5 Simple Tips To Up Your Makeup Game

Photographed by Nina Westervelt.
When it comes to putting on makeup, do you often feel clueless? Maybe you struggle with applying eyeliner or can't seem to find a color palette you love. Getting your makeup regimen down pat isn't easy. As people in the biz, we've taken years of beauty tutorials and been through a lot of trial-and-error with thousands of cosmetic products — so, we've got some beauty words of wisdom. Master your makeup once and for all by following the five tips ahead.

Glitter & Shimmer Are Different Things
People tend to get a little excited when it comes to glitter and shimmer once the holiday-party circuit kicks into gear — which is any day now! They may both be sparkly cosmetics, but you shouldn't use them interchangeably because they offer totally different results.

Glitter is made up of flecks of light-reflective particles, and you should apply it for high-wattage sparkle power. Shimmer, on the other hand, uses teeny-tiny specks of finely-ground glimmer to offer an overall, subtle light reflection. While glitter is a festive way to play up your party look, it may appear a touch too disco for daytime. Unless you're really amping up the sex appeal for a bold night out, stick to shimmers to add natural depth and radiance.
Photographed by Nina Westervelt.

The Eyes Come First
After executing your perfectly blended, smoky stare, do your undereyes always appear gray or muddy? To avoid this, be sure to start with clean skin, and focus on your eyes first. That way, if eyeshadow dust or black-mascara flecks end up on your cheeks, you can simply sweep them away with makeup remover, without worrying that you're also wiping away foundation, bronzer, or blush. Once you've finished with your eyes, then you can move on to your complexion: Stick to this format for a smudge-free look.

Photographed by Jacqueline Harriett.

Your Undertone Is Unique
While most brands will try to categorize your skin tone as either warm or cool or pink or olive, a lot of people actually have a combination of tones. Take your neck and chest into account when choosing the right shade. Try snagging a sample of both colors and doing a little at-home test, to see which is the right match for you. Be wary of going too cool (which may leave you looking washed out) or too warm (which may give you a sunburnt look).

Photographed by Nina Westervelt.

Eyeshadows Can Be Used Anywhere
Both your favorite shimmer eyeshadow highlight or your best matte crease color can be used on areas other than the eyes. Powder color can be used anywhere: to contour the cheeks, highlight down the bridge of the nose, or accentuate the sharpness of a clavicle. Don't let the product's name limit your creative uses.

Photographed by Sara Kerens.

Liquid Liner is HARD
Don't be fooled by professional makeup artists or skilled beauty bloggers: A perfectly winged eye is rarely executed in one swipe. A pointed Q-tip and makeup remover are your best friends in achieving this symmetrical look. A good eyeliner gel, which is more forgiving, and an angle brush can make achieving this look much easier and still leave you with the bold peepers you're after.

Don't forget to have fun with your makeup — that's what it's for! Mixing up your cosmetics routine is a great way to experiment with new looks without doing anything permanent.

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