Wednesday, January 30, 2013

8 Common Make-Up Mistakes

I've been a lot of places in this world and I've seen and met a bunch of different people, and there isn't a country I've been to where I don't see women using cosmetics. Make-up for women, I find, is more than just looking attractive for another person; they have been using products to enhance their features for thousands of years. It has been document that Romans (x) and Egyptians (x) used natural elements in various mixtures to beautify themselves. It isn't just about enhancing our features-- sometimes we wear make-up to appear stronger, youthful, ethereal, or mysterious. It's been worn to battle, worn to hide our identities, and, of course, to appear alluring.
Sometimes, though, we get lost along the way, or we don't learn techniques correctly. This inevitably leads to the misuse of various items and creates big make-up faux pas. Here are the ones I've found most blaring among friends, co-workers, girls at clubs, elderly women, moms, and teenagers.

1. Not  blending or matching foundation correctly
I've known lots of people who have this problem. They either choose foundation shades too dark or too light for their skin.

Another problem that goes hand in hand with this is when foundation isn't blended correctly. This leads to a kind of line along the jawline that makes the make-up incredibly obvious. Since day-to-day make-up is meant to enhance us while remaining natural, this is obviously not the right way to go about it.
Matching foundation can be difficult, especially if you're buying at a drugstore or somewhere where you can't sample the product. Keep in mind the undertones of your skin-- pink, red, yellow, blue, etc.-- and make sure you find a shade that compliments that. Since I'm a redhead I'm really pale, and I also have pinkish undertones to my skin, so I look for porcelain colors that are on the cool color side. I always go to a department store such as Nordstrom's or Neiman Marcus (Bloomingdale, Printemps, Selfridges, M&S, etc.) and play around with shades until I find one that works.
Also, to blend well, I use a foundation brush and go in circles around my face, to my jaw and a little under my chin, over eyes, across the upper part of my lips, etc. Take your time, and if you don't have any nice brushes, use your fingers (cleaned) and make sure you smooth it down as much as possible. Blend. Blend. Blend.
2. Too much blush
I always see this for some reason, and maybe it's the lighting people have in their rooms or something, or maybe they think it makes them look like a doll, I'm not sure. But this is a very common mistake.

When it comes to blush, I think less is more. One half of my face looks like I'm coming down with something sever! It's distracting and not in a good way. Look at it up close:
Imagine leaning in to kiss someone on the cheek and that's what you see! Yikes. I don't want that all over my lips.
Use a brush designed for blush such as this one, that I own, from Laura Mercier. You can get them slanted, for cream blush, for powder blush, etc. Use very gentle strokes. I start a little ways under my eye and gentle swoop over to my cheek bone. Then I use circular motions to gently increase the color until it looks like I'm natural flushed and blushing.
3. No blush and a very sick, waxy complexion
I knew this girl who never wore blush and her face always looked really sickly. Do you know what I mean? Your face becomes this kind of uniform color and with no blush or anything it just looks... waxy and strange. Like this, but imagine it was blended better:

This one is easy to avoid. Just use a little blush, make sure your foundation actually matches, or use bronzer to sculpt your face a bit (though that could still leave the color kind of monochrome so I'd suggest the blush).
4. Not knowing how to blend or apply eyeshadow
I've seen this lots, mostly from drunk girls or older women who don't have the patience to apply eyeshadow correctly. I find this very distracting on a person's face and I always find myself resisting the urge to reach up and close their eyes and blend it for them. Here's what always happens. You meet them and you're like, "Hi, it's great to see you again."
Everything seems normal for a little bit and then...
BAM they blink and you're like, "Oh my gosh what is going on here."
My advice: don't use that little applicator brush that comes with the eyeshadow. Your finger can do a better job blending than that little piece of styrofoam sponge weirdness. I use a series of different brushes to apply my eyeshadow, but the best one if you're trying to do a dramatic eye color is a blending brush like this one. Small circles, slowly blending outwards until you're pleased with the shape. Blending brushes are very forgiving and softening.
5. Not knowing how to apply liquid/ creme liner (smudges, mix-matched wings, etc.)
I know that liquid and cream liners are very difficult. I know this because I really only started implementing them into my beauty routine last year. I was really scared of them. And for good reason. It took me several goes before I didn't look straight up crazy.
Something I see a lot is smudged winged eyeliner. Which is a shame because when it's well applied, it looks so sophisticated and fresh. Smudging usually happens for one of three reasons: 1. The liquid or cream liner you used was cheap and doesn't set well. 2. You smudged it towards the end of the day/ you sweat and it smudges that way. 3. You slept in it and woke up thinking, "looks alright, I'll make it work for another day."
I couldn't even make this look as bad as I wanted to, but I think you know what I'm talking about. The edge gets all smudged and it starts looking like maybe you've been crying or drinking or something.
If the cause is one of the three I listed, I suggest 1. Get a better liner (I LOVE Bobbi Brown's cream one, and I hear Mark. is good as well) 2. Use some sort of setting spray/ smudge proof cream or primer 3. wash your face at night, really? It's so bad for your skin to not wash your face every night.
Matching both sides takes practice. I suggest waking up early and/ or trying it out at night multiple days in a row. I did it for like three weeks until I got the hang of it. Play around with the wings, try making them bold, different shapes, small, long, etc.
7. Lipstick on teeth
We have actually ALL been there. It's really common, I've seen basically everyone at some point or another dealing with this. And it's awful when someone is like, "OH HEY, *whisper* your teeth," and then rubs their front teeth.
And then it's like 0% of the world noticed your new lipstick or the fact that your teeth look so much whiter, and all they can talk about is that dumb smudge of lipstick ruining your night. 
For some reason, this happened to me, I can't remember when, and this wizened old women came up to me and said, "The trick to never having lipstick on your teeth again is to put your thumb in your mouth, like a baby sucking a thumb, and then suck your lips in and pull your thumb out. That way, whatever lipstick was on the inner part of your lips is gone, and there is no more rubbing of lipstick on your teeth." Best advice ever given to me by a stranger (probably).
8. Putting on finishing powder too heavily
Really, most of these problems arise from too much of something. Powders that are created to either keep skin matte or to create a glow are wonderful tools at our disposal. However, lots of times I see women wandering around with really obvious powder residue on their faces. 
Here, on one half of my face I have correct foundation and powder. On the other, I over-powdered. Honestly I think it makes me look more aged. Use a big brush head like this one, tap out all the excess powder, and apply with a light hand. 

Anyway, I know that this post is long but I hope it makes you think about how you apply your make-up and why you apply your make-up as well. Oh, and here's a bonus mistake:
Tip: don't apply too much mascara and let it dry before you fully flick your eyes open. 

Guilty of any of these? I know there are lots more, but these are the most common, I find.



  1. I can never quite get the hang of eyeshadow. I find that it always ends up looking like a hot mess. A smoky eye tutorial for those of us with hooded eyelids would be much appreciated!

    1. will do, probably in the next few days because i already have other things lined up in my blog queue.

  2. hahahaha geat post. Your so funny

    1. Thanks! I'm glad someone is reading them other than my sister (love you mary!!)


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