Makeup can make us look awake when we’re sleep-deprived and younger when our skin shows signs of aging. While the right products can be miracle workers, some makeup trends can make us look older. We’ve rounded up some of the most outdated trends and alternatives for a younger, fresher look.
Building the Wrong Foundation
Foundation can be tricky: too much, too little, or the wrong color can make us look older. Matte formulas can make skin look dull, while wrong shades make skin look unnatural. No foundation, on the other hand, can result in uneven skin tone with a combination of dull and shiny skin.
Solution: Look for a shade that matches your skin tone. To avoid a caked-on look, choose a sheer, translucent formula you can layer if you need more coverage. Exfoliate two to three times a week and apply a moisturizer first to prevent the foundation from sticking to dry patches.
Powdering Too Much
Too much powder can prevent light reflection and make skin look unnaturally matte and dull. It can also settle into fine lines and accentuate aging skin.
Solution: Dust a translucent powder only on your oily areas, such as the T-zone. Carry blotting papers if your skin tends to get shiny about midday.
Caking on Concealer
If you have dark circles, you may resort to patting on thick concealer to cover them. But caking on too much means the product will settle into lines and magnify wrinkles around the eyes.
Solution: Apply moisturizer first (hydrated skin provides a smoother base) and then dab concealer onto the skin, focusing on the inner corners of your eyes. Opt for a highlighter pen to illuminate the under-eye area.
Solution: Opt for an understated color such as brown, grey, or navy in a matte or slightly shimmery formula. Shimmer can be applied to the inner corner to brighten eyes, but avoid dusting it over the entire lid.
Lining just the lower lid can make eyes look smaller and droopy, while harsh lines on the upper lids can look too heavy.
Solution: Line the upper lid by applying a soft brown or grey eyeliner close to the lash line, then slightly smudge it out for a more natural look. You can also blend liner from the outer corner of the eye to the lower lash line to soften the look.
Dark Lip Liner
Dark lip liner faded away with the ’90s and looks dated on almost everyone. But because lips lose fullness with age, lip liner can enhance and define your pout—when applied correctly.
Solution: Apply a color in the same shade as your lips or favorite lipstick. Line the outside of your lips with a cream pencil (it won’t stick to dry patches) and then fill them in with the same pencil. Apply lipstick on top.
Sweeping a heavy pinky purple blush across your cheeks can create a clownish or almost bruised appearance. Applying it too far below the cheek can also make your skin look saggy.
Solution: Starting at the center of the eye, sweep a sheer rosy or peach color along the cheekbone. Add just a touch of the blush to your brush; it can always be layered.
If you over-plucked your eyebrows in your younger years you’re not alone. But fuller brows will add more definition and frame your eyes. Avoid shades that are too dark: Eyebrow color fades with age so the same pencil from your 20s may not work in your 50s.
Solution: Fill in sparse eyebrows with quick, short strokes using a pencil a shade lighter than your natural eyebrows. Comb brows to blend the color, and finish with a gel to keep hairs in place.
While bold, dark trends can make you look older, going too natural can have the same effect. In one study, more facial contrast gave a younger appearance.
Solution: Since lips and eyebrows can lose fullness with age, define and darken slightly without going overboard. Stick to one pop of color on either the eyes or lips, and pair with a neutral face and a touch of blush.
Makeup can help enhance your look for a fresher and younger look. But too much color, heavy foundation, or other outdated trends can make you look older than you really are. Stick to these alternatives to look and feel your best!