03/30/2012 10:12 EDT | Updated 05/30/2012 05:12 EDT

Beauty Tricks: Simple Secrets To Keep You Gorgeous


It's the little things that can take your look from pretty good to wow. Best of all, most of these simple tips and tricks take no time at all to incorporate into your beauty routine.

Eye Shadow Isn't Just For Eyes

If you've got a great eye shadow for highlighting, why only use it on your eyes? Try sweeping a bit of it at your cupid's bow and on your cheekbones to get that pretty subtle sheen. Or take a cue from the runways, and apply an intense orange or pink eye shadow over top of your lipstick for a modern look.

Natural Isn't the Only Way to Go

Natural bristles for your makeup brushes aren't always better. "Synthetic bristles are best for liquid and cream products as they won't absorb product," says Diana Carreiro, a makeup artist with Page One Management in Toronto. Where you'll want to use natural-bristle brushes is for powders, shadows and blushes, she says, but adds that the quality of synthetic brushes is improving so many artists (including herself) are switching to them as they're cruelty-free.

Whiter Teeth in an Instant

Much like how you might wear white to show off your tan, wearing a bright lipstick can help make the whites of your teeth really pop. A bold fuchsia in particular would work well at making your whites seem whiter.

Brushes are Better

Some makeup artists prefer to apply foundation with their fingers as your digits help to warm the product, but Carreiro, who's worked with such clients as Neiman Marcus and Dove, opts to use a brush. "The only time I recommend fingers for foundation is when applying a tinted moisturizer, otherwise a synthetic brush with a flat top is best for buffing foundation into skin," she says.

Layer to make a statement

Your fragrance isn't the only thing you should be layering. Layering your eye shadows (both cream and powder) will help build colour--especially with the hot metallic shades that are in this season. Apply the cream shadow first--this will help prep your lids for the powder--then sweep on the powder shadow using a flat brush.

The boldest, brightest nails

If you're coveting the super bold, neon nail shades that are all over the runways, to get the best results, after your base coat, you need to apply at least one coat of a white nail polish before applying the neon lacquer. Doing this is the key to really making the colour pop.

Bee-stung lips sans collagen injections

Dab a bit of clear gloss at the centre of your pout after you've applied your lip colour and people may mistaken you for Angelina Jolie, ie. your lips will instantly look lusciously fuller. Don't apply the gloss all over atop your lipstick or you may end up with your lip colour bleeding and looking goopy.

Long-lasting nail polish

If regular nail polish tends to chip on you quickly, go to the nail bar and get a soak-off gel manicure. This will last you two weeks without chipping or looking dull. Plus, when you apply a regular nail polish overtop, you'll find it won't chip as quickly as it adheres very well to the gel hybrid "base" you have on. (Note: If you're a fan of neons this season, consider a white soak-off gel (see "The boldest, brightest nails".)