As I walk around a home store, I find myself picking up candle after candle, trying to get a sense of what each scent will be like when it’s actually lit. It’s a bit of a guessing game because the fragrance from an unlit candle isn’t always an accurate representation of how it will smell when the wick is burning. The heat from the flame can change the scent profile, making it richer, more intense, or even slightly different from what I perceive now. This makes selecting the perfect candle a tricky process. I’m making decisions based on the unlit state, yet I know the experience I’ll ultimately have will be with a lit candle, which could vary significantly.

This dilemma reminds me a lot of choosing makeup products. When I test makeup in-store, I’m often making decisions based on swatches or how the product looks under store lighting. But the true test comes when I apply it at home, in different lighting, and wear it throughout the day. Just like with candles, the final experience of makeup can be quite different from the initial impression. The foundation might oxidize and change color, the eyeshadow might blend differently, or the lipstick might look off in natural light compared to the store lighting.

In both scenarios, we’re making decisions based on an incomplete picture. With candles, we can’t fully grasp the scent until it’s burning. With makeup, we can’t fully appreciate how it will perform until it’s applied in our daily environment. This is why it’s so important to take these factors into account and, whenever possible, test in conditions that mimic the real experience. For candles, this might mean reading reviews or buying small samples first. For makeup, it means using testers and considering how products will work in different settings. Understanding these nuances helps us make more informed choices, ensuring we get the experience we truly desire.

To truly understand how makeup products look and wear on you, book a private makeup lesson today and experience personalized guidance tailored to your unique beauty needs.

Photo: Tabitha Stoffel Photography

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