Step up your looks with these 30 simple tips that make a big difference — and get noticed:
If you get stranded without your concealer, check the cap of your foundation — the makeup that has collected there will be thick and perfect for covering up flaws.
If you’ve dyed your hair at home and the result is too tame, take a second box and dilute it in equal parts with shampoo. Lather on your hair and let it sit for five minutes before rinsing. You’ll get a second hit of color and loads of shine.
Makeup on the run.
If you don’t have time for full-on eye makeup on a night out, try this: Dip your finger in a pot of waxy lip balm, then scribble a little dark eyeliner on top of the balm. Gently rub the finger into the roots of your top lashes and finish with mascara . . . the smearier, the better!
You can trim your own fringe but do it dry and with proper hairdressing scissors. Divide your fringe into three sections, grab the first one, pull it straight up and twist. Snip into the ends with the point of the scissors, cutting diagonally so each strand varies a little in length. Drop the section to see where it falls, then twist and cut more if necessary. Pull up the next section, matching it to the length of the first and so on. You’ve just added a few more weeks to your cut!
Find your eyes water in the wind? Dot a little Vaseline at the outer edge of your eyes — it will act as a waterproof barrier.
For a hassle-free DIY pedicure, apply base coat and two coats of color a few hours before bed (don’t bother trying to keep within the lines) and top off with glossy top coat. Next morning in the shower, you’ll find you can easily scrape off any stray polish with your fingernails — and voila! — perfect toes.
Always style your hair in sections, starting at the back. Because the back of your head is the hardest to reach, do it first as it requires the most effort. Your arms get tired blowdrying, so if you do the front first, you’ll lose the willpower to do the back properly, which can ruin your look.
Get rid of shine.
Caught yourself in the pub mirror with skin like an oil slick? Don’t panic. That nasty hard toilet paper makes an excellent blotter! Simply tear off a corner and press on to your skin to soak up the shine.
You don’t need pricey scrubs and loofahs in the bath — a double-sided kitchen sponge (green one side, yellow the other) will do an excellent job for lathering and exfoliating. Plus, you can buy in bulk and throw them out as soon as they start looking a bit iffy.
Wash and go.
Got extensions? You can leave the bulk of your hair to dry naturally, but you must ensure the bonds are fully dry to prevent them from softening. If you do want to blow-dry all your hair, use a heat protection spray such as Racoon-Xtend Thermal Defence.
To mend a split nail in an emergency, take a tiny thread of cotton from cotton wool (so small you can hardly twist it) and put it in the split. Pull away the excess, then paint with clear polish or base coat.
If you have a difficult hair line, blow-drying can be a nightmare. Brush your hair in opposite directions while drying, to tame unwanted kinks and create extra volume where needed.
If you have puffy eyes, try placing a thin slice of potato on the eyes for 10 minutes. Or a chilled teaspoon can help, too.
A small tube of hand cream in your handbag can fix a bad hair day. In winter, rub a tiny amount on your hands and smooth over your head to eliminate static and hat hair. Come summer, running a tiny amount through your hair with fingertips will tame frizz.
Revive a tired complexion by going hot and cold. Soak your face cloth in warm water with a few drops of Dr. Hauschka Lemon Bath, which softens hard water and revitalizes you and your skin. Apply the compress to your face for a few seconds — repeat and do your usual cleansing regime. Complete with a cool splash — this contrast in temperature strengthens the skin. The warmth stimulates the delivery of oxygen to the surface, while the cool helps eliminate toxins and closes pores.
Before a wedding or party where you’re going to be photographed, rub the juicy side of cut strawberries across your front teeth to brighten them.
If you suffer from ingrown hairs following hair removal, get into the Nivea Creme habit. Ingrown problems should become a thing of the past with a daily application as dry skin causes hair to embed. Nivea helps to retain moisture, meaning existing hairs pop out and new ones don’t appear.
If you have jet-lagged or hungover skin, makeup artists swear by gel cloth masks like SK-II’s Facial Treatment Mask. After cleansing, leave one on for as long as you can. There’s no mud, no rinsing to remove gunk — just a fuss-free mask that livens up your skin and saturates it with moisture.
Banish roots. If you have grey roots showing, a quick touch-up with dark mascara will do until you get to the hairdresser. For blondes, try a little hairspray focused at the roots and a dusting of loose, gold eyeshadow.
For beautiful feet, use Benefit “Touch Me Then Try to Leave” cream. Rub all over, then wrap in cling wrap, put socks on, and leave overnight for totally soft skin by morning. Do this once a week, and your feet will be gorgeous by sandal season.
Splash a drop of olive oil over freshly painted nails. This forms a protective film over the polish, encouraging it to dry more quickly and stop smudging. Alternatively, transform grubby nails by rubbing chalk under the tips with a nail brush to give a French manicured look.
If you’ve used hot rollers and your hair looks tight or dolly curled, spray a generous amount of Eau de Toilette on with a clean hand towel. Give your hair a gentle rub and tug — this will break up the curls and settle it, giving a more relaxed, sexy look.
Don’t be flaky.
Dandruff? Crush up an aspirin and mix it with your regular shampoo. Properties of the painkiller will calm the dry scalp and save you splashing out on special brands.
Instead of back-combing your hair, use a firm bristled toothbrush, digging it into the roots and lightly teasing. Softer baby toothbrushes are also a secret weapon on shoots as stylists use hairspray on them and smooth wispiness around the hairline.
Splashing your face with ice water in the morning will reduce puffiness. But did you know that if you hold an ice cube against the roof of your mouth with your tongue, the chill will help reduce facial puffiness from the inside out?
Don’t throw out used ground coffee — it makes a great hand exfoliator. After it has cooled, place in a plastic bag in the fridge. Twice a week, scoop out a teaspoon and rub on your hands before rinsing and applying your usual cream.
In a dire nail emergency, the rough ignition part of a box of matches will serve as a nail file for troublesome snags when you can’t find an emery board.
An egg white and lemon juice mask have an instant tightening effect on the skin, so it’s ideal to do an hour before you go out to a party.
If limp hair needs an injection of oomph after work, wet fingertips and massage the roots. Using a blow dryer, flip your head over, then blow your hair forward, getting heat on the scalp. Allow hair to cool before flipping back. If you’ve no access to a dryer, pin your hair up on top of your head, mist hairspray on the roots, wait to dry, and then brush hair upside-down.
To fake the natural look, dab some cream blush on the apples of your cheeks, then apply light foundation or tinted moisturizer over the top to the flushed-from-within look.