How to Choose Makeup and Use It Beautifully

Check any woman’s bathroom, and chances are you’ll find a plethora of makeup, much of it old and barely used. But choosing a makeup should be as simple as choosing an ice-cream flavor — once you know what’s best for you. Along those lines, follow this advice:

  • Use a moisturizing makeup remover that leaves your face feeling clean and soft.
  • Eye MakeupComstockCompleteAccentuate the outer corner of your eyes with a gray-brown powder and extend it toward the edge of the eye to make close-set eyes look farther apart.
  • Throw foundation away after three months. After a few months, the oils in foundation can go bad and smell rancid, says Gabriela Hernandez, makeup artist in Los Angeles. Powder makeups like blushes and eye shadows last a little longer, but make sure to throw them out after a year.
  • Keep your makeup style fresh and current. A subtle change now and then will keep your look fashionable. If you’d rather not change your colors completely, change the texture. For example, if you love a particular shade of eye shadow, choose the same shade in a sparkly version. The small change will get noticed, but it won’t be too dramatic.
  • If you’re blessed with great skin, use as little foundation as possible, suggests Dianne M. Daniels, image consultant and color analyst at Image & Color Services in Norwich, Connecticut. If you do use foundation, choose a sheer liquid foundation instead of a corrective foundation and top it off with a dusting of loose powder.
  • For a bit more coverage, go for a crème-to-powder foundation.
  • Mature skin usually requires a heavier crème foundation — a powder finish may actually accentuate lines in your face.
  • Make sure you apply the right amount of foundation to your face. Too much is like pointing a neon sign at your wrinkles, says Daniels. Instead, dip a fine brush or makeup sponge in a lightweight foundation and dab it on skin blotches and brown spots to even them out. Then take a damp sponge and apply foundation to your entire face, making sure to match the color of your neck and blend in well so there’s no obvious line at your chin.
  • For instant radiance, mix liquid bronzer with your foundation or moisturizer before applying it to your face.
  • Use a makeup sponge instead of your finger to apply foundation. Dipping your finger into your foundation spreads bacteria, which can cause breakouts. And use a fresh, disposable makeup sponge every day.

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