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Landscapes of Our Faces

The Terrain

A collage of 4 selfies that I call "Faces"

The following article (with minor edits) was originally posted last year:

Landscapes of Our Faces; sounds poetic and could double as a soap opera title. The first time I heard the term was when Stephanie Van, my vision rehabilitation teacher, was giving me some makeup tips and I liked the sound so much I just had to write about it.

Like life itself, with the exception of those whose livelihoods depend on facial care, many of us can take our faces for granted. How many times do we really pay close attention to our own face unless there’s an issue requiring closer examination?

I think it’s safe to say that we understand the face is necessary for individual recognition and we are familiar with its various components. We may even know our facial shape, tone and type but what if you couldn’t see your face? How would you do what millions of women do every day when preparing themselves to face the world?

Many of us get up each day, take a shower, get dressed, style our hair, apply makeup, and go about our day without giving any of these preparations a second thought. There is a segment of our population however, whom for numerous reasons, are very intentional in any given area of their morning ministrations.

I suppose a certain amount of complacency with regard to routine is not a bad thing for if we were constantly reminded of pain, discomfort or even incessant empathy, moving beyond today would be a great hardship. The pain of childbirth is one of those events though very rewarding, if we had the ability to carry that pain for any length of time beyond the birth of a child I dare say there would probably be a serious population decline.


Back to Landscapes of Our Faces, when Stephanie demonstrated what she meant by the landscape of the face it made complete sense to me. Allow me if you will to take you through the process:

  • Close your eyes
  • Relax your face
  • Using the pads of your fingertips on both hands start on your forehead gently trace your hairline past the temples
  • Continue down past your ears, under the jaw line and to chin
  • Going back up to your forehead trace your eyebrows feeling the brow bone underneath your skin
  • Gently circle the orbital socket of the eye
  • Feel how tissue thin and pliable your eyelids are
  • Along the base of your eyelids trace your eyelashes
  • Notice contour of your bone structure from your eye socket to your cheekbones
  • Run your fingers along the ridge of your nose to the cartilage at the tip and nostrils, notice how the skin in this area is firmer than your eyelids
  • Sliding your fingers on your cheeks notice the softness and the difference in skin texture from that of your nose
  • Now trace your lips

It took me several times of doing this to be able to feel my unique characteristics. I found that though the skin on my face is very soft there are some uneven areas that feel like tiny pimples. I’m now even able to feel the soft fine hairs on the sides of my face (okay I have to say I was a little shocked to find that I have a quasi-beard). Taking it a step further and smiling I could feel the muscles under my cheeks causing them to elevate along with the laugh lines.

Just like I recommended at the outset of this blog, Stephanie also advises her clients who are blind and vision impaired to consult with a trusted friend or family member when first learning how to use or switching makeup products/types. This is to ensure that you’ve attained complete coverage and correct application.

I showed Stephanie some of the stencils that I’ve recently acquired and asked for her opinion. While she could see the benefit of these tools for some women with low vision she recommends using the fingertips for most makeup application. The reason being, that one can use the sense of touch to determine the amount and coverage of the cosmetics.

Stephanie went on to show me how to line up an eyebrow pencil with the eyebrow and tracing with the fingertip along the brow line. For liquid foundation she uses what she calls the Power of Three. First she places one dot of foundation on each of the following: forehead, cheeks, nose and chin. Then with three fingers on both hands she swipes the cheeks in an upward and outward motion three times. This process is repeated on the forehead, nose and chin.

I hope this post was helpful you. If you’ve never done this before did you learn something new about your face? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below or you can email me directly at

When feeling and looking good come together, the natural outcome is confidence. Have a great day! ~Steph

12 thoughts on “Landscapes of Our Faces

  1. I have often heard people, especially in spiritual circles that makeup is a mask and a way to hide and is superficial.

    I have to say I completely disagree. It is what one makes it.

    I find it one of my favourite forms of self care. It is powerful time I spend in the mirror looking into my eyes (more so than at any other time). It is nurturing.

    I especially love the creative aspect of applying it and find it another avenue of my creative self expression.

    The most important tips I can share are:

    -eat a healthy diet

    -moisturize daily (I do morning and night daily and have for many years)

    -always gently use the finger pads if applying anything around the eyes (the skin is very sensitive and can be damaged easily)

    -sleeping on the back will help prevent wrinkles (especially crowsfeet, if this is important to a person)

    -drink plenty of water

    -when applying make up, blend, blend, blend (make up is best when it looks natural, unless it’s evening wear when more drama is called for). It is best used to bring out your natural beauty.

    -a great way to give skin a nice glow is to use a highlighter (with a slight sparkle) in the corners of both eyes, on cheekbones and on the arch just under the brow bone – all areas that light reflects off of.

    Hope this is helpful. 🙂 Enjoy.

    1. Yes, people can wear masks, and often do, without makeup. While I get what the folks in the spiritual realm are saying I don’t necessarily agree b/c as you say it is what you make of it. If an individual’s entire focus is on their appearance there could be some underlying causes as to why so much attention is needed but again, to each his own.
      Thank you for the great tips. I was reading not too long ago that our sleep position can have an impact on wrinkles and suchm I wish I would have known this decades ago but better late than never. Thank you again for stopping by and leaving such a helpful comment. ~Steph.

  2. The things we take for granted. I don’t peer at myself much – not only because I don’t want to (eh) but because I can afford not to as far as vision goes. But yes, knowing our own landscape is certainly a fundamental self-awareness, Steph. Lovely post. I know you’ve learned so much about yourself the rest of us are years behind in understanding.

    1. Hi D. Thank you for stopping by and for your kind comment. I’m still takning many things for granted, could it be part of the human condition? Great thing about the learning process, provided there isn’t a significant brain injury, is that it doesn’t stop. I’m just hopeful that I’ll continue to learn more about others.

  3. Reblogged this on Michael's Origins and commented:
    I found Stephanae a while back, you may or may not know her, but she helps the vision impaired look good and feel better about themselves. I have a male friend who is blind rather recently who is a farmer, he saw dark floaters one day and the next his vision was gone.

    1. Thank you Michael. Sorry to hear about your friend’s vision loss. Been there with the floaters (in the first eye it was due to a detached retnia and the other eye was just due to recurring issues).

  4. Landscapes of Our Faces: you are right that title just has that right note that promises more like that shiny red apple that seems to say pluck me 😉

    hahaha I did the exercise and realised my shave is not as close as i thought or maybe facial hair grows super fast… and OMG they grey strands feel coarser then the regular ones. Still havent decided if I should dye or not dye this grey too soon I am way too young to look this wise hahaha


    1. B. you are so funny!! I’m just glad I wasn’t eating anything when I saw this else I would have surely choked.

      1. You are welcome ha!

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