They’ve got their fathers’ eye makeup.
On a recent Sunday, five intrepid dads gathered at the new Blushington Beauty Bar on the Upper East Side to help their tween daughters learn to take care of their skin and apply age-appropriate makeup.
“Every dad should know this stuff before a big event because [the girls] come out looking like they shouldn’t look,” says one of the participating dads, Seth Rosensweig, 46, a consultant at an accounting firm who lives with his wife and two daughters on the Upper East Side. “You have to be involved. You don’t want to be a spectator — you don’t want to sit on the sidelines.”
The $50 class is the first of several Blushington plans to hold, in response to demand from dads who want to better help their YouTube-makeup-tutorial-obsessed daughters navigate concealer and contouring, especially if Mom isn’t around. The 90-minute class is divided into three parts: lip preparation, skin care and makeup application. Each dad is paired with a makeup artist who watches and instructs him on how to cover acne with concealer, subtly highlight cheekbones and perfect a glossy pout.
The program was inspired, in part, by a popular hair-braiding class for dads offered at Cozy’s Cuts For Kids on the Upper East Side, a salon not affiliated with Blushington. Some participating dads are divorcées, while others are happily married but have wives who travel often; Blushington also anticipates the class appealing to gay fathers and widowers.
“It’s bar mitzvah season — two to three per weekend. If my wife is away on business, what do we do?” says Michael Covino, a 50-year-old married dad, as he sweeps Opal by Becca highlighter across the cheeks of his 12-year-old daughter, Sky.
Covino, who works in multimedia, came to the class with a six-pack of beer to foster bonding with the other dads and keep him from stressing out too much as he learned the “windshield-wiper” eye-shadow application technique.
“It calms the nerves,” he says.
Meanwhile, daughters sip virgin strawberry Bellinis out of Champagne flutes while giggling and admiring their dads’ handiwork.
“He’s very secure in his femininity,” says Covino’s daughter, Sky, a seventh-grader.
Divorced dad Steve Hirsch, 49, was inspired to sign-up for the class after his first foray to Sephora two weeks prior. He was overwhelmed by the beauty store’s offerings and realized he needed help.
“Sephora is absolutely confusing,” he says. “This class is like a consultancy.”
By the end of the session, he felt much more confident in his ability to navigate Sephora’s aisles with his blossoming beauty hound.
“I dabbed a bit, I blended,” he says. But there’s still more to learn. “When it came to [eye]liner, I wasn’t allowed [to apply it].”
‘I had respect for what women went through before coming here. But I have a lot more respect now.’
Rayman Thorne, 59, a social worker based in The Bronx, also struggled with eyeliner.
“[It] was the hardest part,” he says. But overall, he’s happy with what he’s taken away from the training.
“I had respect for what women went through before coming here,” he says. “But I have a lot more respect now.”
His 12-year-old daughter, Clarissa Thorne-Disla, is also pleased with what her dad has learned.
“I trust him [now with helping me with makeup],” she says. “[And] he’s good at art and stuff.”
Covino is also thrilled with what he’s gotten out of the class.
“This just expanded our relationship to a new level,” he says. “I can’t help [my daughter] with hair or braids on any level, but this — yeah, I can do this for her.”
“I would trust him now more than my sister,” says his daughter Sky.
Amelia Hirsch, 10, is less effusive in her praise for father Steve’s potential to help.
“Dad’s good at applying things,” she says. “So I would maybe let him do my concealer.”
Lew Schlosser spritzes green-tea setting spray across the face of his 12-year-old daughter, Emma, and takes a moment to admire his skillful application of Stila Matte ’n Metal eye shadow on her lids.
“She’s perfect. It’s subtle, which fits her personality well,” says the 44-year-old forensic psychologist from the Upper East Side. “She’s not a Kardashian.”