All posts by Harvey Helms

As an avid Beauty Junkie extraordinaire, Harvey’s love for makeup and skincare began at age 11, when acute acne became his daily battle. The ridicule and bullying he received on a daily basis, empowered him to become the person he is today. Through a twist of fate, Harvey started his professional career, as one of Revlon’s first male beauty advisors and quickly rose through the ranks to eventually become their Global Director of Beauty in New York. His quirky and meteoric cosmetic rise is chronicled in his first book, Blush: The Unbelievably Absurd Diary of a Gay Beauty Junkie. With his much anticipated follow up to BLUSH – BLUR: HARVEY’S UNBELIEVABLY ABSURD DIARY CONTINUES- He picks up the drama where he left off! His next career stints, in Product Development at L’Oreal, and Executive Director at Donna Karan New York, his traumatic 9/11 experience, his accidental foray into the fashion eye wear industry, his crazy love life, and finally, a solution that sends him on a journey in recovery. Through an unfiltered, raw lens, Harvey reveals some of his deepest demons, as he finally makes his trip down the yellow brick road.


Foundation. Face Makeup. Base. Spackle. Pan Stick. Pan Cake. It has had several names over the years. All promising to deliver better face when you wear it. But alas many don’t live up to their hype. Most women I know hate the thought of foundation. The “Unnatural Mask” or “Clown Grease Paint” as it were. Luckily technology has moved forward not only in the Tech sense! New formulas are more light weight, natural, and concern driven. But as always there are many to choose from. What’s a girl to do?


As promised! Here’s my list of Holy Grail foundation formulas. They made my list because I’ve used them on clients & girlfriends with great success.  I’ve broken them down into categories that make them easily recognizable based on your concerns. I’ve included a description and the link to buy for easy shopping. In some categories, I’ve included a drug store best version for my girls on a budget!

Ready? Here we go!





 This is the reason I launched a cosmetic brand. Every day, my clients were asking for the best “All in One” foundation in a tube that is weightless, pore & wrinkle disguising, with buildable coverage that looks like their skin only a little better version of it! It’s become one of my top selling products! Women who hate foundation love my mousse! I call it “Instant Goddess in a tube!”

Buy it here



Immaculate® Liquid Powder Foundation Mattifying Oil Free

This innovative foundation helps reduce the appearance of oil, acne scars, and the severity breakouts. It’s formulated with Cashmere Kaolinite Clay, which absorbs 75 percent of its weight in oil without over-drying the skin. The oil-free formula transforms instantly from liquid to powder, creating an all-day finish that camouflages imperfections and never appears dull, flat, or cakey. This foundation’s ultra-fine pigments provide unsurpassed coverage and effectively eliminate the need for powder, blotting, or constant touch-ups throughout the day.




Teint Idole Ultra 24H Long Wear Foundation

This foundation gives you the full coverage, comfortable, long wear that you need. Not thick or greasy, this foundation’s innovative formula gives all skintones flawless, complexion-perfecting coverage, while the broad spectrum SPF 15 sunscreen protects. Redness, pores, and imperfections visibly disappear, evening the skintone and leaving a mattified-yet-natural result. Formulated with color-true NAI pigments, it maintains your skin’s pH level so that color stays put all day long—meaning your makeup doesn’t need to be re-touched and provides transfer-resistant coverage—plus, it’s infused with perlite and silica, absorbing oil for a shine-free wear.




ColorStay Makeup For Combo/Oily Skin

Foundation smoothes on evenly for a flawless look. ColorStay Makeup with SoftFlex SPF 6 for Combination/Oily Skin by Revlon features SoftFlex technology that will not rub off with normal wear. Oil-free formula looks fresh, feels natural and controls excess oil. Also available in a Dry Skin formula.




Bye Bye Foundation™ Full Coverage Moisturizer™

This first-ever full-coverage moisturizer from IT Cosmetics™ lets you say bye bye to foundation—and hello to beautiful, flawless-looking skin. Perfect for all skin types, Bye Bye Foundation™ covers absolutely everything while truly caring for your skin. More than a foundation with skincare thrown in, or skincare with a hint of color, this game-changing formula is infused with proprietary 3D SKIN FLEX™ Technology to deliver weightless coverage that lasts all day and is clinically shown to improve the look of your skin, even after you take it off!



Bobbi Brown

Skin Foundation Stick

Formulated with skintone correcting pigments for an incredibly natural look, the Skin Foundation Stick delivers a natural-looking finish and hydrates where your skin dry while it absorbs oil. An innovative blend of emollients help to lock in moisture so that skin stays looking soft and smooth all day. Light diffusing powders and oil-controlling minerals help perfect the appearance of skin while reducing shine—even through sweat, water, and humidity.




Fit Me Shine Free Foundation Stick

Maybelline’s Fit Me Shine Free Foundation Stick has an anti-shine core with ultra-lightweight powders built in to instantly dissolve oil. The gel stick formula goes on creamy, blends easily, and transforms to a matte powder finish. Natural looking longwear.



DUAL FINISH – Multi-tasking Longwear Powder Foundation

This portable compact is a powerful multitasker that provides sheer to full, buildable coverage. Dual Finish offers a virtually weightless feel for a natural matte finish that lasts all day, and it can be applied wet or dry, depending on the desired effect. Perfect for on-the-go touch-ups, use it for contouring and highlighting, makeup setting, color softening, and spot coverage.






A weightless texture meets luxurious, long wear. NEW Soft Fluid Long Wear Foundation SPF 20 seamlessly blends soft color, healing hydration and Miracle Broth. Pores look refined. Imperfections virtually disappear. SPF and antioxidants help protect a newly flawless complexion. New color capsule technology helps color stay true – even in humidity.




Simply Ageless 3-In-1 Liquid Foundation

CoverGirl + Olay Simply Ageless 3-In-1 Liquid Foundation instantly reduces wrinkles, improves tone, and hydrates to firm skin. Hydrates skin over time. Reduces the look of discolorations, fine lines and wrinkles. Instantly helps you look younger. CoverGirl Beauty meets Olay Science and instantly gives you a flawless look.


There you go Gorgeous! I hope this helps you find your Holy Grail! Be sure to catch next week when I’ll be Giving Great Face Primer recommendations!


Stay covered up!
































GIVE GREAT FACE 2017 Harvey’s Definitive Best Face Covers List PART 1 – SKIN TINTS

Welcome to 2017. Yes!

We made it. Looking around at everyone, including my own mug in the mirror, I decided to help put our best face forward to begin the year. Why? Because last year was so friggin stressful and it’s showing up in our skin. Tired. Dull. Broken out skin. So here’s Harvey to the rescue.  My clients & girlfriends are always asking me what “The Best” products are to prime, tint, cover and powder so my next blogs give you my best from experience as a makeup artist and beauty columnist. I’ve had acne since age 16 so this category is near & dear to my heart. It’s also the reason I finally launched Harvey Helms Beauty in 2016.  The products on my list are from my personal experience with thousands of women with very diverse complexions. I have no affiliations with any brands other than my own. If my HHB product is on a list, it’s because I created it to answer a need not being met for all my Harvey Girls out there! Also after reading product reviews on Sephora and Ulta, I see many confused comments about which product is right for who.

Another cautionary tale is with young beauty bloggers who are basing their entire commentary on their own skin alone. There are many variables when choosing the correct product. Skin type. Finish. Coverage. Skin concerns. I hope to help give clear choices based on real women in real life.

So for 2017, let’s get it together and always give great face! Ready? Here we go!



How do you know if this category is right for you? Well, first and foremost, you have very little to hide. Do not expect this category to give you complete or full coverage. Skin Tints are great for the most natural look and for busy girls who need one product to perform skincare as well as skin evening tasks. You can normally expect sheer coverage, SPF protection, pore refining, fine line blurring, oil controlling, super hydrating, and tube portability in this category. Sometimes called Tints, but can also be called BB and CC creams.

For easy shopping, I’m breaking these down by the main skin concern or primary skintype and including the link to a number of my favorite beauty retailers for instant retail therapy!




Acne Solutions BB Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 40

This all-in-one skin perfector for oily and acne-prone skin features high-level UVA/UVB protection, moderate coverage, and oil control in an ultralightweight formula. The non-greasy texture eliminates shine throughout the day, does not cause breakouts, and minimizes the look of pores. It’s available in a broad range of natural-looking shades from light to deep—mattifying skin without leaving it feeling dry or uncomfortable. Long-lasting for up to 12 hours of wear and oil-free, it conceals imperfections without clogging pores for a super smooth, beautiful finish.



ultra sensitive tint spf30

Broad Spectrum sunscreen ideal for sensitized, reactive and recently resurfaced skin. Natural mineral sunscreens help shield against photodamage and UV exposure. Contains our exclusive UltraCalmingTM Complex with Oat and botanical actives to help minimize discomfort, burning and itching. Sheer formula provides optimal hydration and helps protect and reinforce barrier lipids, which are often compromised in sensitized skin conditions. Formulated without artificial fragrances and colors.,default,pd.html?cgid=sensitivity_and_redness&start=4&cgid=sensitivity_and_redness



Stay All Day® 10-In-One HD Illuminating Beauty Balm Broad Spectrum SPF 30

Add a touch of illumination with this revolutionary, oil-free formula that uses the smallest particle of coated pigments for seamless, smooth coverage. Ideal for all skin types and skintones, this beauty balm gives skin a lit-from-within glow. The formula is infused with innovative micro-spheres, which have been shown to hide skin imperfections and reduce the appearance of wrinkle depth by up to 84 percent. It also contains natural, skin-protecting emollients, which have been shown to increase antioxidant activity by up to 89.7 percent. Enriched with a proprietary blend, this balm helps reduce skin inflammation, improve texture, support natural collagen production, and reduce the appearance of wrinkles by up to 67 percent.


Estée Lauder

Enlighten EE Even Effect Skintone Corrector Broad Spectrum SPF 30

This ultra-sheer skin-transformer gives a hint of healthy color and creates an overall even effect. It immediately helps minimize the look of dark spots, sun spots, post acne marks, redness, and pores, while delivering high-level SPF 30 and powerful antioxidants to soften, smooth, and hydrate. Tonight, awaken the transformation to naturally glowing, even-toned skin.



Mineral Sheer Tint SPF 20

 Lightweight, mineral-enriched, tinted cream with broad spectrum sun protection. Evens skin tone with a sheer natural radiance, as it nourishes, moisturizes and protects. Available in natural and glowing finishes.

Exclusive Multi-Mineral Complex (Magnesium, Potassium, Sodium, Zinc, Chloride) helps protect skin. Vitamins A & E condition and protect skin. Antioxidants Ginseng Root Extract & Ginko Biloba Leaf Extract protect skin. Hypoallergenic, paraben-free

Next week is for my girls with something to hide! Best Foundations!

 Happy Shopping!





2016 Goodbye. What a year. Some good. Some bad. Some unpredicted election results and deaths of some of our most treasured icons. It was a year that forced all of us out of our respective “Closets” as it were. Liberals, bigots, racists really we got to see each others true feelings. Everyone had an opinion about everything and social media became the main venting place for all to let each other have it. Facebook had a record number of unfriending and blocking situations that I’m sure mark Zuckerberg didn’t see coming.

SO 2017. Let’s turn the page and take a step forward into what I hope we be a more collaborative vs dividing year. With that said, I thought I’d begin a new tradition of creating a “Stop It” list. You may want to create one as well. This list allows me my last vent for 2016 about things I want people to stop doing. Not that they will stop but just saying it makes me feel better. If you disagree with my list, then make your own and post it.

It’s like good therapy.


  1. STOP OVER EXFOLIATING YOUR FACES! Too much of a good thing like scrubs, peels, retinol, any of the cosmetic acids, Clarisonic brushes, buff puffs, enzymes, and micro daily whatchamacallits are making everyone look dehydrated and making the incidents of rosacea and adult acne go through the roof. So stop it. Use these a few days a week vs everyday please.
  2. STOP OVER DRAWING YOUR EYEBROWS! I like an enhanced natural brow but come on! Those big brunette comas your placing above your eye area because some inexperienced beauty blogger told you to? No. Stop it.
  3. STOP BUYING/WEARING THOSE CONTOUR/HIGHLIGHT KITS! Regular people do not need these for daytime real life looks. If you have your own Net Flix series, then you can keep doing it. If not? Stop It!
  5. STOP SAYING/TELLING PEOPLE HOW BLESSED YOU ARE. This should be self explanatory. If you don’t understand, well, perhaps you may have a little problem in this area. Stop it.

Well I feel better. Please let me know your TOP 5 Stop It’s to begin 2017! But just don’t ask me to copy and paste it.





As your Cyber Main Gay and  self professed beauty junkie, you know that I sometimes have a penchant for expensive beauty products. I received a text yesterday from a woman who said “Harvey! $900 for a throat cream? That’s more than my mortgage! Have you lost your big gay mind?” Well she didn’t say “big gay mind” but I think that sounds more dramatic when I share it at cocktail parties, don’t you? Anyway, you get the point.  So I’m interrupting my 2011 Emmy Countdown to plant my feet firmly on the ground where many Americans are having a tough time because of the economy. I get it. I’m not spending like I use to right now either. At the same time I want to feel pretty and use products that I know work!

And the three I’m getting ready to share OUTPERFORM their department store competition! Take note girls! These are STEALS that make you feel like you SPLURGED!


RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream

ALLURE Magazine Editor’s Choice Award winner that really works! Look younger or your money back guaranteed! They also have a sensitive skin formula. Around $19 compared to department store products at $250-500.


Check out this Clinical Study for the facts!

Revlon Color Stay Make Up  Best long wear formula to this day! 16 hour flawless finish that feels great! Around $13 compared to department store brands at $45-80.


L’oreal Voluminous Mascara  This is always my number 1 pick for best in class! Builds lashes to 5x their original size! Gorgeous and long wearing! Around $ 7 compared to department store brands at $25-85.{userdata//d+d//|diagnostic|main:pdp//objectid+Cos36a_1//{pdp_tab:pdp_overview//objectid+Cos36a_1//}|media:_blank|nav|overlay:_blank}

So now  I’ll sleep better tonight knowing that my girls can be beautiful and save for a rainy day. Or at least save for that new pair of shoes you have your eye on!












Emmy Countdown Continues! Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy? Modern Family’s Sofia Vergara!

Just moments closer my darlings to give you my picks for the 2011 Emmy Awards broadcast on FOX September 18th! Have you decided what your red carpet look will be? How many dresses have you tried? I personally want to attend a few parties to take in the whole scene! Don’t forget that red lips is the trend of the season! If you’re thinking about throwing an Emmy party, check out my column on special events Guru Robert Fountain so you won’t have any wardrobe malfunctions or disastrous catering faux pas!

I love Sofia Vergara! She has a real woman’s body with a personality that leaves you just mesmerized as soon as she opens her mouth. This beauty is wicked smart and can say more with her eyes than any words necessary! My true undying devotion was sealed after seeing this incredible TV commercial for Diet Pepsi with super soccer hunk David Beckham! I love David but I couldn’t take my big gay eyes off this naughty girl!


Modern Family on ABC? If you haven’t checked it out you must! The series follows three over the top families. One crazy but looking like the traditional American family. Another family with two gay men and adopted asian baby. And finally Sofia as Gloria Delgado Pritchett married to “Married With Children’s” Ed Bundy as her husband Jay. They have a disturbed hypochondriac child from her last marriage! Hysterical! Sofia plays an out of control emotional Latina! Hide your guns when she’s around!


Check out this Mother’s Day episode!


Born July 10, 1972 in Barranquilla Columbia, she was raised as a devout Catholic in a well off family and attended a private bilingual school. She was discovered by a photographer while walking on a Columbian beach and cast in a Pepsi commercial in Latin America. Talk about full circle! She wants you to know that her accent is real and that she originally wanted to be a dentist.

Brains and beauty again. Love it!


On the beauty front, Sofia has signed to be the new face of Cover Girl Cosmetics so look for her new campaign in 2012! Until then log on to her Facebook page and support this incredible actress!


Here’s to you Sofia! See you on the Red Carpet!





Hello my darlings1 I’m taking a break from my Emmy 2011 Countdown to help all my kittens get ready for fall. I know that many of you are  sending the kiddie’s back to school so let’s have a little ME time! Clients are texting hourly  asking for my perspective on  fall make up trends, so here you go!  As your Cyber Main Gay I have to tell you I’m a little tired of “Au Natural” so please, let’s glam it up! Go into your bathrooms immediately and do a quick inventory! I know you have everything that gives you the “No Make Up Look” so don’t even consider buying another neutral.  Keep that look for day and now concentrate on a little glamour for night!  This season should be a breeze and add some budget relief   because you only need a few elements to update your look. No complete overhaul here! Think eyes and lips! Have an open mind! Try something new! I love Gwyneth Paltrow’s  philosophy on life and beauty! She proclaims “Beauty to me is about being comfortable in your own skin, that, or a kick-ass red lipstick!”  You rock Gwyneth! So let’s begin!

Step 1- Buy a red lipstick! It’s the must have color! Don’t say “I look horrid in red!” Instead say “Which shade of red complements my complexion?” Burn’t red, Cherry red, soft red, OMG there are a million! All my clients say “But it’s too bright!” Well when you’ve been wearing nude 24/7 for the last 10 years in going to definitely be a change. Come on Girls! Go for it!! I love Lancome’s L’Absolu Rouge shade Hold Up Red from their 29 ST Honore fall collection!é%3A-Fall-2011-Color-Collection-by-Aaron-de-Mey/whatsnew-29StHonore,default,sc.html

Step 2_ Wear color on your eyes. Try the deeper hues of plum or gray. Add a surprise with sheer mint green or blue. Yes blue is back. I won’t accept any whining till you find the shade that rights for you “Miss I always wear the same thing everyday!” I love YSL’s 5 palette eyeshadow from their delicious Midnight Garden Collection! Don’t let the mint green scare you! It’s super sheer and totally luminizing!,default,sc.html?cm_mmc=LabeliumSearch-_-Google-_-SiteLinks-_-YSL%20beauty&gclid=CPbB17Ke6aoCFQs0QgodiG7RPg


Step 3- Get ready! Take a breath!  Let your brows grow.I know I know! A brow change is difficult at best but  a fuller brow is in so give it a try. I’m not saying UNABROW, I’m saying natural brow with maintenance.  Let your brow girl or boy know what your experimenting with to give you the perfect look! Don’t just sit in the chair and say “The Usual please!”


My two fall  skincare picks are Kate Sommerville’s 24 Hour Pimple Punisher to banish zits and Lancome’s Visionnaire with LR2412 to erase pores and wrinkles! Each can be added into your current skincare protocols!,default,pg.html?cm_mmc=LabeliumSearch-_-GoogleBrand-_-Skincare-_-lancome%20visionnaire





Now, as soon as you drop off  little Wyatt and Tiffany at school, stop at Starbucks then go directly to your favorite store and have some fun! Remember “No Neutrals!”


Big Kisses to all the girls I adore!













2011 Emmy Countdown Continues! Vote For Mad Men’s Cara Buono!!!

Yes my pretties! We are moments closer to the 2011 Emmy’s to be aired on FOX September 18th! You already know that your Cyber Main Gay get’s incredibly excited before any major star award events. It’s sort of like Christmas but with better wardrobe and lighting!  My next big gay fab pick is for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series.  Who could it be? Think of  the fabulous dressed up 1960’s. Think Sex and Cigarettes.   Since some of you weren’t alive then, here’s a link to Banana Republic’s new limited Edition Clothing line created by the show’s designer!

I’m just mad about Mad Men! Especially my Emmy pick Cara Buono! I’m sure you know her story line but if you don’t here’s the grand gay rewind: The fabulous Cara landed her most widely seen role to date playing Dr. Faye Miller in 2008.  Dr Miller is a cool, cerebral market research consultant who joins the Mad Men agency Sterling Cooper, Draper and Pryce.  Cara is so exquisitely fabulous that it makes me want to channel the any one of those famous Alfred Hitchcock Blondes! Remember Kim Novak in Vertigo?  Any way, Dr Miller initially resists the advances of Don Draper, played by the gorgeous Jon Hamm, but of course eventually falls for his charms! Their relationship started to shut down as she grew close to the truth of Mr draper’s  secret identity and the fact that he eventually leaves her emotionally crushed by marrying his younger secretary Meagan Calvert.  What incredible performances by Cara! She must win! Take a look!

How did she become so fab? Born March 1, 1974 in Bronx New York, Cara was raised in a blue collar family with an incredible work ethic.  Which is probably why, at twelve years old, without telling anyone, she auditioned for Harvey Fierstein’s “Spook House” and landed the part! I love it when brains and beauty go together! She graduated from Columbia University where she earned degrees in English Literature and Political Science in three years!  You may have recognized Cara from my other guilty TV addiction “The Soprano’s“. She was equally fabulous as Kelli Moltisanti, wife to Michael Imperioli’s troubled mobster, Christopher Moltisanti, who’s killed by Tony Soprano. What a HOT couple!


Cara Buono is so multifaceted! Check out her website to learn more about this glorious creature!

There you have it Gorgeous!

We love you Cara! Can’t wait to see you on the Red Carpet!