Get messy and other advice when first learning about make-up

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Get messy and other advice when first learning about make-up
Caroline’s make-up can be described as “variations on the colours purple and black”
I am a near-25-year-old that never used make-up routinely. I am starting to get curious about it at a late point, and am inspired when I see others wearing make-up to enhance their look.

The problem is, I don’t know where to even start looking at brands or what goes well with various skin types and such. I don’t even really know the difference between foundation and concealer. I’ve used eyeshadow, mascara, and lipgloss but that is really limited to stuff my mom gave me back when I was in junior high and high school! I have no idea how to buy and look for make-up for myself as an adult!

Does anybody have a good cosmetic guide or beginners advice? -Sara

I didn’t start wearing make-up seriously/frequently until a couple years ago, so I feel you. Like any other hobby, it can seem daunting to get into. Things clicked with me when I looked at make-up like art: it takes practice, the right tools and materials, and an understanding of the medium.

Here’s my advice…

Soul search

Make a Pinterest board (or seven) of looks you like and might want to try. Figure out what your priorities are when it comes to make-up. Do you want to make sure that nothing you use was tested on animals? Do you need it to be for sensitive skin? …Are you unsure? Do you prefer to support smaller brands, your local drug store’s brands, or big name brands? When you’re just starting out, I recommend trying a little of each (more on how to do this affordably later) to see what works best for you. Sometimes spending the extra money on a product is worth it, and sometimes it’s not. Start doing some research with…

YouTube tutorials

I can’t stress the awesomeness of YouTube make-up tutorials enough. These are free and fantastic ways to learn about make-up — how it works, what techniques are out there, what tools you might need and how to use them, and what would work best for your face shape/eye shape/lip shape.

There are tons of amateur and professional make-up tutorials online. I’m sure our Homies will share their faves in the comments, but I’ll recommend:

Spend some time browsing the videos and find a style that gels with your personal style. These artists have their favourite products, but the techniques are applicable to any brands.

Beauty counter “make-overs”

Big drug stores and make-up counters at department stores offer make-overs to help you figure out what shade of foundation is best for you, what product can help with a skin problem, how best to line your lips, etc. They’ll ask you questions about your skin to get a sense of what type you have (e.g. is it usually oily, dry, or both?). Bring some examples to show them what kind of look you’re into. Go to the counter whose beautician’s look is most similar to the one you’re into (there’s a big difference between Clinique and MAC, for instance).

The beautician will explain to you upfront if you need to pay for the make-over or if you can pay for it by buying products used. This can save you a lot of money in the long-run if your drug store doesn’t accept returns on used make-up (getting the wrong shade by mistake suuuuucks). These people are professional make-up artists or beauticians and it’s their job to help you find the product that works best for you. Avail yourself!

Incidentally, make sure you know if you can return make-up when you buy it. Often stores will accept make-up you’ve used and all you have to say is you didn’t end up liking the shade.

Beauty subscriptions

There are services like Ipsy that will send you sample or even full-size versions of make-up products every month for a flat fee so that you can try new things. They’re perfect for those just starting out with make-up or anyone looking to see what’s new on the market.

I still have trouble with eyeshadow. And really goofy expressions apparently.
I still have trouble with eyeshadow. And really goofy expressions apparently.

Practice practice practice

Applying make-up is a skill that anyone can master with practice. People ask me how I get my eyeliner so even; well, it wasn’t always this way (and I still have off days). I tried a ton of different products and gave up many times before I found the perfect eyeliner for me and started diligently practicing at least a couple times a week. Now it takes me no time at all. Eyeshadow, on the other hand…

Like anything you want to get better at, practicing, trying new things, and taking risks is the best way to learn. Invest in some good make-up remover, and practice on yourself before you get in the shower so you can wash it all off!

The basics

Skin:

Start with a moisturizer to keep your skin healthy. Concealer works to conceal pimples and other blemishes, and foundation goes on everywhere to even out the skintone. You don’t need both, or either; you could go for a tinted moisturizer to provide a bit of coverage, or just regular moisturizer. But if you want coverage, concealer and/or foundation is going to do the job. You put foundation on first, then concealer on blemishes, dark circles, or any other area you want extra coverage. Foundation can be liquid or powder; ask a beautician which they recommend for your skin type.

After you even out your skintone, you’re going to want to add some blush and/or bronzer to add some depth and contour back onto your face (that’s why it’s called a foundation). YouTube videos on using blush and bronzer are your best bet for learning how to contour the easiest way. Experiment and try different things to see what you like the best.

I really love using eyeshadow primer above and below my eyes to hide dark circles. It really helps eyeliner and eyeshadow stick, but even if you don’t want to put on any other make-up, the primer makes a world of difference.

Eyes:

Eyeliner is my favourite thing. Eyeliner and mascara without any eyeshadow might be all you want/need for day-to-day and even special occasions. You can get liquid, gel, or pencil eyeliner — or you could use your eyeshadow with an eyeliner brush. Trying different products is the only way you can figure out which one you like best, but like I said: you can often return products that don’t work for you.

There’s a definite art to blending eyeshadow, and YouTube videos will help you figure out the art behind combining colours, what tools do what, and what works best on different eye shapes.

Lips:

As with everything else, learning to put on lipstick takes practice. You might want to start by using a lip brush to pick up the colour from the stick, or by using lipliners, and then move on to applying directly from the stick itself. Practice going over your natural lip line if you like. Or forgo lipstick altogether and keep it simple with lipgloss or balm or nothing at all.

Take chances, make mistakes, get messy

Even if something isn’t technically for your eye or face or lip shape — give it a try if you like it. Buy shades you like and don’t listen to anyone who tells you it’s too dramatic or any such nonsense. Make-up is 20% what the product is and 80% how confidently you wear it. If you’re into it, you’ll look great.

How about it, Homies? What tips do you have for someone just entering the make-up world?

Comments on Get messy and other advice when first learning about make-up

  1. My absolute favourite YouTube makeup tutorials are by Lauren Luke (simple, colourful, down to earth), Tanya Burr (lots of classic looks), and Pixiwoo (two sisters, who are professionals). I’ve liked others in the past too, but there are always great new people.

    In general, I’d say the downside of tutorials is they are made by people who are REALLY into makeup and therefore do ALL the possible steps (foundation, concealer, bronzer, blush, highlighter, powder, etc etc etc). That’s pretty daunting if you’re new to it.

    So I’d not worry straightaway about doing everything – instead, think about what individual products seem the most fun to you and start there. Want to define your eyes a little? Try mascara. Want a bit more colour in your checks? Try some blush. Or try concealer, lipstick, lipgloss… you can wear any of these things just on their own.

    I’d also recommend searching YouTube for phrases like “back to school makeup” and “suitable for school makeup”, “everyday makep”. The tutorials aimed at highschool students often use fewer products, fewer tools, and are an easy place to start.

    • I was a big fan of Pixiwoo before I even wore much makeup (I love their british accents). Also FYI Tanya Burr is the girlfriend of one of their brothers and has learned with them. I would definitely agree that youtube tutorials are your friend.

      Ecoholic Beauty is another one that I have recently found that is good. She is Canadian and uses all organic, natural, and vegan products. Since these are things that I value I look to her for product suggestions. She is also a grad student, not a professional make-up artist so her looks are much more day-to-day. She only does make-up tutorials occasionally because she also does other natural living tutorials.

  2. Practice and experiment with new things at night, before you wash your face for bed. This way you are not stuck with wonky eyeliner or too much bronzer all day long.

      • The other night I was trying out a new eyeshadow look. So I could compare, I did one eye the new way and the second I did my old standard style.
        I was a little tipsy and decided to tease my hubby, so went and plopped down on the couch with each of my eyes done in very different drastic styles. Wish I could have taken a photo of the confused face he gave me.

  3. I recommend Pinterest as a place to find tutorials too. It’s handy because a lot of times, the whole step-by-step is shown right on the pinned image, so you can get an idea of what’s involved before you even click on it (so if it looks too advanced you can just skip it). I only started learning this stuff last year (I’m 32!) and it really helped a lot with learning how to do very specific things to start with (concealing under eyes, or making lipstick last) as opposed to full face tutorials, which can be somewhat overwhelming. Find a couple of good boards to follow and the tips will come to you rather than you having to know what to look for.

    And I really like the E.L.F. brand because it’s super cheap (some stuff only $1) and vegan, and you can buy it at Target and K-Mart and even some stuff at places like Ross or TJ Maxx (like eyeshadow palettes for just a few dollars). That makes it really great for trying stuff out and experimenting!

    • Also, the E.L.F. brushes are wonderful quality for just a few bucks each. Make sure to clean them weekly, though, ESPECIALLY if you have sensitive or blemish-prone skin. Learn from my bad mistakes!

      • how do you recommend cleaning the brushes? I’ve read a lot about people getting infections and what not from uncleaned brushes, does simply running through the brushes with soap and water work? Or would that ruin the brush and they need some other type of care?

        • You can buy brush cleansing fluid, but I just use hand soap and warm water. Some use shampoo. Wash them till the water runs clear, and make sure you rinse out the soap. Then lay the brushes down to dry – don’t have them with the handle down when wet, or water will gather in the bottom of the bristles and damage them.

        • Personally, I just buy a little $1 travel bottle of baby shampoo (no tears, FTW). In addition to this, you’ll need a clean rag/cloth that doesn’t shed much lint (darker colors are better, you’ll see why). What I’ve always done is this:

          – Tap your dry brush out over a sink to remove as much excess makeup as possible (for your powder brushes and whatnot). For more liquid-type brushes, try to gently wipe any excess off onto a clean rag. Don’t use anymore pressure than you use to apply your makeup.
          – In lukewarm water, wet the bristles of your first brush. Gently squeeze out any excess water. (Sidenote: try not to let the water run all the way down into your brush head – it can rust things, glue can come undone, and you can get gross moisture pockets).
          – Get a small (seriously, no more than dime-sized for a larger brush) amount of shampoo in the palm of your hand. Very gently swirl the brush around in your palm. You shouldn’t use any more pressure than you do to apply your makeup. Gentle is the key: you don’t want to warp your bristles.
          – Rinse under the water, gently squeeze extra out. If there’s still makeup that you can see in the bubbles/water, repeat the wash & rinse cycle.
          – Once clean, gently squeeze excess water. I like to fling my brushes a few times like I’m Jackson Pollack to get the extra water out, but that’s just me.
          – If distorted, gently push bristles back into their place.
          – To dry your brushes, don’t stand them upright! All that water will travel into the brush handle and cause groady things (see above). Lay them flat on a surface to dry overnight (at least). I usually commandeer our dish rack to get air circulation above and below, but you could also use a clean towel to lay them on. Just make sure to rotate the brushes so the bottom parts can breathe.

          …that was an overly specific answer, but I had to teach freshmen theatre majors how to clean the department brushes constantly.

  4. A nude lip liner is very forgiving to apply, and it goes with any lip color!

    I also found that for me having a set of makeup brushes made applying makeup FUN, since it’s like painting on your face. (Just remember to periodically wash them.)

    Also, has anyone tried home made powders? I’ve heard you can you a base of cornstarch, and then add cinnamon or cocoa powder to darken it. I haven’t tried it yet, but that would be a lot cheaper than the “mineral veil” type products. And it would be nice to actually know what’s IN your makeup.

    • I tried a homemade powder, cornstarch or arrowroot, I think, plus cinnamon/cocoa powder. My friend got the shade just right, and it smelled yummy. But…. I have baby fine hairs on my face that got darkened, leaving me with the appearance of a full on beard. So yeah, as much as I would love to have continued using it, nope. That was just my experience though, maybe if you don’t have any facial hair it would work splendidly?

    • I’ve used plain cornstarch as a veil-like product (I’m really pale), it’s pretty good as long as you don’t have any blemishes that you want to hide. I also have baby fine hair all over my face, but since it was a very light dusting of plain cornstarch, they didn’t show up.

  5. If nothing else, grab some good moisturizer and primers (especially eyeshadow primer) if you want to play with color! You can experiement to your heart’s content with inexpensive colors and nice results if you don’t skimp on the underpinnings. As for eyeballs, Sephora and Ulta (beauty superstores) have great housebrands (and actually some pretty great foundation too). Happy face-arting!

  6. As Celeste said, I really recommend E.L.F. makeup. Most of it is between $1 and $6 with the exception of a few of the mineral line products. There is the Essential line, Studio line and Mineral line. The majority of my E.L.F. products are from the Studio line. The brushes are amazing and incredibly cheap for their quality (starting at $3) and makes application much easier to get that perfect look. I always order online when they have a 40% or 50% off sale. I wouldn’t recommend buying foundation or concealer online unless you have tested out the product in a store to be sure it will match as I find the colour in their photos to be off.

  7. I have 2 older sisters. My mother grew up on a farm in rural Iowa and never really had an interest in wearing makeup.
    When my sisters turned 16 and weren’t really starting to date or do other things teenage girls were interested in, my father decided that he had to find a way to help out. He decided that he would host a Mary Kay makeup party for my sister’s birthday and they could invite their friends to try out makeup for an afternoon. The Mary Kay salesperson gave all the girls a personalized makeover and tutorial for how to apply all the products. And as a gift, both of my sisters got full makeup kits to get them through high school.
    Now my sisters both regularly wear makeup and occasionally try new looks and products as trends change.

  8. YOUTUBE!

    God where was this when I was in high school?!? Mom didn’t wear makeup so I can remember relying primarily on friends and sometimes magazines. I wore makeup everyday in high school but my usage petered out in college and didn’t spark back up again until just about 5 years ago. Not only was my makeup routine dated but it didn’t really compliment my face. YouTube rescued me — not only are you introduced to a variety of products but also a variety of methods. I can’t recommend it enough.

    The best advice I can offer is be patient and practice. It’s like learning calligraphy. There really is an art to it and if you’re not artistic ( like me ), you have to practice more to get the basics techniques down.

    Some favorite YouTube channels :

    Pixiwoo : lots of different techniques! This is two sisters, Sam and Nic, who are makeup artists in Britain. They started the Real Techniques line. I would start here first.

    EnKoreMakeup: also good intro

    Nicole Guerriero: good basic info and she’s fun to watch

    Julia Graf : she puts the “artist” in makeup artist. Good for inspiration if you feel stuck in a rut.

    gossmakeupartist: Another professional makeup artist. This guy is an encyclopedia of makeup BUT he never seems to do actual demonstrations ( or very rarely ). This severely limited his use to me, as I need visual examples of how to do things.

  9. I have never worn a lot of make-up but I have always worn some. In some ways I felt a little vain for even wanting to learn about make-up since I have many friends who don’t wear any.

    When I was planning my wedding I decided to do my own make-up and to buy all the right products and do it well. It was actually kind of fun learning. Okay, it was the most fun part of wedding planning. It did feel like painting and as Caroline said, it is an art. I would also second her suggestion about brushes. Until I started learning for my wedding I always just used the little applicators that came with the drug store brands. I was amazed when I bought brushes how much more satisfying it was to apply eyeshadow and how much better the effect.

  10. Step back for a minute & think about why you want to wear makeup — do you want to look a certain way (older, younger, more professional, more artsy, more punk, etc.), do you want to emphasize a part of your face (eyes, lips, cheekbones), do you want to cover up blemishes or even out skin tone, do you want to look like a particular celeb or anime character or drag queen, etc., etc. Maybe make a Pinterest board about what inspires your makeup need.

    Let that guide you towards whether you want eye or lip tutorials or whether you need foundation at all. You may not want a full face of makeup, maybe just learning to do a nifty little cat-eye liner will give that edge you’ve been craving. Or a bit of tinted moisturizer will even out the rosacea that’s bothered you for years. Or maybe you *do* want a full-on face of makeup! That’s cool too.

    Point is, you can enhance your look in a lot of different ways with makeup, & it’s very personal. So take some time to explore what you really want first, then go shopping for products 🙂

  11. Make sure you have plenty of Q-tips on hand! Go for the 1000 pack, don’t be shy. There’s just as much of an art to removing a little bit of mess as there is to putting the makeup on in the first place. You don’t always need to start over if something goes awry. Sometimes I end up with a cat eye that’s not quite right (either in looks or for appropriateness of where I’m going), so I just twirl a damp Q-tip on the wing to either thin it out or to leave just a bit of liner on my lids. They’re also perfect for dabbing off a single blob of mascara if you have unsteady hands like I do.

    The most important thing I’ve learned about making up my face over the years, though, is that a well-groomed eyebrow can make the whole look and a bad brow can break it.

  12. Jenn Im of clothesencounters on Youtube is my favourite “beauty/fashion” blogger just generally, and I find her makeup fairly simply to recreate with or without following along with her videos! She does tutorials, reviews, and a “favourites” video each month which is pretty interesting even if you stick to basics like I do. I’m still waiting on someone to teach me how to make lipstick look fabulous without lip liners (ugh, too much time and effort there)!

  13. For all-natural/cruelty-free YouTubers, I like Cloudy Apples, Ecoholic Beauty, Alanna Bobanna, and ItsJustAesthetics. I’m not a huge makeup person, but I do like me some occasional lipstick, and I also just love watching these videos.

  14. Youtube is seriously the best help with makeup. I don’t watch it regularly for techniques (my sister taught me basics, and it’s a lot of trial and error). But Youtube is also very very helpful for reviews. I don’t really have favorite bloggers, but I would start thinking “I want to switch to a liquid foundation” or “I want a long wearing lipstick” and search “best liquid foundation.” Watching a few videos is the best because you get to really see the texture and the coverage. It’s also really good to see swatches on different skin tones

  15. Highlighter! It’s a very underrated product. I’m currently using this one: http://www.stilacosmetics.com/product/all+over+shimmer+liquid+luminizer+.do?gclid=CLrajdyu178CFdKFfgodjo4Ayg#

    A little bit goes a long way. I dab a tad on my eyelids, the inside and outside corners of my eyes, brow bone, and sometimes cheekbones. Sometimes I just do a bit of concealer, a bit of powder, and the highlighter. Other times I add some eye shadow and eye liner. Highlighter just draws attention to eyes and cheeks, or other places you want to show off. Most brands are very natural looking.

    My other favorite tip is to set aside time to wander around a Sephora or other large makeup store. Try all the samples and see what you like best.

  16. This stuff is so important but is less talked about:
    1. Makeup goes bad! Especially liquid/cream products, when it smells off or the texture gets weird, throw it out. I used to get horrible eye irritation until I learned to throw out my mascara every 3 months.
    2. Clean your tools! Don’t spread around bacteria and you’ll get better application when you aren’t unintentionally mixing colors.
    3. Only put makeup on clean skin and take it off every night, makes a huge difference with keeping your skin clear.

    • Great points – what a lot of people don’t realise is that make-up has a symbol on the back telling you when it will go bad. They look like a little tub with a lid:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Period-after-opening_symbol

      It will say something like 3M or 6M, telling you how many months you can keep it. If you’re really paranoid, write the date you got the product on it with Sharpie!

      • A side benefit to marking things with a sharpie: Once you figure out a few of your favorite products, you’ll get to know approximately how long each thing lasts you personally. This helps me because I don’t have a lot of extra $$$ laying around, but I like to splurge here and there sometimes. So if I know I’ll end up using a whole product before it expires, I feel better splurging on it when I have the dough. I can also budget for certain products if I know that my favorite foundation lasts me 3 months (or maybe, it might be a better value to buy the bigger sized tube/tub/bottle). I super recommend keeping a sharpie with your makeup products.

      • Wow – I always assumed this was some kind of volume declaration, ha ha. Thanks for the tip!

  17. I really love the archives of Stuff I Put On Myself (www.stuffiputonmyself.com) which is utterly no-nonsense in it’s approach.
    Also, as well as regular youtube makeup tutorials, cosplay and stage makeup tutorials are good fun and useful to watch. The principles are roughly the same but they’re all dramatically exaggerated so may be a bit easier to follow. I know when I started doing proper makeup all those tutorials with skin colour over skin colour over slightly darker skin colour just lost me.

  18. I wish you were in Texas so I could swoop you up, and have a fun makeup day with you!
    Here’s my two cents:
    1- obviously Caroline is beautifully and brilliant, I agree with everything she said
    2- definitely use an eye base, I love Two Faced, it’s not the cheapest but a little goes a long way and its fabulous
    3- I second a good makeup remover. I love the one from Gabriel cosmetics, but its hard to find. Kiehl’s makes a great one too, and it lasts forever. Unscented lotion, or olive oil, or coconut oil work too.
    4- check out the EWG Skin Deep registry to find what cosmetics are safe, and which have harmful toxic ingredients.
    5- elf has good products at Target that are cheap, and a good starting place.
    6- invest in at least decent brushes, they make a difference. Some of my brushes are even from the craft store.
    I hope this helps. Good luck, you’re beautiful!

  19. A big AHA! for me was getting a couple of good eyeshadow brushes. Most of my eyeshadow is applied with a shadow brush and a crease brush. YouTube tutorials can teach you how to use them, but I think they help make anyone look semi-pro!

    I’d also recommend you try experimenting with your makeup sometime outdoors, in natural light. My bedroom is like a cave and everything I apply in my mirror looks very different when I step into the sun. What I think is dark and moody usually turns out to be rather tame (BOO!)

    • This similar thing happens to me! When I see photographs of myself, it looks like I’m barely wearing any makeup, even though it felt like I was putting a ton of it on (eyeliner, mascara, multiple shadows). I have one of those lighted makeup mirrors someone gave me for a gift, but no outlet to plug it into on that side of the bedroom.

    • Totally agree with the lighting issues – don’t let the crazy elevator lighting at your office throw you off either. At least in our completely mirrored elevators everyone looks like a freak due to some weird lighting. 😉

  20. Two tips:

    1) Know when to go drug store vs specialty. I love drugstore for everything except concealer and foundation, for which I go with MAC because a) ain’t no one got time (well, less-lazy people do) to color-match concealer and foundation to their skin. Also, MAC is really highly pigmented–my high school friends used that stuff for drama productions all the time–which is helpful when you’ve got really dark undereye circles like I do. Mascara, powder, bronzer, brushes (hello, elf!) etc? Drugstore me, baby!

    2) Know the limit of makeup. As an owner of abovementioned undereye circles, my life improved considerably when I realized that there is no product that exists on God’s green earth that either “cures” or 100% covers them. I felt a lot less terrible about myself when I made peace with that; this is how I look. If someone doesn’t like it, they can turn away.

  21. There are so many of us, learning how to apply makeup after we’ve grown up! I’m another one, learning for the first time at 27.

    My $0.02: I go to a stand-alone mall makeup store when I’m looking for something that is supposed to match my skin tone, and then I ask whomever is working there to tell me what shade to buy. Going to MAC has worked really well for me, but Sephora or a different store is probably just as good as long as the store has beauty consultants and lets you try on the products. For example, I was looking for foundation, and the consultant applied it to my face so that I could see exactly what it looked like before I bought it. I even tried two different lines of foundations to see what I liked best.

    Foundation, concealer, blush, and nude anything (lips/eyes) are all products where going to see someone to tell you what color to get is SUPER helpful. Eyeshadow, eyeliner, and mascara don’t need consultation, but you would probably still get some useful information about what shade/color looks good on you if you were looking for those. Lip colors are really hard for me to find something that looks nice, so that’s another one I’d get professional advice for, but you may be better than I am at color-picking. And seeing a professional apply the makeup on you is an added bonus, because you may learn new techniques for doing so.

  22. I have been working in stage make up and I’ve done beauty make up on myself as well as for clients – mostly wedding looks. There are lots of good tips above, I’d especially like to support

    a) the importance of EYEBROWS:
    look at a wide range of eyebrows. Google the eyebrows of Emma Watson, Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Connelly, Beyonce, Audrey Hepburn, Judy Garland or Kate Hudson.
    Imagine how they would look on you – or try it out by painting them into your own face, analyzing darkness, thickness, angle and copying it. Try camouflaging extra hair with concealer, so you don’t have to pluck any hair until you know what you’re going for. Take pictures of the different looks, compare.

    b) Watch YOUTUBE videos. I really like pixiwoo, who have been suggested multiple times already – although I often do not like their eyebrow styles 😉

    c) CLEAN your brushes and sponges and whatever. Tons of advice above.

    d) PLAY around. I also loved the advice to test out a look at night, before you go to bed (even if it’s just one eye). Snap a picture, remove make up and go to sleep. DO NOT attempt a new look prior to an important event like a work meeting, a wedding or a date. That’s like trying out a new recipe for guests – always better to stick to sth you know like the back of your hand.

    Two important things I’d like to add:

    1 – Just like eyebrows, BLUSH tends to get underestimated. Get to know the different styles (google youthful, dramatic, dewy, 20s, natural blush etc – whatever look you’re going for) and products (creamy oder powdery? earth or berry tones? shimmery or matte?) and experiment!
    With make up, people tend to agonize about eyeshadow and lipstick. But do eyebrows and blush the right way and it will take you 5 minutes only, looking natural and gorgeous.

    2 – Most products are more or less shimmery. If you are going for a more natural look, avoid the glimmery stuff and get MATTE products. I use professional stage make up by Kryolan, but I heard that Mac has a lot of matte products as well.
    However, I’m very loyal to Kryolan, however, it is not easy to find. You can always order online, but I’d always prefer testing make up in person, especially with Kryolan, who don’t use fancy names like “Pomegranate Crush Blush” or “Lush Lips Liner in Mocca Brulée”, but rather “Blush 267 G”. They do have a store in NY and one in LA, but I don’t know any more.

    They are the make up sponsor of SyFy Channel’s Face Off – which has started its 7th (?) season just now! Any other hardcore Face Off fangirls around? 😀

  23. I have always worn a little makeup, but usually just mascara and a little concealer. My sister wears it on nights out but never really any other time, but we never ‘played’ with make up when we were growing up and don’t discuss it with friends etc. So when, on my sisters wedding day, the photographer thought it would be nice to get a picture of me helping my sister with hers there were some great ‘blind leading the blind’ moments.
    I love E.L.F because it’s so cheap and allows me to buy what I need and also a couple of other bits to play about with too. Youtube is great for tutorials. I still haven’t mastered the pin up flick but getting there!

  24. I’m going to put out a slightly controversial point here: do try YouTube tutorials, but unless they’re incredibly simple then don’t EVER try them for the first time before a night out. Or a day out. Or going grocery shopping. What looks great on one person can look awful on someone else, and what looks great in a photo/carefully lit video can be terrible when moving around in natural light. Basically if you’re going to try something new, try it some time when you’re going to be able to catch your reflection at plenty of angles and have time to either think “heeeey, guuuurl,” or reach for the makeup remover and cross the idea off the list.

    A couple of examples: using tape to get “perfect winged eyeliner” looks awful on most people. Yes, it might be neat, but if it doesn’t follow the contour of your brow bone, it looks baaad. Secondly, most contouring looks absolutely ridiculous in real life situations, when the pretty pretty highlights and shadows don’t actually move and continue to contour your face along with the lighting around you. If you’re expecting to be flash-photographed, great! Otherwise … well, no, it still looks really strange most of the time.

    Lastly, totally seconding everyone that’s said about brows and blush being overlooked too often – I feel I’ve only really learned about this in the last year (I’m 27!), and I’m really starting to notice the difference. Along with a neutral lipstick that’s the colour of your lips or a shade darker, a good foundation and maybe a small slick of eyeliner, it can pretty much airbrush your face. In a good, “moves with the light of the room” way.

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