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Get a print subscription to Reader’s Digest and instantly enjoy free digital access on any device. Makeup trends come and go—blue eye shadow, anyone? As you get older, your skin tends to thin and develop fine lines, and your makeup routine needs to change to accommodate those nuances. The first order of business is to toss out powder, which reliably makes you look older. Powder adds way too much texture, looks cakey, and takes the life out of your skin. As you age, you naturally lose definition in your lips, so you want to avoid dark colors like deep reds, purples, and browns, which make your pout look even smaller, less highlighted, and less plump. Choose a color that blends into your skin tone color palette,” Joseph suggests.
You can find the best hue for yourself if you look at the color tone of your lips, tongue, and gums. Let your natural palate guide you to the right colors. Many women apply dark blush or bronzer beneath their cheekbones in the hopes of slimming their face. However, this attempt at contouring often ends up looking dull, muddy, and unnatural.
Instead, your blush should match your natural flush, and you should apply it in places where it would naturally appear—not in a line down your cheekbone or highly concentrated onto the apples of your cheeks. Lining your bottom lids can make your eyes appear smaller, dragged down, and overall older. The eyes already start drooping with age, so you don’t want to accentuate this process with lines beneath your eyes. If you must apply eyeliner to your lower lashes, stick to the outer corners and make sure the top and bottom lines connect. Your natural lip line will begin to fade as you age, which makes lipstick more apt to bleed and feather. Yet another reason to avoid dark-colored lipsticks. To avoid this unfortunate makeup migration, be sure to trace your lips with a clear lip liner, or one the same color as your natural lips.
This will create a barrier between your lips and the surrounding fine lines, helping the color stay put. Let’s face it, as you get older, the skin under your eyes naturally gets thinner and darker. But that isn’t an invitation to start piling on heavy concealer. A thick layer of undereye concealer is extremely likely to crack and cake, which only draws more attention to the area. Sparkles that settle into wrinkles are not a glamorous look.
Sparkles are especially aging on the eyelids because they magnify and bring attention to every fine line. If you’re feeling festive and really want to glam it up, limit sparkly shadow to the inner corners of your eyes and the center of your lids. By now you’ll also want to stop believing these popular makeup myths. Eyebrows become thinner due to natural hair loss as you age, so filling in sparse sections is an absolute must. Brows should always be kept defined, well-shaped, and fairly full, as this looks youthful and healthy, according to Joseph.
Plus, eyebrows frame your face, so without a nice, full shape, your face is likely to look heavier, rounder, and wider. When filling in brows, don’t just grab a random brown that seems neutral enough—or you risk looking like a granny cartoon with black, Sharpie-marker brows. The fact is that your eyebrow color gradually fades to grey, white, or so fair that the brows are practically invisible, so it’s imperative that you choose a pencil color that matches. Joseph recommends going with a brow pencil or gel with brown undertones. Stay far, far away from frosty or iridescent highlighter shades, as these light-reflecting effects actually accentuate fine lines and creases. They also appear highly unnatural and painted on, just sitting atop the skin instead of blending into it.
For highlight and radiance, avoid frosts and use creamy pearlescents instead,” Joseph says. Boomstick Glimmer is great for this. By the time you’ve celebrated 40 birthdays or more, you’re likely to have collected some souvenirs—like acne scars and other random unneven spots, and you may also have dry, flaking skin. Primers are like the spackle you’d use when repainting a wall—they create a smooth base that ensures all makeup stays put and doesn’t crack. Primers also help diminish the appearance of pronounced wrinkles and fine lines, leaving you with a silky smooth finish.