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8 Makeup Mistakes to Never Make If You Wear Glasses

Whether you’re near-sighted, far-sighted, or rocking a pair of readers, it’s a cinch to look spectacular if you wear specs. Here’s how to apply makeup to create a striking optical illusion.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Think less eye makeup is more

Despite what you might think about the magnifying power of your specs, you may actually need to wear more eye makeup than you normally would to make your eyes pop. Don’t miss these tips for fighting puffy eyes and dark circles.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Allow slippage

To keep glasses in place, put a little eye primer on the bridge of your nose before applying foundation. As the editors at note, this hack—reposted from Reddit—makes sense, since primer is formulated to hold makeup in place by creating a base that also offers glasses a little extra grip. These tips can help extend the life of your glasses.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Use the wrong concealer

Frames can sometimes cast shadows underneath the eyes and highlight darkness, so camouflaging them with a yellow-based concealer is crucial. Just use a light hand, as too much cover-up could work against you and make fine lines more visible—a major concern, especially if you’re farsighted or wear reading glasses, since your lenses will magnify the problem. Try this makeup routine when you need to look less tired.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Go crazy with colored shadow

Your glasses make enough of a statement, so stick to neutral eye shadows like ivory, beige, and taupe. Just brush the lightest shade in your palette over your entire eyelid, then blend a slightly darker hue into the crease to create definition. Bonus for sticking with more muted eye makeup: Bright and cool colors will magnify dark undertones around the eyes, causing them to look tired and swollen—and who needs that?

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Overdose on sparkle

A dab of shimmer may work to highlight the brow bone or lighten up the inner eye corner, but keep the rest of your eye shadow matte: The reflective surface of glasses doesn’t often pair well with shimmery shadow and too much eye bling can compete with your glasses. “Matte shadow absorbs light and helps balance the look,” says Sir John, L’Oréal Paris celebrity makeup artist.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Skip eyeliner or opt for the wrong shade

Choose a color that’s darker than your natural eye color to create a perfect contrast. Keep in mind, though, that basic black or brown aren’t your only options. “Don’t be afraid to play around with tinted liners,” says Sir John, who suggests trying navy, ivy, or copper. Got dark frames? Use a liner that’s at least a shade or two lighter to keep it from getting lost in the shape of your frames. When it comes to applying liner, try Brown’s technique: Line across the top and bottom lash lines, making sure the line on the top lash extends across the entire eye and is thinner on the inner corner and thicker on the outer corner.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Lengthen your lashes

Going long when you wear glasses often means your lashes will hit—and smudge—your lenses all day (annoying!). To keep lashes lush but not overly extended, start by curling your top fringe (clamp as close to the base of lashes as possible and hold for at least five seconds), then apply volumizing mascara to top lashes only, advises Brown. For extra insurance against smudges, opt for a water-resistant or long-wearing formula. Here’s how you might be applying mascara all wrong.

Ali Blumenthal/

Don’t: Ignore your brows

Being bespectacled doesn’t give you a pass when it comes to brow tending. In fact, glasses often bring more emphasis to the eye area, making it even more important, notes Brown. For perfectly groomed brows, tweeze strays below the arch and comb hair neatly up and over. Using a small angle brush, fill in sparse areas with a brow pencil or powder shadow that matches your hair color. Be sure to follow the natural direction of the hair and arch at the midpoint of the eye.

Glasses wearers: you might be missing out. Save money on your optometry by getting your eye exams at Costco! 

Originally Published in Reader's Digest