, and move, as nothing says “sloth” like a slouchy brood. So, relax your neck and shoulders, gently elongate your spine (drawing up from the top of the head), and open wide across your front and your back. If you’d like to explore this further, take a ballet class or explore the Alexander Technique. Both have helped me to release tension, find my best alignment, and discover more fluid swagger to inspire the masses, both onstage and off.
Mistress Ginger is a cabaret performance artist and vegan cookbook author based in Minneapolis.
Photo courtesy of Erik Saulitis