7 Makeup Tips to Help You Look Younger
Anti-aging is such a hot topic these days. Everyone and their mother are calling out tips and tricks to take years off our faces. Most times, it is innocent enough. A product recommendation here, an eye makeup trick there. But even if your goal isn’t to look younger than you actually are — whether that is because you are a 20-something with baby skin or because you are a badass 50-something who wears fine lines like badges of honor — you probably still don’t want to age yourself unnecessarily with rookie makeup mistakes that chip away at your most radiant reflection.
We learned from celebrity makeup artist Shannon Pezzetta and Nick Lujan, Kevyn Aucoin Beauty’s global director of artistry and education, that creating a more youthful look with makeup is actually really simple. Not surprisingly, heavy-handedly covering every single imperfection is the last thing we should do if looking younger (or at least not older) is your goal.
We love a good beauty cheat, so we asked our pros for their top makeup tips for those looking to put their youngest looking face forward. And as a friendly reminder, we don’t believe, nor do we want you to believe, that younger equals better. Beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors and ages. A radiant and glowing face is a move we can always get behind, and if our efforts leave us looking a little younger, then that is just a bonus!
Tip 7: Ditch heavy, matte foundation
Both our experts agree that heavy, matte makeup is the thief of youth. “The best products for keeping the face young are creams and liquids,” Pezzetta said. “I like to stay away from heavy matte makeup [on my clients].” She works with a vast age range of celebrities, from Regina King and Nia Long to Alexa Demie and Marsai Martin.
“To reduce the look of fine line and wrinkles, you want to plump skin and smooth texture. Sticking to more hydrating and radiant foundation formulas will certainly help,” Lujan added. But he also pointed out that heavier, matte formulas don’t have to be an absolute no-go. “A full-coverage foundation with a liquid highlighter is my favorite combination.”
“If you are looking for longevity and coverage, you can still use your full coverage, matte formulas, but by adding a bit of (glow) to the formula, you will certainly look much more youthful,” Lujan said.
The takeaway: Steer clear of heavy, matte foundations unless you plan to thin them out with glowy additives.
Tip 6: Use more liquid formulas
Aside from lighter foundations, our experts said that liquids and creams are the way to go for blush, eye shadow and highlighter. “I love cream and liquid blush and cream shadows in warm pink and peach tones,” Pezzetta said. “When applying, I focus on the apples of cheeks to give that baby glow.”
Pezzetta also called out her love of cream eye shadows. They come in many different forms, but the ones housed in sticks are easiest to use. They are super easy to blend out, either with a brush or with your finger.
The takeaway: Swap in liquid and cream formulas wherever you can.
Tip 5: Conceal wisely
Lujan said that a pro tip for concealer is to warm it up in the back of your hand before applying to your face and to only place it on the areas of discoloration or the hollows under the eyes. “Avoid placing concealer or highlighter on the puffy part of under-eye bags as it tends to make them stand out more. By concentrating your product in just the hollows and discoloration, you are balancing out skin and creating the illusion of smoothness,” he said.
Pezzetta said her pre-concealer routine includes under-eye patches as well as eye cream to get the smoothest application.
The takeaway: Use soft, creamy concealers and a light hand to strategically place product in the hollows of your eyes and on top of discoloration.
Tip 4: Step up your brow game
Pezzetta also called out the youthful effect of full eyebrows. She said the key is creating hairlike strokes that don’t look to harsh or unnatural.
Lujan also loves a full brow to soften the face and make it appear younger, but he cautioned not to go too far. “Don’t overdraw your brows,” he said. “Sketch individual hairs in sparse areas of your brow, using an extremely precise brow pencil or marker.” He also said that a little-known pro tip he swears by is to fill in brows at the beginning of makeup application because brow products adhere better to clean skin.
The takeaway: Full brows help to take years off your face, but make sure to keep them looking natural with precise, hairlike strokes.
Tip 3: Lean into fuller-looking lips
“I love to do flesh-toned lips to give them a fuller look,” said Pezetta, who believes that loss of volume in the lips is a sign of aging that we can easily conceal with the right technique. She called out exfoliating as a great first step, but the real magic is in the product layering. She starts with a dab of lip tint to enhance the natural flush.
Then comes lip liner. Pezzetta tops her custom full lip concoction with moisturizing rose lip balm to seal in moisture and keep the lips looks soft and plump.
Lujan also thinks there is a strategic way to conceal lines around the mouth that might creep onto the lips, making them look more aged. “To enhance the wear of your lip products, always start with a (definer) pencil,” said Lujan. “This will fill in texture on the lip and help keep lipsticks in place.”
The takeaway: Create full-looking lips with flesh tones and a lip liner that won’t settle into fine lines.
Tip 2: Less is more
“Powder is your friend, but too much powder can be your enemy,” said Lujan. “Choose powders … designed to smooth over pores and fine lines. Gently press and roll powder only into areas that are textured or have unwanted shine. Dust off excess powder from the skin with a clean powder brush,” he cautioned.
Pezzetta said that color-correcting before applying concealer under the eyes, where too much product buildup can be aging, is a good way to make less product go further. She said peach tones are great for lighter skin tones, while orange is much better suited for medium to dark skin tones.
Lujan also recommended tiny amounts of multi-use products to get the most payoff with way less makeup. “Use less than a grain of rice–size amount” of skin enhancer, he said. “To remove excess product and reduce any chances of creasing, use the back of your concealer brush to press and roll product under the eye to smooth the look of your concealer. Finish by pressing and rolling a sheer amount of loose powder under the eyes lock your product in place”
The takeaway: Use smaller amounts of product to make sure you aren’t inadvertently emphasizing the areas you would prefer to conceal.
Tip 1: Prioritize skincare
As a surprise to absolutely no one, our experts both put major emphasis on the importance of skincare for looking younger. “Do not skimp on skincare — it is the key to beautiful, youthful skin,” Lujan said. He called out hyaluronic acid as an ingredient to incorporate, which most of us are already hip to for its plumping, water-attracting benefits. Lujan reminded us that making sure the skin is well hydrated will always yield better results when applying makeup, too.
“I apply (moisturizer) before foundation or for a more natural look to the skin,” Pezzetta said. “You can even mix the two together and apply with a round foundation brush.”
Lujan also loves a good anti-aging face treatment. “It helps draw all your other skincare product in deeper and also helps to speed up the desquamation process in adult skin,” he said.
And, as if it hasn’t been the skincare line of the year, sunscreen is an absolute must. Pezzetta said that at minimum, hydrating the body and skin by drinking lots of water and wearing sunscreen every time you leave the house are the keys to creating the best canvas on which to apply makeup.
The takeaway: Take care of your skin with ingredients like hyaluronic acid, retinol and SPF.