We all have a comfortable, day-to-day makeup routine—but every now and then, don't you just wanna pull a Hermione and do a slow-motion staircase entrance lookin' smokin' hot? Don't you want to get aggressive with the fancy-face, even if it's just for the Yule Ball?
Sure, we get the intimidation factor. One minute, you're rocking your trusty lipgloss like a vandal. But the next? You turn into an alien who's like "What are these tubes and bottles and brushes? Why do I only have two hands? Where am I? Must destroy humans."
Here are some (more!) tips you might find helpful before you end the entire human race in a fit of rage.
Read Making Faces by Kevyn Aucoin.
It's a book, you guys! You'll like it. Seriously—with my hand on Little Women, I swear to you—everything I know about makeup I learned from this book. Kevyn Aucoin (may he rest in peace and glitter) was a celeb makeup artist and also basically Dumbledore. There's a lot of step-by-step instruction that showcase real women (yay!). But in the back, it gets good. He breaks down a handful of looks that give a nod toward historical moments in makeup ("The Biba," an homage to the 1960's London fashion line and "The Starlet," helping you nail the pout of a true glamour girl). Don't be weirded out—even if you don't go all the way, you'll learn a little something from each. And if all else fails, it'll make a Friday night at home more fun.
Get a magnifying mirror.
It's so much easier to do eyeliner when you can see your face real big. You can get really close to your lashline. It's just science. Just don't try to tweeze your eyebrows in it or it will lead to disaster. Speaking of eyebrows …
Use Anbesol to numb them before you start plucking.
That's all I have to say about that.
Hey there, fairy face.
Highlighter changes everything—don't be afraid. White liner, for example, is a really good tool to wake things up around the eyes. Apply a little on your brow bones, inner corner of the eye, and/or underneath your lower lashes and blend, blend, blend. Blend some more. Keep blending. Voila! No one will ever know you were up late reading all the Wikipedia entries about Degrassi.
Also, let's talk about shimmer.
Shimmer the right way and you look lit by candles wherever you go. Follow this map: tip of the nose, bow of the lips, top of the cheekbones, brow bones. Just a dab.
And speaking of illumination: true facts.
No one looks good in fluorescent lighting. No one. Not Klum. Not anyone. Be ok with it.
What can brown do for you?
Everything! Seriously, smoky blacks and charcoals on the eyes are super dramatic, buuut they can also make you look like you went 10 rounds with Manny Pacquiao (a boxer). Browns are way more forgiving. Layer on brown eyeliner plus taupe and copper eyeshadows to amp up your normal eye routine.
Don't overdo it, of course, but every now and then before a big night out, I put a drop or two of Visene in my eyes. I end up looking less like a sleep-deprived vampire and more like a human, with feelings and a heart and all that! I've been known to use a little on overly red zits, too.
Ok, this is the one hole in my makeup knowledge. I just … can't do it. All right, I'll say it: liquid liner is my kryptonite. I do not have the steady hand. If you know how to work around this, throw me a bone in the comments below.
Contrast is queen.
If you go heavy on the eyes, lighten up on the lips, and vice versa.
Know yo' self.
I learned my face by doing (and messing up) my own makeup like a ton of times. I have barely any eyelids. I am basically translucent. My lipline is complicated. The point is this: Every book and magazine in the world can tell you how to apply it or what might be in for the season, but in the end, you know what looks good on you (Sorry, nude lipstick. I'll pass.)
PS: One more thing to know.
You're just as pretty without makeup, so there's that too.
We lurve all these makeup tricks—we especially can't wait to try a brown smoky eye and the whole Visine-on-a-zit scheme! What are your favorite cheap and easy beauty tips?
Related post: The Lazy (and Cheap!) Girl's Guide to Beauty 'N Stuff