Makeup Secrets

By Asuncion Parra Llorente

Makeup secrets to correct the most common problems

1. A secret to liven up dull, lifeless skin.
2. A trick for correcting acne, eye rings and skin blemishes.
3. An easy guide to knowing what skin-type you have
4. Tricks for making yourself up in 10 minutes

1. A secret to liven up dull, lifeless skin.
Though it may seem complicated; with a few quick steps your skin can change in a matter of seconds.

Three basic steps ;

1. Cleansing
Cleanse your face with your usual make-up remover and finish cleansing by rinsing your whole face in cold water

2. Exfoliation
Apply an exfoliating face pack over the whole face, not forgetting the neck, and avoiding the eye and lip areas (Follow the product-specific instructions), later remove the face pack with water and pat the face dry, without rubbing.

3. Moisturising
First apply a moisturising tonic if your skin is dry or normal, and a descaling cleansing tonic if your skin is combination or greasy. Apply it over totally dry skin with a cotton pad in small touches without spreading it, so as not to irritate the skin.

Apply eye contour treatment if you need it, or if you normally use it.

Apply a moisturising serum for your skin-type (this is normally sold in ampoules at the chemistís. Most make-up brands also produce different serums according to skin type)

Finally, apply the moisturising cream over the whole face, once the serum has been properly absorbed.

THE KEY STEP: The most important step here is the exfoliation, as skin normally appears dull and lifeless when there are dead skin cells that need removing. You should do the cleansing and moisturising steps daily (except for the serum which would be for specific occasions, according to the indications on the product used).

2. A trick for correcting acne, eye rings and skin blemishes.
The corrector/concealer is the star product here, but if you donít have one, we are adding a trick to be able to use foundation instead of corrector.

Eye rings
Apply foundation the way you normally would (foundation should be liquid or in a cream texture) once you are done, apply the foundation with a synthetic-hair brush, once again on the eye ring region. When you finish, using a large powder puff, apply a little loose powder that is lighter than your makeup base. Apply the powder in small touches and in tiny quantities, so as not to produce folds in such a delicate area.

For acne or facial blemishes
Just as in the last step, but in the area you need to correct, here the powder you apply should be the same tone as the foundation, or totally transparent.

With this step what you have done is concentrate the foundation over the area to be corrected. Of course, the ideal thing is to use a specific corrector for eye rings, and another specific one for acne (there are brands that do acne correctors which treat as well as correct) in this case you can follow the same steps, and use corrector instead of the foundation, and youíll see how much better the result is than when you use corrector alone.

3. An easy guide to knowing what skin-type you have
These are the most common skin types; pay attention to the characteristics of each, and identify your skin type. The best thing is always to consult a dermatologist or aesthetician.


The skin feels dry and tight.

Wrinkles appear easily, and it has no grease unless you moisturise.

Dry skin normally has a soft aspect, with small pores. Itís uncommon for it to have blackheads or zits.

Dryness may increase or decrease depending on the environment, the weather, computers, air conditioning.

One way of determining the skinís dryness is to take it between thumb and fingers, pushing it up and then letting it go. If it snaps back to place immediately, then itís sufficiently moisturised, if there is a little delay, then it needs moisturising.

To keep this skin soft and smooth, you need highly moisturising products, products with nutrients, moisturising face packs and eye contour treatment for day and night. Soaps should be avoided as they tend to dry up the skin. The same goes for products that contain alcohol.

Normal skin is neither greasy nor dry, and tends not to have zits.

The skin is perfect and appears fresh and smooth. This perfect-looking skin has small pores, and can be a little greasier in the T zone. This skin-type is not very common among adults, but can be found among almost all children.

People with this skin-type should use products specially for normal-to-sensitive skin in order to maintain this type of skin. They should avoid products that contain alcohol.

Combination skin has a greasy area: the T zone, and is normal over the cheeks and neck. One needs to choose products very carefully. Moisturising a lot, and avoid drying the skin, putting a particular emphasis on cleanliness.

Greasy skin tends to appear dull, and have blackheads. This skin is constantly producing grease. Greasy skin keeps young for longer. This skin type should be treated with specific, oil-free products but that should be sufficiently moisturising. Besides this, cleansing should be done with cleansing face packs, together with other products for greasy-skin care. The quality of this type of skin will vary from one day to the next, depending on external factors such as tobacco, stress, weather, food, etc.

Irritated blood vessels below the skin are typical in sensitive skin. Skin often feels dry and gets irritated very easily. Perfumed products and soaps can irritate this type of skin. Even products specially designed for sensitive skin can cause inflammation. The only way to find the right kind of product for it is to try them out beforehand. Products should be tried out on the inside of the arm, as any potential reaction will not be as strong here as on the face. Sensitive skin is most common among blonde or red-haired people.

Recommended products for this skin-type are gentle and very moisturising ones. Avoid very perfumed products or those that contain alcohol. Sensitive skin should not be overly exposed to the sun or to very warm temperatures.

4. Tricks for making yourself up in 10 minutes
These are the steps to follow once the skin is totally clean and moist:

Apply corrector in the areas that need it
Put the foundation on
Put the rouge on
Put on eye pencil
Put on mascara
Put on lip pencil
Put on lip gloss or balm

And thatís it. Youíll be completely made up and with a natural and pleasant aspect.
And yes, this make up should last all day, except of course on your lips, and besides, it should take you no more than 10 minutes to put on.

Below we describe each step:

-Apply corrector where necessary
This step should take a few seconds, and the difference between doing it and not doing it can be significant.

Those among you with perfect skin can avoid it, and just use it as an illuminator.
I recommend using it before foundation, although there are products on the market which are meant to be used afterwards; it doesnít matter, as the question is to correct these areas.

The key thing here is to use the corrector in the areas where the foundation will not be able to unify the tone: a zit, a very noticeable eye ring. Once you are through you can switch to putting on the foundation.

Put on the foundation

Use a make-up sponge (with or without latex, according to preference and skin type) and moisten it (just lightly) so as to be able to spread it more quickly (naturally, I am referring here to liquid or cream foundation, which are the easiest and quickest to put on).

For the liquid version, apply some on the upper part of your left hand (or the other way round if you are left-handed), and dab the liquid foundation lightly with the dampened sponge, but donít pick it all up.

Start to apply the foundation from the forehead towards the sides, next from the nose towards either side, then the chin towards either side and upwards, and lastly the neck and the ears, if you are short-haired.

Once your whole face is made up, with another part of the sponge, go over the areas where you can see too much make-up, and spread it in small upward strokes.

Put more emphasis on the areas that need correction most, for instance on the outer corner of the eye (this tends to go red) on the nostrils and around the lips.

Applying rouge
This is the easiest bit. Use a tone that flatters you and apply it on the cheekbone and on the mobile eyelid with a rouge brush, blending well so that it ends up looking natural, with a loose powder brush, or using the same rouge brush but with no product on.

That's it. You can go to the next step now.

Applying eye pencil
This step is a perfect trick if you have few eyelashes or want to make them look thicker than they are.

Sharpen the pencil, and for daytime makeup use one in dark brown or grey (for it to look more natural) and apply it in small touches (not in a line) among the lashes on the mobile lid, avoiding the tear duct area, and end up three or four lashes short of where the eye ends.

The idea is that it look like we have more lashes, not like we are wearing mascara.

If it is too noticeable, its because you have put too much product on. Donít worry: just blend it out with a fine brush or a Q-tip.

Applying mascara
This is an indispensable step in make-up. I know that many of you donít like mascara because youíve got to remove it later, it runs, etc. The truth is that, yes, obviously you have to remove it in the end, but if you use a good mascara (for daytime it neednít be water-resistant: normal ones come off easily) as well as protecting your eyelashes all day, itíll come off when removed.

A good trick is to always do the lower lashes first, to avoid staining the upper eyelid. Apply the mascara in zigzag fashion, then apply the mascara on the upper lashes, firstly downwards, then upwards. You neednít put on too much mascara, as this is daytime make-up.

You can use a dark brown mascara but as we are using so little colour in the face, I recommend the black, unless youíre a very light-blue-eyed blonde.

Applying lipstick
Although this is basic daytime makeup, I recommend not to forget the lips. If youíve paid attention, youíll have noticed that at no time did I say that I recommend making the lips up with foundation , since, the way I see it, foundation on the lips does not look very natural.

Use a pencil very close in tone to your lip, tending towards the pink but with brown pigments, outline the lips and put some inside the lips also. This way itíll last you a lot longer and you wonít need to use lipstick unless you so desire.

Apply gloss or balm
The pencil will normally tend to dry a bit, and to blend the colour in youíll need a little gloss or balm, which one is up to you; balm is more moisturising and natural, and gloss makes your lips thicker and more juicy.

Final touch
Apply an illuminator (or if you donít have one, a bit of white, semi-pearl powder will do) in the space below the eyebrow , at the top of the cheekbone, and on the chin, so as to light up the face in a very natural manner, making you look spectacular.

About the Author:

Articles by Asuncion Parra Llorente a Beauty coach and founder and professional Make Up teacher at the Make Up school Elite Make Up.

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