Makeup has an almost magical ability to brighten, balance and enhance
your face—if applied correctly. But if you put on the wrong type of
makeup, or the right makeup but the wrong way, it can actually make you
look older than you are.

Before you throw your hands in the air and all your makeup in the trash, let us teach you how to put on makeup to look younger.

Shimmer down. Is the
excitement of sparkly makeup enough to send you into an over-application
frenzy? Shimmery products can emphasize wrinkles if worn incorrectly,
so take care not to apply too much. Think “soft glow” instead of
“blinding light.” Or just stay away from the dreaded “wrinkle zones”
(see “Pro tips,” below). Light-reflecting tinted moisturizer is a fantastic alternative if what you’re after is a subtle, goof-proof overall glow.

Lighten up. Have you gotten heavy-handed with your
application technique? Heavy makeup and intense colors can look severe,
especially as we get older. Take years off your face by using less
pigmented colors, sheer textures and a softer application for eyes, lips
and cheeks. Choose neutral colors that look natural with your skin
tone.

Do the dew. If you’re feeling plagued by wrinkles or
dry skin, creamy formulations could be your new best friend. Try
switching to liquid foundation, and cream eye shadow
or blush for a dewy look. Creams can be applied with synthetic bristle
brushes or your fingers. Then keep your look from sliding off: use a
soft bristle brush to set your makeup with a light dusting of
translucent powder.

Refine the shine. Oil slick alert! If your skin tends to get oily, try using blotting paper
instead of piling on more powder as the day goes on. Since the sheets
remove oil without adding anything to your face, you can use them with
wild abandon.

Be a softy. Resist the urge to pencil-line your
lower eye—it can look harsh and close off your eye, making it appear
smaller. If your eyeliner ends up smudging (as most do), the area
underneath your eyes will look darker. If you do line your lower eye,
avoid black and use a sponge-tip applicator for blending, so the line
doesn’t look too stark. Brown, gray and even deep purple pencils are
great choices. Even better: use eye shadow (apply it with a thin, angled eyeliner brush).

Pro tips

Warning: wrinkle zones. Wrinkles are little crevices
where both powder and cream makeup can get stuck, emphasizing fine
lines. Avoid the trap by applying less makeup to areas where wrinkles
tend to form: between the nose and mouth corners, crow’s feet around the
eyes, forehead and any other personal trouble spots.

Bright idea! Use an at-home teeth-whitening system
to brighten your whole face—no makeup necessary! And maintain your
dazzling smile on a daily basis with whitening toothpaste.

Makeup misstep. One of the most common makeup
application mistakes happens when women try to cover skin imperfections.
If you apply too much base and follow with a heavy layer of powder on
top, your face can end up looking mask-like and be more distracting than
what you’re actually trying to cover. Instead, try putting concealer
only on trouble spots, followed by a light application of base and
dusting of translucent powder to set your look.