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12 Makeup Mistakes You Don’t Know You’re Making

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Western chapter.


We’ve all been guilty of at least one of these makeup mistakes. Learn what the most common beauty mistakes are and how to fix them!

1. Not Using A Primer

This is #1 for a reason! Applying a primer to your face first allows your foundation, concealer, and eyeshadow to glide on smoothly and last longer. Otherwise, makeup may settle into your fine lines and creases, making you look older. Try Victoria’s Secret PRO Airbrush FX line of primers.

2. Applying Foundation with a Sponge or Fingers

Foundation brushes are better than sponges not only because they waste less product, but they are also much better at blending – giving you a more natural and less cakey appearance. Make sure you regularly wash your foundation brush, and always choose a brush with synthetic rather than animal hairs. Eco Tools makes great brushes that are not only great quality, but are also well-priced.

3. Applying Concealer Before Foundation

The whole point of concealer is to hide and lighten blemishes and other imperfections. If you put it on before foundation, it blends away and gets cancelled out completely! But also be careful of applying the “reverse raccoon eye”, where the skin under your eyes looks too light. Concealer should be no more than one shade lighter than your skin. Use a brush to dab on a cream concealer like Urban Decay’s 24/7 Concealer Pencil. Follow with powder.

4. Wearing an “All-day” Sunscreen

Be careful when buying a facial sunscreen that claims to provide all-day coverage. These usually wear off during the day, so make sure to apply SPF at least 3 times a day if you’re spending a lot of time in the sun.

5. Using A Face Moisturizer on your Eyes

The skin around your eyes is super delicate, so facial moisturizers are often too heavy. Instead, moisturize with a lightweight eye gel, such as Elderflower Cooling Eye Gel. The elderflower ingredient reduces puffiness and baggy eyes, giving the area a boost of hydration.

6. Neglecting Your Eyebrows

Before you put on any makeup, tweeze and shape your eyebrows. This gives you a more polished look. However, over-tweezing can be a problem too. Very thin eyebrows can make your face look thin, aging your face. Over-tweezing can also eventually damage hair follicles, preventing hair from ever growing back.


7. Ditching The Eyelash Curler:

This tool is a must-have. Curling your lashes before applying mascara adds an instant lift to your eyelashes so that they don’t stick straight out. The key is to curl your lashes in two places: at the very base of your lash line, and at the lashes’ halfway point. And an extra tip: heat up your eyelash curler with a hair dryer for a couple seconds. Heating it gives you a longer-lasting curl, since it acts like a curling iron.

8. Wearing a Bold Lipstick with Heavy Eye Makeup

If you want to be daring and try a bold lip colour, like fushia pink or wine red, keep eye makeup minimal. Try neutral shades for your eyes and don’t add seventeen layers of mascara. You don’t want your lips competing with your eyes or worse, making you look like a clown.

9. Using Black Eyeliner On Your Waterline

This mistake doesn’t apply to everyone. But if you have small eyes and are trying to make them look bigger, don’t use black eyeliner for your waterline. Instead, opt for a white or peach coloured eyeliner. Trust me, this will make your eyes pop and look much larger! Lancome’s Blanc Le Crayon Kohl eyeliner is fantastic and long-lasting.

10. Using Mascara Over 3 Months Old

Getting a new tube of mascara about every three months helps to keep your eyelashes from looking spidery and clumpy. Old mascara also harbors bacteria. To maximize the use of your mascara, apply about 3-4 coats, placing the mascara wand at the base of your lash line and wiggling it back and forth towards the ends of your lashes.

11. Over-Applying Blush

Sometimes trying to get a flushed look winds up making you look like a circus freak. When applying blush, smile and apply a small amount of blush to the apples of your cheeks. For a more structured look, blend the blush along your cheekbones and into your ear and hairline region in an upward, circular motion. 

12. Not Washing Your Face Before Bed

No matter how tired you are, always make time to wash your face before you hit the sack. Leaving makeup on while you sleep can cause breakouts as your skin gets clogged with natural oils mixed with makeup and dirt. Clogged pores prevent your skin from releasing sebum, which lets out dead skin cells and other irritants. When sebum doesn’t get released, it builds up, causing acne.


Alexie is a graduate from The University of Western Ontario where she majored in English and minored in both Writing and Anthropology. She is now a graduate student at Western, where she is completing a Masters of Media in Journalism and Communications. Reality TV junkie and social media addict (follow her on instagram: @alexie_elisa and twitter: @AlexieRE_Evans), Alexie is ecstatic to be on the alum team of HC Western Ontario after loving being the campus correpondent in her undergrad!
Rida is a fourth year student at the University of Western Ontario and is extremely excited about the opportunity to bring Her Campus to London! She recently changed her major from Finance to English Literature after finally realizing what she wanted to do with her life. Having spent her whole life in the Middle East (Dubai and Saudi Arabia) Rida had no choice but to grow up a shopaholic! Having shifted from the desert to the great ice box that is Canada, she still finds it difficult to adjust to the freezing weather. In her spare time, Rida likes reading, watching way too many shows, stuffed crust pizza and,of course, shopping! Her aspirations are to one day live in Paris and be a writer for Vogue.