18 Ways to Put on Makeup Better

Think you’ve got your makeup routine down to a science? Maybe—but these easy makeup artist tips may actually improve it.

Photo by Chris Buck

Melissa Silver and Tanya Rae, the New York City–based makeup artists behind Makeup Tips for 8 Common Problems, shared these tips with the eight Real Simple readers who participated in the story—and now with you.

  • In general, always apply cream products before powders—on your eyes, for instance—to help the makeup last longer without looking cakey.

  • You can cut down on primping time by doing your eyes first, since you can clean up shadow, pencil, or mascara mishaps without then having to touch up any other makeup. Before applying under-eye concealer, wipe away residue using a bit of moisturizer on a tissue or a cotton swab.

  • Blending eye shadow upward helps visually “lift” the eyes.

  • Using a darker eye shadow color in the creases helps to visually recess puffy eyes.

  • To make your eyes look bigger and brighter, gradually lighten the tone of your eye shadows as you move upward on the lid, putting the lightest shade on the brow bones.

  • A smidge of shimmer is nice in eye shadow, because it helps the eyes pop, but you want to avoid anything frosty.