Top 5 Beauty Tips For A More Youthful look With Hollywood Makeup Artist, Michelle Spieler

EPISODE 8


Michelle Spieler
Michelle Spieler

My guest, and friend Michelle Spieler is Hollywood makeup veteran and a true expert on all things beauty, skincare and health. We’ll go through 5 practical steps every woman can take in order to maintain their looks, even if midlife slowly but surely sets in. We also have loads of fun, talking about plenty of subjects from skincare regime, hydration, skin glow, our new passion for TikTok for the over 30 crowd!


You can connect with Michelle either on her website michellespieler.com or on her Instagram @michellemspieler and you absolutely MUST check out her TikTok @cleanbeautybabe


Please follow the show @ItsNotACrisisPodcast on both Instagram and Facebook for behind-the-scenes content, memes, and updates.


Also, don’t forget to check out our sponsor at writtenoutloud.org Registration ends on September 14th, so make sure to hop on while you still can, and let them know Doryn sent you.


Products/ Websites Mentioned:

-Touch in Sol: Pretty Filter Glassy Skin Balm: https://touchinsol-us.com/products/pretty-filter-glassy-skin-balm -Lisa Eldridge https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFghPtzFcmyDiID1ASMA4Dg -@Cleanbeautybabe on TikTok


And remember: It's not a crisis!


EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

Doryn Wallach:

Hi, everybody, and welcome to It's Not a Crisis, a podcast for women in their 40s searching and trying to figure out life and making the most of it. Before I get started, I have my very first sponsor. I promised to only have sponsors that I truly believe in. I know that we are all freaking out about what our kids are going to do this fall. I definitely am. So check this out. My daughter did an online storytelling camp this summer and I kid you not, it was one of the most inspiring things that she did all summer. They're offering it this fall. It's truly amazing. I actually had a couple of friends send it to me and tell me that their kids had this incredible experience.


The program is called Written Out Loud. It's a small online storytelling program taught by Hollywood filmmakers and Yale professors. They teach the kids in small groups how to tell stories inspired by the stories they already love like Harry Potter, Stranger Things, Marvel, Frozen, and Hamilton. It's all on Zoom and the best part is that they group kids together based on their creative tastes. So if you have a 10 year old who's into Percy Jackson, they'll group them with other 10 year old Percy Jackson fans across the country, and they can end up being friends for life, which is really nice.

Over the course of a few months, they write a book together. I'm telling you, this program has turned over 300 kids into published authors. My daughter did it with her friend and they absolutely loved it. You know how most kids hate Zoom? They looked forward to actually doing their Zoom storytelling sessions every day.

The fall program starts September 14th and enrollment is limited. They will sell out, so register now if you have a creative kid between the ages of 8 and 16. They can really and truly write their very first book this fall. The program is called Written Out Loud. Go to writtenoutloud.org, not .com, that is writtenoutloud.org, and let them know that Doryn sent you.

I am so excited about my guest today because not only is she a very good friend of mine, I have known her for many, many years. I'm so inspired by her daily. Michelle Spieler is not only a ridiculously talented makeup artist who has worked in both film, TV, and commercial, and print, she has started this, in my opinion, much needed social media following for women in their 40s and 50s. So Michelle is 53. She looks amazing. She's gorgeous. She has amazing beauty tips, hair tips, health tips, exercise tips. If you go to her Instagram, you'll fall in love with her. She's now on TikTok, which we're going to talk about in a second because I have also kind of joined TikTok and in my last episode, I said I never would do it.


Anyway, we are going to talk today all about beauty, but not just makeup. We're going to talk about your skin and we're going to talk about beauty within and how we can take care of ourselves as we're going on our next chapter of our lives in our 40s. Because I think I am noticing, for the first time at 43, that things are changing and it's changing with every year. I've been blessed most of my life with good skin, but I'm starting to see some major differences and that's life. So I would love to introduce my beautiful and wonderful friend, Michelle Spieler. Hi, Michelle.


Michelle Spieler:

Wow. Hi, Doryn. What a great introduction. I don't feel worthy. But I would like to say that I've seen your skin in person. It is absolutely gorgeous and what I wouldn't give to be 43 again, but here we are.


Doryn Wallach:

I hear you. I always know you're exactly 10 years older than me and our birthdays are right around the same exact time.


Michelle Spieler:

Yes.


Doryn Wallach:

So I'm going to tell you how I met Michelle. So first of all, let me preface this with I have been obsessed with makeup and hair since I was a little kid. If you asked me at seven years old what do you want to be, it was a hair stylist. I would make over friends. They would come over. I'd take the girl in school who maybe wasn't that popular and kids were kind of mean, and I'd make it my project to bring her home and change her wardrobe, hair, and makeup. She'd go back to school and everyone would be like, "Oh, my God." Even as I got older, I would blow dry friends' hair and whatever. It helps that my mom was very into beauty and has taught me a lot. But while I've done a lot of different things, mostly interior design, but as I've mentioned in my podcast in the past, I've done a lot because I just can't make up my mind and I just like doing so many different things.

So I worked briefly, only about four or five episodes, on the show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. I think this was back in 2004, 2005. Is that right, Michelle?


Michelle Spieler:

I'm thinking '04. Yeah.


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah. So Michelle was the makeup artist in the trailer and I was the... I don't even know what I was. PA, whatever. Design. My title was Assistant Design Producer. I don't know what that means. Well, I actually loved working on that show. It was one of the most memorable times in my life and I just thought it was so much fun. But I used to hang out in the trailer, which I probably shouldn't have, with Michelle talking about makeup and watching her do makeup. I think even once I did makeup on one of the cast members when you couldn't do it or something. I don't remember.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah. I got deathly ill and [Noralynn 00:06:25] and you, I think, did Preston.


Doryn Wallach:

Yes, I did, and I'd never put makeup on a man before in my life. So that was interesting. I think I did okay. I don't really remember.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, I'm sure you did.


Doryn Wallach:

But just to follow with this, so anyway, we were chatting and chatting and just became fast friends and have kept in touch ever since. Michelle has moved from LA to North Carolina, so I haven't seen you in so long. Then just to also give a little bit of my background, which Michelle knows, a few years ago when I had a podcast and a blog in 2005, Michelle was one of my first guests on that podcast, which is crazy. Remember that? On Doryn's Dish?


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, I do, I do. I loved it. We even did one with your mom.


Doryn Wallach:

Oh, that's right.


Michelle Spieler:

We did two. We did one-


Doryn Wallach:

Which by the way, I am going to do a podcast with my mom again because I think it will be really popular.


Michelle Spieler:

I think the whole world needs to hear from Arlene.


Doryn Wallach:

I agree, I agree. We're going to do it. We're going to do it. Then just to give you a little bit about my background, so I had moved to London for a couple years and my husband was working and I couldn't get a work visa. I kind of felt judged by my family with the idea of ever going into makeup or hair. When I was younger, I cared more about things like that. I was like, "You know what? I'm all the way in Europe. I'm going to take makeup and hair classes," so I did a four month intensive makeup and hair. I did movie makeup, I did bridal, regular every day makeup, face painting, and hair styling. I loved it. It was so much fun. I even did the Queen's cousin's makeup.

Then I started a beauty blog after that, just writing about my favorite products. Because as I've posted in my Instagram feed a few times, when I like a product, I'll post it and I've done it on my Instagram. I still love doing it. I love trialing products. By the way, Michelle, my 13 year old is now doing this. She's obsessed with skincare. She always wants new products. She's like, "I just like testing them." It's really funny. Where did you come from?


Michelle Spieler:

Oh, Lord. Oh, Lord.


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah. That's a-


Michelle Spieler:

Generational.


Doryn Wallach:

I know, totally. So with all of that, we are going to get started and have a chat because Michelle has so much to add and you guys, you're going to follow her forever after this. I promise you.


Michelle Spieler:

I think that we have to definitely blame our moms because I grew up with a very glamorous mom. She wore lashes every day of her life. She looked like Barbara Eden from I Dream of Jeannie. Everywhere we went, people turned and looked at her. So I got into that whole makeup and hair and skincare at a very, very young age myself. Now, I have passed that onto Gracie. She's just like Tatum and she absolutely loves skincare and natural makeup. She is not all about that heavy Instagram look, but she loves Millie Bobbie and the Florence line and Goop.


Doryn Wallach:

Tatum too. Our daughters are the same age too.


Michelle Spieler:

They are. They are. We got to get them together someday.


Doryn Wallach:

Oh, yeah. Tatum's turning 13 next week. It's crazy. So my mother, and if you're ever interested in my mother, I have an Instagram for her, mymomarlene. I don't post all the time, but she is a character and she's wonderful and glamorous and beautiful. She wears a lot more makeup than I'll ever wear, but my whole life, people would stop her and be like, "Your makeup's so beautiful. You do such a good job. Are you a makeup artist?" She would always do my makeup and did it really well for prom or whatever. But my mom's skincare routine is two hours in the morning and two hours at night, which I will never, ever have the patience for.


Michelle Spieler:

It's definitely a sport for Arlene. She's just funny. She's just naturally funny.


Doryn Wallach:

Right. She is naturally funny. So we both agree in our 40s and 50s that it's not... I do want to get into makeup because I have a lot of questions for you Michelle and I think other women do too. But what you're doing right now, which is so wonderful, is that when we get older, our skin and our hair and our nails is from within. We can't just be as careless as we were in our 20s and 30s. I'd love you to talk a little bit about some... I guess starting with health and things that you think should be included in our lives for the exterior as well as skincare.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah. Well, when you approached me about the show, I think just to keep it concise for the audience, I think we both really loved the top five tips for looking younger. Definitely one and two are very important, have nothing to do with makeup. But I would say that number one is to get yourself on a good skincare regime. I don't care what that is as long as it is a daily, regular skincare regime. People will often tell me, "Oh, my gosh, I can't believe you're 53. You look so good. What's your secret?" I used to always say, "It's just DNA." But I thought, "You know what? No, I'm downplaying all the hard work that I've put in for 40-some odd years." I literally started using Oil of Olay every night of my life when I was very, very young. Like 13, 14. Then I started religiously wearing SPF when I was maybe 20 years old. I stopped tanning my face at 20. I wish I had stopped tanning my neck and hands, but that's a story for another time.


Doryn Wallach:

My hands. My hands are so bad. It's terrible.


Michelle Spieler:

Wait until you're in your 50s. Then another thing is that I washed my face every single night of my life. Even I'd come home from clubbing or college parties and I wouldn't remember the night before, but I would wake up with a squeaky clean face. So I have been putting these regimes and practices into my daily life for a very, very long time, but it's never too late. I don't want to say, "Oh, you're 45 and you've never taken your skin seriously? Well, you're screwed," because you can always start right now and it does make a big difference to wash your face every day, tone your face, do a moisturizer. I think most dermatologists would agree that a vitamin C serum is so crucial for daytime and at nighttime, use a retinol product or a retinol alternative product. These are great anti-aging skincare products that really, really do improve skin texture and clarity, and give you that glow. Who doesn't want that at any age?


Doryn Wallach:

Exactly. I'm going to tell you, I've been wearing eye cream since I was 16, but-


Michelle Spieler:

Amen.


Doryn Wallach:

... I never washed my face after going out until probably my 30s at some point. I'd just go to sleep with makeup on.


Michelle Spieler:

You know what? You're not alone. It's good to talk about this so that nobody feels shamed. When I talk about that, I'm not trying to be holier than thou. I'm just stating the fact that I've taken my skin very, very seriously from a young age. I tell women if you really are too tired at night to go and wash your face, which takes a whole one minute, then keep makeup wipes on your nightstand and at least you can take off makeup while you're lying in bed. It's not as good as washing, but it's better than nothing.


Doryn Wallach:

Well, I just want to go back to what you said about... So you're 53 now. Regarding skincare, you said you wish that you had put sunscreen on your neck and hands. So in addition to that, a) how often, b) is there anything else in your early 40s or your late 30s that you wish you did more of?


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, I really, truly wish that I had been drinking more water all along. That's point number two I'll get to in a minute. But I have worn SPF almost every day of my life since probably 1990 when they started putting a 15 in makeup and skincare. I never covered my neck and my hands and my chest. Now, when I look at it, my chest has definite sun damage. My neck, I'm getting the turkey neck at 53. I'd love to get my neck done someday, but it's not in the budget right now. My hands just look so old. It's because of all the intermittent driving and exposure in Southern California, right?


Doryn Wallach:

My mom tells me to keep sunblock in the car and put it on every time you're driving. She's told me that my whole life. I don't do it. But who even thinks about that? Well, you also get, even dead of winter, sun rays are coming into your car.


Michelle Spieler:

I know. So that's my advice to anyone, 30s or early 40s right now, is please start putting that sunscreen on your neck and hands because just the skin on your chest is so thin and it just starts to look really bad as you get older.


Doryn Wallach:

I was on, and I will never go on another one again, my brother sent us on a cruise for Mother's Day. I'll never forget being outside putting on sunblock and my mom looks to me and said, "Did you skip your decollete? Dude, that is the first part of your body to start aging. If you don't start covering that with sunblock now every single day, you are going to see later on how bad that looks."


Michelle Spieler:

Oh, Lord. I love her. She's absolutely right.


Doryn Wallach:

So I have always been crazy about putting block there. If there's one place I'm going, it's there.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, and I'll say this too, is that doing makeup for so many years, I would have actresses or models sit in my chair and the ones who would drink a gallon of water a day or near that, it was obvious. Their skin was just so plump and glowing. So I have always been a water drinker. I really don't drink much else except for coffee in the mornings. But I started a new program over summer called 75 Hard. You have to drink a gallon of water every day and if you fall short, you have start back to day one of 75 days. So I really drank a gallon of water every single day for 50 days. I quit on day 51. I'm like, "Peace out. I'm out of here." But it's caused me to drink more water. My friend literally asked me a couple of weeks ago if I had Botox. I have not Botoxed since 2006. So the gallon of water of day, it's very effective. It really works.


Doryn Wallach:

Which is our second tip.


Michelle Spieler:

Yes.


Doryn Wallach:

How did you leave the house? Weren't you peeing all day long?


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah. Yeah.


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah?


Michelle Spieler:

And here we are.


Doryn Wallach:

Now we're in the coronavirus times. It's like you don't really want to go into a lot of places to... But I actually drink a ton of water. I don't drink that much water. I probably drink about 32 ounces and sometimes more than that every day. But I also, I mean, TMI, I have a really weak bladder and I pee a lot.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah. Well, that's pregnancy. That stretches out everything down there. Yeah.


Doryn Wallach:

No, no. Yes. But I've always been like that.


Michelle Spieler:

Oh, got it.


Doryn Wallach:

I was no different when I was pregnant. So a gallon a day, wow. That's actually good challenge.


Michelle Spieler:

It's a lot. It's 128 ounces a day. I will say, since I quit doing 75 Hard, I'm still probably drinking 80 to 90 ounces a day. So it's far, far more than I used to drink because I would say I used to drink half a gallon a day.


Doryn Wallach:

Since you've stopped drinking that much, has your skin changed at all?


Michelle Spieler:

I haven't noticed. I haven't noticed. I'm still drinking a ton. What I love about water is that you can do it at any age. It doesn't cost any money unless you buy bottled water because you don't have good water in your home, but we have a water filter. It's so easy and it's free.


Doryn Wallach:

Right. We will get onto this one later. I've also started to realize how bad alcohol is for my skin.


Michelle Spieler:

Amen.


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah. And hormones. Oh, gosh. So that's a topic I would like to touch on if we can. Okay. So we watch social media now. I see what my daughter's looking at. I look at these young girls. They are covered in foundation and it's so yucky. They don't need it. I mean, I've never really worn a ton of foundation. Maybe tinted moisturizer, but I'm not into the look that is the influence for our daughters right now. I think as you get older, I find that I'm wearing almost less on my face because it sits and cracks in places and makes me look older. So just curious your opinion on that and any advice for foundation?


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, I absolutely agree. I stopped wearing foundation when I was 36 years old. I met a woman at Fred Segal in Santa Monica and she had the most incredible skin. She said she only wore Bobby Brown. It was Bobby Brown tinted moisturizer. So that day, I switched and I only use tinted moisturizers. Now, I would use foundation for special occasions, especially in the evenings, but as I've gotten older, what happens is foundation sits on top of the face and as you get older, you get a little bit more texture, your pores get larger, women tend to grow more facial hair. So foundation tends to be very aging.

But if you tell someone, "Well, you need to ditch foundation and stick to tinted moisturizer," what happens is a lot of women in their 40s and 50s, and I do believe a lot of this is due to alcohol consumption and wine every night of the week, but women start to get rosacea. There's more rosacea than probably ever before. So a tinted moisturizer won't cover the discoloration on your nose, cheeks, and chin. So there is a way to go in with a heavier foundation on those cheeks and chin and blend it over a tinted moisturizer so you're covering the areas that need more coverage without covering all of the other areas that look old when you use foundation.

So I'm not a big fan of foundation and you really have to be strategic with it as you get older. Sometimes it's just trial and error, finding the right one that works for you.


Doryn Wallach:

Okay. So tinted moisturizer. The other thing I feel is a necessity is concealer, but again, we can have that same issue where it sits in lines. So personally, I apply concealer from the inner part of my eye just about to the middle of my eye and then I tap it into my skin and I use a translucent powder. I don't want to go anywhere near my crow's feet because you see women that do that and it sticks in there. I'm sure you have more tips about concealer than I do.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, so I have had a love-hate relationship with concealer since my 30s when I started developing that sunken-ness under the eye because of the orbital bone is showing. You get indentations and people are like, "I can't get rid of these dark circles." Honey, those are not dark circles. Those are indentations on your face and you can't cover an indentation. So it's really hard because if you want to cover any discoloration or hide the shadows of the indentation, you need heavier coverage, but then, again, that shows more texture, it looks crinkly, it's not pretty close up, it doesn't look like real skin. So women tend to be very aging under the eyes.

This brings me to tip number four, is stop following makeup artists on social media who take the concealer and they do it from the tear duct out to the outside of the eye and it's huge and they blend it in with a Beauty Blender. That's fine if you're 20. Personally I wouldn't do a 20 year old like that. But concealer needs to also be strategically placed, put it only where you want to hide an imperfection, and really pat it in with your fingers to really melt it into the skin. At 53, I'm actually okay. I'd rather see a little bit of darkness but have skin under my eye than seeing a lot of makeup under my eye.


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah, I agree with that. I'm starting to get a little... that indentation under my eye. It's purply.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, and it gets deeper and deeper. If you're in good lighting, then it looks great. If you have a window flooding your space, it floods it out. It looks great. But unfortunately, we can't walk around with great lighting everywhere. The best thing is fillers. A friend of mine across the country, she just sent me some pictures, she got hers filled. They look absolutely beautiful, but you have to make sure you really go to the right person.


Doryn Wallach:

I know. I was going to say I've seen it done and it's been really bad on some friends. That scares me. Yeah. I know you have to go to someone really good, but even the ones in New York City that people say are really good aren't that great. So yes, it does make a big difference for a lot of people. You don't think it makes your eyes look squinty?


Michelle Spieler:

I don't know. I'm probably going to try it someday and I'll let you know what I think.


Doryn Wallach:

Oh, good. Okay. This is a good thing you're a little ahead of me.

Michelle Spieler:

I'm definitely ahead of you. Another thing I'd love to see women stop doing is contouring and highlighting. This is another thing that is overdone. Most makeup artists who are real, professional makeup artists, we're sick to death of seeing the contouring, the highlighting. It's just too much. It's way too much. I see older gals walking around with products and placement much like the younger women of social media and it's very, very aging. So I would say to someone who wants to contour, unless you maybe are carrying a little extra weight and your face is maybe a little rounder and you do want to get a little bit of a chiseled cheekbone, then you're a good candidate for that, but most women look older when they contour. It's going to back to, like you said, it's not pretty. It does not look like pretty, healthy skin.


Doryn Wallach:

I do think though something to make you glow is important.


Michelle Spieler:

Me too.


Doryn Wallach:

For me, I actually put it all over and then I powder out the spill everywhere but my cheekbones, so it just looks like a natural highlight on my cheekbones. I just found this great... I was actually trying to find it. I posted it on my social media. It's called Touch In Sol Pretty Filter Glassy Skin Balm. Have you heard of it?


Michelle Spieler:

No. Sounds fabulous.


Doryn Wallach:

It makes your skin look great. It's not too greasy and it's not shimmery, which I think sets into lines. It highlights the places that should be highlighted naturally. I love it.


Michelle Spieler:

Exactly. That's what I'm talking about. Natural, glowy skin, not strategically placed metallic powder that a satellite from outer space could pick up. It's too much.


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah. What else can you do to make your skin look glowy? Because I think that's probably the number one thing women are seeing at our age is that we're losing that glow.


Michelle Spieler:

Yeah, so I'm still super glowy at 53, but I really think, again, it goes back to the water, it goes back to my skincare. I've gotten into clean beauty recently and I've noticed a huge difference kicking the toxins out and using just clean chemicals that are proven to help skin and nourish skin without any links to endocrine or hormone disrupters or cancer. So I've noticed a huge difference in my skin in the last five to six months due to that. But also, like you said, you could find topical products. I think as you get older, if you could find a luminous lotion or a highlighter that comes in a cream stick and you could put that strategically in areas that it'll look like skin, but I would really avoid powder highlighters for most women.


Doryn Wallach:

So clean beauty, are you talking just skincare or makeup also?


Michelle Spieler:

For me, right now, I really am sticking to clean skincare 100%, but I'm slowly switching over to clean beauty and I'm going to be switching my professional makeup kit over to clean beauty. I'm getting more requests for it, but it just makes me feel good to be putting products on someone that, again, isn't linked to anything health-related. Before, it was very inferior in quality. Now, they have really upped the game. There are some great, great products on the market that are absolutely beautiful and are clean and I can start building a kit with.


Doryn Wallach:

You would be so disappointed if you saw what I put on my face.


Michelle Spieler:

No, I wouldn't because I was into clean beauty in 2015 big time and then I got out of it and got back into all the traditional makeup. So for years, I've been wearing the traditional stuff that scored high on toxicity as well. So I don't judge anybody and I really would never... I'm not legalistic. I would never tell someone, "Hey, you need to throw all of your products away. You're going to get cancer. You need to go to..." No, no, no. That's silly. I just think you do a clean swap. As you run out of a shampoo, use it up. You spent good money on it. But could we now look for a shampoo that maybe scores low on toxicity or you finally run out of a tinted moisturizer? Could you find one that scores lower on toxicity? It's those little clean swaps as you run out of products to slowly start building cleaner things into your regime, whether it's makeup or skincare or body or hygiene. I judge nobody because I've used everything under the sun.


Doryn Wallach:

Okay, well, that's good. I have a friend who works for a beauty counter and she knows not to contact me because I'm like, "No, thank you. I'll take my cancer makeup and my products. I'm good."


Michelle Spieler:

That's okay, that's okay.


Doryn Wallach:

I'm sure I'll get more into it. I think for me, it's more I don't believe that one company is everything. I think you need to find things in different places. So I do that. I do that. But it's one more thing to put on my list of things to do, so I have my comforts that work for me. But I do think it's important, so I will make that a goal of mine. I will switch out one thing at a time and hopefully find one. I'm going to be texting you.


Michelle Spieler:

Just keep thinking in the back of your head, "Okay, clean swap. As I run out of something more toxic, can I find something that's great quality, but lower toxicity?" Just do it that way, little by little, piece by piece. Again, I'm not an alarmist. I would never tell someone, "Oh, my gosh, you're going to get cancer if you use this brand or that brand." You know what? We already know what cancer does to people and we know it's a big, fat crapshoot. But if we could have a little bit more control of what we put in and on our body as we get older, why wouldn't we go that route?


Doryn Wallach:

Yeah. Absolutely. I think at this stage, I've been wearing the same makeup, doing the same makeup routine for probably the past 15 years. Now, I do a very classic, so I hope that it hasn't gone out of style, but I do see women who, and again, I don't judge either because I get it because I'm doing the same thing, but I do see women who are probably doing their same makeup from the '90s, the way they did it then, or they doing how they did when they were younger. I actually just want to tell you what I do. I'm curious what your recommendation is for shadow placement because that's actually one thing that I don't really know what I should or shouldn't be doing anymore.