1. Maximize Your Lashes
All you need is the right mascara and these tips from makeup artist Dick Page:
1. Start by curling your lashes. Gently pinch lashes at the roots and then move along the length, making pulse-like squeezes as you go. (The Shu Uemura Eye Lash Curler is the gold standard, and it even comes in actual 24-karat gold, if you’re feeling fancy.)
2. Apply mascara by wiggling the wand back and forth at the roots to deposit as much of it as possible before pulling the wand straight up.
3. To make lashes look long and separated, apply three coats of mascara—but comb through the mascara while it’s still wet with a clean, dry spooley brush.
2. Get Smooth Lips
1. Exfoliate: Slather on a lip balm with a touch of alphy hydroxy acid, such as EI Solutions Lip Refine.
2. Moisturize: Apply a creamy balm containing petrolatum, shea butter, hyaluronic acid, dimethicone, or ceramides
Balm, or Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm SPF 25). Avoid waxy formulas (their ingredients may not penetrate) as well as anything heavily flavored or fragranced (which can make chapping even worse).
3. Add color: Try a tinted balm like Fresh Sugar Rosé Tinted Lip
3. Refresh Your Complexion
Exfoliate once or twice a week with an at-home peel containing glycolic, alpha hydroxy, or salicylic acid. After the first peel, “your skin will look shinier and more taut,” says dermatologist Katie Rodan, and after four weeks, it’ll look even better.
For normal skin: Use a one-step salicylic or glycolic acid peel, such as Avon Anew Clinical Advanced Retexturizing
For sensitive skin: Use a gentle peel—such as L’Oréal Paris Dermo Expertise ReNoviste Anti-Aging Peel Kit—no more than once a week.
4. Apply Fragrance Like a Pro
Spritz fragrance on your pulse points, which give off heat and release the scent: your wrists, inner elbows, temples, neck hollow, behind the ears, and behind the knees. Apply no more than two drops of perfume, three sprays of eau de parfum, and four hits of eau de toilette. And since, over time, you become desensitized to the smell of a fragrance, resist the urge to pile it on, and stick to the amount you used when you first wore the fragrance.
5. Get Your Smoothest Shave Ever
Choose a razor with five blades, like the Gillette Venus Embrace Razor. Once you’re in the shower or bath, wait three minutes for warm water to soften hair. Instead of soap (it clogs your razor), use a shaving cream or gel (it creates a smooth barrier between your skin and the blades). In a pinch, hair conditioner or a creamy body wash can work.
For legs: Start above the ankle and work upward in six-inch sections. Rinse the razor between each stroke. To get your knees and ankles, pull the skin taut with one hand and glide the razor with the other.
For underarms: Shave at different angles, since the hair grows every which way. Move the blade upward, then down, then across, rinsing it clean and relathering between strokes.
For the bikini line: Avoid irritation by angling the blade in the direction of hair growth and gently shaving with the grain.
6. Give Yourself a Flush
Don’t underestimate how good blush can make you look. A cream formula looks the most natural, goes on sheer, and is easy to blend. To find your best shade, gently pinch your cheeks and match the blush to the color you get. Some that we love:
For pale skin: Revlon Cream Blush in Rosy Glow, Becca Crème Blush in Turkish Rose
For medium skin: CoverGirl & Olay Simply Ageless Sculpting Blush in Lush Berry, Nars Cream Blush in Constantinople
For dark skin: Maybelline New York Dream Mousse Blush in Soft Plum, Lancôme Color Design Blush in Retro Rouge.
7. Try a Scented Body Oil
For smooth, glowing skin all over, switch from your normal lotion and apply a lightly fragranced body oil. Our favorites: Nars Monoï Body Glow II, which is scented with the Tahitian tiare flower, a type of gardenia; the clean-smelling Neutrogena Light Sesame Oil; and Lisa Hoffman Spa Shower Body Oil, with bergamot and ginger.
8. Keep It Lightweight
In the winter, when skin tends to be dry and dull, less foundation is definitely more. “Your face will look much more awake if you can still see your skin,” says makeup artist Aaron De Mey, who recommends a creamy formula with light-reflecting particles. “Apply it with your fingers, so it can melt into the skin.” Try: Lancôme Photôgenic Lumessence Light-Mastering & Line-Smoothing Makeup SPF 15 Sunscreen, Neutrogena Healthy Skin Liquid Makeup; or Giorgio Armani Lasting Silk UV Foundation SPF 20.
9. Get a Great Wax
There is nothing romantic about getting a bikini wax. But Cindy Barshop, owner of the Completely Bare Spas in New York City, is here to explain how to make the best of it:
Book it: Your hair has to be long enough—about a quarter-inch—for wax to work. Book your appointment accordingly, about every two to four weeks.
Prep your skin: For the closest wax, exfoliate with a body wash containing salicylic acid before your appointment, but don’t apply any lotion.
Manage the pain: Pop two Advil an hour before your wax. Ask the waxer to tackle small areas at a time. And if you get red bumps afterward, apply aloe lotion or hydrocortisone cream.
10. Don’t Forget Your Cleavage
The skin on your chest and cleavage has few oil glands and is more susceptible to brown spots. It also happens to be more sensitive, so while your favorite anti-aging cream will work, use it here just twice a week. Plan on showing a little skin? Sweep an illuminating body powder, like Stila Good to Glow over your collarbones.