If you are a busy working woman the last thing you need to worry about is whether your makeup will stay put through the school run, meetings, working lunch, presentation and commute home. And sadly it is a fact that women who wear makeup earn more than those who don’t – and unfairly women in business are still judged on appearance.
Most brands now make long-lasting makeup that doesn’t constantly need touching up, but there are also application techniques you can use to ensure it stays in place too, and creating a base for your colour products really makes them last.
This may sound like a lot of steps but with practice you will begin to get into a routine, and it’s worth the effort not to have to keep reapplying during the day. My makeup takes me no longer than about 5 minutes – promise!
So here are some top tips and products I recommend:
- Starting with your base – using a primer will prepare the skin for foundation and give it a smooth finish. My favourite is Laura Mercier Foundation Primer which comes in oil free and hydrating. Rather than rubbing this in spread it over the face and press gently.
- Then on to foundation – In premium brands I recommend Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay in Place Foundation £26.50 which also has an SPF, so good in the summer too. If yo are looking for a less expensive brand I am currently using Max Factor Ageless Elixir 2 in 1 foundation which contains a serum and gives a lovely velvety finish. Put a small amount on the back of your hand and then I use a Foundation brush from No7 at Boots (by the way these brushes are great and affordable – designed by top makeup artist Lisa Eldridge) starting at the nose and blending outwards as cheeks tend to need less coverage. Always brush downwards and blend in.
- Your next key step to keep foundation in place is a light dusting of loose powder. If you know you are going to be in an environment where you will get hot – presenting on stage under hot lights, for example – I suggest pressing a cotton wool disc onto the powder and then pressing and rolling over the skin, this really presses the powder in and sets the foundation. Finish with a large brush to dust off the excess, brushing downwards in the same direction as the fine hairs on your face. If you will be in a dryer environment just brush on your powder with the large brush. My favourite is Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish Loose Powder £23 Many of the cheaper brands do a loose translucent powder but this one is the one I have used for years, and it lasts for years too!
- On to blusher and here I use two – a cream and then a powder over the top which “sticks” to and sets the cream. Again I love the Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge for lips and cheeks £18 or a new great value find No7 Blush Tint Cream Blush £10. Apply using your foundation brush and then blend in upwards and outwards on the apples of the cheek. Powder over the top with your powder blusher. I like Laura Mercier Second Skin Cheek Colour £20.50 which can look a little scarily bright but when on looks gorgeous, or Max factor Flawless Perfection Blusher at a great £6.99
- For eyes again it is a case of base and then colour. This is a habit which started in my Colour Me Beautiful days with their fantastic eye base – but which I have since replaced with what I now call my secret weapon! Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Eyeshadow £17 in Sandy Gold. These eyeshadows do exactly what they say – stay put and don’t crease, even in very hot weather. If I want a casual look I will literally just wear this with a little eye liner and mascara. For a more polished look I will then add powder colours over this base. But the key here is the long lasting base, and I won’t even give you a cheaper alternative because these are in a multitude of lovely colours and worth every penny!
- My top tip for keeping lipstick in place is layering. Start with a smooth base – use a lip balm to keep them smooth – then use a pencil in the same or a close colour to you lipstick. Outline the lips with the pencil and then fill in with it too. This gives your lipstick a base to adhere to, and even when your lip colour wears off you should still have a remnant of colour from the pencil. For your first application use a brush to apply your lipstick, blot with a tissue and apply a second layer. Later in the day you can just top up from the bullet, but using a brush for the first application over the pencil gives real staying power. My favorite premium brand lipsticks are Bobbi Brown and Laura Mercier both available from House of Fraser or for a cheaper but great option which lasts and moisturises try L’Oréal Paris Perfection Colour Riche Lipstick
So next time you need your makeup to work as hard as you do try some or all of these tips and let me know how you get on. If you have any favourite long lasting products let us know in the comments below.