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It may come as a surprise to you guys that I am not Angelina Jolie. I’m also not Scarlett Johansson, Lupita Nyong’o, Jessica Chastain or Matthew McConaughey (although if I were the latter, I would pat myself on the back for last week’s True Detectives episode). Therefore, I do not go to a whole lot of awards shows. Nevertheless, I still like to feel fancy every once in a while, so I do a polished yet simple look that is similar to those many Academy Awards attendees wear.
Now, mine might not have the fur eyelash extensions, professional blowout and $300 facial as prep, but this quick-and-dirty rundown on an Oscars-ready look is easy enough for anybody to follow and won’t break the bank.
Step 0: Start fresh
Seriously, you don’t want to have a bunch of residue on your face to clump up your makeup, especially if you’re planning on going out and taking pictures with your friends (or on the red carpet, you big shot you).
Step 1: Base
Massage in a little bit of Smashbox Photo Finish Perfecting Primer onto your t-zone. Apply a pore-minimizing, smoothing foundation to the skin and dot on a bit of concealer where necessary. I picked Lorac POREfection Foundation and Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil for this. If you want to combine the primer and foundation components, you can use a BB cream like L’Oreal Paris Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream and leave it at that.
Step 2: Add color
Sweep some peach blush on your cheeks for a healthy glow using a blush brush and blend upwards. One of my new favorites: Smashbox Halo Long Wear Blush in Peachy Dream.
Step 3: Enhance eyes
Brush on a pale shimmery shadow onto your eyes–no matter what your skin tone is, this will look sexy and glamorous on you, so don’t be afraid if you typically avoid lighter shades. A great option: Urban Decay Eye Shadow in Foxy. Run a liquid liner across your lashline and wing outward; for this, I picked my typical favorite, Urban Decay 24/7 Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Perversion. Use a lengthening mascara like Benefit They’re Real Mascara in Black to enlarge eyes by jiggling the brush a bit at the base of your lashes, then continue to the ends of larges. Hold the brush vertically and carefully apply mascara that way, too, in order to make eyes look even bigger. Dot on a little Benefit High Beam under your brow arch, on the inner corners of your eyes and on the upper parts of your cheekbones.
Step 4: Accentuate Lips
Use a lipliner like Nyx Slim Lip Pencil in Hot Red and then apply a true red such as ULTA Lipstick in Red Carpet Red overtop. Blot on a tissue. Apply color again, then blot again. Spritz a little Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray on to set your makeup (and refresh it on the go with this little travel size!).
Step 5: Hair
Part your hair to the side. Take a small section from the front of one side and twist it along the hairline, gathering new hair as you twist (this is almost the same as French braid, except way easier and I can actually do it), then secure with a bobby pin. Repeat with the hair on the other side. Now, you can either leave your hair like that or twist it into a bun; it’s up to you!
And tada! You’re done.