Make up tips and tricks

Make up tips and tricks

Posted by Michele Deckman in Beauty, Blog

We all have our little flaws we obsess on and one of mine happens to be my Rosacea, which is red and blotchy skin on the face.  I don’t have a severe case with raised red bumps and I am thankful for that, but I do need to spend a little time to cover it up and even out my skin tone.  Again, some products work for certain skin types and not others so be aware of that when shopping the latest in beauty trends.  If matte finishes are in and your skin is extremely dry, chances are those foundations and powders will have a ‘cracked dessert rock’ effect on your face.  As I stated in my skin care post, it is imperative that you properly maintain your skin before even thinking about applying make up.  Here are a few of my favorite make up products and tips:

photo finish

1.     Smashbox Photo Finish Primer –  Apply this skin smoother on after your moisturizer absorbs into your skin as a base for any foundation.  It smooths and fills in pores, fine lines etc.. to give a more flawless canvas for your foundation.  This is a very crucial step and Smashbox has the best primer on the market.

Tip:    Start prepping your skin for make up while styling your hair or choosing an outfit so each of the products has time to absorb into your skin and do their job before applying make up.


2.     Smashbox Foundation – I use two, depending on the season, my level of dryness etc.. ~ Studio Skin and Liquid Halo.

Studio Skin ~ One of the best foundations I have found for providing full coverage without becoming too drying.  It will go on looking dewy and will set itself within minutes.  If you are super dry like me, do not set this with powder as it will become too dry and flaky.  Do not skimp on moisturizer and skin prep when using this foundation for that same reason. Find your perfect shade by asking to try samples of 3 shades, one that the counter clerk suggests and one each of the lighter and darker shade as they don’t always get the shade match right because in store lighting is not the best.


Liquid Halo – This foundation is lighter and reacts well with the skin by absorbing like water and looking more natural.  The light deflecting technology creates a smooth, even radiance.  However, to cover redness you may need to use a concealer under the foundation on those areas.  Always use the halo powder to set this foundation or it will tend to smudge and look unfinished.  This is a great winter foundation for dry skin because of the dewy, natural finish that is non-drying.  It can also be good in the summer when you don’t want a heavy coverage.


3.     Mac Studio Sculpt Foundation – This foundation is a heavier coverage perfect for covering up redness, however, I cannot find a good shade for daytime.  The lighter shade makes me pale while only one shade darker is fantastic for night but a bit too dark for bright daylight.  They say you should only need one foundation and just use bronzer to darken, but I do not follow this rule as bronzers tend to amplify my already large pores.  It is fun to change it up and you can definitely wear a different shade at night so go ahead and experiment a little.  Be careful to blend it into the neckline and if you opt for the darker shade, you must at least have a bit of a bronzed base which can easily be achieved with products like Jergens Natural Glow (the mousse is amazing!)

Too faced shadow insurance

4.     Too Faced Shadow Insurance Lid Primer – After you put on your concealer (I use both the Smashbox or Mac depending on my foundation) dab some lid primer on the lid so your shadow will stay.  Only a tiny amount is needed per eye.  It makes a huge difference in the color saturation and lasting ability of your shadow.  Keep that in mind when applying and don’t cake on the shadow too dark.


5.   Mac Brow Liner in Brunette – Nothing transforms the look of your eye like a manicured and shaped brow arch.  Stay on top of the waxing but do not be tempted to get them waxed in a strip mall nail salon as they do not shape the arch right and typically make them too thin.  Go see an expert at a top salon or the Anastasia Brow Specialists found at many department stores like Nordstrom.  Learn to the shape the brow arch best suited for your face and fill in with a pencil that matches your hair color.  When using the pencil, keep strokes short so it looks like real hair and be sure to outline top and bottom (not severely) and blend with a brow brush to create a finished look.  Online tutorials are available and helpful but if you follow this rule you should be fine: Apply the strokes at a 45 degree angle to mimic real hair growth and hold the pencil from the center of your eye to the brow at that angle to see where to place the arch – so many of us have been over waxed and need to fill in the brow so that the arch is at a 45 degree angle.  Then, take the pencil and extend it from the end of the outside corner of the eye to the hair line – if the brow does not extend to the line formed by your pencil, it should be extended with pencil strokes (again, keep them natural).  Finish by highlighting under the brow bone with a highlighting pencil (I use Anastasia) and slick on a light coat of brow gel (scrape the applicator to remove excess gel and avoid clumps).  This is particularly important for those of us with lots of coarse, curly hair as we tend to have unruly brows.

tip:  Anti dandruff shampoos like Nizoral can be used on the brow area a few times a week in cold weather (do not get in your eyes!) to get rid of scaling and flaking of skin around the brows.  Be sure to apply moisturizers to brow area too.


At highlighter just above the bronzer on top corner of cheek bone.

Add highlighter just above the bronzer on top corner of cheek bone.

6.     Mac Highlighter – Highlighting is a super quick way to brighten your face and keep you looking fresh.  Use a medium sized brush and apply to top of cheek bones, above the brow bone and bridge of nose as the last step after bronzer and blush.  Do not apply to lower parts of face as this is meant to catch the light and attract the eye to the higher points on the face.  Use a matte, never shimmer, bronzer (I like Too Faced Bronzed and Poreless) to outline just under the cheek bone to create a contour, thereby thinning the face.  Don’t go too heavy with this step to keep it looking natural.  Suck in your cheeks and apply the bronzer to the sucked in area so you are sure it is in the right spot. Add a touch of blush on the apple of the cheek (smile to see where it plumps up).  Since I go to great lengths to cover Rosacea redness, I use a very small amount of Nars Stick Rouge dabbed on my fingers to add a hint of color.  Why cover up redness and pile on the pink blush?  So many people overuse blush to tragic results.

Nars cheeks

7.     Revlon Colorstay Brown Eyeshadow – I am always on the hunt for the perfect brown shadow as there about a million shades.  Find the one that works for you and apply to the lid and just under the eye before applying a black liner.  Smudge and blend under the eye to soften the look and open up the eye.  Harsh dark liner that is not smudged will narrow the eye and make it appear smaller.  Too much black is not good for day, but a touch of brown shadow blended just under your black liner is perfect!  Use a larger brush to blend lid shadow perfectly onto the brow bone and go back and forth in the crease using a pointed brush with more of the same brown or a shade darker.  For a smokey eye, apply a darker shade of brown or charcoal just on the lid and blend up into the brown.

Revlon shadow


duo-dark-tone-7g8.     Duo lash adhesive glue in Dark – if you opt for lashes, apply with the dark Duo to avoid having to cover up the white glue when it dries.  The dark blends nicely with your dark liner.  Always trim the lashes from the inside corner so you still get the gradual increase in length from inner to outer corner.


9.  Chanel Le Volume Mascara – If you want to be asked if you are wearing fake lashes, this is the mascara for you!  It’s the one in the round, not square, tube.  Be sure to use a lash primer (mac has a great one) to condition, plump and lengthen the lashes before application.


10.  Baby Pink YSL lip gloss is my favorite nude lip for the smokey eye.  It goes on slick, does not clump and adds the perfect touch of color.


Happy Beautifying!




27 May 2014