8 Smarter Ways to Put On Your Makeup

Aly Walansky
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Girl getting her makeup done

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We put on makeup every morning, probably using the same routine we’ve used for years. We have it set to a science, but is our science the best we can be? We can be saving time and energy by doing our makeup smarter – and it’s often easier than you may think!

Prep the skin:
Preparing the skin is a must before you apply any type of foundation. This means starting with a light moisturizer with SPF and primer, says makeup artist Lisa Gibson. Apply moisturizer first and allow it to set a minute, then apply primer. Taking these steps prior to foundation will ensure your skin is both protected, moisturized and smoother with less visible pores and fine lines, says Gibson. Primer will keep foundation from settling in to fine lines, extend time between touch-ups as well as hide larger pores.

The power of powder:
Translucent pressed powder is the great equalizer if you’ve applied too much eyeshadow or blush. Blend away a bit of the excess and pat on some translucent powder, says celebrity makeup artist and brow expert Ramy Gafni. It will take the edge off the color and soften it. This also works well if your brow filler looks too dark or too warm.

MORE: How to Find the Best Concealer For You

Order matters:
Apply lipstick first and then add your lip liner, says Gafni. Once lipstick is applied you can see exactly where you need the lip liner. Bonus: The two will fade together instead of leaving you with that “ring around the lips”!

Applying eyeshadow first before foundation can be a great clean up time saver and be smarter as well, says Gibson. If dramatic eyes are your thing, you know the shadow can be messy! Apply the entire eye look first, use a facial wipe to clean up & then your foundation and the rest of your makeup, says Gibson. It’s faster, and no worries of darker eyeshadow accidentally mixing into your concealer or foundation! Another smart tip for eyeshadow and liner, use a strip of paper medical tape (at most drugstores for about $4) and apply it on outer edge of eyes in a slanted direction from mid-point of lower lashes to temple, says Gibson. Paper medical tape is gentler than regular tape to the delicate eye area.

Clean up, don’t give up:
If you’ve applied too much foundation, no need to remove it all. Simply grab a cotton ball and buff away the excess by tapping over it in circular motions, says Gafni. The excess foundation ends up on the cotton and what’s left behind is buffed to a natural finish.

MORE: How to Play Up Pale Winter Skin

Blending is key:
If you struggle to create a smooth line with eyeliner, apply the liner first (on upper lash line) then add eyeshadow, blending the shadow on your lids right into the liner, says Gafni. No one will be able to tell where the eye shadow ends and the line begins, so the liner will look perfect!

Mix and match:
If you bought a foundation or concealer that is too light for your complexion, don’t toss it. Add an apricot or nude blush or a light bronzer and it will warm up the color to make it match your complexion, Gafni says.

Perfect lips:
When it comes to lipstick, keeping it clean with no color bleed is key, especially with bright or red shades. Use a colorless lip pencil prior to lipstick or lip liner application, says Gibson. This will prevent feathering and reduce appearance of any fine lines around lips! Try using lip liner as your lip color, too. Line outer lips and fill in with same color. Add a swipe of gloss or lip balm and your done!

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