We previously spoke with stylist Bruce Dean about how to use cosmetics to create a “signature look.” Now, Bruce weighs in about how to update your look, while keeping the overall effect.
Get professional help. Let’s be honest, doing your own makeup isn’t always easy. If you want to tweak your look to make it a little more modern, but don’t want to completely change your style, arrange a consultation with a professional at a department store or cosmetics retailer like Sephora or Mac. Make sure to call ahead and find out who is the most experienced. They can show you how to make simple changes in a way that works well with your particular skin type, tone and bone structure.
Focus on your favorite feature. What is the strongest feature on your face—your brows, lips or eyes? If you haven’t been highlighting that, doing so can give you a more striking look. If you have fantastic lips, consider a brighter or deeper lip color and going lighter on the eye makeup. Shifting the part of your face you emphasize can brighten your appearance. Because we tend to be judgmental of ourselves and can be somewhat blind to our positive features, it can help to get an objective opinion from someone else.
Resist jumping on the trend bandwagon. Of course you’re going to want to try out all the latest makeup trends, but not every style or product will work for you. Be aware that you can modify a trend in a way that makes it more suitable for your features.
Mom can be right—but not always. I’ve had many women clients who have been surprised when I teach them a new technique, because their mothers taught them to do it differently. Whether it’s your mom, best friend or even a professional, no one technique is gospel. Go to YouTube and look up makeup tutorials—be open to trying new methods.
Know when to bargain and when to splurge. For certain basic products, it’s great to choose the lower-cost, drug store option. But for special ones, buying the higher end item at a department or cosmetics store can make a real difference. Plan to have a mix of items in your makeup bag.
Don’t forget your hair. Your hair color can impact the overall effect of your cosmetics. If you want a bold look, use makeup colors that contrast with the color of your hair. For example, if you’re a redhead, try cooler tones like blue and lavender. If you have black hair, go with red and copper. If you’re going for a look that’s more subtle and less bold, do the opposite, choose makeup colors that match your hair.
Eyes that pop
A dark, smoky eye isn’t necessarily work appropriate. Instead, try using an ample amount of mascara with a little liner right at the lash line.
Bright, beautiful lips
Let’s face it, eye makeup can be time-consuming. If you want your look to pop but you’re sick of smudging your liner, try a bolder lip color instead—and go lighter on the eyes.
If you have oily skin, a little powder goes a long way. If your skin is dry, go a little easier on both the powder and the foundation. Choose a blush color that complements the rest of your makeup, as well as your skin tone, and use products with SPF protection whenever possible.