The Beauty Profile: The Creative Director Who Has a Low Maintenance Approach to Beauty

The Beauty Profile: The Creative Director Who Has a Low Maintenance Approach to Beauty


Meet Paulina Ortega, the creative eye behind Recess and Par Femme Magazine. For this story, we dive into her relationship with beauty, including her low-maintenance routine

In this day and age, everybody has a beauty story to tell—let’s turn it into an open conversation. For today’s beauty profile, we caught up with a creative force that made a name for herself when it comes to design and creative direction. We sat down and talked about everything related to beauty, ranging from her everyday routine to her best-kept beauty philosophy.

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Meet Paulina

Paulina Ortega is not your ordinary cool girl. In fact, a visit to her feed hints at her creative eye for color play, design, and IRL content. However, her work goes far and beyond what you see on Instagram. The artist holds an impressive portfolio with works featured on Uniqlo, Incu, Halo Halo and Sunnies Face, which have garnered global admiration, but her heart found a permanent residence in her position as a Co-Founder and Creative Director of the female-founded life-intervention-wear brand Recess

A true creative chameleon, Paulina continues to prove that she is not just a visual artist, but rather a visual storyteller, an essence that made Recess’ content a standout in any feed or fyp. 

On her beauty awakening

As mentioned in a previously-released article, beauty origins are undeniably the best story to tell. Paulina, for example, shared one of the most relatable moments, “I think it came from a sense of play. When I was four, I used to lock myself in my grandma’s room and station myself at her vanity counter where I’d be found, hours later, with a full face of makeup, ready for someone to help me blow dry my hair (which are all things I used to watch my grandma do to herself). So it very much started from that playful sense of roleplay. If anything, I’ve become progressively less and less playful with it as I’ve gotten older.” 

Paulina also became candid about her own beauty direction. “I’m very lowkey and fairly low maintenance when it comes to beauty, but, sure, one could say I have always had an ongoing dialogue with it and interest in it since I was young.”

On her beauty routine 

Paulina’s routine might be easy and fuss-free, but her top shelf holds some true beauty gems. “In the mornings, I typically start by washing my face. I am in love with the N°1 DE CHANEL Powder-to-Foam Cleanser. I use that on most days, even when I travel [because it’s in powder form, it’s super convenient to take around].” The artist also shares her favorite beauty tool, “On a good day, when I’m not rushing, I use my guasha and do some facial massages. Typically, I’ll start with the Drunk Elephant C-Firma™ Vitamin C serum and then do the N°1 DE CHANEL Revitalizing Essence Lotion and massage from there.” 

Like most beauty girls, Paulina never missed this one non-negotiable step in a routine—“The most essential step, which is the one I never miss: sunscreen. I use the Ultra Violette Supreme Screen SPF 50+. I live in Sydney, where the sun is extra strong, so I use Australian brands, which are graded for stronger UV protection.”  

The Creative Director also gave us a look into her minimal makeup rotation, which consists of the Glossier Boy Brow, RMS or CHANEL Cheek Tint, and Sunnies Face Lip Treat in Juice before heading out the door. A true Lip Treat patron, Paulina continues to rave about her holy grail. “I must say that I have emptied about seven to eight sticks of Sunnies Face Lip Treat at this stage. Love this product so much, I panic when I start to run out of them.” 

Meanwhile, Paulina also shared a secret behind her soft and healthy hair texture. “I always just air dry and dab on some Kérastase Nutritive Nectar Thermique Serum while my hair’s wet from the shower, which leaves it finished with the perfect soft texture, once dry.”

On her beauty philosophy

A beauty story might be worth telling, but a beauty philosophy is also one thing that is worthy to pass on. For Paulina, her take is short yet impactful. “[It’s better to] only go with what makes you feel your best, what gives you the confidence to feel at ease in your own skin.”

On her top shelf products

More often said than not, a top shelf houses one’s mainstay products. The non-negotiables, as we all know them, are formulas that a beauty girl would rave about. For Paulina, she openly shared her top picks that she doesn’t like to leave the house behind. “Cheek tint is number one. I typically just use a small amount, but I feel it adds such a noticeable healthy glow to the face. I feel kind of naked without it. I toggle between the RMS Lip2Cheek tint, the N°1 DE CHANEL Lip and Cheek Balm, [and the] Sunnies Face Airblush.” 

At the same time, the creative unveiled another essential in her kit—“A tinted lip balm. As you can see above, a lot of the cheek stuff I use work as my lip [makeup], too. However, if not those, I will go with the Sunnies Face Lip Treat in Juice on most days or the CHANEL Rouge Allure A Demí-Mot.” She also admitted her admiration for a cult-favorite product:  “Number three is the classic Glossier Boy Brow. Important!”

On her best advice

A beauty conversation wouldn’t be complete without an exchange of a beauty lesson. As we closed our chat, Paulina shared a simple piece of advice that is necessary for every beauty fan. “Figure out what you like and go with what works for you.” 

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