When it comes to makeup, ladies, we sure are grateful for its power to enhance beauty and hide little imperfections, but with so many ways to apply it and colors to choose from it can really be confusing! The many talented makeup artists out there make beauty look so easy, but when trying to duplicate the effort we mess it up! Here are the secrets to the best Beauty Routines:
First of all, don't fall for the ordinary, be original and stand out in your beauty. Practice, Play, Experiment. Oh yes, let your little daughter dab in the makeup too, she will benefit from the early practice/play (and then wash her face)! If you teach a teenage daughter to apply natural looking makeup, she won't get her tips from music videos and look like a clown behind your back.
Set a beauty routine to take care of your skin: Always remove makeup before going to bed. Use a dedicated cleanser to remove the makeup, soaps can strip the skin of its natural oils. Close the pores using a Toner, which restores the skin PH and keeps dirt out. Apply then any kind of leave-on treatments or serums. Moisturize to finish. Make it a rule to moisturize containing SPF (15 or higher) at least twice a day, all year round. Put some cream on after a morning shower, to lock-in moisture and at a night cream in the evening after cleaning the makeup. Past the age of 30, women should use an anti-aging creams or lotions (according to the type of skin). This cleansing routine takes less than 5 minutes and should be followed religiously twice a day.
For a healthy glow: Cleanse with a facial scrub twice a week, it will exfoliate the skin, ridding it of dead cells and leaving the new layer of skin to radiate youth. Don't ever use a body scrub on the face, neck, or collar bone, the skin in this areas is thinner and can be scratched or bruised by the bigger exfoliating bits. When exfoliating, the rule of thumb is to do it in a light circular motion and don't go over the same spot more than 6 times. Don't put too much pressure, it's not a sanding job, the circular motion will stimulate circulation and the cleanser will lift the already dead skin cells. Don't go over eye or lip area (too delicate); to exfoliate the lips use and old soft toothbrush and Vaseline, moisturize after with a lip balm. Always tone and moisturize your face afterwards.
Leave the heavier makeup and dark colors for the evening, keep it fresh and more natural looking during the day. Don't be mistaken Natural Makeup can actually take more work and makeup than its darker evening counterpart. The natural part is the appearance of it.
Don't be scared of makeup, it's not permanent, when it turns into a mess, just rub it off and start the process again. Invest in a good (natural hairs) cosmetic brush set (5 or more), the application is more accurate than with those tiny brushes or the foam eye applicators found in the compacts . Make sure to have (at least) a powder brush , blush brush , lid brush, crease brush, liner/angle brush, and lip brush. The powder brush is the big one and is used for the powders (regular, bronzer or mineral) for sheer coverage or to set the foundation. The Blush brush is a bit smaller and is used to apply cheek color, use a caressing motion, not a circular motion (it will ruin the brush). The lid brush is a larger flat brush used to apply the medium eye-shadow to the entire lid (under the brow bone). The crease brush is used in the crease of the eye, right under the brow bone, use it in a windshield washer motion and a darker color to create dept and a smokey eye. The liner/angle brush is small and stiff with a pointy side, to help create a smooth line along the lashes or to apply color to the eyebrows. Finally the lip brush should be used to apply lipstick and glosses, for a professional look. When applying powder, dab it on the whole brush and then tap the excess off. Make sure the brushes stay clean by washing them with a brush cleaner every 2 weeks or use a mild soap and plenty of water to rinse then lay flat to dry. Don't ever share brushes with anyone, they should be as personal as your toothbrush.
Buy a few foundation sponges/wedges, wash them often and toss them out when they fall apart. To choose the right color foundation, go to a store that has samples, apply a bit on the jaw bone, which will allow to match the perfect shade to the face and neck, never try it on the wrist (when is the last time the skin on your wrist matched the face?), view it in clear day light, lamps can be deceiving. Don't pick a cool shade (pink hues) to apply on a warmer skin undertones and vice-versa (yellow hues on cool skin), it won't look natural. Pick a foundation that won't clog the pores (non-comedogenic) and with SPF to protect from the nasty damaging UV sun rays. Moisturize the skin before applying foundation for smoother blending, or add the liquid foundation to the moisturizer for sheer coverage. Concealers and highlighters should be a mature woman's best friends. It's easier, cheeper and painless to play with Chiaro/Scuro to highlight a facial feature or hide imperfections than to go through "rejuvinating" procedures. Just like artists paint a picture, every woman can use darker colors to deepen the lines or lighter colors to make them stand out. Use a contour powder or cream to chisel the cheek bones or to reshape the nose, and a light reflecting lotion on the cheeks to give that youthful glow. Keep it subtle. Use a concealer to mask a dark circle or age spot (don't go too light or it will give a raccoon effect), match the shade to the rest of the skin or slightly lighter to look natural. To apply foundation, start at the forehead and move down. Blend, blend, blend! Especially into the jawline and hairline, and don't forget the eyelids and lips. Feel free to mix a few foundations (prior to application) to achieve the perfect color. Apply powder to set it for a whole day stay-put makeup. Then have fun playing with color on the rest of the face. Match the blush to the color you would get when pinching your cheeks, and don't match eye-shadows to the outfit, always go for colors (cool or warm) that match the undertones of your skin. Anyone can wear red lips! There are red shades in both warm (yellowish hues) and cool (bluish hues) colors, so let it be the best accessory for that little black dress. Smokey eyes are absolutely gorgeous on anyone and can work for both day and evening look. Don't assume that black and grey are the only colors allowed for a smokey eye. Any color in the rainbow will do! When skipping on eye color wear mascara, it's a polished look. Buy one with Lanolin, it's an emolient which improves the consistency and application of the mascara and makes it last longer on the eyelashes.
Groom the facial hair, before focusing on makeup. Cut the long eyebrows by brushing them down and holding them with an eyebrow brush (a clean mascara wand will do too), then clip the long strands using small scissors. Don't clip too much, set the rest with a clear eyebrow gel or a bit of Vaseline and a clean mascara wand. Wax or bleach the unwanted facial hair; don't ever cut it or shave it (it's for men), it will grow back coarser and darker.
Embrace growing old gracefully, even those deep lines can look beautiful and tell your story. Nothing wrong with taking care of the skin but embrace growing and changing gracefully, surgery and painful rejuvinating procedures are not always the best answer.
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