Secrets From a Makeup Artist: 20 Makeup Mistakes You Might Be Making


Let’s be honest, we’re not perfect and we all make mistakes. Especially that one time when I thought getting a really short bob was a great idea, or that time I posted a lyrical quote on Facebook after a bad breakup, or even that time when I ate a whole pizza and Ben & Jerry’s pint ice cream by myself because I’m single and I can do what I want. Trust me, I’ve made my fair share of mistakes, but it’s a new year and we need to put these mistakes behind us! Thankfully hair grows back, the thought of posting anything on Facebook is out of sight, and… well… pizza and ice cream will never be a mistake in my eyes, but at least I’ve learned about portion size. But makeup mistakes are different!

These mistakes can stem from way back when you learned what a pair of tweezers were used for—and they can haunt you forever. That’s where we come in to help you turn a new leaf in 2016. Check out these 20 makeup mistakes you might be making and let’s put them behind us!

Source: Getty

1. Storing makeup in the bathroom

It would make sense to store your makeup in the bathroom; this is where most people get ready. However, storing makeup in the bathroom where you take showers will not only dry out and ruin your product, it can also make products more prone to collecting bacteria. Humidity is bacteria’s best friend, so store your makeup and makeup brushes in a cool, dry area to prevent ruining product and spreading bacteria on your face.

 2. Wearing too much face powder

Applying face powder after foundation is a great way to get fuller coverage and to matte oily skin. However, applying heavy face powder all over your face will not only give a super flat, unnatural look to your skin, but it will also age you tremendously. Powder settles in fine lines, wrinkles, and pores giving skin a haggard look. Apply powder just where you need it, down the T-zone of your face, and lightly on the cheeks. Or opt out of full coverage face powders all together and try a translucent setting powder (lightly, all over). Translucent setting powders are just that: they don’t add any color or coverage, they simply matte the skin with a very refined powder that won’t cake.

3. Over lining eyes

Eyeliner is mainly used to define the eye and give the illusion of fuller lashes. I love liner because of it’s variety of finishes, colors, and ways to apply. Applying liner to both the top and bottom lash line creates depth and gives the eyes a larger appearance. However, over lining eyes too thick is a huge mistake. Not only does it create an unnatural looking black ring around the eyes, it also will make your eyes appear smaller. Instead, try using an eyeshadow and a smudge brush on the bottom lash line to lightly define your lashes.

4. Skipping mascara

Mascara does wonders for the eyes. Not only does it define the eyes without using eyeliner, it also opens up the eyes to give the appearance of larger, more youthful eyes. Skipping mascara will give the appearance of an unfinished makeup look, especially when you are wearing beautiful shadow. Some mascara is formulated to curl the lashes so you can even skip using a lash curler, but make sure you don’t over apply mascara. This will create the “spidery” effect, which will weigh down your lashes and give a tired look to the eyes.

Source: Alexandra Burimova

5. Not cleaning your makeup brushes

Not cleaning your makeup brushes is the equivalent of not brushing your teeth. This goes from the girl that glams up every day, to the girl that wears barely there tinted moisturizer and some shadow. You use makeup brushes on your face, which means while you apply foundation, your brush is also collecting all the bacteria, oil, pollution, and debris that is collected on your face throughout the day…. yuck. How frequently you should wash your brushes, depends on how frequently you use them. If you’re a girl that glams up every day, I would use a spray form of brush cleaner every day to clean your brushes, along with shampooing them once a week. If you’re a girl that wears barely-there makeup, shampooing your brushes once every two or three weeks will suffice.

6. Matching foundation on the back of your hand

Getting a perfect match for foundation sometimes seems like the hardest thing. Whether you are getting professional help or trying to match yourself, knowing how to match starts with where you compare foundations on your skin. Matching foundation on the back of the hand will not give you a correct color match due to the hands being slightly different color than the rest of the body, ending in a mismatched foundation. Try matching foundation on the jawline so you can compare it to the neck. This will lead you to get a perfect match and so you don’t have discolored makeup along the jawline.

7. Sleeping in your makeup

OK, so you had a night out and you’re way too tired to take your makeup off. I get it, we’ve all been there, but sleeping in your makeup is probably the worst thing you can do for your skin.  As we sleep, our skin goes through a renewing process so that we can wake up to rejuvenated, glowing skin after a good nights sleep. Wearing makeup to bed not only clogs your pores and causes breakouts, it can also age skin by sucking all your skin’s moisture out which can cause wrinkles or dry patchy skin. Taking those few extra minutes to take your makeup off and applying a skincare regimen will save your skin from looking tired, sallow, and patchy.

8. Wearing waterproof mascara every day

Waterproof mascara is seriously amazing for those times where you don’t want your mascara running down your face. However, wearing waterproof mascara every single day will dry out your lashes and make them brittle, causing shortening of lashes or even lashes to break off. Try sticking to regular mascaras on the daily and only using waterproof for those special occasions.

Source: Cosmopolitan

9. Not setting your concealer

Concealer works wonders on dark circles, but it can also leave a creamy finish under the eyes that ends up creasing throughout the day. After applying concealer, try setting your concealer with a very light coat of translucent powder—your under eyes will stay bright and concealed without getting those annoying creases.

10. Curling your eyelashes after applying mascara

Eyelash curlers are makeup tools used to create a beautiful curl to the lashes. The proper way to use a curler is before applying any eyeliner or mascara. You start at the base of the lashes and then curl up, creating perfectly curled lashes. If you use an eyelash curler after applying liner and mascara your liner will smudge because the curler is touching the base of your lashes. You will also create kinks within the wet mascara that you just applied. If you wait to use your curler after mascara is dried then you will be prone to breaking lashes or kinking them in an unnatural angle. Try curling lashes before applying liner and mascara to create natural curly lashes.

11. Applying makeup in the wrong lighting

Nothing is worse than doing makeup in the morning and spending your whole day thinking you look like Beyoncé and then suddenly seeing yourself in natural lighting and realizing you definitely don’t look like Beyoncé. Doing your makeup in unnatural light (like bathroom lighting!) is a huge mistake because it creates harsh lighting that either makes you put way to much bronzer on or not enough foundation. Try applying your makeup in a room with the most natural lighting—this will save you from looking like you had a little too much fun putting blush on.

12. Keeping makeup for too long

All makeup has an expiration date; it’s just that every product is different due to their uses and how sustainable they are.

Here is a breakdown for how long you should keep different types of products:

Powders (including blushes, bronzers, shadows): 2 years
Cream shadows and blushes: 12-18 months
Oil-free foundation: 1 month
Cream compact foundation: 18 months
Concealers: 12-18 months
Lipstick and lip liner: 1 year
Lip gloss: 18-24 months
Pencil eyeliner: 2 years
Liquid or gel eyeliner: 3 months
Mascara: 3 months

Source: Beauty is Boring

13. Using the wrong primer for your foundation formula

Both foundations and primers are either silicone, water, or oil-based products. To get the smoothest coverage, figure out if your foundation is silicone, water, or oil-based. Then start experimenting with primers. If you have a heavier coverage silicone based foundation, using an oil-based primer will cause your foundation to slip off. If you use a lighter coverage foundation, using a silicone-based primer might cause lightweight foundations to break up. Experiment with primers and foundations, but also try silicone-based primers with silicone-based foundations, water-based primers with water-based foundations and oil-based primers with oil-based foundations.

14. Wearing the wrong color on your brows

Filling in your brows will make a huge difference in your face shape because it frames your eyes and can pull a whole look together. However, finding the right shade is crucial or you’ll look unnatural or washed out. For darker hair, going one to two shades lighter than your natural hair/brow color will define your brows without them looking unnatural. For lighter hair, going one to two shades darker than your natural hair/brow color will define your brows without them looking unnatural.

15. Skipping on skin care

Using skincare, especially a moisturizer and eye cream, is the best thing you can do for your skin. Not only will the right skincare help with breakouts, pore size, texture of the skin, fine lines, wrinkles, etc. it also will prep your skin for your foundation and concealer to go on smooth and look more natural. You will see a huge upgrade in how your makeup goes on by using the right skincare routine for your skin type. It’s never to early to start learning how to use eye creams or moisturizer, so start prepping your skin now to prevent any further signs of aging!

16. Wearing lip liner the wrong way

Lip liner is amazing and does wonders… if you apply it the right way. With the whole Kylie Jenner lip trend that caught on last year, most makeup geeks are in search for the perfect nude lip liner, but applying it right will make all the difference. Instead of just applying lip liner on the outline edge of your lips, outline your lips and then fill in your lips with liner so that it gives a base for your lipstick to go on.  Also, leave the very center of your lips bare—this not only will give the appearance of fuller lips, but you wont get that awkward looking ring outline whenever your lipstick fades from drinking on a night out.

Source: Pinterest

 17. Applying too much bronzer or contour

We can thank Kim K for the holy grail of makeup trends that sheds five pounds instantly off your face: contouring. Like everyone else, I am a huge fan of contouring and bronzing, but sometimes trying this trend comes with a heavy hand and you can go 0 to 100 real quick… and not in a good way. To prevent yourself from looking like a clown or someone who spent a little too much time in a tanning bed, start with a light hand and build product only where you need it.

18. Applying the wrong shade of concealer

Concealer works wonders when you have the right shade for your skintone. There are two different types of concealers: under eye concealer and face concealer. A simple rule to go by when picking a color for the under eyes is to pick a color that is one to two shades lighter than your skin tone. This will give the illusion of a brighter under eye and conceal those dark circles. Concealer for the face is different. You want to choose a concealer that is the same shade as your skin tone and more of a matte or natural finish for the face to avoid accidently highlighting blemishes instead of concealing them.

19. Wearing too much foundation

Foundation is meant to look like real skin and to conceal any uneven skin tones, but not to hide your true self. Wearing too much foundation will not only give you a “cake face” look, but it will actually make you look older. When you apply too much foundation, it starts settling into fine lines, wrinkles, and pores and drawing attention to these areas. To avoid this, try applying foundation only where you need it and then conceal any other areas like blemishes with a concealer.

 20. Skipping sunscreen

Over the years, we have been educated on regularly applying sunscreen to avoid skin cancer. This is exactly why skipping sunscreen in your makeup routine is a huge mistake, and this goes for every skin tone. There are a ton of creams and foundations out there with sunscreen in them, but that is not going to give you enough sun protection throughout the day. Applying a cream that has a 15 SPF before going on with your day will only give you sun protection for a couple hours and you’ll have to reapply. That’s why I would recommend getting a setting powder that has a 25 SPF or higher and continuously applying it throughout the day to not only soak up oils and set makeup, but to also keep protecting your skin from sun damage.