Makeup tips for women over 50 usually consist of slathering on “miracle” creams and stocking up on “age defying” products. But are you aware of how makeup and moisturizer can really help you look younger? Many women tend to use the same rules they lived by in their youth and employ the same looks and products from years ago, which can actually date you. If you are stuck in a beauty rut, there are things you can do about it.
As your skin changes with age, those years of sun damage and poor lifestyle choices catch up with you. Factors like menopause cause estrogen levels to drop and it becomes difficult for the skin to retain moisture and elasticity. Blood circulation slows and draws color out of our cheeks and lips, brows become sparse, fine lines appear and lids become crepey. We’re not coming by our good looks as easily, and techniques that once worked don’t work anymore. Getting heavy-handed when trying to hide flaws can drag your look down or even draw attention to the lines you’re trying to cover up!
Start with lifestyle changes. Drink water to hydrate your skin and wear sunscreen every day (this includes your neck, chest and hands). Eat well, don’t smoke, exercise and don’t skip out on a good night’s sleep. Spend your money on a great moisturizer, since great looks start with excellent skincare. Lubricating your skin is extremely important and helps everything else glide on better. Use of a moisturizer makes skin look smoother and will also keep foundation from settling into lines and pores.
Switch from powder foundation to a liquid formula, as powder enhances dullness and wrinkles. To add color, use a cream or liquid blush. New trends in contouring can lift and shape your face. Applying eye makeup can be a real challenge. Use black mascara to make eyes look bigger and the whites of the eyes appear whiter. Keep dark eyeshadow colors at the outer lids of your eyes to open them up. Eyebrows frame our faces, and great brows will serve to lift eyes. Use a dry lip pencil instead of a cream pencil to define lips. Swap lip gloss out for a satin finish lipstick, and stay away from dark colors, as those can bleed and creep into lines around your mouth. Go to Kathy Aay’s video on make up tips here.
The great news is, finding the right skincare and cosmetics is easier than ever. New technologies and ingredients make many of today’s formulations more effective. Check out new products; it’s so easy now that all the information is online! Sites like Instagram and YouTube contain lots of tips and product recommendations. Stores like Sephora and Ulta let you sample and play with new brands, and even the quality of cosmetics sold in drugstores has improved greatly. Consider scheduling a facial with a licensed aesthetician or see a dermatologist. Either can recommend products proven to benefit mature skin so you can put your best face forward at any age!
19 Tips for Lovely Faces over 50
- Cleanse and moisturize daily with products formulated for your skin. Knowing your skin type, whether it be sensitive, dry or combination, is key;
- Exfoliate your skin at least twice a week to get rid of dull dead skin cells and to get back a fresh glow;
- Use a natural mask every week for your skin type – see recipes online to make your own;
- Moisturize, so that whatever you put on afterwards will have less chance of getting into those dry lines;
- Wear sunscreen with SPF 30 or over every day, rain or shine;
- Add a layer of primer in between your moisturizer and foundation to make skin look smoother and your makeup look fresh;
- Switch from powder foundation to a liquid formula, as powder and matte finishes can actually emphasize wrinkles. Newer base products like BB and CC creams cover redness and imperfections, refine the skin texture and can also make enlarged pores look reduced;
- Applying concealer to wrinkles or dark circles will only serve to highlight them. Use a cover-up that’s the same shade as your skin tone. Layer it thinly over your foundation and pat it in place. Undereye concealer can have a golden or yellow undertone to counteract dark circles. Some products even include light-reflecting pigments, which are said to deflect light away from flaws;
- A soft, warm pink color on the apples of cheeks will give skin vibrancy. Instead of powder blush which will sit in those lines, use a cream or liquid formulation. Powder tends to visibly sit on top of skin, instead of melting into it, so it looks like you’re wearing blush instead of naturally blushing;
- Contouring, done effectively, can take years off your face, highlight the good points, take pounds off your chin, make a wide face appear narrower and cheekbones more defined (as you get older, cheekbones become more prominent – accentuate them!). It can also help to highlight the jawline and lift the eyes. Once you have mastered the very basic techniques you can build up your skills and really make the most of your bone structure and the shape of your face;
- Fill out brows by starting in the center. Use your pencil to fill in the arch area first, followed by the tail. Droopy eyes can be changed by slightly arching the brows and extending them outward toward the temples. The arch is an important part of the brow, and should be a gradual and very gentle lift. Follow the natural shape of your brows and make sure both sides are even. Consider using a shadow rather than a pencil for a softer, more natural look, then use a brow gel to keep hairs going in the same direction;
- Line your top lids with black, but don’t underline underneath your eyes along the lash line as it makes your eyes look smaller. If you are going to line under eyes, do it along the waterline of your lower lid, which helps counteract redness in the eyes. To line the top lids, use powder liner or gel liner, or use a small wet brush and press it into dry eye shadow to create a natural-looking line. Don’t connect the top and bottom lines – keep eyes wide and open;
- When applying mascara, use a magnifying mirror to see and coat every lash. Eye brightening mascara utilizes tints to make eyes pop, but well defined, black lashes will make your eyes look more intense. Black Mascara also makes the white of the eyes appear whiter (as do whitening eye drops). Use of an eyelash curler will make eyes look even bigger. If you are losing lashes, apply some false individual lashes after mascara;
- When choosing an eye makeup color, work with the color of your hair as well as the color of your eyes. Stay away from dark eye shadows. Dark colors can make eyes appear too dark and small and some can easily smear and settle into fine lines around your eyes. If you use primer, make sure you put some on your lids too. Though shimmery eye shadow can age older women, a little bit of sheen used properly can help widen your eyes and give them a younger appearance. Try a light shadow with a touch of shimmer (not glitter) all over your eyelid, then a mid-toned matte color softly in the crease. Highlight under the arch of your eyebrow and the inside corner of your eye to bring out eyes and widen them up. If you have creased lids and don’t feel confident with shadow, go for a soft, kohl eyeliner, because a smoky eye is a good look at any age. If you are not a fan of black, try a softer colored eye liner – black is great but it can be too harsh. Try a dark sapphire blue, dark chocolate brown or a deep purple. It will soften your eyes but still add definition.Invest in a good concealer if you have dark circles or bags;
- For lips: Start by applying a really good lip balm, which stops lips from drying out and makes them look softer. Use a dry pencil instead of cream, which tends to bleed, and a nude or clear lip pencil to define lips with a more natural look. You can also line your lips with concealer before applying color to keep color set. Ditch the gloss, which can sink into lines, and go for a satin finish lipstick – somewhere between a lipstick and a gloss – so they’ll look soft and supple but still reflect light (which can plump up thin lips). Instead of a nude lip, try a pop of color, like pink or coral to brighten up your complexion. Unless you have rich dark skin or plump lineless lips, dark lipsticks will feather, or run into your wrinkles and will make thin lips look even thinner. The most flattering lipstick shade for a more mature lip is one a shade darker than your natural tone, a shade close to the color of the inside of your mouth below your lower lip;
- Whiten teeth because yellow ones look unhealthy;
- Switch to a clean fresh scent instead of heavy florals;
- Gray hair can be beautiful, but tends to be drier and coarser than hair that has retained color pigment. Get gloss treatments to keep it shiny and lustrous; and finally
- In general, start with a little makeup, then add more. Blend your makeup colors until they look natural. Choose makeup wisely and don’t be afraid to experiment.