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Glamorous party looks

25 November 2015 ( 07 December 2016 )

Seven top tips for achieving a glamorous look for a special lunch or evening occasion.

Older woman looking glamorous
Primers ensure that make-up stays fresh all evening. Click on the arrows on the image to watch a video make-up class.

Invitations to special events during Christmas and New Year provide the perfect excuse to go out and buy a nice new outfit and also think about the make-up to complement it. Here are seven top tips to looking fabulous.

1. Prepare your skin so that it is in tip top condition

Make-up is like paint applied to a canvas. If the canvas is in terrible condition, the makeup will look awful too. The solution is to institute a skin-care regime at least 3-4 weeks ahead of your special event. 

So start with exfoliation. A mild exfoliator (a facial scrub) can be used two or three times a week after cleansing and will ensure that the new fresh young skin is brought to the surface. 

Try using a moisture mask and nourish your skin really well to plump it by applying an emollient night cream. Every day use both a serum and a good moisturiser after thorough cleansing.

Does your moisturiser work? Find out

2. Get your eyebrows professionally shaped

Even if your brows are quite sparse they will benefit from a proper tidying process. Straggly, stray hairs invading the brow bone is one of the quickest ways to look unkempt and it will ruin the effect of your eye makeup. 

And, while we are on the subject, check any sprouting hairs on the chin and upper lip. I have recently bought a small 10X magnifying mirror which I have stuck onto my bathroom mirror. What a revelation - and not in a good way. I got very busy with my tweezers - and don't forget, this is not something even your best friend will tell you about.

How to groom your eyebrows

3. Decide whether you are going to town on your eye make-up or your lip make-up

If you have decided to wear quite a dramatic eye treatment, then complement it with a very soft lip colour and vice versa. If you choose a vibrant red lip and team it with a heavy, dark and smoky eye makeup, there is a danger you will look more pantomime dame than Dame Helen.

Eye make-up masterclass and videos

4. Think about the best colours to wear

Like a lot of women at Christmas and New Year I tend to gravitate toward a black outfit in the belief that this is both slimming, sophisticated and appropriately wintry. But black is very unforgiving particularly on an older face. 

If your dress or top has a lower neckline, use jewellery to soften the effect. For instance if you have grey or white hair, then wear a necklace and earrings in a bright shiny silver - a bit of glittery bling is good too! That way you will brighten the outfit and lift your whole face.

5. Co-ordinate the colours you wear on cheeks and lips

The colours you choose to wear on your face are important too, especially cheek and lip colours. These should tone with each other to unify the effect on your face. 

If you are warm toned then go for a peachy pink blusher and a coral or warm orangey- red lipstick (like LFF Foxy Lady). 

If you are cool toned then choose a plummy pink blush and match with a blue toned red or a berry shade (like LFF Cherry Red).

The best make-up for grey hair

6. Don't apply your make-up straight after your shower

On the day of the special occasion, have your shower or bath and wash your hair at least two hours before you apply your make-up. 

Have you ever tried to apply make-up in a tropical climate with high humidity? The make-up just runs off! You are effectively creating a similar effect in a steamy bathroom. 

So cool your skin down and allow it to recover from the onslaught of wet heat (shower) and dry heat (hairdryer). Once any flushing has subsided then you can apply your make-up quickly and easily to cool skin.

Hot stuff - make-up for warm weather

7. Wear face, eye and lip primers to ensure that make-up stays fresh

Primers are my secret weapon. I was recently given an award at a prestigious ceremony at 7pm in front of 500 beauty industry insiders. I had applied my makeup at 7.00 am and had only had time to refresh my lipstick before the event - however I doubt anyone would have suspected that my make-up was 12 hours old because my face and eye primers had kept everything looking perfect. 

I hope that this has encouraged you to pay as much attention to your make-up as to your outfit when you receive that invitation. A beautifully made up face is the perfect complement to a gorgeous dress and will make you look glamorous, sophisticated and just plain fabulous.

Primers for the prime of your life




The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.

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