First things first, you can’t apply makeup to dried out face and flaky lips. Well, you can, but it’s going to look like crap. Wash your face with something mild and nonirritating, you don’t want to try a new or harsh cleanser and find out your skin is sensitive to it. Next moisturize, and let it sit in. Now, if your skin is half as dry as mine, moisturize again and pay special attention around your eyes. How are your lips looking? If they are the least bit scaly take a soft toothbrush or facecloth, run it under some warm water and rub over your lips to exfoliate them, apply some lip balm.
Don’t be scared of trying to wing your eyeliner! Believe it or not it’s pretty easy. I honestly think it’s about 100 times easier than going for the “natural look”. And this is a good baby step if you don’t normally wear makeup. You don’t need a lot for this look, just a neutral-ish base (I like a champagne color) and your liner, and mascara, duh. Please do not use that nasty old black eye pencil you’ve had in your makeup bag for ages, throw it out!! If you can’t remember when you bought your eyeliner, it’s time to let it go. Why not treat yourself to a new cream eyeliner or even, dare I say it, liquid liner? For the record, liquid liner is not nearly as hard to apply as you think it is.
Dramatic Smoky Eye
A lot of ladies are intimidated to try a smoky eye, but you have to face your fears. What’s the worst that can happen? You don’t like it and have to wash your face? Oh no, that would be terrible! See how silly your fear of a smoky eye is? First you need a light base. I either go with champagne or a light gray/silver, and then two shades of the same color, so it ends up being a light, medium and gray shade (you can absolutely do another shade or two but three eye shadows are all you really need). In this case, I went with the gray/silver because I was going with a gray smoky eye. Apply the lightest shade pretty much everywhere from lash line to brow bone. I gradually go a little lighter as I pass the crease so there isn’t a sudden stop of color. Now take the middle shade and starting at the outside corner apply to 3/4ths of the lid, so the lightest color is all you’ve got going on by the tear duct. Next, very lightly swipe the dark color in the crease. Apply the same dark color it to the very outer edge of eyelid and blend towards the center. Take a step back and look at yourself in the mirror. Are you happy? Do you want more? If you’re anything like me, the answer is almost always yes. So just keep repeating the steps until you’re satisfied. Once your color is where you want it, grab a black or charcoal liner (no liquid liner), close your eye tight and line. Why close your eye tight? Because that way when you line your upper lash line, you lower lash line will get just a smidge of liner too.
Now sometimes I look at my gray smoky eyes and I think, “boring”, so I throw some navy or super dark green over my lids, but I tend to wear a lot of makeup, so you just do what’s comfortable for you. I took pics of the gray smoky base and then navy and green additions, but I don’t think the pictures really show the differences all that well.
You can never go wrong with a red lip. Well, actually you can. If you don’t line your lips, then check for lipstick on your teeth or else you’ll look insane. If you take nothing else away from this blog, remember to always line your lips when you’re doing a bold color. If you don’t, the lipstick will end up slowly but surely migrating towards your nose and chin, for reals. There are a million reds out there on the lipstick market and picking one can be tough. I recommend asking a pro. Go to your nearest upscale department store (like Sak’s or Nordstrom’s) and ask someone at one of the makeup counters. My personal favorite brand is NARS, and I wear Red Jungle. Oh, and try to match up your lip liner and lipstick. They don’t have to be exact matches, but you don’t want to look like a chola.
Think you can’t pull off a burgundy lip? Well if you think you can’t, you can’t! When you take a makeup risk like wine colored lips, you have to own it. Why not go into 2013 being confident and bold? I lined my lips and then filled them in with MAC lip pencil in Vino and then applied a purple-ish NARS gloss (sorry but the label fell off so I don’t know the name of it). The beauty of using a pencil as all over color is that it has a ton more staying power than just plain old lipstick.
Yes you read that right, ombre lips. Now if you’ve seen pics of ombre lips some of them look pretty crazy, purple to pink to orange, kinda insane. I’m not advocating that kind of ombre lip, but a wearable ombre lip. I used MAC lip pencil in Vino, NARS lipstick in Red Jungle, MAC lipstick in Instinctive, and NARS lip gloss in Sweet Dreams. Basically, a wine colored pencil, deep red lipstick, rust-ish lipstick, and an opaly pink gloss. I used these colors because this is what I had on hand, you can just grab a few shades of whatever you’ve got on hand and make it work. Lined and then filled in lips with the Vino pencil, concentrating on the outer corners. Now blot (I blotted extra hard in the middle of my lips). Next apply the NARS red lipstick, starting in the middle and leaving the outer 1/4th of lips. Blot to blend. Now use the rust colored lipstick in the center of your lips and top with gloss. If you need to blend the colors at all, just use your pinky. I really liked the ombre lips on myself more than I thought I would. They didn’t look crazy at all, and I think it made my lips look a little fuller. That being said, this is a lot of look for some lips, and I’m guessing the reapplication could be a bit tiresome. So maybe if you’re going to be making out all night this isn’t the look for you. I will be spending NYE alone on my couch, so it’s perfect for me.
Have you tried highlighter yet? I’m not talking neon markers, but makeup to brighten your face and even make it look thinner. I love Benefit’s High Beam or NARS The Multiple in Copacabana. Apply a little to your cheekbones, down your nose, and the cupid’s bow of your lips. Just a touch now, unless you want to look like you’re going to Studio 54, which would be pretty awesome really. Are you any good with fake eyelashes? I’m terrible (mastering them might be one of my resolutions for 2013), but if I was any good with them you can bet your booty I’d be applying them on NYE. And the crazy ones, with feathers and crap. If you’re fake lash challenged like me you can just stick with mascara. One tip I recently picked up is to use one coat of two different mascaras, and I really think it makes a difference.
Well what are you waiting for? You only have a couple days to test out these looks and decide what you’re going to do! Now remember, makeup is not an exact science, its an art, so release your inner artist and let go. Tweet me a pic of which look you go with @HotelFoxtrot!