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5 Makeup Mistakes That Are Dragging Your Face Down

In terms of actual application, you want to make sure your makeup creates a lifting effect. The wrong placement can result in a look that drags down your features. Here’s where the contents of your makeup bag should properly be applied:


Blush: Yes, it is possible to trick gravity with precise blush application. “Smiling and applying blush on the apples of your cheeks? Not anymore,” says Irwin. “Instead, put blush almost a half inch higher than you normally would will give you a visual 'lift' effect.” Think on the very top of the cheekbone, almost the under-eye area rather than the apple of the cheek.

Bronzer: Sweep a creamy formula where the sun would naturally hit: across your forehead and down the center and around the sides your face. Anywhere else could result in a muddied-looking complexion.

Contour: “I’m not a huge fan of contouring on anyone over about 40. As you age, you lose fat in your face, and naturally gain the definition that contouring provides,” says Irwin. If you must, use a cream that’s just a teeny bit darker than your skin tone below the cheekbones.

Eye Shadow: Apply shadow with your eyes open—this allows you to see exactly how the color will look on. Savrani suggests blending a darker shade on the outer lids for additional definition, but make sure to blend well to avoid a drooping effect.

Eyeliner: “With age, your features also change shape and eyeliner can look too severe,” explains Savrani. An easy way to avoid this is by switching to brown pencil. “I like to tight-line it into the upper lash line, including underneath the lashes. This gives the effect of a lifted upper eye, and tricks the eye into thinking the lashes are thicker, as well,” adds Irwin.

Eyebrow Pencil: While it’s important to find the right shade (too dark can look obvious and unnatural), the actual shape of your arches should be your main focus. A brow that’s too square can make your face look heavy. The best way to groom them? Start by brushing them in their natural curve before using a brow pencil to draw a light, yet clear contour line following the bottom edge of the eyebrow. “Next, brush them down and do the same on the top edge. Then brush them back up,” advises Savrani. “Once you have those two lines, fill in the brows using light, feathery strokes—as if you were drawing individual hairs.” For added lift, sweep a light matte eyeshadow right under the arch.

Lipstick: Similar to foundation, the more hydrating and plumping properties your lip color has the better. If you have creases around your lip, lightly line them with a shade that matches your lipstick to keep the pigment from bleeding out.

Okay, this one isn't specifically about makeup, but Irwin says she sees it all the time. “The number-one mistake people make is not using the right moisturizer or enough of it!” says Irwin. If you already have fine lines, dry, flaky skin will simply accentuate those creases more. Proper hydration keeps your complexion looking plump and lifted while also creating a smooth base for your makeup, so look for face cream that are packed with nourishing hyaluronic acid. Layer on a hydrating primer on the parts of the face that have visible pores or on places where makeup tends to rub off during the day for an additional boost. Beyond choosing the correct skincare, skip the powder formulas (they can look cake-y) and opt for makeup that has moisturizing properties like cream blush, sheer tinted foundation, and lightweight concealer.