What make-up should I buy if I can’t afford the expensive stuff

colorful eyeshadowsMake-up can be very expensive, but it also ranges from the stuff you get at the dollar store to the stuff you get in high end shops that costs you $35 or more for one eye shadow. So, how can you know what make-up to buy if you can’t afford the really good expensive stuff? In other words, which of the cheaper make-ups are the better option? The following is a look at how to choose make-up when you can’t afford expensive brands like MAC, Estee Lauder, etc.

  1. Consider what you are buying. Some products are going to be better from the department store than they are from the drug store. For example, a department store foundation will probably stay on better and look nicer than a drug store foundation, and it is likely better for your skin. However, mascara is going to be about the same either way, so save the $20 and buy the $7 tube from Wal-Mart. You are only supposed to keep a tube of mascara for 3 months, so why spend a fortune on it? In other words, for your everyday, foundational make-up products, go for the quality high-end products, but for shadows, lip sticks, and glosses, and the things that you change frequently, the drug store stuff is going to work fine.
  2. Consider the brand. Even at the drugstore there is going to be a quality difference among brands. Choose brands like L’Oreal, Maybelline, and Covergirl as they use higher quality ingredients that are less likely to irritate your skin or cause breakouts. If you want something for fun for one night out, or for an eighties party or something, going with the cheaper stuff is going to be best, but if you plan to use it frequently, spending a little more to get something that stays on and lasts, is going to be worth it. These name brands are name brand for a reason, and they have a good reputation, so pay attention to it.
  3. Choose one must have to splurge on. If you are a lipstick person, then go ahead and buy the expensive tube of long lasting all over cover lipstick, and go cheap on your shadows and other stuff. If you love eye shadow, buy the color you wear most from MAC, and enjoy using it.

It is best to have a few quality products that cost you more than to have tons of makeup that you will not wear or that irritates your skin. So, if you can’t afford the high end make-up, save up for a few items, and supplement with the best brands of the lower end make-ups. Just remember, your skin is important, so do not put stuff on it that will make it unhealthy. Check ingredients, and try for as all natural as you can get.

What colors are best for my skin tones?

a pile of makeupAs a teenage girl, make-up is probably a part of your daily routine. Learning how to choose the right makeup colors is going to help you look your best even if you are only wearing a little bit of makeup. What looks great on one girl might look really horrible on another. So, never base your make-up color choice off of what looks good on someone else. Instead, consider your skin tones, and choose the colors that look best for your skin. The following are some tips for choosing the right colors for your skin:

First you have to know what your skin tone is. Generally there are four categories, also referred to as seasons, for describing complexions. So, look in the mirror and figure out which of the seasons your skin tone most closely represents. If you can’t tell from that, look at your nail bed, and determine what colors are in it. This should help you determine which season you fit in best.

The four seasons are winter, summer, spring, and autumn.

Those with a winter complexion will have blue or pink undertones. You do not have to be pale white to have a winter complexion. Skin is usually pale white, yellowish-olive, or dark. Most of the time, those with winter complexions are going to be brunettes with dark eye colors. Many Asians have winter complexions, as do African Americans.

Those with summer complexions are usually pale, with pinkish skin. The undertones are often similar to that of winter, with blue or pink. The most common people with this complexion are natural blondes. However, brunettes with pale eyes may also have this coloring.

Those with a spring complexion will have golden undertones. Their skin is usually more peach than pink, or more creamy than white. This skin tone is common in people with freckles, blue or green eyes, or strawberry hair.

Those who fit the autumn category have complexions with golden undertones, as well, but typically this is more for redheads and brunettes with golden brown eyes.

So once you know what category you fall into, it is time to look at what make-up and clothing colors are most flattering on you.

Winter: For those with winter complexions, white, black, navy, red, and bright pinks all look good. This means a smokey eye with bright red lipstick might be just the right look. Pale pinks, pastels, beige, golds, creams, or oranges etc. should be avoided. Darker, sharper, or starker colors work better, or icy colors that are lighter, but still stark.
Summer: For those with summer complexions, the softer pastels and nuetrals are your best bet. Rose undertones, light blues, lavenders, browns, etc. all make your skin look great, black and orange should be avoided, as well as other dark colors.

Spring: Those with a spring complexion should use the warm colors like gold, yellows, golden brown, peach, etc. Dark colors, or dull, ashy, colors should be avoided.

Autumn: Those with an autumn complexion should use colors with golden undertones, like camel, beige, or even dark chocolate brown. You can pull off orange, gold and other dark colors better than most. You should, however, avoid blues.

Natural looking make up

happy teenEvery teen girl knows that make-up should look natural, but that does not mean that it is worn that way. Make-up is fun, and a great way to express yourself, but often ignorance for how it should be applied, and what colors or tones to use lead to misuse, and unnatural looking application. The following is a look at how to get natural looking make-up:

First, you have to have a clean face. You will want to use an oil free cleanser, and make sure your face is dried well after washing.

Second, you want to apply a moisturizer to your face, preferably oil free once again. Apply all over, and let dry.

Third, use a brush or sponge to apply a thin, light layer of foundation. Some of the best foundations for a light, air whipped look are spray on foundations. You can spray them directly on the sponge, and then dap on the face. If you do not need a foundation because you have clear and even toned skin, consider tinting your moisturizer with just a touch of foundation.

Fourth, choose a concealer that is just a shade lighter than your foundation, and that is as close to your natural skin tones as possible, and use that concealer to hide dark under eye circles, blemishes, pimples, etc. Use a brush to apply it.

Fifth, after choosing the right color, lightly apply translucent powder over your whole face. This will act as a way to set the foundation and concealer so that it does not rub off as easily, and will stay all day.

Sixth, use a cream shadow in a neutral color. Use your finger to apply it over your entire lid, and be especially careful on the lash line. You will want to blend it well. You can later add a little color or shading to dress up the look for a night out, but for the natural look, choose a neutral color.

Seventh, choose a slightly darker shade of powder shadow to apply directly under the eye, but use a brush to apply it. This will help your eyes look brighter and larger. If you want to make them look even larger, consider a white eye liner on the bottom lid, or a light colored shadow in the corners of your eyes.

Eighth, add a lipstick or gloss that is just a shade or two darker than your natural lip color. Apply a lip balm first to make lips moist and supple.

Ninth, choose a blush that goes with your skin tone, and apply a little on the apples of your cheeks. Use a brush and blend it well so you look kissed by the sun, but not overly made up.

Tenth,  use a mascara a shade or two darker than your natural lash color, and apply a nice, even coat. You want to make sure you do not get clumps, or use a color that is too dark or too light for your natural coloring.

Looking tan the healthy way

woman applying lotionHaving a tan is a big deal. You just look better when your skin is tan, and most teens say to heck with the health risks of getting tan, I would rather have a tan now then be pale and worry about the future. However, that future is coming at you faster than you think, and there are serious risks to getting a tan from the sun. Besides things like premature aging of the skin, you risk skin cancer, and other serious skin problems. So, the healthy way to get tan would be to skip the sunshine and opt for the sunless tanner.

To look tan without the risks of tanning, avoid the sun and tanning salons, and buy a sunless tanner. They can pose some risks, but for the most part are harmless and effective for getting a tan.

How do sunless tanning products work?

Basically you are going to get a sunless tanning product that is either a lotion or cream, or a gel or a spray. You apply it to your skin, and the active ingredient in it, DHA, dihydroxyacetone, will make you look tan. How? Well, it is going to react with the top layer of your skin, which is made up primarily of dead skin cells. The reaction will cause your skin to have a darkened appearance. In a way it is like dying the outermost layer of your skin.

The reaction does not stop, so the tan will not fade, but you do slough off, shave off, and remove the dead skin cells, so to keep yourself tan, you have to continue to apply the lotion, cream, gel, or spray at least every five days, preferably more often.

If you want to look darker, you simply apply more often. Usually the product will go on clear, and within a few hours you can see results. It used to be that sunless tanners left streaks and orange, but today they have developed much better and people have become more adept at using them, so the negative sides are just about gone. Usually color shows up within an hour, but it can take 8-24 for full results. For best results you will want to exfoliate, apply to clean skin, and let dry completely before wearing clothing, etc.

If you do not want to do the home kind of healthy tanning, another option is to go to a tanning salon and get a spray on tan. These are professionally applied sunless tanner, which usually means even, full body coverage, no streaks or stripes.

So, is sunless tanning healthy? Well it will not improve your health, other than using it instead of sun does good. However, according to the FDA it is not unsafe to apply it to your skin, although it should not be inhaled or ingested. So, when applying it you want to keep your mouth and eyes closed.

Lipstick or lipgloss?

woman putting lipstick onWhether you should wear lipstick or lip gloss depends entirely on you. The trick to great lip wear is not whether it is a stick or a gloss, but whether or not it is the right shade for you.

How do you choose the right shade of lipstick or lip gloss? There are tons of ways people go about figuring out which lipstick or gloss works for them, but most of the time it ends up costing them tons of money, and leaves them with little product that they like or use. To choose the right lip color, you want to follow a few simple tips.

Tip one: the best color for your lips whether you are wearing a gloss or lip stick is always going to be a couple shades darker than your natural color. So, choose a color that resembles your natural lip color, and then pick something a couple of shades darker. Do this by putting lipstick on just one lip. Then compare that lip to the bare lip, and decide, is that the same tone, just a few shades darker? If yes, you have found the perfect lip color, if no, you should keep looking.

Tip two: If you can’t try the lip stick or lip gloss on before you buy it, find a mirror and hold the box up to your lips. The box should have a sticker or color sample on top of it to help you see what you will be getting. So, compare that to your lips. It is usually pretty right on, and thus it is a great way to find out if the color will work for your lips and skin tones.

Tip three: Do not try to match your lipstick or gloss to your outfit.
If your are wearing a purple shirt, that does not mean purple lip stick is for you. In fact if you have orange colored lips, an orange lip gloss might be best. So, instead of matching your clothes, match your skin tones. This is going to yield the best results.

Tip four: Choose colors that naturally go well with your coloring.
If you are fair skinned, stay away from brown colors and undertones. Apricots, corals, and nudes work better for you. If you have medium skin tones darker roses, mauves, and burgundy work well.  Do not use bright reds. If you have dark skin, then go with caramels, plums, and rich colors like reds and chocolates.

If you want a natural look to your make-up, choose neutral lipsticks, or light lip glosses. Lip gloss is more flirty and fun, while lipstick is more sexy and sophisticated. However, as long as you get the color right it will not make much of a difference which you wear. For the beach or sporty outings, opt for a lip gloss, for a dinner party or formal engagement, lipstick might be beset.

How to shave your skin

woman shaving legsShaving, whether it is your face, your legs, armpits, or bikini line takes some thought and preparation. There are do’s and don’ts to shaving. The following is a quick guide to shaving, no matter what you are shaving.

Step one: Make sure the area is clean. You want to cleanse the area before shaving, otherwise you might expose your pores to bacteria, dirt, and debris which might cause acne, irritation, inflammation, etc. Use a mild cleanser, and use water as warm to hot as you can handle. This will open the pores and make it possible to remove hair more easily.

Step two: Make sure the blade is sharp and clean. If your blade has hair stuck in it, or is dull it will drag across the skin and not cut well, which will cause it to pull and will result in inflammation and irritation of the area. Your best bet is to change your blade regularly, and to clean it well and often. This way you are not putting mildew, mold, or bacteria onto your skin. So not leave your razor in the shower as it will become a breeding ground for bacteria because of the moisture.

Step three: Make sure the area is well lubricated. Friction created between the blade and the skin can cause irritation and inflammation. So, to avoid this irritation, and reduce the risk of razor burn, no matter where you are shaving, consider using a shaving cream or gel.

Step four: Make sure you shave with the grain. Your pores are going to be sensitive, and shaving against the grain can cause pulling and pain. If you want a close shave, shave against the grain, but be sure at your last stroke, to shave with the grain to return the hair to the right direction, in order to make it less painful. If possible only shave each part of skin once to reduce redness and to help the skin heal faster.

Step five: Be sure to cleanse area after to remove all residue of your shave gel or cream.
You do not want to leave oils, gels, creams, etc. on the skin after you shave as they might clog the pores or irritate the skin. So, cleanse with a mild soap, and water after, and consider rinsing the area with cold water when finished. This will help close up the pores.

Step six: Soothe skin or treat to reduce or avoid razor burn.
You can use aloe vera, tea tree oil, vitamin E, after shave, or any number of other things to help cool and soothe the skin after shaving to help with razor burn.

If you follow these six steps, whether shaving your face or somewhere else, you will find great results and a good shave.

How to get rid of zits

woman with facial maskZits are a common problem in teenagers, especially those going through puberty. However, this does not mean you have to live with zits, or be okay with having them. Just because they are common does not make them any less frustrating to have. The following are 8 tips for things you can do to reduce and get rid of your zits:

  1. Stop popping them. It usually leads to them spreading because the bacteria that was in the pore that caused it to be blocked and a zit to form in the first place is spread when you pop the zit.
  2. Use mild soaps and exfoliate regularly. Your skin is going to need a little help. Basically you have millions of pores, and sometimes oil, dead skin, or bacteria block the pores, and then a zit forms. The best way to stop this from happening is to help your skin have the right amount of oil, to clean away dead skin cells, and to kill bacteria. A mild soap is best for this. If you use too strong of a soap, you might throw off your skin’s natural oils, and it will have to over-produce in order to keep the skin from being too dry. You do not want to irritate skin.
  3. Use toner. Toner is not just some expensive ploy to get you to buy more product. Toner helps clean off any excess residue from your cleanser, and it tightens your pores up so that they are less likely to get debris and bacteria in them. You can purchase a toner, or use lemon juice, or witch hazel. The toner you use should depend on the oiliness of your skin. The more oil you have, the more alcohol you want, or the more medicated toner.
  4. Stick to a routine. Inconsistency in either frequency or product can cause problems for your skin. For the best results and fewest zits, using the same routing each day can result in significant improvement. It gives your skin a chance to balance out and rid itself of pollutants naturally.
  5. Keep hair off of face. Your hair has oils in it, and this can make too much oil on your skin, causing pores to clog, and acne to form.
  6. Get enough sleep. Sleep is the best way to kick stress, and stress leads to hormone imbalance and zits!
  7. Drink lots of water. Being well hydrated is going to help your body rid itself of toxins, waste, and pollutants far better. If your body is not hydrated well enough, your skin can’t do its job of sweating and carrying waste out of the body as well, and so zits form.
  8. Change your pillow case regularly. You sleep on it, and it gets oil, dirt, etc. on it, if you change it regularly you are not plaguing yourself with zits by putting your face on a dirty surface.

How to avoid razor burn or get rid of it

woman shaving her legsRazor burn is not attractive, whether it is on your face, your bikini line, or your legs, razor burn is not something anyone wants to suffer from. The following are some great tips for how you can avoid razor burn, or treat it if you get it:

  1. Scrub the area you are going to shave BEFORE you shave it. This is going to help rid your skin of dead cells, and bring any ingrown hairs to the surface so that they can be shaved off.
  2. Use a gel or cream to help lubricate the skin and reduce friction when shaving. If you can reduce the friction you can reduce the irritation, or in other words, the burn. So, do what you can to keep the area moist.
  3. Shave after you shower or wash with warm water. You want the skin and the hair to be soft and pliable so that you can avoid razor burn. So, do not shave in the shower, or before it, shave after it while your skin is soft.
  4. Shave after you exercise. This will keep sweat from irritating the shaved areas, and will clean out the pores to avoid infection or other problems in the skin after you shave.
  5. Shave with the grain of the hair. Shaving against the grain means a closer shave, but it also causes irritation, ingrown hairs, inflamed skin, etc. So, use short, deliberate strokes, and shave in the same direction the hair grows.
  6. Keep your blade sharp. A dull blade is going to drag at the hairs, and cause inflammation and irritation of the skin surrounding the area. This is going to lead to razor burn for sure.
  7. Rinse your blade between each stroke. If there are any hairs caught in the blade it will not cut the other hairs as easily, and will cause irritation.
  8. Wash the skin after you shave. You do not want to use a harsh cleanser, but you do want to wash off any residue left by a shaving gel or cream, and rinse of any hairs or dead skin cells so that they do not clog the pores or cause any sort of irritation.
  9. Try to only shave each area once. Each pass over the skin removes a small layer, and too many passes over the same area can cause redness and burning.
  10. If razor burn is common, apply aloe vera to the shaved area when you are done shaving.

Tips for getting rid of razor burn:
Tea tree oil, creams, or aloe vera applied to the shaved area can help reduce or rid you of razor burn.
Use a Vitamin E oil after shaving.
Use a cold compress to reduce inflammation and swelling

How much make-up is too much?

girl with makeup bagAs a teenage girl you are probably familiar with, and wear make-up on a regular basis, but sometimes it is hard to know when too much make-up is too much. So, how much make-up is too much? The following is a guide to make-up so that you do not find yourself in the position of wearing too much make-up.

Before you can understand how much make-up is too much, you have to understand the purpose of make-up.

Makeup is there to cover zits, pimples, and dark circles. We all get them, and make-up, concealer, foundation, translucent powder, etc. are all wonderful tools to help our face look clear and refreshed even if it is not.

Makeup is there to enhance your features, and show your best self. Some of us got blessed with outstanding cheekbones, beautiful eye color, long lashes, etc. Others of us did not. Make-up can help bring out the vibrancy in your eyes, draw attention to your cheek bones, or to full lips, etc. It is a great way to enhance your existing beauty. Not create it.

Make-up is too much when you are using it as a crutch, or as a way to create beauty. It should be use to enhance and cover blemishes, not create a look that does not exist.

So, how much is too much? It is too much when it does not do what it is supposed to. If you only need a light foundation to cover your zits, do not put on a heavy foundation, it is too much, and leads to the expression “cake face”. If you do not have zits, and your skin tone is even, you do not have to wear foundation, and avoiding it is best. If you have naturally dark eyelashes, you may not need mascara to darken them. You get the idea. However, even knowing this it can be tempted to put on a lot of make-up. It seems like today that a girl who doesn’t wear make-up has something wrong with her. It is a common thing in our culture, and girls are wearing make-up younger and younger. However, too much is too much. So, look in the mirror and ask yourself if your make-up looks natural. If you answer no, then you probably have too much on.

With make-up it is best to look at natural as possible, then add a little spunk and color for fun. If you love purple, add some purple to your eye-shadow, but don’t paint your face for no reason or to make yourself look different then you are.

Most people would agree that you have done your make-up really well if when someone looks at you they have to ask themselves whether or not you are even wearing make-up.

Sometimes you do not have too much on, you just have the wrong stuff. To make sure you always look your best, find foundations and concealers that match your skin tone as closely as possible. If you are not sure how, get some help.

Hiding acne or zits

girl looking at her reflectionIf you suffer from acne, or have a lot of zits the first thing you want to do is find a treatment option that will help clear it up and rid your skin of the problem. However, while you work to clear your skin up, most teens want a way to hide their acne or zits in the meantime as it is unsightly, and in many cases ugly or embarrassing. The following are some tips for hiding acne or zits:

  1. Start by washing your face well. If you are going to hide your acne, you need your face to be clean to start. Make sure you use an oil free cleanser.
  2. Use a moisturizer, but find one that is oil free. You do not want your face to be too dry, or your make-up that you use to hide acne will not work very well.
  3. Choose a concealer. If you are not sure how you can go to your local mall, and visit the make-up counter of a high end make-up brand. The person working the counter should be able to test out various tones on you to help you match a concealer to your natural skin tone as best as possible.
  4. Apply your concealer by dabbing a small amount to the blemish and red areas surrounding it. You want to use a make-up sponge or finger, and dab gently. You want to blend it as best you can without rubbing it off the blemish.
  5. Now you want to put on a light weight foundation. A spray foundation might be your best option. Spray it onto a make-up sponge and dab it on blending it outward to the outside of your face. Be sure to get even coverage, and that you choose a foundation that once again matches your natural skin tones. Again if you do not know how to choose it, visit the make-up counter and get some help.
  6. The last thing you are going to do is set your foundation so that it does not rub off part way through the day and show your acne. The best way to do this is use a large makeup brush, and apply a layer of oil-free translucent powder. Again, these come in various tones, so choose the one closest to your natural skin tone.

There are a few other tricks for reducing redness, etc. One is to put shaving cream on the area overnight, then wash it off well. Preparation H works well for reducing redness if you only have a few minutes to spare. The idea is however to not put anything on your skin that will make your acne worse. So always choose oil-free products, and be sure to clean your face well at night so that your make-up does not clog your pores.