40+ Beauty Problems and How to Solve Them

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Lipstick Bleeding

One of the most frequent complaints I hear about is lipstick bleeding into the creases of the mouth. This problem, which can be caused by dry, cracked skin around the lips, isn't confined to just women over 40, but, again, older women tend to have drier skin.

To start, make it a point to apply a hydrating lip balm every day. I use lip balm before every lipstick application, but at the very least you should put it on in the morning when you apply your daily moisturizer and sunscreen. I always use lip balm before going to bed.

Next, dab a small bit of foundation over the edge of your lips, and blend out. This gives you a clean surface to work with, and fills in the tiny creases around the mouth where lipstick is likely to seep. Line the lips with lip pencil, and then, fill in the entire mouth with the same pencil. Use a lip brush to blend the color and ensure even coverage. The pencil will stain the lips and last longer than ordinary lipstick.

For real staying power, set the layer of lip pencil with a dusting of powder, and apply your favorite lipstick or gloss over that. Note that lipsticks are typically drier than glosses and will therefore last longer.

Mature women should stay away from overly dark lip colors, as they can be too severe. Shimmery, iridescent colors are better left to teenagers. Seek out bright, warm colors within your natural color family. Since lips tend to get smaller with age, look for a light-reflecting formula that will naturally enhance the appearance of your lips.

In general, exercise is the No. 1 source of energy for women over 40. Drink lots of water. Get plenty of sleep. And most important, don't smoke. If you feel beautiful on the inside, it will show on the outside.

Sonia Kashuk's book, Real Beauty, is available at bookstores nationwide.


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