Beauty Looks That Secretly Age You
The mistake: Using the wrong foundation
Medium- to full-coverage formulas have lots of pigment, which absorbs moisture. Combine that with the fact that skin gets drier in your late 30s or early 40s and suddenly you've got color that cakes and creeps into fine lines.
The fix: Try a foundation spiked with active ingredients like peptides (which increase collagen production) or vitamin C (to fade dark spots). "These provide great coverage, moisturize, and treat skin over time," says Dior makeup artist Ricky Wilson, who works with Sharon Stone. (Try Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow, $34, or CoverGirl Advanced Radiance Age-Defying Liquid Makeup, $12.14.) At a minimum, mix your usual base with a drop of moisturizer, says Vera Steimberg, Zoë Saldana's makeup artist. "This makes it less likely to settle into lines," she explains.
The mistake: Wearing very dark lipstick
"Lips lose plumpness over time, and a deep lipstick makes them appear thinner," says makeup artist Linda Hay, who works with Heidi Klum.
The fix: No need to swap your signature red for a neutral--just try a sheer or satin-finish formula, which looks less severe. Or go to plan B: "Top your fave lipstick with a sheer golden gloss to add dimension," Wilson says. We like Clinique Long Last Glosswear in Goldspun, $15.
The mistake: Putting liner all around your eyes
"It makes them seem smaller," says Clarins makeup artist Pati Dubroff, who works with Diane Lane. Plus, any makeup along your bottom lashes can accentuate dark circles or puffiness.
The fix: For a wide-eyed and youthful look, apply liner only where your top lashes are--not even all the way to the inner corners--and thicken it toward the outer edges to create a subtle lift.
The mistake: Going too bright on the blush
As we age, our skin gets paler and duller. "Women often think a hot-pink blush will restore their glow, but it just looks harsh," says Wilson.
The fix: Wilson's rule of cheek is to go with a warm, rosy color, such as L'Oréal Paris True Match Super-Blendable Blush in Tender Rose, $10.95, for fair or medium skin, or a brownish-berry color, like L'Oréal's Sweet Ginger, on dark skin. Dust it on the apples of the cheeks and blend toward the temples. "It'll restore some of that lost fullness," he says.
The mistake: Choosing concealer suited for a mime
The only thing more aging than dark circles is spackling them with cover-up that's way too light. "It washes you out and can look ashy," says Dubroff.
The fix: Use an opaque liquid formula just a notch lighter than your skin. Pat it on from your eyes' inner corners to a third of the way out. (Any more and you're back in wash-out territory.) Try Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Concealer, $24.
Why 7 years younger?
Because science shows that if you do all you can--smart skin care, healthy diet, regular exercise, low stress--you can turn back the clock about seven years. Check out this free downloadable booklet, 50 Ways to Stress Less & Live Longer.