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Makeup Grows Up

By: Abby Penning
Posted: April 28, 2009, from the May 2009 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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Even eye liners aren’t out of the question for older eyes. “Women should learn to apply a natural, soft eye liner—whether it be with pencil or using an eye shadow with a liner brush—to frame and accentuate the eyes. You can also use a powder eye shadow to fill in the eyebrows,” says Wolcott, and Christalee notes, “I use a dark black raven loose shadow for eye liner. It’s great for giving that really wonderful smoky, smudgy look. The smokier you can get the look, the softer the look is, and that helps you look younger. Liquid eyeliners and things that are harsh-edged make the face look older, adding age, but smoky and smudgy help it look younger.”

Murphy adds, “You don’t have to shy away from eye liner, but you do want to avoid going really intense with it—go more subtle. You can wet a powder eye liner for deeper color and a more liquid look, or use it dry and feather it out really nicely for a look that’s more subtle and refined.”

To round out the eyes, lush lashes are something that are universally desired for a great makeup application, as the NPD Group reports nearly nine out of 10 women between the ages of 18–54 wear mascara. To give them an extra edge, Murphy recommends always curling the lashes before applying mascara, saying, “Lashes tend to get less plentiful as you get older, and they’ll show up a lot more if you curl them.”

With these simple application ideas and options, you no longer need to be hesitant when offering eye makeup to more mature clients. From a rich smoky application to a touch of gilding on the lid, creating a gorgeous look for the eyes has never been easier.

Lipstick jungle

Although the NPD Group’s report states women tend to move away from lip gloss and more toward lipstick as they age, it also offers that women tend to focus more on their lips as they get older. “Losing color in the lips is something that happens as women age, so more lip color can be necessary. I use warm brown tones, pinky browns, something more neutral,” Murphy explains. She also warns makeup artists away from colors that are light or really frosty, as well as those that are unnaturally bright, and Kennedy agrees. “For women who are getting to be more mature, I wouldn’t use something that’s really red red or pink pink. Often I’ll use something with a brown in it to deepen the shade,” she says.