As a 51-year old, I went to a make-up artist for help this New Year’s Eve – here’s what she said
New Year’s Eve makeup is often about hiding a multitude of sins from the week before. But the temptation to slap on a bit extra, to disguise a puffier face and dark under-eye bags, can sometimes make us look older.
As a 51-year old, I’ve noticed that certain things (matt foundation or the wrong colour lipstick for example) can instantly add a few years. What’s the point of all those cutting-edge serums and rejuvenating masks in my bathroom if certain things in my makeup bag may be cancelling them all out?
Keen to learn how to look more Brigitte Bardot rather than Granny Pig on New Years Eve, I sought the help of makeup artist supremo Wendy Rowe. As well as perfecting the makeup on countless Vogue covers, Rowe is the person Victoria Beckham, Sienna Miller, Helen Mirren, Priyanka Chopra and Olivia Wilde call when they want to look fabulous on the red carpet.
Here’s Wendy Rowe’s checklist of the essentials for perfect glamming up.
Number 1: The right foundation
“Avoid anything with a matt or powdery finish, as it will just end up looking cakey and will accentuate your lines. A good tinted moisturiser is much more flattering as we get older. And apply it with your fingers. Always choose something with a dewy, radiant finish (the more sheer the better). If you feel the coverage is too light on certain areas, just go in with a good concealer afterwards to cover things like pigmentation, broken veins and dark circles under the eyes. And be sparse with concealer as it can go a bit powdery.”
Westman Atelier’s Complexion Drops £62, Net-a-Porter (net-a-porter.com)
Hourglass Vanish Airbrush Concealer £32 , Space Nk (spacenk.com)
Number 2: Brows that are the right shade
“Choose an eyebrow pencil one shade lighter than you’d normally go for. Anything too dark on the brows can make them look too heavy and will make the eyes look smaller. You want to try and open up the eye as much as possible. Soft ashy colours work really well on most people (and never use any browns with any red in them). As far as the shape goes, work with what you’ve got. Big, full brows are more youthful, but don’t attempt to recreate them as it will just look clowney.’
Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil, £33, Space NK (spacenk)
Number 3: Careful with the mascara
“If mascara is applied too thickly it has the effect of closing the eye, which we want to keep as open and lifted as possible. Forget any false lash effect ones, or volume building mascaras as they just look too cloggy. Fine, natural looking mascara is much more flattering after a certain age. And always choose a waterproof mascara, as it’s less likely to smudge.’
Chanel Noir Allure Mascara, £37 (John Lewis)
Max Factor 2000 Calorie Mascara. £9.99, (Boots.com)
Number 4: Go glossy with lipstick
“Our lips become dryer as we age, so anything with a matt finish will make them look even dryer. Plus matt lipstick is just not flattering. The shade of nude is also important. Charlotte Tilbury’s Pillow Talk does not suit everybody! As a general rule, nudes with blue or red undertones will make the face look more alive. And using a really soft lip pencil is a good way to make lips which have gone a bit thin look fuller.’
Victoria Beckham Beauty Lip Definer, £18, (Victoria Beckham)
Guerlain Rouge G lipstick , number 08, £27 (Feelunique)
Number 5: Soften your eyeliner
“Heavy, dark eyeliner is really ageing, as it will close the eyes and make them look smaller. It can be much more flattering to just dot on eyeliner pencil in between the lashes on the eyelid instead of drawing an actual line. And just do the outer corners and then smudge with a brush. Try using browns or bronze which are softer and more flattering’.
Victoria Beckham Satin Kajal Liner, £22 (victoriabeckhambeauty.com)
Number 6: Mattify your eyeshadow
Always choose a matt bronzer or eyeshadow rather than anything with sparkle. The sparkles will fall into creases and accentuate lines.
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Bronzing Cream, £43, John Lewis (johnlewis.com)
Dior Satin Finish 5 Couleurs Couture palette, £49, (dior.com)