As an adolescent who was newly-inaugurated into the world of beauty and make-up, I would experience a creeping sense of trepidation whenever a store assistant sidled up to the aisle to attempt to recommend products to me. The face creams and foundations were shades that were way off from my tone and complexion and did nothing to help me shake off that teenage awkwardness and feel completely confident about looking good and dressing up for events in my own skin. Ten years on, I am now older and wiser, and have also learnt to develop a critical eye about the beauty industry’s hard-selling techniques. With the wide range and availability of products on the Internet these days, and a discerning understanding of your own face and body type, no one should ever have to feel like they are less than beautiful looking exactly the way they are Here’s a run-down of some basic tips and tricks that I have learnt about beauty and make-up over the years.
Keep a neutral and clean look
There’s a fine balance between looking presentable and caking way too much make up on To achieve a flawless and glowing complexion, avoid powdery caked bases. Instead, go for more bronze tones which will inject a degree of vitality in your look, and also look out for red and bright pink lipstick which will make your face stand out This does not mean that you have to lay off the drama though – use as much colour and shading as you like!
Purchasing and trying make-up
Do read up on reviews online before you decide to buy a certain cleanser, make-up product or clarifying the treatment. If you have sensitive skin, even dabbing a little sample on could result in breakouts that last for days – a definite no-no. The plethora of beauty websites these days means that you often get great opinions from a wide customer base that can let you know in advance how effective a beauty product has been for an extended period of time And when you are purchasing your make-up in store, do remember that the bright lights tend to disguise the blemishes and dark spots and might not give you an accurate reflection of how it might actually appear on the street.
Understand your hair and stick to a staple hairstyle
I only use organic shampoos and conditioners because of my sensitive scalp, shampoo once every other day and condition a few times a week with coconut oil – my dry hair loves it! Knowing your hair type is crucial to establishing a regular hair care routine. Also important is investing in a good haircut that flatters your face shape, is easy to maintain and versatile; you can be out of the house in half an hour on a busy day but still look put-together, or do something a little more fancy on the weekends. Sometimes I experiment with a few basic ways of wearing my hair (a high ponytail, a half-ponytail with braids) and alternate between them depending on what type of work day it is
Make those eyes pop
Eyeliner or mascara, or both? It’s up to you to decide on your weapon of choice. Indian liner or kohl gives off a great smoky, sexy look, but laying off the liner once in a while and allowing your bright lips, earrings and necklaces to speak for themselves can also easily do the trick. It’s also fun giving coloured eye pencils a try, especially since dark skin is so versatile and can accommodate all kinds of colours. Experiment and give it a try!
Keep that beauty regimen up
Often, it’s not only what you do that is important, but rather how often you do it. It takes discipline and commitment to stick to a regular beauty routine (doing facials, hair masks, clarifying masks, moisturizing and toning). But when you start seeing results after a few weeks, it will give you greater motivation to keep at what you have been doing! You can also try natural remedies like amla oil, which is great for getting rid of hair and scalp problems like dry scalp, or saffron, which can help moisturize dry skin and other problems. Remember to always use lip balm- dry and chapped lips are unsightly and bad for you!