Sunday, 22 August 2010

Beauty tips and tricks I've learnt this year (so far)

This morning I decided to road test Pixiwoo's tip, using the MAC 224 as an undereye concealer brush. And whaddya know, those girls do know a thing or two about makeup. Suddenly any concealer, however inept, blends seamlessly and works! I used my loathsome Laura Mercier Secret Concealer under my eyes, and for the first time ever, it actually delivered. It still is most certainly not one I'd recommend, but the 224 means I will not be binning it afterall. The 224 is an excellent blending brush but somewhat shapeless and huge for crease work (I have fallen for Louise Young's excellent crease brush instead, which Pixiwoo said was like "the old 224" before it was changed.)

So I have taken this as my cue to collect up other tips learnt along the way so far. And hopefully encourage anyone to share theirs below....? 

 Mascara your lashes downwards before upwards, this covers any eyeshadow fallout you might have incurred, also has the benefit of simaltaneously coating your bottom lashes.

 Only apply powder on areas you need to - i.e cheeks left glowing. Powdered cheeks are so ageing!

 Lipgloss is great as you get older, just be aware of the gruesome ones that do that horrific saliva strand thing ewwwww e.g MAC Underage et al. The ones that never do that are Guerlain (absolute fave). Then Estee Lauder (these seem good so far but are somewhat sticky), Make Up for Ever Full Couleur (not sticky at all), and let's admit certain MAC lipglasses, but be very careful... (their Liberty ones and Style Warrior ones were all safe.)

 Eyelids get greasier and more hooded the older you get. Furthermore, wrinkles start to loom menacingly as you apply your eye makeup. Time to make gel liner your staple. Applying with a brush means less tugging, and tends to stay on far longer than pencils or liquid liners. Cake liner is also good, but less weather proof/gym proof.

 Invest in good brushes. Yes they are boring at first (quickly becomes addictive, mind) and seem like a waste of "makeup money" but they make all the difference. They also can prevent needlessly scratching your face and eyes as you apply products - and they make products go further, thus saving money in the long-term. Eyeshadow applies more vibrantly and foundation is saved by expert application.

 Stationary/ Office supplies are perfect for makeup organising. As TiffanyD on Youtube explained, most makeup does look like stationary so it makes sense. Having makeup organised and depotted helps prevent buying too many dupes. And I refuse to become one of those collectors with dozens and dozens of taupe twins.

 Decide what suits you and never waver. I have finally conceded that red toned eyeshadows will never flatter me. Ditto blue toned lipsticks. MAC Lady Gaga lipstick, I tried so hard to pretend it looked great, and piled on apricot lipgloss... No. And, gorgeous rusty eyeshadows, pinky eyeshadows - I am drawn to the colours but once on my eyelids it's a disaster. If seven people in a day ask "What happened to your eye?" I've realised that means a bad makeup day. Know your limits. I am all for saying "makeup is Art - wear what you want" etc etc, but the reality is more dictatorial.

 Wear appropriate makeup. Similar to the point above, I have realised that sometimes more is less. As you get older, bright eyeshadow has to be carefully managed. Resist the easy mistake to blend upwards. Instead, blend along your natural crease, and bring colour out into a cat eye. Too much colour looks desperate and/or silly. When you are in the flush of youth it looks great, but there is something unpleasant about an old face with too much unnatural colour. Again, I hate admitting these things, but reality, again, must be observed.

What have you to share? Please comment below with any useful beauty ideas........


  1. -I also use a 224 look alike for the concealer and it's brilliant.
    -I was over the moon when I discovered the "foiling" technique..I use it nearly everyday.
    -I also understood that orange reds work for me as they have more yellow undertones.
    -I love using a wet sponge to tap tap tap when my foundation goes cakey on my face! It makes a huge difference.
    Uffff I could go on and on and on.
    But the great thing is that thanks to YT and blogs and google of course we all learn new things everyday...even the most pro people.
    Great post.

  2. Brilliant tips - thank you!

    I hear people rave about Underage all the time, but I've never found it sits well on my lips...ick. Clinique liglosses seem to work well for me.

    And I totally agree on the age- and skintone-appropriate makeup. I think it comes down to whether you want to look good in photos or in person - bold or colurful eyes can look great in photos, but in person can end up looking not quite right.

  3. All of those things you've mentioned, I've learned in the last couple of years too. Isn't the 224 brush a miracle when using concealer!?!

    It's so true about make-up brushes...something I've been trying to tell my sister for the last five. She finally gets it after I purchased her some of the ELF studio brushes. Just wait till she gets the Sigma brush kit for xmas!

    I'm sad to say that yes, even though my eyes love to look at all those shimmery shadows these don't translate at all well on my lids. Just a little but all the other e/s are matte. And all those dark, vampy l/s I admire just make me look 20 years older....Great post, thank you!x

  4. Wearing a makeup depends on the kind and quality of the one that we are using. We might be good in application but it would be best if we use the right brand with such a strong reputation for supporting women. I am glad that this is now available through online shopping.

  5. Blue-toned lipstick. Oh, a big no-no for me too. I gave it a chance but realised that looking trendy but corpse-like was not the way to go, thank you.

    Thanks for sharing these useful tips! :)