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My Good Day Face: Katie Becker, Beauty Editor

A serum for glow, an eye/cheek multitasker, and “low frustration” mascara are part of Becker’s feel-better makeup stash. “How we treat our skin with care and dress our faces with makeup,” says the Vogue and Elle writer, “it’s a reflection of our regard for the body we got.”

“My Good Day Face” is a Mental series about the feel-good beauty products people use to boost their moods. 

With a degree in journalism and an early career as a health writer, Katie Becker can dissect a clinical study, find the bigger cultural meaning in a lotion launch—and speak firsthand about beauty’s effect on mood.

“I had really bad acne through my 20s to the point where it kept me indoors and constantly self-conscious,” says Becker, the former beauty and health director of Elle. “It was not good for my mental health.” To wit, much research (and likely a lot of sub-Reddits) has found a correlation between acne and anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem.

“Certainly, we can blame society for having impossible skin standards, but I think it’s really unfair to expect people to white-knuckle through stigma just to prove they aren’t vain,” says Becker. “We know that how you look affects the way the world perceives you and how you feel.”

One 2021 study published in the International Journal of Pharmaceutical Research backs up that how-you-feel bit: Makeup, it concluded, enhances people’s feelings of acceptance and respect toward themselves. “Should we all be striving for the same look?” asks Becker. “No. But you should feel comfortable pursuing the look that makes you feel great.”

Now a brand consultant and freelance writer for Vogue, Allure, and The Zoe Report, Becker tackles subjects from beauty inclusion (see: Selma Blair and accessible makeup design) to the safety of social trends (is the eyelid lift dangerous?)—and turns cosmetic science into lively lessons, like how a plant ends up in your moisturizer. She’s examined the Marie Kondo approach to skincare—and, here, explains the therapeutic one.

“When I don’t feel well mentally, I get so judgmental of my face and can become really harsh about what I see,” says Becker. “What I apply to make myself feel better are products that produce an effect I genuinely like. It helps me feel more in control and it can really turn around my day. Even though the makeup I use is really subtle, it can make me feel completely different about how I’m presenting myself.”

Without further ado…


Violette_FR Boum-Boum Milk All Over Cream Spray, $110.70 for a set that includes C’est La Cream face moisturizer

“It smells amazing and leaves skin with this perfect juicy glow. I massage several spritzes into my skin.”
“This is like a full-face highlighter, but you don’t look like a robot. I guess what I’m trying to say is when I need a boost, I need to glow. Just seeing my skin look better helps me feel better.”

Eye Drops

Bausch + Lomb Lumify Redness Reliever Eye Drops, $20.67

“This does work wonders. When I’m not feeling well, I likely haven’t slept and/or my digestion is down and/or I’m feeling sad and my eyes always lose their luster. This brings it right back. It’s amazing how whitening my eyes makes my whole face look healthier.”


Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, $31

“I use this on my undereye ‘crescents’ of purple and I always make sure to blend into the inner corner and even up into the upper socket. This placement makes a huge difference opening up my eyes. I love this formula and once you find the exact right color for you, it will be a trusted BFF. If I need more coverage, like on a pimple, I let it sit on my skin for a few minutes before blending.”

Monochromatic Eye Shadow, Highlighter, Blush

Westman Atelier Super Loaded Tinted Cream Highlighter in Peau de Pêche, $75

“I get so many compliments on my skin when I use this. It’s a blush and bronzer and highlighter all in one. It’s important to use a nice blending brush or a rounded sponge, but I just use it on the apple of my cheeks up toward my temples. Then I add a bit across my forehead and the bridge of my nose. Instant skin revival. Life! I also use my finger to apply across my eyelids.”

“Low Frustration” Mascara

Freck Lashrocket Mascara, $26

“It is very rare I go out without mascara, as I have blonde lashes that easily disappear. This formula applies really nicely. Mascaras sometimes act differently after using them for a couple weeks, but not this one. It’s just a solid good mascara with low frustration—important when I feel I’m on the brink.” 

Brow Groomer

“I’m blessed with good thick brows, but they are curly and can get crazy-looking without grooming. I just started using this pot of clear gel on my brows, and in combination with the little comb it comes with, it lays my brows flat and gives this nice fresh effect. They’re easy to control and never crunchy or flaky. I love using products that feel like a true discovery—boosts my beauty editor confidence!”

Mauve-y Lip Color

Chanel No 1 Lip and Cheek Balm in Vital Beige, $45

“This color looks remarkably like my own lips, but with a touch of that cool ’90s mauve. It’s easy to use, I like it every time, and it’s not a statement lip I feel like I need to babysit.”

Follow Katie Becker on Instagram at @katiejaynebecker.

MENTAL NOTE: Oh hi there. Like we said above, My Good Day Face” is a Mental series about the makeup and skin products people use to boost their moods. Yes, there are conflicting studies on whether makeup is good or bad psychologically, whether it can soothe or inflame anxiety and depression. If beauty causes you angst or feels like a form of pressure, step away! We love a beautiful bare face. But if applying moisturizer and lipstick helps your mental state by giving you a routine to follow, acting as meditation, inspiring creativity, or simply expressing your inner human, then: By. All. Means. 

All products featured on Mental have been selected independently and editorially. When you buy from our links, we may earn a commission.

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