This is how to hide your most stubborn trouble zones and glow instead with these easy makeup tips and tricks.
1. First, start with prep
“So many women skip the most important step in a flawless finish: prepping skin,” says Atlanta-based celebrity makeup artist Mimi Johnson. After cleansing skin, apply a moisturizer (one suited to your skin type). Even when you don’t think you need to-it’s hot outside, you have oily skin-you still need one, she says.
2. Battle dark circles
Even if you haven’t pulled an all nighter since college, those under-eye circles beg to differ. First, swipe a moisturizing eye cream around the area-the boost in hydration will help smooth crepiness and crow’s feet, says Kimberley Bosso, a celebrity makeup artist in Los Angeles. Then, apply a BB cream (beauty balm or blemish balm cream) with an SPF. “They are like a five-in-one product because they contain sun protection, anti-aging ingredients, extra moisturizer, primer, and a nice tint,” she says. On top of the BB cream, take your fingertips and dab on a peach toned concealer, which will neutralize blue circles. (For really dark circles, a concealer that’s more in the orange family will work best.) Next, apply a creamy, full-coverage concealer followed by a dusting of HD powder. Yes, it’s five-step process, but it’s worth it.
3. Prime away pores
It’s normal to have pores-you’re a human, not a doll. But when pores are large, they can be distracting. Johnson suggests applying a primer to “fill in large pores, absorb oil, ensure a smoother foundation application, and help makeup last longer,” she says. On top of that goes a light to medium coverage foundation-using a makeup sponge can help melt the product into your skin for the most flawless application. Finish with a light translucent powder around your t-zone, if you’d like more coverage.
4. Disguise spots
No matter what your problem-acne, dark spots-a color-correcting primer or concealer is going to be your best bet. First, what color are those discolorations? If they’re brown, a dark pink shade will counteract them, says Bosso. For red spots or blemishes, green will diminish ruddiness. Apply directly to the problem area (rather than over your entire face). Again, use your finger or a Beauty Blender to press the concealer/primer into skin for top coverage.
5. Even out tone
Is it redness? Yellow undertones? Ashiness? This is another time a color-correcting primer really delivers. Overall redness can benefit from a green primer, whereas an orange tinted primer can battle ashiness and bring back life to skin. Finally, for complexions washed out by yellow undertones, turn to a purple-based primer, recommends Johnson. Apply the primer to problem areas only, then top with foundation and a dusting of powder (optional).
6. Fake sleep
Skimping on Z’s can make you appear washed out (and oh, tired, too). “Cream highlighters make skin look luminous as long as you know where to put them,” says Bosso. “They wake up your face for a refreshed and rested look,” she adds. Swipe on the bridge of your nose and around the arch of your brows. Then, dot on the temple area and the side of your nose/inner corner of eyes. Finally, sweep the highlighter into a “c” shape right above your cheekbones. “When you turn your head, you’ll glow from every angle,” she says. Why yes, you did sleep 8 hours last night. (Wink, wink.)