A special occasion that warrants dressing up and ‘looking nice’ requires a good first impression. Yes, what you’re wearing is important, but your smile showcased by some lip gloss or lipstick that enhances your natural beauty is what people really want to see.
While I do want to offer some tips on how to create great looks for the holidays, I want to start from the beginning, first.
A great paint job — like makeup — starts with a great base. I’m a huge advocate for proper skincare. Makeup will go on so much better when your skin is clean, which is really the best place to start, especially for a special occasion when you will likely be wearing extra makeup.
How to Start With a Great Base
-start by cleaning your face with a really gentle cleanser, and once a week use a gentle exfoliant—so loose skin cells don’t get in the way of your makeup.
-apply eye moisturizer, which will help reduce puffiness, redness, and smooth out any fine lines. This is especially important if you’re going out in the evening after work for instance.
-use moisturizer that works well for your skin, whether it be oil-based for dry skin, or water-based for oily skin.
It may come as a surprise to you, but I’ve trained to be a skin care and makeup consultant—working for several years in a retail store . Always interested in creating, and creativity—I enjoyed this new art form, changing someone’s look with a few simple products. It might be surprising because I’m not one to look like I’ve got makeup on—I typically prefer a natural look, where I even-out my skintone, add a bit of eyeshadow, and just some lipgloss. When I was working for that makeup/skincare/haircare company, my manager always told me that I wasn’t wearing enough makeup because she couldn’t see it! Did she want to see bold stripes of blush on my cheeks? Visible lip pencil line? She always made me up with really bold colours that made me feel like I was a street walker—those tones and the style of makeup just wasn’t me.
Keep Your Holiday Look Simple, Not Overdone
Too often I see people go all out with their makeup for special occasions—ending up looking too clownish. It is simply too easy to go all out and add makeup to every are of the face too heavy-handed.
Also remember to keep to a look that makes you feel confident, yet comfortable. Yes, dress up your look a bit for a special occasion, but don’t go too extreme in several areas of your face.
I prefer to focus on one area of the face—like my eyes or my lips. I used to wear darker lipsticks in red tones, but for special occasion where you’ll be enjoying drinks and food, it might be better to wear something lighter so you don’t need to be reapplying your lipstick all the time. I find that a bit of lipgloss and eye makeup work well for me. I feel done-up when I have eyeshadow, eyeliner and mascara on. I typically wear a fairly neutral colour eyeshadow, and a touch of mascara, plus some lipgloss in a light colour—but for a special occasion I like to have a slightly more noticeable lipgloss and more eye makeup. The base I go with is a tinted moisturizer to give my face a dewy complexion. I then use loose powder on selective areas that I want more matte, but not overall.
One thing I am trying more is bronze eyeshadow and neutral lipgloss. I like the shimmer I get with this metallic shadow. I’m out of this at the moment, and have some special occasions coming up, so need to look around for some more. Aishwarya Rai looks great with this look, and she has a similar skintone and bone structure to me:
What is your go-to makeup routine for special occasions? Do you enjoy trying out new looks?