This story was updated in February 2019.
Whether you only use makeup for shaadis and special occasions or love experimenting with different shades and products regularly, there are just some makeup mistakes that many Indian girls keep making. Yes, even if you’re quite the makeup maven, we’ve all committed these beauty sins and keep doing so unknowingly.
When it comes to makeup here's a list of common mistakes to avoid in order to get the perfect look everytime. Lets dig in.
Blame it on our climate, but most of us cringe at the thought of that grimy sheen on our faces. This is why we go all out with matte foundations and setting powders, which can make us look super cakey and older than we are. Ditch your heavy bases and compacts for a light BB cream or sheer foundation instead. Creamy blushes and liquid highlighters are always a great idea as well for that pretty glow. Remember, natural skin is dewy and not matte, so your makeup should mirror that.
Most of us have a pretty serious relationship with our kohl pencils and, agreed, it does help add some magic to our peepers. But avoid a thick, harsh line as it doesn’t suit a lot of people. Instead, use a softer line to make it look more natural. Lightly smudging the kohl is always a great idea to soften the look and add a smokey effect.
A lot of girls look like they have dark circles, but it’s actually a build-up of kajal. Not removing it properly before bed and then reapplying the next day gives you darker looking under eyes, thanks to all that residue. Be thorough about taking it off every night. You can also swap the black kohl for a brown shadow smudged along your waterline to help your eyes look bigger and more awake.
In their bid to look fairer, there are so many of us girls who think it’s a good idea to use a foundation that is a few shades lighter than our natural skin tone. Ladies, we need to stop this because a foundation that is too light will only make our skin look ashy and grey, not fairer. There are also so many girls who are unintentionally using the wrong shade because they didn’t test it right. Always try a shade on your jawline instead of your wrist to see if the foundation matches your skin tone under proper light.
Your brows really do have a huge impact on your overall appearance. Super thin brows are not the most flattering and can make you look older and harsh. The key is to have thicker, more natural brows to soften your appearance and help you look young. Threading appointments should be about defining their natural shape and cleaning them up. If you have light or thin brows naturally, you definitely want to get your hands on an eyebrow pencil to make them more defined.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with experimenting with shades, girls, but please keep shimmer, electric blues and bright purples for the night. You don’t want to look overdone, right? So instead, use neutral shades of brown, taupe and baby pink. They'll help you look more polished and well put together during the day.
This is an important makeup rule that you should avoid breaking at all costs. Match peach lipstick to a neutral or peach blush, pink lipstick with pink blush, red lipstick with a berry blush and orange lipstick with a peach blush. It helps your look come together as a whole so that you look natural and never overdone.
Unlike the Koreans, Indian women don’t take their skincare routines serious enough. Remember one thing, if you have dry skin, your makeup is not going to sit right. Your skin needs to be moisturised and look hydrated for the foundation and makeup to look natural. To avoid your makeup from appearing cakey, you might want to apply a good facial moisturiser to keep your skin hydrated and soft.
Never ever test a new foundation or an eyeshadow shade when you’re around poor lighting. Natural lighting is the best! Before stepping into the sun, apply sunscreen and make sure that you wear a primer. These two products will help protect your skin from the sun and make your foundation look natural and radiant.
Many Indian women have this despicable habit of sleeping with their makeup on. If you’re one of them, it’s time to change your ways. Sleeping with your makeup on can cause acne by clogging your pores. What you can do is use a wipe to take off all the makeup. Later, wash your face with a cleanser and then apply a moisturiser. Make it a point to do this once in the morning and once at night.
You must wash your makeup brushes after applying makeup. Not washing your brushes and using them for multiple products can cause them to collect, dirt, oil and makeup residue. Using them on your skin can clog your pores and cause itchiness. Hence you’ve got to wash not just your makeup brushes, but your beauty blender as well.
India is a colourful country. We like to express ourselves using bright colours that have strong meanings attached to it. While there’s nothing wrong with trying out lipstick shades like grey, black, red, shocking pink and coral, you mustn’t go overboard. If it’s bold lipstick you’re sticking to, then don’t go painting your lids and cheeks with a bright colour. Find a way to balance the look instead of doing things extra.
Ladies, just because it’s translucent powder doesn’t mean it’s invisible. Apply a small amount of it first and then gradually apply more. The purpose of using translucent powder is to help set your base and not provide your skin with a cakey look.
No matter how grand of a function it may be, never wear bright eyeshadow and lipstick together. Prioritise only one of them. If you’re sporting a bright smokey eye makeup look then it’s best to keep your lipstick shade neutral. Nudes, baby pink and mauve should help balance the look out.
A lip liner exists for a reason. Unless you’re a pro at applying lipstick, it’s okay to give the lip liner a miss. The lip liner not only makes the lipstick look neater on your pout but helps give it definition and volume as well. Try this trick to believe it.
Primers are a very underrated makeup product in India. However, it’s a very important product to use if you intend to put on the foundation. Think of your face as a canvas. The primer creates a smooth surface on the skin and hides fine lines and blemishes. Plus, it makes your foundation stay on for long hours without the product budging.
There’s nothing majorly wrong with this point, but to avoid that ‘melting look’ you might want to apply lip balm to your chapped lips first. Once that’s done, apply your lipstick and then, coat your pout with transparent lip gloss.
There’s a method for applying blush. You can directly dip your brush into the powder and apply it your cheeks. The right way to apply blush is to apply the foundation first. Post this, gently swirl the brush into the product and tap off the excess product. This method helps to pick just the right amount of product to deliver on the cheeks.
Each makeup product comes with a shelf life. You can’t be using or storing the same lipstick for 3-4 years even if it’s your favourite product. Formulas expire, fragrances and textures fade, and when your skin starts to feel irritated - you know it’s time to let go of the product. So what are you waiting for? Chuck it into the bin already!
Two reasons why you shouldn’t use either on your face. Fingers are a big NO because they’re loaded with germs, bacteria and dust - you really don’t want that stuff clogging your pores and getting spread on your face. The makeup sponge is not a safe option - it absorbs too much of product and you land up wasting more product than using it on your face. Hence, the best thing to do is to invest in a foundation brush. It will give your skin an even tone finish without damaging your skin.
White liner sure makes the eyes pop, but it’s a makeup trick that’s super outdated. As it is, most Indian women have big brown eyes, so using a peachy eyeliner or your trusty concealer to make your eyes stand out in the most natural way possible is probably the best idea.
You are already blessed with beautiful brown skin, use a bronzer to enhance your features. Make sure that you use a bronzer on only specific areas of your face. Focus on your forehead, temples and nose instead of the rest of your face.
Don’t ever make the mistake of applying matte lipstick on chapped lips - it won’t end well. You need to exfoliate your lips first. Apply lip balm and then once they’re moist and hydrated, you can apply matte lipstick to your lips.
If you have super fine lashes, don’t apply too many coats of mascara. The product can clump and make your lashes look too heavy. Two coats on each lash line should be fine. Overdoing it is where you will mess up for sure.
You can’t apply foundation only to your face and leave the rest of your neck bare. You need to apply the foundation on your neck area as well. If not foundation than at least a tinted moisturiser that matches up to the foundation shade you’re using.
Glitter is pretty, too much of it isn’t. What you can do is go easy on the highlighter and only apply it in certain areas like your cheekbones, the bridge of your nose and cupid’s bow. Applying highlighter anywhere else is a big NO-NO.
Yes, sunscreen isn’t classified as makeup, however, it still should be included in your makeup routine. If you feel that applying sunscreen is an unnecessary additional step, you should bring home products that already have SPF in them. Whether it’s compact, foundation, lip balm - some brands now include SPF in their makeup products.
Mascara is the one wonder makeup product that will help open up your eyes. Indian women apply mascara, but not enough and certainly not every day. On days when you don’t feel like applying kajal, a little bit of mascara can certainly make a difference.
Never commit this cardinal sin! If you curl your lashes after applying mascara, you risk the chance of breaking and damaging your lashes.
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