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Experiment with Make Up

Home > Brisbane > Fun Things To Do
by Michaelie Clark (subscribe)
Pun-loving freelance writer based in Victoria.
Published April 16th 2011
Ever wondered how green, blue, red and yellow eye shadow would look on you? All at one time? Not very good, I suppose you think, though it was highly becoming on Boy George.

Since the dawn of the cosmetic industry, little girls (and little boys) have been playing in their mother's (or father's) make up boxes and having a right dandy time of it. As children, we held no stock in these 'nude tones' and 'natural looks' - we wanted a riot of colour. Purple lipstick? You got it! Orange eyebrows? Sure, why not!

Make Up Tricks
Drag queens know the fun to be had with make up.


Make up boxes can still be a cache of amusement and diversion for any adult. Spending a leisurely afternoon with every kind of cosmetic you own on the relatively small canvas of your face could have you looking like an evil clown/David Bowie in the Ziggy Stardust era, but it can also help you find an unexpectedly good look fit for public appearances.

It's not as silly as it sounds. If you have a stash of many and varied supplies, there's no need to keep buying the latest palettes and pencils and glosses in order to find something that looks new.

Putting Lipstick on Your Face
Crme blush has been all the rage in recent years, but you can get the same look by using lipstick on your cheeks. Really. Now, no-one's advocating Strawberry Shortcake circles of rouge, however as lipsticks are often in similar shades to blush, using a little bit and blending it in can give the same effect as a crme cheek cosmetic.

Creating Your Own Eye Shadow Colour
Playing with eye shadow is surely the most fun you can have with make up. There are so many types, and it's acceptable, nay, absolutely warranted, that we wear several of them at once.

Try different ways of blending shades to suit the shape of your eyes and your face (blending light tones outwards into dark usually works well) and then start messing about with colours! Using eye shadow colours that are quite different to the colour of your eyes is a good way to make them stand out, especially if you apply a little bit of highlighter to the inside corner of your eyes and underneath the brow line.

If you have green eyes, give purple tones a shot. You may think it will look ridiculous but you could be pleasantly surprised, as the two colours often complement each other. Brush a softer and more subdued shade over the top so that darker plums and purples just glimmer through if you think it might be too much, particularly if you are very fair.

Peachy tones can enhance blue eyes, though really, any colour has potential depending on hair and skin, even matching blue eyes with blue eye shadow can work with the right nuances of shade. Likewise, people with brown eyes are often blessed with being able to use any colour shadow, though have a close look to see if you have flecks of gold or green, as these can be highlighted with matching shadow.

Mixing different shades of brown and bronze and gold suits most eyes, you just have to experiment with what looks best for your features.

Toning Down Bold Lip Colour
If you have some fantastic lip colours, but they are just a bit too bold for everyday use, try blending them with more neutral colours to tone them down.

You can also use different coloured glosses to change the character of a lipstick. Experiment with various shades - sometimes the strangest combinations can have the best outcomes.

DIY Lash Tint
Raccoon eyes are the bane of mascara lovers' lives. Some mascara can be very greasy and sticky and hard to get off, even with eye make up remover.

One great solution is Mirenesse Secret Weapon Mascara. It will stay on all day, but come off in little tubes if you run your hands under hot water then pinch your lashes and slide them between your fingers.

However if you want to avoid mascara, try using a lash tint. They can be messy and difficult to apply, but if you clean an old wand from an empty mascara bottle and use that, it makes application a whole lot easier.

Practicing with Eyeliner
If you have a whole swag of eyeliner that you've never used because you're afraid of messing your face up right before you go out, take the opportunity to have a practice run. Eyeliner can be tricky to apply if you don't feel confident, and can look disastrously tacky if overdone.

Start lightly and use a smudger along your bottom lashes if you want to go for a smoky look. Blending white eyeliner into black from the inside corners of your eyes can help make them look more open and impactful.

If you're game to try liquid eyeliner it's best to trial it first to test how steady your hand is - nothing looks worse than two wonky stripes across your eyelids.

Have fun experimenting!
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Why? Stumble across an unexpectedly good look!
When: At home
Where: Any time
Cost: Free - raid your current supplies!
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