Fixing Makeup Bloopers Can Boost Your Self-Esteem

  • A recent Harvard University study led by psychiatrist Nancy Etkoff, Ph.D. concluded that "beauty has a significant positive effect" on many areas of our lives. Etkoff is also the author "Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty." She cites numerous studies to that support her thesis that "beauty is a universal part of human experience, and that it provokes pleasure, rivets attention, and impels actions that help ensure the survival of our genes."

    In other words, the old chestnut notwithstanding, beauty is definitely not skin deep. It's an important part of your emotional health. As we get older, though, continuing to keep up appearances becomes more of a, ahem, challenge. We asked model and beauty guru Cindy Joseph to give us tips for Boomer women to help them look their best. She zeroed in on big make-up mistakes that cause you to look – gasp! -- older rather than younger.

    We can't have that! Click through for Cindy's sage advice or correcting your make-up gaffes.

  • Mistake #1: Wearing powder anything! Best to use nothing made of powder on your skin at all. Powder blush, eye shadows, foundations, etc. Powder adds texture. If you have texture from your lines and wrinkles, powder will add even more extreme texture to your skin. Powders also dull the skin and make it lifeless. And anyone with good eyesight or good glasses will see powder sitting on the skin, making you look over made up and cakey.
  • Mistake #2: Using a Thick Foundation All that does is an emphasize creases and furrows! Instead, use a very thin moisturizing foundation or none at all. You are not going to fool anyone or look younger by using foundation. If anything, it will make you look desperate and older. Keep your skin looking dewy and healthy and fresh. The laugh lines, wrinkles, sunspots and freckles that come with age look better when the skin is fresh and clean and well moisturized rather than suffocated under a coating of foundation.
  • Mistake #3: Any eye shadow darker than your skin tone When we were young, and the skin on our eyelids was tight, we could play with contouring and shaping our eyes with a variety of tones. Think of a young face as a blank canvas. Our faces are now already "painted by life." There is much more texture and character going on. Let the sparkle in your eyes be the star of the show. If you try to use eye shadow to darken, or contour, you will look garish and call all too much attention to your make-up rather than your eyes.
  • Mistake #4: Frosted make-up That's a big no-no. Again, it’s too garish and calls attention to the make-up, and brings out unsightly texture you never thought you had. Choose light, natural-looking products instead.
  • Mistake 5: Coral Lipstick Or for that matter, any color that clashes with your skin tone. Coral is too fake a color. No one has coral lips naturally. If you use bright painted colors, other than a classic red, you will look "painted." Choose a color that matches your natural lip color but a shade or two darker and you will look healthy and fresh without looking old-fashioned.
  • Mistake #6: Placing blush on the apples of your cheeks Remember Grandmother using rouge? If you don't want to look like a silent film star, make sure you use a sheer, creamy blush that is the color your skin becomes naturally when you blush. Place it from the apple of your cheek all along your cheekbone to your hairline and blend, blend, blend, so it becomes a part of your complexion rather than just sitting on top of your skin. Always add it to your upper forehead, and a tiny dab on your brow bone as well as the middle of your neck or down each side of your neck. Blend well. Then you will actually look like you have great circulation rather than Halloween make-up.
  • Mistake #7: Trying to recreate your eyebrows This may be the biggest mistake of all. If your eyebrows have faded or become thin, drawing a new eyebrow with a pencil on your skin is totally obvious to the onlooker. Use a very soft beveled brush and a brow powder or eye shadow powder (this is the only time to use powder) that matches the color of your eyebrow hair today (it will be lighter than you think) and use very, very little, keeping the shape a subtle version of what you once had.

    About the Author

    Cindy Joseph, a former model, has created her own makeup line, BOOM! by Cindy Joseph, so that Boomer women can look their best. For more information, please visit