Youthful makeup techniques

Posted: Updated:

It seems to happen overnight, doesn't it? One day, you've got your makeup routine down to a science, you can read the morning paper, all is well in your fairly youth filled world.

Watch now

Then, you wake up and you're older! Even your makeup doesn't look right. This happened to me in what seems like an instant. Everything I knew about experimenting, colors and makeup technique fell flat. So, I had to involve a professional. A professional make-up artist because I refused to keep doing the same old, same old and making myself look dated or worse - older because of my makeup. I went to one of the best in town, Karen Hall, Makeup Artist Extraordinaire. So, here's what I learned regardless of the type of makeup you use, try these application techniques and shave off the years.

First, warm up your skin with foundation and blush. Skin that has warmth will look younger and have a certain glow. Pretty much everything from this point on is an added benefit. In fact if you just do this, top it with a little mascara and lip-gloss that will get you through most daytime duties.

Your foundation should match your skin. As you work it over the face, be sure to include your lips. Yes, cover your lips, you'll know why in a moment. Then, use a bronzer as a blush - that's what gives it that glow that we all strive for. In fact, it doesn't have to be an actual bronzer, just a blush in a bronzy color with a warm undertone. Most cosmetic lines carry on. I found nice ones by Revlon and also Sonya Kushak at Target.

Using a large blush brush sweep it on the cheeks, brow bone, forehead, nose and chin and I like to even go down onto my neck and collarbones. It may seem like a lot but it's not, just think of it like where the sun hits the face.

Here's a nice tip I found if your foundation seems to settle into your lines. Take a makeup brush and dampen it. Squeeze out all the water so it's barely damp to the touch. Then use it to pat any area of your face that seems to collect your foundation. You can do this throughout the day as needed.

If you use concealer, mix it with a tiny bit of eye cream or eye gel - takes the cakey-ness out for a smooth application.

Now to the eyes. Shadow your eyes more; line them less. Dark rimmed eyes alone can be very harsh and aging. Use shadow and highlight where they naturally occur without looking overdone. And, never forget your brows.

Now, back to those foundation-covered lips. It seems the older we get the more the color of the lips shrinks and the shape remains. We tend to follow color with a lip pencil instead of shape. That's why; if you apply foundation to your lips you can see the real lip shape. Outline there just above the natural lip shape. Use liner in a natural color over the whole lip - look for the names, natural, spice or nude in a liner. Then, apply your lipstick, then lip gloss only in the center. If you use gloss too close to the edge of the lip it will bleed and create those lovely colored little vertical lines.

Here's what Karen Hall says about lip color:

"As far as lip color goes, a good rule of thumb is, don't go any darker than the depth of the eye color. Deeper eye color can usually do a deeper lip color, lighter eye color, lighter lip. Just keep it soft...even a red lip can be softened. No hard fast rules here, as some older gals look great in a red lip (as long as they have maximized the shape}, and some look harsh and older. It depends also on skin color, fullness of the face, etc.....

And of course, blend. Put your make-up on in good light, and if you need to, use a magnifying mirror to assure you have blended well."

You can't get better advice than you get from Karen. Those are her tips in a nutshell.

All I can add is that I love, love one other thing. And, being well into my fifties, I've already tried it all. I swear by one definite purchase - Smashbox Photofinish Primer. It makes your pores appear smaller and your foundation go on so much smoother. That, girls, would be the $25 purchase I would make the minute I woke up on that memorable day when my makeup looked dated.

Regardless, just caring makes a difference. 50 and proud. Join me in looking good!

Live and Learn.