Simple Makeup Tricks that Make a Difference

by Catherine Nessa

Think you know how to apply makeup like a pro? There are many common makeup mistake people make.  Luckily, there are many surprisingly simple tricks that can correct these mistakes- and make a big difference in your overall appearance.

1.  Remove makeup before bed.

No makeup is going to look good unless your skin is in good condition, clean and properly moisturized. One of the biggest mistakes women make is not removing makeup before bed. Every night, our skin goes through a natural process of shedding dead skin cells and repairing damage. In fact, one of the most important functions of sleep is to repair the body from the day’s stresses.  The condition of your skin depends on you getting your shuteye. Make sure your face is clean and ready repair itself when you go to bed. This is especially important because wearing makeup to bed can clog pores causing acne.

2.  Use moisturizer.

Women should have a moisturizing routine. If you don’t already moisturize read here to learn about the benefits. If you have oily skin, you’ll want to opt for a gel moisturizer, rather than a cream. Gel formulas have a high water content that instantly delivers hydration to the skin—in the form of water rather than oil, avoiding a shiny appearance.  Another moisturizing tip is to wait until your moisturizer is absorbed before applying primer or foundation. Many women apply foundation too soon after moisturizing, which causes makeup to sink into your pores, leading to a blotchy look.

3.  Choose the right foundation.

When trying to find the right shade of foundation, some women will test it on the back of their hands while others will dab it on their cheek. Neither are the correct method. Why? Your hands are about one to two shades darker than your face and the skin on your face is different from the rest of your body because of sun exposure. This is why many women blend foundation past the jawline to “blend in” with the neck and chest. If you use the right shade, you won’t need to blend. The key to finding your true shade of foundation is to match it to the skin an inch or two below your jawline. Pick a few shades, apply them to the skin in this area and choose the one closest match.

4.  Mask under eye circles correctly.

There are two mistakes women commonly make when trying to conceal under eye circles. The first is choosing a shade of concealer that is too light. Aim for a shade that is one shade darker than your foundation. The second is applying the concealer in the shape of a circle underneath the eye. You can brighten the entire eye area much better by applying it in a V shape. An easy way to find that area is to hold a pencil along the outer tip of your eye, angling the shadow inwards, and then repeating on the inner corner of the eye.

5.  Apply eyeliner correctly.

The first thing you want to do is determine your eye shape. If your eyes are round or close set, applying liner to the entire upper and lower lid areas will make them appear small, which is the opposite of what most women want! If your eyes are either of these shapes, apply liner to the outer part of the upper lid only. Then choose a lighter shade to apply to your lower lid, avoiding the “water line” which is the middle part of the lid. For those who have other eye shapes, lining the entire upper lid is fine. And, if you really want to open your eyes, apply a nude liner to the water line.

6.  Don’t treat shine with powder.

This applies to those with oily skin. It is tempting to soak up shine with powder, but many women go overboard using too much powder, giving makeup a cakey look. Instead, use a gel moisturizer before makeup, or a clear mattifier before or after makeup.

7.  Use the right lip liner.

Rather than using a lip liner that is the same color of your lipstick or darker (think circa 1998), use one that is the color of your lip. It will create a fresher, more contemporary effect.

8.  Take your time applying mascara.

We’re all pressed for time and it’s easy to rush the process.  But if you take your time with mascara, it can create a fuller look. Rather than making simple sweeps, start at the outer corner and work your way in. Start at the base of the lash and use a zigzag motion while sweeping up. This technique will make your lashline look thicker.

9.  Tweeze brows regularly and pick the right color pencil.

To keep your eyebrows in tip top shape, you really should tweeze a little every day. This may sound extreme but we’re not talking about major maintenance—just a stray hair here or there. Most likely, your eyebrow color will be either one or two shades lighter or darker than your hair color—this is the color pencil you want to use. So for example, if you’re a brunette with highlights, match your eyebrow color to the highlights. If you’re a blond, match them to your darkest lowlight.

10.  Use blush and bronzer correctly.

The purpose of both blush and bronzer is to make the face appear fresh and awake in a subtle way. Yet there is the tendency for women to overdo the blush and apply bronzer to the entire face. Blush should be applied so that you can barely see a color difference compared to the rest of your face. Smile and apply blush to the apple of your cheek. Bronzer should be applied lightly to the areas of your face that naturally attract the sun—forehead, cheeks, nose and chin.

April 2, 2015

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