First you need expert party tricks to fake your way to flawless. Then you need emergency measures to stay there…
How to: Make partied-out peepers popTechnique: “I always carry a bottle of [anti-redness] eye drops in my kit for this,” says make-up artist Di Kennedy. “It’s only a temporary solution, but it causes the capillaries in the eye to constrict, reducing redness. Another quick fix is to line the inner rim of the lower lash line with a white pencil. Flesh-coloured pencils are also good, but I like the dramatic lift you get with white.”
It’s also important to choose eyeshadow carefully when not at your sparkly best, warns Kennedy. “Avoid purples and plums as these shades will enhance any dark circles,” she says. “And opt for a golden-based or light-reflecting concealer to disguise under-eye darkness.”
Tools:Visine Advanced Relief Eye Drops, $9; Mavala Switzerland Eyelight Kohl Kajal in White, $11.95; Clinique All About Eyes Concealer in Light Golden, $34; Elizabeth Arden Sheer Lights Illuminating Pen, $45
How to: Go from close-set to doe-eyed in seconds
Technique: “To make narrow-set eyes seem further apart, you want to add light and space, rather than darkness and shadow, to the inner and upper eye areas,” explains Kennedy. “Use a light colour and, for extra glamour, add some shimmer or sparkle. Avoid really deep shades on the inner two thirds of your eyelid and don’t apply dark liner to the inner two thirds of your lower lash line.
“Keep any contouring shadow or liner on the outer third of the eye [as shown in diagram at A] and focus deeper colour on the outer part also,” Kennedy instructs. “Add some sparkle to your inner corners to open up the eyes [B]. Use lots of mascara on the top outer lashes and try adding some individual lashes to the outer lash line too. Finally, highlight your brow bone with a lighter shade or a touch of shimmer or sparkle [C].”
Tools:Stila Kitten Eye Shadow, $34 (light shadow); MAC Eye Shadow in Shroom, $32 (satiny golden beige with shimmer); Di Kennedy Eyeshadow in Way Cool, $28 (beige shimmer)
How to: Lift downturned eyes
Technique: If your eyes appear to point downward at the outer corners, Kennedy suggests using darkness to draw them upward. After applying a base colour [shown at B] use a small, rounded contour brush to “apply contouring shadow slightly above the crease of your lid [shown at A] on the outer third of your eye,” she instructs. “This will give the illusion of a higher crease and ‘lift’ the outer corner of the eyes. Mid to deep shades are good for this. You can also use this contour shadow as a liner, but avoid applying heavy liner to your lower lid as this will visually drag the outer corner down again.
“When using a deep colour to lift your eye, ease off on your lip shade and keep it natural and fresh.”
Tools: Di Kennedy Eyeshadow in Oomph, $28 (pink deepened with black/mauve shimmer); I Nuovi Colours D27 Shadow in Pecan, Cement, Bewitch or Ash, $30 each (perfect for wearing wet or dry); Clinique Eye Contour Brush, $31
How to: Bring out the best in deep-set eyes
Technique: “If you use heavy shadow on deep set eyes, it will only serve to push the eyes further inward, so use light and medium shades to help open them up,” advises Kennedy. For a dramatic, dressed-up look, first wash your mobile lid in light shadow before applying your feature colour above the socket line only [shown at A], blending it up and outward. A subtle layer of glimmering shadow over the top and long lashes really helps bring out your best too.
“White liner on the inner eye rim can also bring out deep set eyes,” adds Kennedy. Remember, however, that ringing your eyes with dramatic liner will close them in, so keep lid lines fine and natural or try tightlining (pushing soft liner into your upper lash base from beneath).
Tools:Clinique Colour Surge Eye Shadow Super Shimmer in Gold Rush, $33 (for a final, sparkling touch); L’Oreal Paris Contour Kohl in Pure White, $20.95; Bourjois Mascara Allongeant Talons Aiguilles, $20
How to: Disguise droopy lids
Technique: “Generally, hooded or droopy lids are on more mature eyes and I find that frosted and shimmer shades tend to exaggerate fine lines and wrinkles, so opt for more matte shadows,” says Kennedy. “To lift the curvature of the eye so that it appears the crease is slightly higher up, use a small, rounded brush to place your contour colour (a deeper shade to that which you’ve applied across your lid) slightly above your crease [shown at A] and blend it well.”
Tools:MAC Matte 2 Eye Shadows, $32 each; Proof Cosmetics Matte Shadows, $27.50 each; Di Kennedy Crease Brush, $99 as part of seven-piece professional set
How to: Camouflage a pre-party pimple
Red, angry spots are puffed up with inflammation, so the best way to defuse them is to chill out. Apply a menthol-infused cooling treatment, or an ice cube in an emergency, to deal with swelling and then begin camouflage tactics. Gorgeous Cosmetics’ make-up maestro David McConnell recommends a cream concealer, which you should press, rather than rub, onto the spot until it’s hidden. “Make sure not to use too much product and blend the edges,” he directs. “Next, apply a powder foundation over the area to set the concealer and keep the spot your secret.”
How to: Sculpt a smaller nose
Technique: “The shape and size of the nose is affected a lot by our brows,” points out make-up artist Victoria Baron. “Many people over-pluck the area between their brows, making the nose look bigger. So, before you begin a shading frenzy, make sure your brows start above the sides of the bridge of your nose, not at the nostrils. If you have wide nostrils and a big gap between your eyebrows, your nose is going to look huge!
“Once your brows are fixed, you can then start using little shading tricks. The theory behind shading is that darker tones are ‘negative’ and absorb light and lighter tones are ‘positive’ and reflect light. On a wide nose, putting a straight and subtle highlight down the middle can create the appearance of more of a ridge, making the nose look slimmer. Applying a darker shade, like a bronzer, on the bottom and side of the nose visually pushes these areas back and helps the nose appear slimmer.”
Tools:Bourjois Delice de Poudre Highlighting Powder or Bronzing Powder, $30 each
How to: Fake a full, cushiony pout
Technique: If you were born more rosebud than bee-stung, don’t despair. You’ve got two options: a colour or gloss that works to dilate blood vessels and temporarily swell your lips or an old trick of the make-up trade. To create the illusion of a fuller lip, add a dot of illuminator or a light, shimmery eyeshadow to your cupid’s bow, then softly line the outermost rim of your lower lip with a fleshy pencil, concentrating the colour on the centre spot opposite your cupid’s bow. This fools the eye into seeing extra space between the two points. Then, to harness the enlarging power of light, keep the rest of your lip colour subtle and polish it off with an ultra gleamy gloss.
Tools:ELES Mineral Makeup Liptox, $59.50; Rimmel London Full Volume Liquid Lipcolour, $14.95; Skin Doctors Perfect Pout, $39.95; Benefit Cupid’s Bow Lip Shaping Kit, $53
How to: Chisel in cheekbones
Technique: “Use a blush brush instead of your large powder brush as these are generally smaller and a little firmer, letting you achieve more precise definition,” says McConnell.
“First, find your cheekbones with your fingers. To bring them out, apply bronzer/blush along the bottom rim of the bone and then bring it up onto your apple in a move I call ‘the lazy J’. This creates quite strong definition. If you want to soften the look, round out the colour on your apples.”
Tools:Gorgeous Cosmetics Brush #028- Blush/Contour, $56; Covergirl Instant Cheekbones, $12.95; Cargo Cosmetics The Big Bronzer, $49
How to: Tone down sunburn
Technique: A glaring red nose is the due penance of skimping on sun protection, but McConnell says the right make-up prevents adding embarrassment to injury. “A foundation primer is always good to even out any dryness and tightness in the skin,” he says. “Next, use a green-based foundation powder to neutralise the redness, though when I say ‘green-based’, I don’t literally mean a green powder! Look for one with just a hint of green undertone. Then, using a large powder brush, apply a light dusting of bronzer. You’ll find this actually makes your sunburned skin look tanned!”
Tools:Gorgeous Cosmetics Powder Perfect Powder Foundation in Honey, $60 (features a subtle, red-reducing green caste); Gorgeous Cosmetics Endless Summer Powder Bronzer, $55; Vani-T Flawless Finish Crème Base, $14.95
How to: Repair a torn nail temporarilySecret steps of LA’s celebrity nail technician, Jessica Vartoughian:
1. Tidy up any snags with a file and gently reset the nail in its original position.
2. Use a cuticle stick to apply a spot of nail glue to the tear. Gently lift the nail at the break to allow the adhesive to penetrate. Hold the break together for a few seconds.
3. Add another dab of the adhesive on the surface of your nail and allow it to dry.
4. Gently smooth the surface of your nail with an emery board, stroking against the grain.
5. Clean your nail and then apply one layer of base coat.
6. For reinforcement, tear two pieces of fibre from a tea bag. Using your cuticle stick, apply adhesive to one piece of fibre and patch it over the break. Repeat this process on the underside of your nail with the other piece of tea bag.
7. Be sure that the surface of the paper is smooth and flat before applying another lick of base coat.
8. Apply two coats of your favourite varnish and lock it down with a super tough top coat.
Not got the perfect product on hand? Turn to the rest of your beauty kit for back up…
SOS: Fresh out of shaving foam
Solution: Most hair conditioners contain a silicone ingredient to give hair a smooth, sleek finish. This will also allow a razor to slide over your legs for a close, snag-free shave.
SOS: Caught in a thunderstorm with no frizz-defier
Solution: A tiny dose of lip balm, hand cream, body lotion or any emollient product will help tame flyaways. To avoid overdoing it, distribute a drop between your hands before smoothing it lightly over your hair. Need curl control? Twirl separated sections around a finger to define and calm the curl.
SOS: Can’t find any concealer
Solution: Blend some loose powder with a touch of moisturiser. Dabbed on, this will help keep spots on the down-low, but don’t try to fake a full face of foundation – it’s likely to end up looking mask-like and patchy.
SOS: Where is my mascara?
Solution: Vaseline. Warm a little between your fingers before applying it for emergency lift and definition. Need colour? Some waxy eyeliners might blend with petroleum jelly well enough to get you by. You won’t get the smooth separation of your best mascara, but it will give you a glossy touch of glam. PS: Vaseline is also a superb stand-in for eye gloss, brow gel, heel and elbow balm, barrier cream and, mixed with blush or bronzer, eyeshadow.
SOS: Left your lipstick at home
Solution: Apply blush beneath a layer of gloss or balm. The beauty of this trick is that it can be used in reverse: a lipstick can also double as cream blush. Just be mindful that most lipsticks have more pigment than blusher, so you’ll need to apply it sparingly.
SOS: Flat liner
Solution: For truly livewire eyes, transform an electric eyeshadow into liner. Simply mix the powder pigment on the back of your hand with water (never add water to your compact as this can contaminate it) or an eye base and trace it on with your liner brush.
SOS: Greasy hair but no time to wash
Solution: Dry shampoo (try Klorane Dry Shampoo, $12.95) is indispensable, but failing that, baby powder or cornstarch can mop up excess oil. Just be sure to sprinkle it on lightly and brush it out thoroughly afterward.– Tracey Withers
All illustrations courtesy Di Kennedy, make-up artist – dikennedycosmetics.com