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E.L.F. Cosmetics Creative Director, Achelle Dunaway, Shares Her Half Marathon Beauty Secrets and Motivation Tips

By day, Dunaway oversees the product and brand development, entertainment marketing and editorial copy for E.L.F. Cosmetics (a cute and affordable makeup and skincare line). But during her down time, she spent the past 10 weeks pounding the pavement and training hard for her first half marathon in East Hampton, New York. As a makeup artist, she let us in on her race-day beauty recap as well as what kept her going through 13.1 miles.

What was your race-day makeup plan? Did you even wear any?  

“When running a long race, it’s ideal not to wear too much makeup that could create a ‘melting effect’—aka, a smudgy mess. I always want to look and feel my best so I kept a pretty basic beauty look. I prepped my face with primer to create a long-lasting hold. My favorite is the E.L.F. Mineral Infused Face Primer ($6, eyeslipsface.com). And since I’m outside, I always wear sunscreen. I pair that with tinted moisturizer with additional SPF, spot concealer, sweat-proof mascara, a little bronzer and blush and lip balm with SPF.”

What hairstyle worked best for you while training?

“I wear my hair in a high ponytail that is doubled up on hair ties in case one breaks, and I always run with a backup around my wrist. I also sport a cute headband to keep flyaways down.”

What was the hardest thing about training?

“Traveling. It was difficult to fit in my training during the summer months with vacations, but I would always try to run on my trips or compensate by running longer runs on my shorter run days to catch up.”

What advice do you have for others preparing for their first half marathon?

“Sign up with friends! I ran this race with three friends. Their encouragement helped me stay focused and excited through training. Plus, let’s be serious, I totally wanted a fun Instagram photo to post on Facebook!”

Dunaway looking good and jamming out mid-half-marathon.

How do you stay focused through all 13.1 miles?

“Music is essential. I jam away to my own personal dance party and set my Pandora playlist to the Rihanna station. It keeps the songs fresh and unexpected as opposed to listening from my own music list.”

What made you want to do a half marathon?

“It was on my life bucket list! Sometimes you have to push yourself to try and do things you never thought you could, because when you realize that you can, you continue to set your limits higher.”

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