Having been a beauty journalist for 5 years, a blogger for two and a fully fledged beauty junkie since I was old enough to hold a lipstick in my hand, it’s safe to say I’ve trialled every product out there, put every treatment to test and picked up a plethora of tips and tricks along the way…
- BROWN MASCARA: I discovered this trick years ago from a family member and it has stuck with me ever since. Layer brown mascara on your bottom lashes for daytime if you want a wider-eyed look. I don’t know how or why it works but it does. Its more understated too – although I still apply copious layers of black mascara to the top lashes.
- CREDIT CARD EYELINER: You’ve probably seen bloggers sticking sellotape along the side of their face to get the perfect feline flick. Well, for the novices out there, I think a harder surface makes this easier. Just line up a credit/debit card under your lower lash line up to the end of your eyebrow and sketch out a rough line. Then wing this back to the centre of the lid and fill in.
- BABY OIL POST SHAVING: I’m not advocating you shave WITH baby oil here, in fact I particularly dislike shaving with an oil – be it coconut or any sort of bath oil. It leaves the bath with a hairy film and said film then sticks to you post bath and defeats the whole point of shaving when you’re roaming around with random clumps of hair stuck to various ligaments. I’m recommending you slather on baby oil as soon as you’re out of the bath or shower, when skin is still slightly damp and you’ll have the smoothest skin for days after. It gleams like a Victoria’s Secret model too.
- DIY FACE MASK WITH AVOCADO: A very gifted Indian facialist I often see (she’s based in Islington, London) advised me of this complexion perfector – if you have sensitive, inflamed skin then this is a miracle worker. Mash up an avocado in a bowl and add some olive oil. Apply all over your face with your fingers and leave it on for 15 minutes or so. Remove with lukewarm water and a flannel/muslin cloth – redness is instantly soothed and skin is hydrated and glowing.
- APPLY CONCEALER IN A TRIANGLE SHAPE: From Charlotte Tilbury, to Sharon Dowsett, Lisa Eldridge and Lucia Pieroni (some of the best makeup artists in the world), a common rule for concealer application is to go for the triangle. Don’t apply concealer right up under your lashes, but leave a gap of a few cm’s and then have the tip of the triangle resting on the apples of the cheeks. This gives an uplit, brightening effect to your face and hides those bags and dark circles without looking like an extra from Casper.
- COLOUR CORRECT FIRST: One of the best makeup tricks I have ever discovered and one which totally changed how my makeup looked, was colour correction. Before applying foundation and after applying primer, you correct any colour deficiencies you have in the skin. I suffer with Rosacea so I always apply a green based concealer – Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat Neutraliser in Green, £25, is brilliant and gives a totally uniform tone to the complexion before you’ve even got started with foundation.
- WASH MAKEUP BRUSHES WITH SOAP: I know you have probably always been advised to wash your makeup brushes with a ‘gentle shampoo’ but in honesty, I think it washes them as well as a cold shower with no shower gel would clean your body after a Tough Mudder race. I.e. NOT AT ALL. No amount of gentle shampoo can cut through weeks of grime, dirt and oil that builds up, whilst Fairy Liquid leaves brushes too dry and the handles crack. Now this may sound a little excessive, but the best brush cleaner I have ever stumbled across is a bar of Jo Malone Soap – English Pear & Freesia to be exact. Dampen the soap and the brush head and then run the brush repeatedly over the bar. Watch the product build-up slide off and see how quickly the brush is squeaky clean, smells amazing and gives your makeup a better finish. You can thank me later.
- REMOVE SELF-TAN WITH OIL: Forget gritty scrubs to remove fake tan, run a hot bath and soak in any body oil for half an hour. When you’re ready to get out, use a flannel or sponge and in circular motions, rub away at self tan and watch it disappear with no red skin left behind.