Have you ever wondered if you’re applying your makeup properly? Before delving into the world of YouTube makeup tutorials, I was practically clueless to the differences between foundation and concealer, eyeliner and eyeshadow, etc. After spending hours of my time and hundreds of my dollars on makeup, I became much more versed on the process of perfecting a full face. Here are some tips and tricks I’ve picked up along the way about the step-by-step art of crafting a flawless makeup look.

Use primer. While many see primer as a mere attempt to get you to shell out more money (I originally believed the same thing), it truly can add to the longevity of your makeup. There are a multitude of different primers that are suited for particular skin types. For example, my skin is relatively oily. Choosing a primer that masks the effects of that excess amount of oil has changed the game for me. My makeup lasts twice as long and continues to look flawless throughout the day.

Apply your foundation before your concealer. Aside from moisturizer and primer, foundation should be the first part of application. I prefer to apply with a beauty blender, but a brush works just the same. Foundation provides a canvas to work the rest of your makeup onto, and applying concealer beforehand can create a caking effect. On top of this, concealers primary goal is to highlight specific areas of your face. If your concealer goes on before your foundation, it can be dragged around during that second application and lessen the intended effect.

While applying concealer, add some to your eyelids. This process will initially have you looking a bit washed out, but it acts as a great alternative to eyeshadow primer. Since many college students don’t have the means to break the bank for both a face and eyeshadow primer, using concealer for both is extremely cost efficient. This not only makes your eyeshadow pop, but adds to the longevity as well.

Photo By Kam Fitzgibbons

If you’re using liquid or cream products, apply them before powders. Powders set the face and lock makeup into place. If you attempt to put cream or liquid products overtop, they won’t blend as well or sink into the skin in the desired manner. They’ll merely sit on top of the powder and add a cakey look to the skin. As a result of this, always setting the face last and making sure to use cream contour or highlight products before powder ones can provide a more natural, no makeup look.

If you use a beauty sponge, spray it with setting spray before blending out your foundation and concealer. Adding this small step into my makeup routine permanently altered it. Working at a restaurant, it tends to get hot. I often found myself sweating off my makeup, but after introducing setting spray throughout the entirety of my routine instead of saving it for the grand finale, that issue became a thing of the past. The process of blending with setting spray provides your makeup with the ability to set as it dries. This really prevents caking as it sets your foundation and concealer into the skin as they’re going on.

Finally, invest in an eyeshadow palette instead of individual shadows. A multitude of brands offer affordable eyeshadow palettes that allow for a variety of looks. Buying palettes with a wide range of colors over individual shadows not only saves money, but provides an ability to play with different looks until you discover what you like best on yourself. It saves money while giving room to evolve makeup looks and continually better your craft.

All of these tips and tricks have helped me personally achieve more stable and longwearing makeup looks over the past five years. These six tricks have helped me create looks I wouldn’t have imagined possible when I first fell down the YouTube rabbit hole all those years ago. Try incorporating some of these processes into your makeup routine and watch the magic happen!

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