The Dubai-based fashion designer reveals what make-up she wears every day, her tips for blemish-free skin, and her favourite local salon for a streak-free tan.

What’s your morning and evening skincare routine?

I used to have terrible skin, so my routine is very simple to stop breakouts from returning. I use a Bioderma face wash morning and night, followed up with a Bioderma moisturiser afterwards. I found that making sure your face is wet before adding product, and lathering the product up in your hands before application, really helps. This means there is less contact between your hands and face and less likelihood of breakouts. I wait for my skin to fully dry before applying moisturiser. Everything of course, is oil-free.

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If you were stranded on a desert island, what three products would you want with you?

Sunscreen – Bioderma 50 Dry Oil is amazing, I rarely use anything else. My skin is so fair so I burn very easily. For my face I use Uriage Bariesun Oil-Free Tinted Moisturiser, so I still get a little bit of coverage and am protected at the same time. Then I would take Kevin Murphy’s Young Again Oil Treatment for my hair – it keeps my colour in check and the ends nice and conditioned.

What products can we always find your beauty cabinet?

I start with Clinique Foundation and then I use everything else from Bobbi Brown – both brands are oil-free. I like Bobbi’s under-eye Corrector for covering up the evidence of late nights and early mornings, and I also use a combination of their Long-Wear Even Finish Compact Foundation and Shimmering Bronzer. I use M.A.C for lips and Yves Saint Laurent for the best eyeliners.

beauty cabinet deborah henning

What’s the one product or tip that everyone should know about?

I love Younique’s 3D Moodstruck lashes! It’s a three-step process – first you apply a base mascara, and then while it’s wet a layer of tiny fibres that give length and volume. Then you finish with the base mascara again. It’ss super easy and the effect is dramatic and perfect for evenings! For everyday I wear Yves Saint Laurent’s Shocking Mascara in Black.

What’s your approach to beauty?

Keep it as natural as possible and work with your assets. If it’s your eyes, learn how to do nice liner and a good smoky eye; if it’s lips, experiment with colour and glosses or go for glowing skin if you are naturally blemish-free. Always accentuate your natural-given beauty.

What are your five must-have products for an evening look?

A red lipstick by M.A.C, Bobbi Brown’s Saddle eyeshadow (it’s a taupe/grey shade, perfect for smoky eyes), Younique 3D Moonstruck Mascara, Yves Saint Laurent Black Eye Pencil, and hairspray. I useTRESemmé Freezehold because I love a messy look with some volume.

bobbi brown saddle

What’s your one holy grail make-up item?

It’s a coin flip between the YSL liner and Younique mascara.

What are your best tips and products for surviving summer in the UAE?

Use a good heat-protection spray on wet hair so you are protected from the heat of hot styling tools and the beating sun. Also find a good moisturiser that dries quickly, I like the Nivea Everyday one.

Where do you shop for products?

I have to be very specific with the brands I use because they need to be hypoallergenic and oil-free, so when I find products that work for me I’m usually very brand loyal. If I’m on the lookout to try something new, I usually hit the beauty counters at Bloomingdales.

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What are your go-to salons and spas in the UAE?

Because I’m pale, I love a special occasion when I can get a spray tan. Elvie at Pastels on Al Wasl is amazing. She uses Fake Bake and it gives a perfect natural-looking tan, I always get positive comments and I feel great with a sun-kissed look. When relaxing I go to Sofitel on the Palm – they do the best massages I’ve ever had.

fake bake

What’s your signature fragrance?

Stella McCartney’s Sheer. I love it and have worn it for years.

What haircare products can’t you live without?

Definitely hairspray! TRESemmé is great, or I recently discovered Coconut Bay by Cedel – it smells super yummy!

What other body or bath products are always close to hand?

I recently started using Avalon Organics Biotin B-Complex shampoo and conditioner – they don’t contain any nasty GMOs, parabens or test on animals.

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Images: Supplied/Deborah Henning