Tips & Tricks: Foundations, Concealers, and Contouring

Who's ready to talk about some makeup tips and tricks? I don't know about you, but the summer heat is taking its toll on my makeup routine. Every day around noon it turns into a scene from Wizard of Oz and like the Wicked Witch of the West, my once flawless makeup application just melts away - not pretty. Our amazing UW Hero, Elena, always tells me less is more in the summer heat, but we have been doing a lot of pictures in the office for social media and I want to look my best. I went all over the internet for the best tips & tricks to keep my makeup in place and I'm finally back to share them with you. We're going to start with some fundamentals and build from there...

1. The Right Brush

A skilled makeup artist will tell you the right brush makes all the difference. Even if your skills are not the best, the right brush and richer pigmented products make the application immediately better without improving your technique. Once you have the right tools ( like the MK Brush Collection) it is very important to know how to hold them.

Make Up For Ever educator Lijha Stewart explains, "Where you hold a brush on the handle affects your control. The closer your fingers are to the barrel (the silver section beneath the brush head), the more pressure you put on the brush head and vice versa." For your general even application, it is best to place your fingers on the center of the brush handle.

2. Primer, Foundation, and Mixing

Primer is the key to locking your foundation in place to avoid a total meltdown. My only problem is sometimes it would get a caked-on look with my cream foundation over my primer. In my Internet travels, I found a great tip to avoid this problem: mix in my primer with my foundation. It's genius, how have I not thought of that before? Alone, my cream foundation is opaque and provides full coverage when I need it, but I don't always need full coverage. If you mix in primer with your foundation, it breaks it down enough to provide some coverage without looking super cakey (is cakey a word? ;). This handy-dandy trick also allows the mixed foundation to blend seamlessly with the first layer of primer on your skin.

If your T-zone is prone to getting oily, try using a damp sponge to apply your foundation. Most foundations contain some oil for blendability but using a damp sponge will pick up the pigment and not the oil. You will enjoy great coverage and no shine. Also, the MK Beauty blotter is great at absorbing excess oil and not messing up your makeup.

3. Love Your Flaws - Then Conceal Them

We all have those days of splotchy redness, stress-induced blemishes, and annoying under-eye discoloration. When these moments happen, remember to still tell yourself you're beautiful and tap into your knowledge of the color wheel. The goal is to cancel out the unwanted colors so you can get an even tone all over. Opposite colors cancel each other out, so green pigmented concealer covers redness, and orangey concealer removes blue. A beige concealer tends to make those areas look muddy.

4. Be A Contouring Master

This is my favorite part of my make-up routine. Once your face is toned, primed, foundation-ed, concealed, and set with finishing powder, it's time to highlight and contour. Here are the basics of contouring - anything lighter than your skin tone will be more prominent, and anything darker will recede. Contouring is great for mature skin to create instant lift - for example, to lift those cheekbones, apply a highlighter just about your cheekbone all the way up to your temple. Then apply blush directly on the cheekbone, follow with bronzer in the hollow of the cheek and underneath your bone.

To thin out your face and add more definition: Apply your favorite bronzer (a shade or two darker than your skin tone) in a "3" shape alongside your face. The "3" technique is achieved by starting at your temples, then make the first curve down to the hollow of your cheeks, then make the second curve down to your chin. A great trick to make the forehead area not so prominent is to shade around the outer edge along your hairline to minimize the area with bronzer.

A sparkly highlighter will make your contouring really pop because it reflects the most light. But don't combine a sparkly highlighter with a sparkly bronzer - there is such thing as too much shimmer, you don't want to look like a disco ball. Stick with a matte bronzer to provide a stark contrast with your sparkly highlighter.

The right brush and some color knowledge will really help you go a long way when performing makeovers and giving advice. Be sure to subscribe to our blog so you can stay updated on everything UnitWise.

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