I’m often asked about my makeup. What products do I use?…How do I keep my makeup looking fresh all day?…What steps do I take when applying?…Etc. Etc. Luckily, this is one of my absolute favorite things to talk about! Seriously…don’t walk up to me and ask about makeup unless you are looking to have at least a 2 hour conversation! But, in all honesty, I feel such gratitude when asked about skincare and makeup. The possibility of being able to boost someone’s personal confidence is something that I aspire to do on a daily basis. We should never underestimate the power of great skin and beautiful makeup. Trust me when I say, there isn’t a woman on this planet that doesn’t smile a bit brighter when flaunting beautiful skin or makeup.
Ok, I’ll shut up now and get to it! Here’s my step-by-step guide to flawless makeup!…
STEP 1 – PREP YOUR SKIN
If you’ve been following my posts, you know I’m an avid skincare lover. Your makeup will only look as good as the canvas that’s underneath it. So please remember to take care of your skin! Prepping your skin is essential for flawless makeup application. And by “prep your skin” I’m talking about cleansing, toning, and applying serum & moisturizer. For more detailed info on these steps, please check out my post on Six Anti Aging Skin Secrets.
STEP 2 – APPLY PRIMER
This is such an important step that is often overlooked. Primer not only gives your makeup staying power throughout the day, but it also helps to minimize pores and fill in those fine lines. Think of primer as your tool for creating a beautiful work of art on a blank canvas. Apply the primer all over your face including your eyes (there are primers that are specific for the eyes which I will discuss in a bit). Just a small amount will do the trick as a little bit goes a long way. Allow the primer to set for just a couple minutes before moving on to Step 3.
Here’s a tip: invest in a primer that is OIL FREE. If you’ve prepped your skin properly, you don’t need the added moisture of an oily primer. Plus, a primer that is oily can cause your makeup to slide right off your face. Not cute! Like I mentioned above, there are primers that are specific for the eye area. Most contain color correctors for dark circles, etc. If you need a lot of coverage around the eye area, a separate eye primer will be perfect for you. Here are the primers that I use and LOVE…
STEP 3 – FOUNDATION
I actually apply foundation in 2 steps. I start with a CC cream as they are great for color correction and typically contain SPF which is essential for the health and beauty of our skin. Most CC creams are lightweight and have moderate coverage which is perfect if you prefer the “less is more” makeup look. CC creams are also great to use as your foundation on a daily basis when you’re pressed for time, running errands, hanging with the kids, etc. However…if you’re looking for more coverage to REALLY obtain that flawless makeup look, apply your foundation on top of your CC cream. I promise this will not look cakey! It just gives that little extra coverage and evenness to your foundation. Keep in mind, foundation is not meant for your eye area. Only use concealer for the eye area which we will cover in Step 4.
Helpful tips: make sure to correctly match your foundation to your skin. Never go a shade darker than your skin. This will create that yucky line around your jawline. Also, please invest in quality makeup applicators and brushes! This will change the way your makeup is applied. Sorry ladies, your fingers just aren’t cutting it! The key is to achieve that flawless look without looking like you’ve put on an hours worth of makeup! Here are the foundations that I personally use and stand behind…
STEP 4 – CONCEALER
This step is where a lot of people go wrong as they typically apply concealer before foundation. Applying concealer AFTER your foundation will ensure that you aren’t “undoing” all the work you just put into strategically applying your concealer. Use concealer around the eye area (yes, under your eyes and on your eyelids) as well as on blemishes. First use your finger or a concealer brush to apply. Then blend using a damp Beauty Blender. One of my favorite applicators is no doubt the Beauty Blender. It blends your makeup flawlessly without inadvertently rubbing it off. Here is the one and only concealer that I use and will likely use forever!…
For more info on how to use the Beauty Blender, see my post on Must Have Makeup Applicators.
STEP 5 – CONTOURING
Ok ok Kim Kardashian! Trust me when I say, this step will hands down make or break your flawless makeup look! Contouring is a pivotal component for ALL great makeup. It defines your face in a way that no other makeup can. I mean…who doesn’t want higher cheek bones, a more defined jawline, or a glow that lights up the room?!?! Well, guess what, your foundation alone can’t do that for you. If you haven’t learned about contouring, take some time one evening or over the weekend and practice. Contouring is something that will improve the more you work with it and the more you become familiar with the practice.
Here’s a tip: proper contouring is specific to your face shape. Definitely check out my post on Makeup Contouring. This is everything you need to know about this precious work of art that will forever change your makeup! Not to mention, how great you’ll look in pictures 😉 Here are my favorite contouring tools…
STEP 6 – SET
This is yet another step that is overlooked even though it’s so important. Setting your makeup will help to prolong the life of your makeup resulting in less touchups throughout the day. Setting your makeup also takes away that pesky T-Zone shine! This step also helps define your contouring.
For staters, use a puff sponge and dab it in a translucent powder. Translucent powder is meant to be just that…”translucent” which doesn’t contain color. Translucent powders are perfect for setting makeup. However, if you prefer to use a powder with color, you can absolutely do that. Up to you! Ok, where was I? Oh yes, after you’ve collected some powder on your puff sponge, apply it gently in a tapping motion specifically to the areas you “highlighted” in the contouring step. The powder may look a bit heavy or white so its important to take a powder brush and blend slightly all over your face. This will give that extra WOW factor to your highlighted contouring as well as set your makeup for a full day of wear! Here are the product I use daily to set my makeup…
STEP 7 – BRONZE AND BLUSH
This is my favorite step in makeup application as it brings out all the detail that you’ve worked so hard for up to this point. Apply bronzer to the areas you “contoured” in Step 5 (i.e. under the cheek bones, around the hairline and jawline). Bronzer not only gives you that gorgeous glow, but it also helps to define your bone structure! After bronzing, apply blush sparingly. Not on the age-old “apples” of your cheeks, but up along the cheekbone, using the center of your eye as a guide for your starting point. Sweeping your blush upward along the cheekbone gives the illusion of pulling your face upward, giving your face that slimming effect. These are my all time go-to products for blush and bronzer…
Step 8 – EYES
This is the last step as it is no doubt the most important! After all…the eyes are the windows to the soul! I’m just going to touch on the basics here as a detailed eye makeup tutorial will need to be a post of its own. For me personally, I keep eye makeup pretty simple. Unless I’m doing a smokey eye or a specific funky eye look, I only use two eyeshadow colors. Both which are neutral colors as I prefer the drama that comes from eyeliner and mascara. So for eyeshadow, I keep it short and sweet by just sweeping a neutral color over my eyelids and a bit under my brow.
As for eyeliner, this is something I like to play with a bit more! You’ll often see me wearing blue, purple, or teal eyeliner. Just depends on what mood I’m in! However, for just an average everyday look, I use a black or navy eyeliner. The key to applying eyeliner is to keep it as close to the lash line as possible. Unless I’m doing a “cat eye” look with my liner, I don’t prefer a harsh line. To soften the line, I use a smudge brush and gently smudge the liner around my lash line.
The last step and by far the most significant…MASCARA! Oh how I love mascara! If you wear nothing else on your face, do yourself a favor and ALWAYS wear mascara. If you’re really looking to make a difference in the appearance of your mascara, you MUST do two things…use an eyelash curler and apply a lash primer. If you aren’t using an eyelash curler, you’re defeating the purpose of mascara. Unless you are one of those lucky individuals that has naturally curly eyelashes, your lashes are probably straight with zero lift from the lash base. An eyelash curler helps to lift the lashes giving your gorgeous eyes more visibility as well as creating the illusion of longer lashes. So please don’t skip this step!
As for lash primer, similar to the makeup primer mentioned in Step 2, it sets the stage for mascara application. Primer not only lifts and separates your lashes, it also helps aid mascara by adding additional length and volume. Trust me when I say, you will notice a BIG difference in your lashes if you apply a primer prior to your mascara. And don’t be afraid to layer a few coats of mascara on those lashes! If you buy a good mascara, you shouldn’t have any issues with clumping. These are my ride or die eye makeup choices…
Wow! Now that was more info than I bargained for when I sat down to write this post tonight! Nonetheless, I’m so happy to be able to share these tips with you. I hope you enjoyed the post and feel you can take something from it! Would love your feedback so don’t be afraid to chat me up in the comments section below!
Be Bold, Be Brave, Be Free, and Be Forever Young!