By Renee Rouleau, Skincare Expert & Esthetician
Renée Rouleau has been helping men, women, & teens attain healthy, glowing, beautiful skin for more than 20 years. Her philosophy is simple: With the proper tools, effective products, & a disciplined approach, anyone can have great skin. You can find more advice on her blog!
Your best accessory during the holiday is glowing skin – it can make you look ethereal, radiant and simply ravishing. Unfortunately, with the holidays in full swing, sometimes our glow gets a little less glowy. Here are my tips on how to keep skin looking its best, even as you may jet from party to party, city to city or country to country celebrating the season and ringing in the New Year!
Exfoliate. Exfoliation is considered one of the most important techniques that you can perform on your skin to resolve certain skin problems as well as to achieve healthy and glowing skin.
- Take the exfoliating test. Start off with a simple test to determine if you have surface dry skin cells on your skin that need to be exfoliated. A quick and easy test is to take a piece of clear tape and apply it to the forehead. Rub it gently and remove. Look at the tape, and if there are little pieces of flaky skin, then you need to exfoliate!
- Use a gentle face scrub or mild acid serum. I recommend using products that feature round beads or an acid exfoliator using lactic, glycolic or salicylic acid. Just keep in mind that the goal with your skin is to exfoliate as much as possible, with minimal irritation. The skin likes little boosts but not on an everyday basis!
Rev up your circulation. When the skin ages, less oxygen and nutrients are being delivered to the skin. For example, by the time you are 75 years old, you have about 50% less blood vessels in your face, so with less vessels, it means less blood is flowing to the skin leading to skin fading, lacking the glow and looking fairly washed out. It’s so important to focus on keeping good circulation in the skin so nutrient-rich blood can deliver what it needs to the skin to keep it glowing.
- Massage in your moisturizer. When applying your moisturizer, massage into the skin using firm circular motions to help increase blood flow. Another trick is immediately after applying moisturizer at night, close your hand to make a fist and use your knuckles to massage the skin in small circular motions for two minutes. This helps to gently stimulate blood flow to the skin to bring new nutrients to the skin cells—and a glow!
- Try incorporating products containing vasodilators. This includes ingredients such as peppermint and ginseng which work to give the skin a pick-me-up! When applied topically to the skin, these ingredients work to dilate the blood vessels, therefore, allowing the skin to accommodate more nutrient-rich blood. With continued use, you can get skin that glows!
Additional tips! Continue reading →
Makeup & Beauty Tips on How to Apply Matte Eyeshadow
Share your best tips and tricks for applying matte eyeshadow! Feel free to share your first experiences, how you’ve grown, what you’ve learned, and what, ultimately, you found most helpful in learning how to apply matte eyeshadow. (And if you haven’t conquered it, hopefully some of these tips will help you get there!)
- Softer mattes can often be powdery and easily blended out – but sometimes they will blend to nothing all too soon! After you grab the color with your brush, lightly tap the brush handle against your forearm; this will help loosen any excess powder before you apply it to your lid. Then, pat, rather than sweep, the eyeshadow onto the lid, exactly where you want it.
- When using multiple matte shades together, I prefer to apply them first, then blend after I’ve determined where each shade is going.
- For firmer, stiffer matte textures, use a fluffy brush and lightly stab at the eyeshadow to loosen the color, and then grab the color and apply. Use very fluffy brushes to blend out these stiffer textures, too.
Makeup & Beauty Tips on How to Apply Gel Eyeliner
Share your best tips and tricks for applying gel eyeliner! Feel free to share your first experiences, how you’ve grown, what you’ve learned, and what, ultimately, you found most helpful in learning how to apply gel eyeliner. (And if you haven’t conquered it, hopefully some of these tips will help you get there!)
- The applicator is important! My preference is for a very thin, angled brush (I like MAC’s 208) The thinner brush allows me to do both thin and thicker lines.
- Look up to see how close the eyeliner is to your lash line, because ultimately, you want to the eyeliner to get between the lashes, too, for a very solid, crisp line.
- If your hands are unsteady, try stabilizing yourself by resting your elbow on a flat surface.
Makeup & Beauty Tips on How to Apply Red Lipstick
Share your best tips and tricks for applying a beautiful red lipstick! Feel free to share your first experiences, how you’ve grown, what you’ve learned, and what, ultimately, you found most helpful in learning how to apply red lipstick. (And if you haven’t conquered it, hopefully some of these tips will help you get there!)
- If you have problems with the lip color bleeding or feathering, lay down a matching lip liner first, or an invisible lip liner along the edges, to help maintain a crisp line of color.
- Apply with a lip brush for precision, as this will allow you to layer on the color and apply it evenly, and it will also let you control and ensure it stays within your natural lip line.
- If you’re wearing a really matte formula, apply a hydrating lip balm about a half hour prior to applying your lip color. If there is excess that hasn’t yet absorbed, blot it off (I usually just kiss the back of my hand) before applying. (Lip balm can often shorten the wear of a lip color!)
Makeup & Beauty Tips on How to Blend Your Eyeshadow
Share your best tips and tricks for blending your eyeshadow to perfection! Feel free to share your first experiences, how you’ve grown, what you’ve learned, and what, ultimately, you found most helpful in learning how to blend your eyeshadow. (And if you haven’t conquered it, hopefully some of these tips will help you get there!)
- Always take a step back! It’s all well and good to have your nose to the mirror, but make sure you’re also stepping back throughout the application to see how everything is looking from a “normal viewing distance” as I like to call it.
- Pull or push colors into the neighboring color. Depending on the finish, blendability, and lightness/darkness of a shade, I’ll either lightly pull a lighter color onto a darker one, or lightly push the more matte shade over a more shimmery one.
- Soft, feathery strokes are better! Use a very light hand with soft, quick strokes to diffuse color.
Bold Eyes, Bold Lips Inspired by Estee Lauder’s Violet Underground Collection
One of the major trends this fall is wearing both bold eyes and bold lips. You may have heard in the past that you should only draw attention to one feature, but we all know that in makeup there are no hard and fast rules, because it’s all about having fun and experimenting with colors, textures, and finishes. Here are three ways to go bold with ways to rock the trend and still be confident in your makeup:
Keep the Cheeks Soft but Defined
One of the easiest ways to pull off bolder, more color-saturated eyes that you’ve already paired with a deeper, richer lip color is to use a subtle cheek color to add definition and sculpt the cheek without adding a lot of color. Think of using a complementing blush shade as a way to contour cheeks, but softly, subtly, and just enough where at a glance, your cheekbones pop just that much. I recommend using a fan brush for this technique, lightly dipped in a shade of beige, shadowy brown, or plum. Fan brushes make it even easier to achieve soft results and help to blend and diffuse gradually.
Bold Eyeliner, Vibrant Lips
Create a bolder eye look by going for a stronger cat-eye; start by using a dark black eyeliner and wing it out, extending the wing so it aligns with the angle of your bottom lash line. Take it out a little further than you normally would. You’ll want to thicken the line on your upper lash line just a smidgen; again, it’s about going a couple of steps further than what you’ve done in the past. If you want to add even more oomph, add a pop of color on the lid and lightly blend it upwards and outwards with one or two shades.
Consider wearing a lipstick alone and lightly tapping translucent powder on top to mattify the texture, as the eye is already shimmery, and this will add more depth to the overall look. If you want vibrancy but not opacity, try a gloss, which will give you more control over the opacity and intensity of your lip color while still adding color. Remember, bold doesn’t have to mean dark; it can just be stronger, more eye-catching; you can go with a really defined eye and pair it with a soft fuchsia on the lips–it doesn’t have to be black eyeshadow and near-black lipstick–that’s just one way out of an infinite number of combinations you can try.
Fearlessly Bold and Beautiful
Oh — you want to go all out? No problem! The key to rockin’ this look is owning it, which means you have to feel comfortable wearing it. You have to feel good to look good!
I recommend wearing colors from similar color families with comparable undertones on both eyes and lips. If you opt for a plummy eye, go for a plummy lips; you can deviate and pick a more burgundy hue, slightly lighter, or even deeper color. You want some contrast, but you want a point of reference, too. A layer of gloss in a lighter or darker hue compared to the lipstick can add another layer of texture and finish (fullness from the shine, glossiness, and shimmer).
Add bursts of light on the brow bone, inner corner and tear duct, and even a light brush of a shimmery beige on the lower lash line can open up and brighten the eye area. These subtle rays of light will keep the look from looking too dark or heavy. This is why playing with a range of textures can take your look to the next level. If your eyeshadows are mostly shimmery, go for a more matte lip look. If you opt for more matte finishes on the eyes, play with high-shine and shimmer on the lips. You can create even more dimension to the eye by using both shimmery and more matte finishes–using a matte shade in the crease is an excellent way to define and create shadow and contour. Try a matte lip with a tap of shimmer or gloss on the center of the lip for something fun on the lips!
- Go as bold as you want, so maybe that just means adding color to your eye look. For someone else, that might mean trying bolder eyeliner with vibrant, colorful eyes and paired with a smoldering lip.
- Pay attention to the undertones of the colors you’re wearing. When you use cooler undertones on the eye and want to pair a bolder lip color with them, try reaching for one with similar cooler undertones. Look for colors that will complement, balance, and play well together.
- Use the back of your hand or the inside of your forearm to help play with color combinations if you’re not sure what might work.
- Have fun! Makeup washes off. If you don’t love your look, simply remove and start over!