Your Top Beauty Woes -- Solved!
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Your Top Beauty Woes -- Solved!

From scars and dark circles to cakey foundation, makeup pro Bobbi Brown provides solutions for your top beauty problems.

Problem Solved

When it comes to beauty tips, the first thing women ask me is how to change a feature they're not happy with. My response each time is always the same: When I look at a woman, I don't see what's wrong with her. I see what's right. I believe that makeup is a way for a woman to look and feel like herself, only prettier and more confident. So instead of obsessing over the shape of your nose or wishing you had higher cheekbones, think about playing up your sexy eyes or great smile. All it takes is knowing what makeup shades and formulas to pick, and using the right tips and techniques to fit your beauty style. Here's how to handle 10 common makeup dilemmas:

Beauty Woe: Disappearing makeup Bobbi's Fix: The trick to sweat- and smudge-proof makeup is layering different textures. A wet or creamy texture like concealer will stay put if you set it with a dusting powder, which is a dry texture. Use this layering technique for face, eyes, and lips and I promise your makeup won't budge.

Beauty Woe: Creased eyeshadow Bobbi's Fix: The key to getting your makeup to last for hours is powder. Using loose powder will help your makeup stay put and keep it from evaporating too quickly. For long-lasting eyes, begin by applying eye cream to the under-eye area only -- any extra moisture on the eyelid will cause the shadow to crease. After that, use a puff (I love velour puffs) to press powder onto your entire eyelid to prime it. You'll find that any eye makeup you apply afterwards stays in place much longer.

Beauty Woe: Dark spots/age spots Bobbi's Fix: Your skin thins out as you get older, and you start to notice that the area under your eyes looks darker. The solution is finding the right concealer to both lighten and cover up dark circles. The same concealer you use for dark circles can also be used to help hide age spots. Use a concealer brush to apply just a touch of concealer to the spot you want to hide, and pat it on to blend. Add more if needed, and then put your foundation on over that.

Beauty Woe: Skin bumps and blemishes Bobbi's Fix: Bumps on the skin are often caused by ingrown hairs. To prevent this, use a gentle exfoliator.

Beauty Woe: Dull skin Bobbi's Fix: Drinking plenty of water is one of my top secrets to a clearer, smoother complexion. To perk up your skin with makeup, add a pop of blush on the apples of your cheeks -- it will instantly give you a brighter glow.

More Beauty Woes Solved

Beauty Woe: Uneven-sized lips Bobbi's Fix: Most people's bottom lip tends to be fuller than the top lip. If you have thin lips, don't try to create a bigger pout by pencil-lining beyond the edge of your mouth -- it just won't look right. Instead, look for a medium-tone lip color and use a lip pencil to define your mouth, following your natural lip line. Make sure to choose a lip pencil that is the same shade as your lip (or one shade darker). Apply gloss on top of your ordinary lipstick for a more full look.

Beauty Woe: Smeared eyeliner or "raccoon eyes" Bobbi's Fix: To make your eyeliner last, line eyes with a shadow eyeliner on a damp eyeliner brush, or with a long-wearing gel eyeliner. If you use a pencil eyeliner, follow up by lining eyes with eyeshadow (in the same color as the pencil) applied with an eyeliner brush. Or, wet the eyeliner brush and apply the eyeshadow damp.

Beauty Woe: Cakey foundation Bobbi's Fix: Always prime your skin with moisturizer before applying foundation (Give the moisturizer a minute to absorb before you put on foundation). If you feel that you've put on too much foundation or that you created a lumpy texture, smooth the flats of both hands over your face to gently move the foundation from the center toward the hairline and jawline. To set the foundation, take a velour puff and use it to press powder over the foundation; this locks the foundation into place and helps prevent oil breakthrough.

Beauty Woe: Facial scars Bobbi's Fix: To conceal blemishes or scars, use a concealer brush to apply foundation that matches your skintone exactly. Do not use actual concealer; since it is lighter than your skin tone, it will only draw light and attention to the area. Remember to use powder to lock in the foundation.

Beauty Woe: Oily skin Bobbi's Fix: To keep oily skin under control, start by cleansing your face with a gentle gel formula that contains oil-controlling ingredients like seaweed extract. Avoid toners containing alcohol, as they can dry the surface of your skin. Your moisturizer should be oil-free; you can use a gel or a mattifying cream made especially for oily skin. Exfoliate your skin twice a week, concentrating on blackhead-prone areas like the nose and chin. When applying your makeup, use oil-free formulas and carry pressed powder to control shine during the day.