One of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to makeup application is the belief some women have that more is better. Yes, if you are competing in the next episode of RuPaul”s Drag Race series on VH-1, then by all means pile it all on! For most women, makeup should not be about covering up or camouflaging, but instead about emphasizing and shedding light on beautiful features already present.
Maybe the eyes should stand out with a bit of eyeliner or the cheeks could stand a bit of blush. Remember that enough is enough, and too much is too much.
For starters, all makeup applications should begin with a cleansed face, then a makeup primer to minimize pores. Think of a makeup primer the same way you would a primer on an exposed wall prior to painting it. All complexions can benefit from the silky serums that polish and prep the face just before stroking on several layers of moisturizer, preferably with a built-in sunscreen.
Once the canvas is gleaming, apply a concealer in a shade nearest your own under the eyes, around the nose and anywhere else needed to balance the complexion. Oftentimes, I do not even use foundation because my philosophy is, quite simply, less is more. When needed, I use foundation in a shade closest to the jaw line color. Hold a mirror in front while looking up into the light at your neck, and this will reveal the foundation color best suited for you. Also, I only paint it onto the areas where needed using a professional foundation brush blending seamlessly with my fingers. Unless your skin is excessively oily, opt for a foundation with luminosity and sheerness for the most radiant natural face.
Color is where some go wrong. For a classic look, go with a basic routine: a cream blush in a neutral more nude shade, one complementary eye shadow hue (perhaps natural cappuccino or mocha), a softly smudged eyeliner and several coats of mascara. Finish with a glossy lipstick.
Desiring a bit more drama? For a more sensuous look, start with the steps above, but opt for a cheek with more color, maybe a bronzer added, or contoured eyes with a darker shade of shadow on the outer edges (blend, blend, blend), liquid liner stroked along the top lashes, dramatic black mascara and a coordinating lip liner.
Use blues, purples or golds if you want to get noticed, and glitter, shimmer and sparkle are not for the novice. I love false lashes when applied for effect, but amateurs beware the Tammy Faye look, rest her soul.
And, as I tell every lady who walks up to a counter where I am wielding my magic brushes, “Daylight is your friend.” Walk outside, or at least to the window, with a hand mirror and be positive it”s all blended to perfection. With practice, you are on your way to the best you can be. Just remember that more is not always better. After all, you”re beautiful before you even pick up a makeup brush.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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