Makeup is a tool which is designed to be fun and boost your self-esteem. Your makeup usage is a very individual choice and is yours to make for yourself. I get so frustrated when I hear ‘experts’ touting rules and regulations on makeup application. Most of these are pure myth and serve only to limit creativity. As soon as you hear “must always” or “should never” be wary! Rules are meant to be broken. So this month, AFW is busting makeup myths and separating fact from fiction!
Myth # 1: You are either a ‘cool’ or a ‘warm’ colours person
This is absolute rubbish. Anyone can wear any colour, anytime. You may feel that some colours suit you more than others, but this is a personal choice, not anyone else’s. If you are tentative about trying new makeup colours, try softer tones or apply just a hint at first. For example, if you would love to wear bright purple eyeshadow, but are afraid to take the plunge, try wearing a little mauve or lilac at first and build it up until you feel comfortable with more colour.
Myth # 2: Mature ladies cannot wear shimmery/frosty makeup
Completely false! Shimmery makeup can be worn at any age. More important is how you wear it; you may want to wear a little less as you get older. Try small hints of it, such as only on the bottom eyelids or only on your cheekbones.
Myth # 3: You should never sleep in your makeup
This is actually good advice. Statistics show that you can age up to seven times’ more if you go to bed each night with makeup on.
Myth # 4: Not everyone can wear red lipstick
Pure fiction. Anyone can wear red lipstick – just choose a shade of red with which you feel comfortable. Wearing a red lip tint is a more conservative option, or applying lip colour then matting it down with a tissue can soften the strong effect of red.
Myth # 5: Pale skin requires darker foundation
Many believe that paler skins require ‘warming up’ with a darker foundation or bronzer. Firstly, there is no such thing as pale skin, unless you are sick! Fair skin, rather, does not need to be altered with makeup, the same way that darker skin does not need to be lightened. Your foundation should match your skin tone perfectly, whether your skin is fair or olive. If you feel pasty and want to warm up your skin, add some blush to your cheeks.
Myth # 6: Heavy makeup is for after dark only
Not true. There is no such thing as ‘day makeup’ or ‘night makeup’. Feel free to wear your makeup as light or heavy, colourful or neutral as you wish, no matter what time of day.
Myth # 7: You cannot wear eyeshadow the same colour as your eyes
Of course you can! It is true that contrasting colours do make your eyes stand out more, but that does not mean that blue eyes cannot wear blue eyeshadow, for example. Here are some ideas for contrasting eyeshadow colours to try:
Brown eyes: turquoise, mauve/lilac, purple, gold, bronze, silver
Green/Hazel eyes: dark blue, purple, mauve/lilac, silver, turquoise
Blue/Violet eyes: gold, bronze, copper, pink, peach, chocolate
Myth # 8: Warm, yellow tones of foundation are the most flattering
This is true, if you have yellow-toned skin! Pink-toned skin should wear pink-toned foundation. As mentioned before, your foundation needs to match your skin perfectly. The best place to test colour is on your jawline, where it can be compared to both your face and your neck, where it ultimately has to blend in. If you wear a foundation which does not match your skin tone, it will look like a mask. Foundation is designed to look like flawless skin, not foundation.
Myth # 9: Spritzing water on your face will freshen up makeup
Err, no it won’t. Spraying water onto your made-up face will only cause your makeup to run.
Myth # 10: Wear products from one brand/line only
Totally false! Your face does not know you’re mixing brands and neither does anyone else! You may have brands and/or products which you prefer, but using only one means limiting your options. This myth was most likely invented by a cosmetic company to sell more product.
Myth # 11: Always apply makeup in natural light
This is ideal, if possible. Natural light is less forgiving; therefore applying your makeup in it gives the most desirable results. If natural light is not available, use the strongest light possible.
Myth # 12: Only those with large eyes can wear liquid eyeliner
On the contrary, use of eyeliner on the upper lash line can make smaller eyes appear larger. If you feel confident applying and wearing liquid eyeliner, go for it! Applying along the entire lash line is fine, as opposed to the belief that eyeliner should only be applied to the outer corners. However, sweeping up at outer corners lifts the eyes.
Myth # 13: You should never ‘pump’ the mascara wand in and out of the tube
True, this isn’t recommended. Doing so pushes air into the tube, hence drying out the mascara and increasing the risk of bacteria getting in. A more effective way of getting mascara onto the brush, is turning the wand inside the tube, and then gently pulling it out. Because mascara is a breeding ground for bacteria, it is recommended that you do not share it with anyone else. For the same reason, adding water to mascara isn’t advisable.
Myth # 14: Concealor should always be lighter than your foundation
False. Concealor has many uses and its tone depends on its use. You may use a lighter-toned concealor for under eye circles to counteract the shadow, but to cover a blemish you would use a similar tone to your foundation. There are also other tinted concealors available for specific uses, such as green tint to cover redness. Whichever concealor you use, it must be well blended to avoid being seen.
Myth # 15: Redheads can only wear earthy colours and blondes cannot wear blue eyeshadow
Nonsense. I am a redhead and I rarely wear earthy colours! Redheads can also wear black mascara, contrary to being told to wear brown only. Discover your own style and don’t let it be dictated by others!
Myth # 16: You should never pluck hairs from the top of your eyebrows
False. If you have stray hairs at the top, pluck away! However, eyebrows play a very important part in framing your face, so whichever method you use for shaping your eyebrows, it is recommended that you do not stray too much from their natural arch.
Myth # 17: Bright lipstick makes lips look smaller
Incorrect. It is true that pale, glossy lip colours can make lips appear fuller, but wearing bright or dark lipstick won’t actually make your lips appear smaller (it just won’t make them look bigger). Wearing bright lip colour will draw attention to your lips; paler colours less so.
Myth # 18: You should never apply mascara to bottom lashes – it casts a shadow
Fiction. If you apply mascara to your top lashes, you should apply it to the bottom ones also. Mascara will only cast a shadow if it is smudged, or runs. Avoid this by using a waterproof and smudge proof one.
Myth # 19: You must always wear foundation
A complete fallacy. You do not ‘have’ to wear foundation, nor do you have to apply it to your entire face. If you only want to cover up a few blemishes or smooth out skin tone in certain areas, simply apply it where you feel you need it and blend well. If the foundation tone matches your skin well enough, you won’t have to smooth it over your whole face. Then again, if you prefer a strong coverage, applying it to the entire face is fine too!
Myth # 20: Blush is for adding colour, not definition
Actually, cheek colour does both. It can be used to add warmth to your face, to shape and contour, enhancing cheekbones or to make your face appear thinner. More neutral tones of cheek colour can also be used to contour other areas of the face, such as the jawline, temples and the sides of the nose.
Guest post by Cassandra Rae Ferguson – Professional Makeup Artist and Mobile Makeup Artist, specialising in Wedding Makeup in all suburbs of Sydney.