cosmetics on the table

In the mad scramble that is getting out the door each morning, I’m as guilty as the next person when it comes to reaching for the same old make-up products.

You know the ones? The products that are a no-brainer to apply, stuff you could almost do in your sleep (now that’s idea and a way to get an extra five minutes shut-eye)!

While generally this works nicely and has me leaving the house looking vaguely presentable, it’s also a sure-fire way to get me a one-way ticket to Rutsville. Make-up Rutsville. I see the signs of that ticket presenting itself. The red flag alert comes when I find myself cutting corners off my already corner-cut routine.

I try to tell myself that technically it’s still summer holidays so it’s okay to be a bit lackadaisical in all areas of my grooming (well maybe not the shaving part as unshaven legs and other body parts apparently embarrass teenage offspring should you venture to the beach together) but the reality is that normal life is looming.

School will be back in two weeks. Meetings and work travel will resume.
It will be time to get my game face on, so I may as well give myself a big bum-kicking now in preparation.

Would you like a makeup bum-kick too? Here are five ways to shake up your makeup routine:

1. Do a clean and cull of your make-up drawer/bag or cabinet.

Like foodstuff, make-up also has use-by dates. You won’t find dates on the actual products but in terms of whether it’s still good to use on your face, here’s a guide to how long products generally last:

Mascara: up to 3 months
Liquid foundation: water-based up to 12 months; oil-based up to 18 months
Powder foundation: up to 2 years
Concealers: up to 12 months
Nail colours: up to 12 months
Lip pencils: up to 12 months
Lipsticks: up to 18 months
Powder blush: up to 2 years
Cream blush: up to 12 months
Eye shadows (powder): up to 2 years
Eye shadows (cream): up to 6 months
Eyeliner (pencil): up to 2 years
Eyeliner (liquid): up to 3 months

2. Get a second opinion on whether your current foundation is right for you.

This is an especially good idea if you’re still buying and wearing the same foundation you were five years ago. Our skin changes as we… ahem… mature. Plus, new technologies are introduced to foundations seemingly every month. These advances can help your skin look its best and create the ideal canvas for what goes on top. Ask a professional make-up artist or visit a cosmetic counter for advice and a colour match.

woman applying make-up on her face

3. Try a different eye makeup technique.

While you’re quizzing the makeup artist about your foundation, why not get them to show you a different way to apply your eye makeup? Nailing a technique that enables you to quickly contour and blend your eye colour, can be the equivalent of a surgical eyelift. Well, maybe not quite, but certainly a whole lot less painful.

4. Visit a brow-shaping expert.

If you thought a new eye make-up technique could make a difference to how fresh your eyes look, then well-shaped brows can give the illusion that you’ve just had a Botox top-up. The key is finding a brow expert who knows his or her stuff.

One of my brows is actually about a centimetre higher than the other and my expert (I get my brows threaded) has shaped them so this doesn’t look as obvious.

5. Buy a new shade of lippy (or gloss).

If you do one thing to shake up your make-up look then make it this one. It’s cheap, it’s an instant mood and complexion enhancer (with the right shade), and it will get you noticed – particularly if you decide to “pop” your lips with a bright colour.

Could your makeup routine do with a little shakeup?

How do you like to freshen things up when you’re feeling stuck in a rut?


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