Too Cool For School: Gorgeous Back-to-School Beauty Looks—Using School Supplies!

Rachel Adler
Too Cool For School: Gorgeous Back-to-School Beauty Looks—Using School Supplies!
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We’re not quite sure how it crept up on us, but the start of school is already around the corner. You know what that means: It’s time to figure out your best new look to impress that guy you were eyeing in class last year (and, of course, make all the girls you don’t like jealous).

Now, a great look should never mean sacrificing time in class — we all know it’s the smart girls who get ahead! — but we’re big fans of making every second count when it comes to your beauty routine. In order to use those last seconds before class starts to touch up your makeup, or to steal time before you have to meet for student government to finish that fabulous manicure, we believe in prioritizing your time to its full potential.

With that philosophy in mind, consider the tools at your everyday disposal when you’re in a beauty jam: school supplies. That’s right, the items you carry around every day in your backpack are far more versatile than you think.

Remember the old “business card” mascara trick for helping with smudging? It can easily be replicated with an index card. Have you ever struggled to get a half-moon manicure? Well, that’s what your binder reinforcement stickers are for! We enlisted help from MAC Cosmetics senior artist Gina Bettelli and Sally Hershberger hairstylist Edgar Parra to help us get some of our favorite beauty looks (and some that are a bit more playful) with basic, everyday school supplies.

Next time you need to perfect your cat eye in between classes and think that you don’t have the right tools, think again!

Photographer: Ally Lindsay

Makeup Artist: Gina Bettelli, MAC Cosmetics
Hairstylist: Edgar Parra, Top 5 Management, Sally Hershberger Salon
Models: Samantha Drew and Fiona Singh, Q Management
Nails: Jaclyn Sciara
Special thanks to The New School

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Hair Chalk: Hairstylist Eddie notes that to have the most success when chalking your hair (art pastels work the best!) you should make sure that your hair is completely clean. Then, spray down the parts of your hair that you want to chalk with water. "Pick colors you want to fade into each other. The lighter the hair the more the color will pop. If you have darker hair, you want to pick vibrant colors," Eddie advises.  

Gold Stars for Glittery Eyes: During the fall 2013 runway shows, we saw a lot of "statement eyes" on the runways, with shows like Chanel using fun sequins on model's eyelids. You can, of course, try out the trend yourself (if you're daring enough!) by using gold or silver stars and a hole puncher. Cut the stars in half or create perfect circles with the hole puncher, and keep the rest of your face minimal or matte. Makeup artist Gina suggests using a crayon to apply the small pieces of sticker around your eyes. 

Eraser to Smudge Your Liner: If you love making your eyes the center of your look, this trick is for you. After you've drawn a graphic line with a kohl pencil (we chose the crease of the lids, but you can get creative!), smudge the edges using your pencil eraser to diffuse the shape. If you have eyeshadow on hand, Gina advises adding some shadow above the liner to set the pencil in place and add extra dimension. 

Index Card for Flawless Mascara: We all touch up our mascara throughout the day, and when we're in a rush, we get it everywhere. Next time, pull out an index card and place it along your top lash line, resting the card against your eyelid. Then, you can coat your lashes with mascara and use the card as a backdrop to absorb any of the excess!

Binder Reinforcements for Mistake-Proof Nail Art: When it comes to adorable nail art, having a steady hand is key. In case you weren't blessed with manicurists' hands, we have a trick for you. To get adorable half-moon nail art, just stick your binder reinforcement stickers on your nails (you know you don't really use them anyway). Then, paint any color you want over the rest of your nail and once dry, peel the sticker off carefully. Finish with a top coat! 

Pencil Bun: Have you always wanted to know how to get your hair to stay in a simple bun using only a pencil? Us, too. Eddie tells us that the trick to getting your bun to stay in place is to wrap your hair into a really tight bun, and then secure it with the pencil, making sure the ends are tucked in. "Treat the pencil as if it were a bobby pin. Grab a piece of hair with the tip of the pencil, and then punch towards the scalp, and away, to secure it in," Eddie advises.

Scotch Tape for a Perfect Cat Eye: If you struggle to get that perfect cat eye angle, this tip is for you – especially if you have a hot date after school and need a quick bathroom touch-up. Take a piece of tape (Gina recommends sticking it to fabric first to make it less sticky), and line up the edge of the tape to the outer corner of your eye—you can use your eyebrow as a guide. The edge of the tape will help to give you a perfectly straight line and save you time!

White Pencil as a Nail-Whitener: Nude and neutral nail polish is making a big return this season, so we need to keep our nails clean! If you're in a jam, grab a white colored pencil and clean out under your nails, or simply color underneath your tips with the pencil to whiten them up.

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Bobby Pin How To: Which Pins to Use Where

Bobby Pin How To: Which Pins
to Use Where