There some huge beauty mistakes that are super obvious, like not taking your makeup off at night. But have you discovered the sneaky ones? I’m talking about the ones that stage a stake-out across the street in a non-descript white van, eating Cheetos by the bagful and swapping wry one-liners with their partner. The ones that wait for you to leave, and then BAM! They strike... and you have an unexpected breakout/weird redness just before your ‘casual’ (i.e. 3 hours of prep) drinks with that cute guy with the glasses who sits opposite you at work. Check out my list of huge beauty mistakes so you can throw them out like year-old mascara...
1. Forgetting Your Boobs
Yep. It’s a funny image, like you’re leaving the boobs by themselves in a house over Christmas... no, wait... that’s Home Alone. But it’s true! One huge beauty mistake we often make is to give our décolletage (and our neck area too) less attention than the face. Though it is exposed to just as much sun as our visage, we can easily leave our chest area out of our daily beauty routine. Keeping in mind that this part of your body is often on display, even in higher necklines, it’s a good idea to spend a little bit of time on it if you can. It is just as delicate and prone to age, so take a moment to pop some of your face cream on it, or buy a slightly less dear one if you don’t want to use up your crazily expensive French-sounding cream.
2. Using the Wrong Shade of Concealer
Choose your shade of concealer very carefully as it shouldn't be too much darker or lighter than the rest of the skin on your face. It’s not for your whole face, just little spots, so you don’t want those annoying little spots to stand out. If you’re lost about which color is right for your skin tone, think about paying a short visit to a makeup counter in your nearest department store, and ask them to help you choose the right one. It can be hard, but once you find the correct shade, you will smile into your bathroom mirror on pimple-day and thank your past self for making the effort as blemishes disappear like magic before your eyes.
3. Using a Foundation Brush for Your Blush
Your blush usually needs to be applied in a specific way, on a specific part of your face. So, you shouldn't use a ginormous, elephant-sized face powder brush, as it will not apply your brush correctly. You need to use a medium-sized specific blush brush – you can buy them almost anywhere makeup tools are sold.
4. Removing Waterproof Mascara Incorrectly
Waterproof mascara is great for when your eyes will be doing some tearing up – you know, weddings, the end of Toy Story 3, that sort of thing. It stays on well in most situations, but can be harder to remove than a red wine stain on your mum’s new antique rug. You can't use just any old makeup remover for waterproof mascara, or it won't come off properly. What you can use for waterproof mascara is cleansing oil. For example, I wear waterproof mascara every day and I use Jojoba oil. It works really well to break down the waterproof bonds and helps it slide off easily. Use it on dry skin, applying it to the eye with a cotton swab, then use some water to gently rinse the area. Jojoba oil is also useful for those with sensitive skin who want to avoid any harsh chemicals. You probably can't use it on that rug though. Just FYI.
5. Not Letting Moisturizer Absorb before Applying More Product
Patience is perfection! Try and leave a minute or so between your moisturizer and your powder foundation – not doing so means it will go on all patchy and yuck. If you can, try and do this between every new layer of makeup – i.e. primer, concealer, etc.
6. Applying Your Mascara from Half Way or Sweeping Straight up
Often we put on mascara in a hurry, so it’s tempting to throw it on quickly. But there’s a definite technique to getting it flawless, and it doesn't take long. You should be applying your mascara from the root to the tip, so that there is even coverage, rather than from a section half away upwards. Also, try to gently move your mascara in little movements from side to side as you slide it to the tip of your lashes, rather than sweeping it up vertically so that they’re so stiff and straight they look like garage doors opening and closing. This will help avoid clumps and separate your lashes, while giving them a fuller look.
7. Forgetting What Shade Lipstick/Foundation is Your Fave
Like meeting your perfect man and not writing down his number, if you find a something wonderful that suits you to a tee and don’t make note of which one it is, you’ll be very annoyed when you need to find it again. Rather than sifting through all the Mr Smells-Weird-And-Stares-Too-Muchs to find Mr Gorgeous-Scent-And-I'm-Staring-Too-Much, make a note so you will be able to find your Perfect Match lipstick/foundation again.
8. Pumping Your Mascara into and out of the Tube to Get More on It
This is one of the biggest crimes committed against makeup. Never do this! It forces air into the formula, which oxidizes it and makes it more liable to grow bacteria and other ickies that will infect your eyes and have you scrunching them closed more uncomfortably than that time you inadvertently caught your parents making out. It also makes your mascara likely to dry out much faster. Twist the wand around inside the tube, and coat it that way. Plus, if it's that hard to get formula out, it's probably time for new mascara anyhow.
9. Being Too Rough with Your Eye Area
When you are applying moisturizer or other products to your eyes, never go too rough. Go with gentle fairies-feet taps, not hard, angry rubs of product – these will make your eyes sad. Feel how thin the skin under your eye is – you have to be tender and loving to it! And don’t pull the skin out to the side, swiping off makeup – leave the pad with your chosen makeup removal product on it on for about 10ish seconds, then gently drag it down your lashes, repeating if necessary with a new pad to make sure it’s all gone.
10. Not Putting SPF 30+ Lip Balm on Your Lips
Though they can heal notoriously well, our lips are just as prone to aging as everything else, so they need the same daily protection from the sun. It’s wise to start investing in a good SPF 30+ lip balm. Find something without color or odor for a good base that moisturizes and protects. Put it on every morning before anything else on your lips, reapplying throughout the day.
11. Never Trying Anything New
My last suggestion is one that we should all have learnt watching 83% of romance films where the girl always ends up with the guy she least expects. Don’t be afraid to try something different with your makeup every now and again! Whether it’s a pop of unexpectedly bright lipstick, or a new and exciting eye shadow, the key to making the most of your makeup is to do just that – take risks, and have some fun with it! After all, you weren't afraid to smear lipstick all over your face when you were a kid, so embrace your crazy side and you never know what fresh new look you might discover.
I hope this has been helpful! I have only listed a few makeup mix-ups here, but I’m sure there are many more tricksy tips that you have to offer! Are you a seasoned mascara maestro with a makeup moment you’d like to take back? Share it with us in the comments!