40+ Beauty Problems and How to Solve Them

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Overdoing It

Once you hit your 40s, a makeup routine should become less about color and more about the skin, and whether you need foundation and concealer. You've probably noticed that a little goes a long way! Experimenting is fine, as long as you remember to BLEND.

For women over 40, I recommend the old adage "less is more." Too much can end up calling attention to your makeup -- not your features -- and that defeats the purpose. With good skincare and maintenance, a beautiful, youthful look can be obtained with less product. The trick is in the application.

Start with concealer, keeping it sheer to hide dark spots, such as undereye circles, age spots, broken capillaries, etc. Then, use foundation to hide uneven skin, especially on the eyelids, neck area, and around the nostrils. An oil-based liquid foundation will move easily over dry and mature skin. Once your skin is evened out, decide how much makeup you really need. Many older women look beautiful with just a pinch of blush on the apples of the cheeks, and defined lips and brows.

For blush, look for soft shades such as pinks, mauves, and peach, and be sure to blend well. Keep eye shadows fairly light and neutral with shades of brown or taupe. Grays, soft purples, and blues also work well with gray hair. Strong colors such as charcoal or black can be used subtly to get more intensity from the eyes. It used to be a no-no to wear shimmer shadows (which may accentuate lines) but most shimmer formulas are refined now, so anyone can wear them. Above all, apply all color with a good makeup brush. Brushes are essential for precise application. Each time you dab the brush into a compact of color, tap it a few times to release any excess product before it goes on the face. This will help control the application no matter what color you use.

Many older women prefer cream blushes to powders as they don't settle in fine lines. I say experiment, and see what works best for you.

You can use pencils to line the eyes. Use a brush to blend pencil outward to keep the line from looking too severe. Opt for brown or gray liners, which are less intense than black. Finally, give your eyes the most natural lift with an eyelash curler, a favorite tool of mine. This will make a huge difference in opening up the eyes, whether or not you wear mascara. Curl the top lashes, using little pumping motions, moving from the lash line to the end of the lashes in an upward sweep. Black mascara works on everyone, and black/brown gives a slightly softer look.

Full, well-shaped eyebrows complete the look. Women often make the mistake of going too dark with their brow pencil. If you have brown eyebrows, you don't need a dark brown pencil -- try a gray/brown instead. Blondes can use taupe. On the gray side? Try a taupe-gray tone.

Continued on page 3:  Lipstick Bleeding


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