A five-minute-in-the-morning beauty routine simply does not allow enough time to do a complete makeup. On the other hand, you don’t want to spend an hour on your face either. Unless you’re preparing a very elaborate, fantasy makeup, anything more than twenty minutes is a waste of time. With more time, you may be tempted to do more, and an overdone face is just as inappropriate as an underdone one.
I do not count your cleansing/toning/moisturizing time in these twenty minutes. You must bring to the task a properly prepared “canvas”-and begin from there. Your makeup will go on much more smoothly, the colors will remain true for a longer time, and the skin will respond with more suppleness if your face has been properly treated before applying cosmetics.
The Proper Position
Before you begin your makeup, learn how to get the most from your mirror. It is always best to sit at a table facing a mirror, rather than stand in front of one. A table gives you something to lean your elbows on, which automatically steadies your hand. If you must stand, use your opposite hand to cup the elbow of the arm you are using. This will stabilize the arm and keep your hand from getting the jitters. Begin with the side of the face that is opposite to your natural hand. For instance, a right-handed person should start with the left side of the face. This will be the more difficult side to do, and it will be easier to match the right side to the left side than vice versa.
The best way to apply eye makeup is to position the mirror under the chin. Look down at it, keeping your head straight (don’t blend your neck downward). You should be able to see the entire surface of your eyelid without pulling the skin or wrinkling the lid. It’s a big mistake to cover only the portion of the lid you can see with your eyes open.
A perfectly made-up face is the results of selecting the right colors and putting them in the right places! But no matter which shades and shading techniques you choose, there is a basic procedure to follow when you want the effect to last. And remember, makeup is much more effective when it is built up slowly, with lots of light little layers. Never settle for one product that claims to do everything (a base and a powder combined, for instance). If you get heavy-handed with any single product in order to save time, it will be obvious. Makeup becomes much more beautiful and transparent when it is applied in subtle layers.
- Start – Begin with absolutely clean skin. Makeup won’t stay on skin that hasn’t been properly cleansed.
- Moisturize and Blot – Apply moisturizer to your entire face. Poke a hole for your nose through the center of a facial tissue, put the tissue over your entire face, and press lightly. You must absorb any remnants of excess moisturizer, or your makeup will move right off your face!
- Apply Base and Blot – This is not a step to rush. A badly applied base makes the skin look shiny and the complexion look artificial. Anything indiscreet will ruin the rest of your makeup. After your base is applied, don’t forget to blot. Use the same tissue technique you used for blotting your moisturizer.
- Hold It – If you want your makeup to last all day, wait three minutes before you put another thing on your face. Use this time to file your nails, put your rollers in, take your rollers out – anything as long as you aren’t tempted to touch your face.
- Hide It – Use a thin brush to place a light-colored concealer just under the eye area. Position it only where you see a blue shadow. Finish by adding a dot of concealer on the outside corner of the eye.
- Highlight It – Continue using your concealer to highlight the planes of your face. Put a dot in the center of your forehead; a stroke down the center of your nose; two commas on the sides of your nostrils; two apostrophes at the corners of your mouth; a final dot at the center of the chin. Think of it as face punctuation. And blend everything!
- Powder and Press – Whether you like a matte finish or not, powder is what makes your makeup stay put. It is a myth that powder accentuates wrinkles. It can, but only if improperly applied. You never want powder to sit on top of your makeup. When your body heats it warms the base, it will start to move-and so will the powder on top of it-right into every crevice! You must make your powder one with the base. Make sure you use only loose powder at this point. Compacts are for retouching. Don’t dust the first application for powder on with a brush. Think, instead, of fusing the powder into the base. Take a big square of dry cotton, fold the edges in, and use a rolling motion to press/release, press/release the powder over your face, eyelids, and lips. If you press powder into your face this way, it will always be transparent no matter how much you use. If you prefer a “dewy”, unpowdered effect, you can bring back the glow by wetting a cotton ball with a mild astringent. Press the cotton ball against your face (everywhere except the nose area). This will also “fix” the makeup immediately. I recommend this trick especially for evening makeup. If you do like a matte look but wish to fix your makeup with astringent, simply repowder lightly, after blotting, with a powder brush. In the summer, pay particular attention to powdering the T-Zone area. A shiny forehead and nose do not make any woman more attractive!
- Build Mascara – Start applying your mascara with a single stroke of the wand on each eye. You’ll eventually want four thin layers on your lashes. If you start now, allowing time for each layer to dry and to comb lashes in between, you’ll avoid the thick, clumpy, over mascara’d look that results from trying to add too many coats at the last minute. An early stroke of mascara begins to give a certain shape to the eye, a balance to the face. You need this definition before you begin to apply eye makeup.
- Add Eye Shadow – After your eyes are framed with their first layer of mascara, you’ll have a better sense of the form of the eye to follow in applying shadow. Use the shadow-shaping technique that best suits the shape of your eyes. Line the lower lashes first, then stroke on your lid color. Apply another coat of mascara, then add your highlighting shade on the brow bone. Finish with another coat of mascara.
- Begin to Blush – It would be helpful if you could make your face blush naturally to see where the color comes to your cheeks; then you could apply your favorite shade to the spot. But even if you can’t, remember that blush should look as natural as a blush. Use a long-handled brush to keep your hand light. A little blusher on the outside corners of your brow bone will tone down any obvious shadow colors and blend the eye makeup in.
- Emphasize the eyebrows – Use a combination of two pencil colors. And take your time- this can’t be rushed!
- Color Lips – To make the color last longer, always apply two layers. Blot the first with a tissue, then reapply.
- Pat on Powder – A final touch of powder from a compact will smooth the finished effect. Lightly press the formulated powder into the sides and bridge of the nose, the forehead, the temples, and the chin.
- Check the Mirror – No makeup is ever complete without one last look. Before you go out, always verify – by daylight, if possible – that your final makeup is not too vivid, that everything is well blended.
Remember practice makes beautiful makeup!!!
See you next week with another great blog!