Makeup Tips Advent Calendar
As a qualified and experienced Makeup Artist, I like to think I know a thing or two about makeup. I wear makeup every working day and I’m lucky enough to spend time with some of the best makeup experts in the business, but there’s still a lot to learn. Here are the tips and tricks I pass onto my clients and which will help you achieve a more professional makeup look, whether you’re a total makeup obsessive or simply a bit of mascara and go girl (or boy).
As an aid to help my fellow makeup lovers out there, for the last 24 days I have been revealing a different makeup tip each day following on from questions which have been asked during my 1:1 makeup lessons. Here is the full advent calendar in one blog post.
Advent Calendar Day 1: BLUSHER
If like some of my clients your blush gradually disappears during a night out, I suggest layering a gel/cream blush under a powder to extend the wear time. Be careful not to add too much powder blush on top of the cream, as you don’t want to look like a doll. I use a dual fibre brush to give a light dusting a lock in the colour.
Advent Calendar Day 2: FOUNDATION
So, you’ve found your perfect shade and brand of foundation. But what do you do when you’re having a great skin day or just want a lighter coverage? I advise mixing your foundation with a small amount of your favourite moisturiser. It’s the easiest way to lighten the coverage and have a bespoke consistency. Added bonus, you are keeping your skin moist and hydrated whilst still wearing your favourite product. No more having to buy tinted moisturisers 😉
Advent Calendar Day 3: MASCARA 🎅💋💄
You can guarantee that on the night of a big Christmas Party your mascara will suddenly be dry and clumpy. There are two ways to extend the life of your mascara, 1) add a few drops of saline solution to the tube and swirl the brush around. Leave for a couple of minutes and you’re ready to go. 2) Whilst applying the rest of your makeup, place your mascara tube in a cup of hot water (Tap hot is OK, no need to boil the kettle) This will reinvigorate the product and when you’re ready to use it, swirl the brush around and away you go!
If you’re in a rush, liquid or gel eyeliner on a spoolie can be used as a mascara.
Advent Calendar Day 4: RED EYES 🎅💋💄
So, you’ve had a few late nights over Christmas and have red bloodshot eyes!!! To get rid of this quickly, use moisturising or refreshing eye drops. Eye drops contain ingredients that constrict the blood vessels in your eyes, therefore making the redness go away. This same principle applies to pimples or other redness on the face as well. Just saturate a cotton swab with some Optrex Eye Drops and dab it onto the specific area. In a few minutes, the redness will be gone.
Advent Calendar Day 5: LONG LASTING LIPS 🎅💋💄
There are few things worse on a night out than having to keep nipping to the loo to re-apply your lipstick. The key to making any lipstick last is to layer. Start by lining and filling in your lips with a nude lip liner or one that matches your lipstick. Then, apply a light layer of lipstick. Hold a split tissue over your mouth, blot the colour, and dust a light layer of translucent powder over top. Repeat the process one or two more times for lip colour that won’t budge. Have fin kissing, drinking and singing the night away with lips that will last as long as you do (nearly).
Advent Calendar Day 6: DRY SKIN 🎅💋💄
Cold weather is enemy number one for your already-dry skin; even those who don’t normally struggle with flakiness tend to encounter it during the winter months. At this time of year I use my two go to dry skin products on all clients: face oil and a beauty sponge.
I always dab a small amount of face oil on top of the moisturiser with a beauty blender, especially any problem areas. This gives your foundation a smooth base and ensures that you have flawless foundation.
Advent Calendar Day 7: LIPS🎅💋💄
Add texture to your lips this Christmas rather than having the same gloss or matte finish, why not try velvet??? To add a velvety texture to your favourite lipstick, just dab your finger in a bit of blush or eye shadow; then pat it over your lips. So much easier and more interesting than full-on matte. To add a bit of Christmas Sparkle, why not add a touch of shimmer or gold/metallic eye shadow to bring back a touch of Glam? Don’t forget to set with a makeup setting spray!
Advent Calendar Day 8: LASHES🎅💋💄
If you love a big, voluminous, Bardot-esque lash look, you might be tempted to look for a full, thick false lash—don’t. These extra thick lashes can look really false and cheap as they have much thicker bands at the base. You’re much better off stacking two lighter, thin false lashes on top of each other. Just make sure the bands are thin to keep things looking natural.
Advent Calendar Day 9: BROWS 🎅💋💄
So, you want to have Insta worthy brows but when you try they just look like you’ve drawn them on with a Sharpie marker! The mistake is filling in your eyebrows with just one colour. Whether you’re blond or brunette, your eyebrows will be naturally darker at the tail and lighter towards your nose. Choose two cool shades of taupe and brown which complement the colour of your brows. I fill the entire brow with the lighter shade, then fill in any sparse areas, and accentuate the arch and tail with the deeper shade. Finally comb through with brow gel or a clear mascara to blend it evenly.
Advent Calendar Day 10: ON TREND EYE MAKEUP💋💄
Whether you want to create a full on Insta worthy eye makeup or a more subtle version (like most of us), there are two key tips: blend, blend, blend and your edge and wing must be as straight as the edge of a business card.
When creating your straight edge, line up the corner of your eye with the end of your eyebrow using micropore tape. You can buy this at any chemist. This will allow you to create crisp and clean eyeshadow lines and a liquid eyeliner wing. When you’re done, just peel it away.
Advent Calendar Day 11: LONG LASTING MAKEUP 🎅💋💄
This old school beauty trick is one that myself and many other professional makeup artists use on clients for events. When it comes to getting your makeup look to last, use a puff instead of a powder brush to apply your finishing powder. This puff presses the powder into the face, minimising the appearance of shine and adding longevity. Finally add a spritz of MAC Prep+Prime Fix+
Advent Calendar Day 12: LASHES 🎅💄
One of the most popular questions I have during makeup lessons is “How can I apply false lashes easily?” I have a couple of tips for this problem: 1) Trim the lashes to fit your eye. Most false lashes are too big for the general eye and so the end needs to be snipped off to ensure a perfect fit. 2) If you still can’t get those pesky little things to look good: don’t use a complete strip of false lashes. Cut strips into small sections and apply individually. It’ll look a thousand times better and more natural than a strip which is applied wrong! And look for lash strips that have an small thin band at the base.
Advent Calendar Day 13: Foundation 🎅💋💄
It’s almost impossible to find a foundation shade that perfectly matches your skin: that shade just doesn’t exist, especially not from just one bottle. I always advise my clients to have two shades, one darker for summer and one lighter for winter, then mix them together in spring and autumn to create your own custom shade. This way you will always have a foundation that matches your skin tone.
Advent Calendar Day 14: EYELINER 🎅💋💄
When clients are out dancing they don’t want to have to worry about their eyeliner smudging across their face with the heat. I always ‘Smudgeproof’ their eyeliner for events. I achieve this by setting the eyeliner with a little powder eyeshadow in the same colour over the kohl to keep it from moving. Works a treat and means that you can dance the night away without your smokey eye running down your face!
Advent Calendar Day 15: LIPS 🎅💋💄
Do you suffer from chapped lips in winter? Well you’re not alone. Many women do, and the cause could be our favourite lip balm! If your lip balm has petroleum jelly as an ingredient it stops moisture entering your lips and acts as a barrier. If you can’t live without your lip balm, apply moisturiser to your lips before applying your balm. This way you will lock in hydration for your lips.
If you already have chapped lips, don’t worry, either use a lip scrub or rub a balm onto your lips and gently scrub with an old mascara wand or toothbrush. Once your lips are smooth as a baby’s bum, add a moisturising balm before applying your lip pencil etc.
Advent Calendar Day 16: HAIR 🎅💋💄
Do your hairpins keep falling out and your gorgeous hair style turns into a hot mess on the dance floor? A trick I use for all of my clients for events is to spray the hairpins with hairspray before using them. This gives them additional grip and ensures that they don’t slide out of even the finest of hair. (I spray my hairpins in bulk on a piece of kitchen roll before putting them into my kit. Its easier to do this way and takes less time)
Advent Calendar Day 17: DRIED OUT PRODUCTS 🎅💋💄
Do you ever have an amazing gel eyeliner or cream eyeshadow/paint pot that is that dry that you can’t use it anymore? Firstly, to stop your product drying out, when you take the lid off, keep the pot upside down on your work surface to stop the air from drying it out. As soon as you are finished, replace the lid. Its that simple.
If your product has already dried out, take the lid off and pop it into the microwave for a few seconds. When the product is soft again add a couple of drops of saline solution to the product and mix with a makeup spatula/tooth pick. Flatten the product and use as normal.
Advent Calendar Day 18: EYEBROWS 🎅💋💄
So, you’ve created a perfect eyebrow and you’re feeling great however the weather is windy and rainy, and you just know that your brows won’t last the day/night. So how do you keep your eyebrows in place? After you fill in your eyebrows, help keep the hairs in place by spraying some hairspray on a spoolie or on an old mascara brush that’s been cleaned and then brush through your brows. Alternatively, you can use a clear mascara to set your brows and keep them looking perfect.
Advent Calendar Day 19: FIX BROKEN POWDER MAKEUP 🎅💋💄
We’ve all been there; we’ve dropped our favourite powder, highlighter, blush or eyeshadow and its broken into pieces. We want to keep it as there’s loads left but don’t want to put it into our makeup bag/handbag as it’ll cause a mess. Makeup artists have this problem too and here’s how we get to keep using our damaged powder products.
With a makeup spatula or small teaspoon, crush the rest of your product into a fine powder. Next, add a couple of drops of IPA (isopropyl alcohol) and mix it with the broken powder. As the IPA starts to evaporate, flatten the product down with the back of the spoon so that it is flatter and looks more like it used to do. Now leave the lid off for a couple of hours until the IPA has completely evaporated, and the powder has set. It won’t look perfect but who cares when you get to keep your favourite product?
Advent Calendar Day 20: SKIN 🎅💋💄
So, the party season has started to take a toll on your skin. We all know that the best way to attain healthy, luminous skin is by drinking water, but if you’re slacking on your H2O consumption, have no fear! A makeup artist trick is to use a brightening primer or illuminator such as MAC Strobe Cream to get the same effect. Pat the product onto clean, dry skin before applying your foundation or for a dewier effect, mix a small amount in with your foundation and you’ll look like you’re glowing from within.
Advent Calendar Day 21: PRIME YOUR EYES 🎅💋💄
Just like you prime your skin, you should prime your eyes. This is one of those must-know makeup tips for ladies who love a smokey eye or wear glitter shadow. An eye shadow base is a must if you’re planning on wearing eye shadow all night long to all your Christmas and New Year parties. Primers will make your coloured shadows pop more, as well as making colour and glitter last longer without creasing or fading. I like to use MAC Paint Pot in Barely There, but you can just use the same primer that you use for your face.
Advent Calendar Day 22: COLOURFUL EYELINER 🎅💋💄
On the days when you just want a soft look, take an angular brush and use eyeshadow instead of an eyeliner on your upper lash line. It gives a natural and soft look, absolutely perfect for colourful smokey eyes. For more definition and deeper colour, spray your brush with a fixing spray then dip it into your favourite eye shadow colour. Now you have a colourful eyeliner without having to fork out for lots of different gels or pencils!
Advent Calendar Day 23: ENHANCE YOUR BOOBS WITH MAKEUP 🎅💋💄
Are you wearing a low-cut dress and want a little bit more in your chest area without stuffing your bra? Well the answer is use Makeup. This is a makeup artist and drag queen secret that can enhance your assets without resorting to ‘chicken fillets!’
1.Using a flat brush, use a cream color about two shades deeper than your skin tone to draw your first breast. Follow the shape of an underwire bra and simply make an “over wire.” Taper the line to be thinner as it goes up and stop at about the 11 o’clock spot on your breast. Do the same on the other side.
- Now dip your brush in the next deepest shade. Apply this at the bottom curve of your “cleavage,” where a shadow would naturally happen and blend the colour inwards. Continue blending up and over, until you have more of a shaded look rather than harsh lines. If you feel more comfortable using a makeup sponge for this part, that works too! Just gently tap the sponge against your skin to blend.
- Don’t forget to set your makeup with a translucent powder and fixing spray.
Advent Calendar Day 24: FALSE LASHES 🎅💋💄
As most of you will be out celebrating or staying in with friends and family I’m not expecting people to be reading this post on Christmas Eve and so todays final Advent Calendar Tip is for the morning after a night out.
How to clean your false eyelashes: in a ramekin or small bowl, add some of your IPA (isopropyl alcohol). Submerge your lashes and leave them for 5 mins. With your fingers and a cotton bud, gently rub the mascara off your lashes. By this point the glue will start to separate from the lashes. Gently pull the glue away from the band and discard. Place your lashes on some kitchen roll to allow the IPA to evaporate and replace your lashes into their box to keep them looking beautiful for their next use.
I hope that you’ve had an amazing run up to Christmas and enjoyed all of the tips and tricks in my Digital Makeup Advent Calendar on Instagram (@makeupbyclaire01)
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See you all in 2019!