Makeup Tips that Make a Difference

The following are some of the best beauty tips I've come across in my many years of scouring beauty magazines and books. I've tried to consolidate the tips into one blog, giving credit if I remember where I saw it. Some of the tips are universal. Some were things I discovered in all of my years experimenting.

1. Apply undereye concealer only where there is darkness/puffiness, not around the entire undereye. - Wayne Alan Goss (Gossmakeupartist). The first time I tried it, I noticed what a difference it made. It seems obvious, but many of us have been concealing by rote for years. What you're trying to do is counteract and diminish the darkness, so if you cover the areas that aren't dark, it has a way of highlighting the entire area and thereby emphasizing the problem.

2. Get a color wheel from a paint store: This is the easiest way to learn and understand complementary shades and how colors cancel each other out (green vs. red, purple vs. orange). You can also learn how mixing various shades creates a new shade. This means spending less on new lipsticks and other makeup.

3. Dark colors make certain features recede and light colors bring them forward: When highlighting and contouring, keep this mantra in your head. The cheekbones are the easiest feature to apply this theory to: Take a makeup stick and sweep the dark shade under the length of the bone to give the illusion of a deeper recess; take the highlight shade and sweep this lighter color on the tops to give the illusion of them being higher.

4. To create the illusion of a fuller mouth, hit three spots: Highlight the cupid's bow, add a shimmery color to just the center of the bottom lip, and add a little dark contouring under the bottom lip (just above the chin). All of this plays on the philosophy of #3: You're bringing forward areas your want to stand out, and creating shading to pull other areas back. The overall effect is the look of fuller lips.

5. Sweep blush starting at the apples of the cheeks, but working your way up the cheekbone, rather than moving the brush in a circle. The sweeping motion draws the eye up and gives an instant lifted appearance to the face. Especially as you get older, this trick makes a considerable difference.

6. When bronzing your face with makeup, think about keeping the center of the face a little lighter than the high points of the outer edges (temples, cheekbones, jawline). Tans are not a one-dimensional wash of color; real tans are multi-dimensional. Keeping the center of the face slightly lighter gives a spotlight effect on this area, which draws the eye. - Scott Barnes, celebrity makeup artist

7. Match your foundation to your neck, not your face. On many of us, the colors are actually slightly different. So even if you're matching it to your face, there will still be a mismatch with your neck. I'm still not a fan of applying foundation to my neck, so consider this rule when picking a foundation.

8. Use a slightly off-white pencil to line the inner rims of the lower lash line. Using a perfectly white shade is jarring, as most people's eyes aren't that color. Going that white emphasizes the eyeliner, rather than creating the illusion of a larger eye.

9. Go opposite of your eye color to make it stand out: Blue eyes stand out the most in neutrals/browns; brown eyes look great in deep blues and purples. The contrast, and not a match, is what emphasizes the eye color.

10. To give yourself that lit-from-within glow, apply a well-pigmented cream blush before your foundation. The cream blush will come through the foundation with a more natural effect than blush sitting directly on top.


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