Makeup Tips for Mature Women

Over the past few weeks, we've noticed an increase in inquiries from readers "of a certain age" looking for impartial advice on age-appropriate products.

One reader writes: "I am 47 and though I have always worn make- up I have never been very confident with it. I would love to be advised on which products are best for me, and shown how to apply them correctly."

Updating your make-up every now and then is crucial for looking your best - you spend enough on it, so it's worth finding out what flatters you best. Investing in a personal lesson will actually save you money as you'll use up everything you buy from then on.

Zoe Clark is one of Europe's most experienced make-up artists, switching from high-end fashion shoots to making the mother of the bride glow. Her warm and totally unintimidating attitude make her the perfect choice for a one-on-one personal make-up lesson. Here she shares her tips for making mature skin looks its best.

* Heavy, dark foundations are banned - they just show more wrinkles and make skin look orange and dull. Instead, stick to lighter, moisturising textures, and always match your natural skin tone. Colour can be added with blusher and bronzer.

* Concealer is a key product as we age - use it after applying foundation where you need some extra cover. If you are particularly dark under the eyes, first apply Mac's Select Moisturecover concealer and then a little YSL's Touche Eclat on top. Never rub - just gently tap on product with your ring finger, then dab a little dusting of powder all around the eye area with a puff (Make-Up Forever does a great one).

* Don't be afraid of powder. You need some around the nose and eyes to keep the make-up in place, but choose a very light textured silky formula and use a blusher brush to apply it down the T-zone for a lighter effect.* Avoid sparkly eye shadows and highlighters on areas that are prone to wrinkles - around the eyes or on crow's feet. A creme blusher gives the skin a dewy glow but if you suffer with broken capillaries stick to a matte powder blusher. Bright pink and soft peachy shades give a lift on the apple of your cheeks.* For those tropical moments, use as little foundation as you can get away with, or skip it altogether and only use a concealer on any blemishes or dark circles, then dust with a light powder. I advise having Mac Studio Fix handy, which comes in many different shades and is an all-in-one powder foundation, which is excellent for touching up.* Eyebrows frame your face, but can become thin and patchy as we age. If you have little or no hair, fill in with a pencil, but don't go too dark, choosing a shade which matches your hair colour. If you are blond, choose a very pale almost green/beige tone. To "set" the pencil use a slanted eyebrow brush to add a little eye shadow in the same colour. (This will also help to keep the eyebrows in place if you have a tendency for those hot flushes).
* Use eye shadow for lining eyes by tapping color along the lash line with the fine slanted brush to form a line. Don't bother with colour under the eyes as this emphasises droopy eyes.* Eyelash curlers are great if you have long enough straight eyelashes as they can open the eye for a wide-awake look.* Always use mascara; top lashes only please, choosing a waterproof formula if you have a tendency for watery eyes.* Lip liner is the way to go. Match your natural lip shade but don't go too overboard in an attempt to make your lips look bigger. Follow up with a matte lipstick if your lipstick tends to "bleed". For colour that lasts, go for a highly pigmented formula (Clark loves Chanel). Beware of darker shades which can make lips look smaller and orange tones can have a yellowing effect on teeth - instead choose softer pink shades that will give you a "lift".
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