Beauty School: How To Hide Your Flaws

We get lots of emails asking how to downplay flaws, be they real or perceived. What tips do you have for doing your makeup when you have small eyes? Or thin lips? Or a strong nose?

Makeup can hide countless flaws and help you put your best face forward. Here are a few tricks:

Small Eyes
The average space between a pair of eyes is approximately the width of one eye. If your eyes are closer than this, you have close-set eyes. To create the illusion that the eyes are farther apart, apply a light color to the inner corner of your eyes and three-quarters of the way across your lid. Apply a darker color to the outer corner of your eyes and blend it outward to “stretch” the eye. Highlight under the browbone and in the inner corners. Apply eyeliner to the outer corner of the top and bottom lids only and smudge inward to soften. Open up your eye and create the illusion of larger eyes by applying beige or white eyeliner around the inner rim.

Thin Lips
Lip shape affects not only how you apply lipstick, but also the colors you should wear. For the perfect pout, lips should be completely symmetrical — the depth of the fattest part of the upper lip should be equal to that of the lower lip, and the left and right halves from the center of the Cupid’s bow to the center of the bottom lip should be mirror images of each other. Lip pencil is an invaluable tool in achieving perfect symmetry, enabling you to “correct” any irregularities by drawing a hair’s breadth inside or outside the lip line. For thin lips, use sheer, shimmery shades; dark colors make a mouth look severe, while lighter shades make lips look fuller. Using a lipliner than matches your lipstick, accentuate your lips by drawing on the outer edge of your lip line. For a fuller pout, add a dot of shimmering gloss at the center of the lower lip and blend it out by pressing your lips together. Lastly, plump up your pout by wearing lip plumper alone or under a lipstick.

Strong Nose
Become a master of contouring and highlighting. Light colors highlight and draw areas forward, while dark colors shade and push them back. Employing these techniques together lets you manipulate light and shadow on your face to create illusions. A heavy brow ridge can cast a shadow on the nose bridge, which looks as if you are frowning. Place highlighter on the deepest part of the shadow and soften by blending at each edge. A shimmer product is inappropriate, so don’t look for a light foundation or powder. Don’t blend highlighter too high or the correction effect will be lost. A touch of highlighter down the center of the nose will make a wide nose look narrower, but be careful not to extend it to the rounded tip.

Jemma Kidd is a world-renowned makeup artist who has painted the faces of Naomi Campbell and Jerry Hall, and now she’s here to solve all of your beauty dilemmas. Not only does she have two makeup lines of her own — Jemma Kidd Make Up School and JK Jemma Kidd — she’s also worked with Max Factor, Rimmel, and Stila. Yes, she’s a total beauty guru. Have a question for Jemma? Email it to!

PREVIOUSLY: How To Hide A Hangover, First Date Makeup, When To Splurge, Black Tie Makeup, When To Ditch Old Products, Prom Makeup, Spring Beauty Trends, How To Get Rid Of Shiny Skin

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