The aging of skin around the eyes is a natural process of aging. We also need to treat this process as not just an event but as a journey.For most women over 50, wearing makeup is an important part of feeling and looking good. The challenge is to apply eye makeup for over 50 in such a way that it looks natural, fresh, and young without becoming garish.
Eye makeup can be fun and flirty, but it’s also an art form that requires some skill and finesse. If you’re older than 50, you may have some issues with your eyesight or dexterity—but don’t let that stop you from trying out new looks. Here are some tips for applying eye makeup for over 50:
- Use a magnifying mirror when applying eyeliner or mascara.
- Invest in some good quality brushes and sponges to apply your eye shadow. The best ones are soft bristles that won’t scratch the delicate skin around your eyes.
- Make sure to wash your hands well before applying any eye makeup products so that they don’t get infected by bacteria on your hands or clog up your pores with oils from lotion or other skin care products like face moisturizers which contain fragrance ingredients which may cause irritation or allergic reactions in sensitive individuals who are prone to allergic reactions such as contact dermatitis (redness around the eyes), conjunctivitis (redness of eyelids), styes (eye infections caused by bacteria), blepharitis (eyelid inflammation), etc…
How to apply eye makeup for over 50
Once you reach the age of 50, your skincare needs change. Mature skin tends to be dry, and fine lines and wrinkles may make it seem difficult to apply flawless makeup, especially around the eyes. However, with the right techniques, your eye makeup can brighten your face and help you feel even more beautiful and confident than you already are!
Preparing Your Skin
1. Wash your face with a gentle cleanser and pat your skin dry. If you want your makeup to look natural and bright, you need to start with a glowing complexion. Start by washing your face with a gentle cleanser. Since your skin gets drier as you mature, a hydrating cleanser is likely your best choice.
After you wash your face, use a soft towel to blot your face dry. Don’t rub your face—this can stretch out your skin, especially in the delicate area around your eyes.
2. Apply a thin layer of moisturizer. Hydrated skin looks healthier, so use a lightweight face cream after you wash your face. This is especially important under your eyes—if your skin is dry, it will look saggy, which will emphasize any lines in the area. In addition, powder can settle into the creases around your eyes, making the area look heavy.
During the day time, it’s a good idea to use a moisturizer that contains sun protection if you don’t use a separate product. Opt for a product with at least SPF 30.
You may also want to use a separate lifting or firming eye cream at night.
3. Apply a thin coat of eyeshadow base or primer onto your eyelids. If you have a tube of product, squeeze out a very small amount onto your finger on a brush. If you have a tube of product, swipe a brush across the product. Either way, apply the primer or base to your eyelids just above your lashes, then blend it upward above your crease. This will give your eyeshadow something to adhere to.
- The skin on your eyelids thins as you get older, making them more translucent. That means they’ll appear slightly purple, blue, or red. An eyeshadow primer or base will help cover that, creating a smooth canvas for your makeup while making you look more bright-eyed and refreshed.Make sure to apply the product lightly to ensure it doesn’t crease.
4. Wait to put on your face makeup until after you do your eyes. When you put on eyeshadow, small particles of pigment typically fall onto your cheeks and under your eyes. This is called eyeshadow fallout, and if you’ve already applied foundation and concealer, the fallout can get trapped. If you do your eyeshadow first, you can brush away the fallout before applying the rest of your makeup.
- Fallout can emphasize any dark circles under your eyes, making you look tired or ill.
Choosing and Applying Eyeshadow
- Opt for natural, warm tones. Since dark circles and discoloration on your eyelids often have a cool tone, you’ll look more lively if you use warmer-toned eyeshadows. Look for shades like gray, sepia, bronze, and golds to help bring a refreshing warmth to your eyes.
- Stay away from purple tones that can make dark circles look worse.The tone and undertones of your skin will affect which eye colors look best on you, so you may have to experiment to find your best colors.
Makeup Artist & Wardrobe Stylist Our Expert Agrees: Keep your look natural and simple. Use mascara and eyeliner, and focus on shaping your brows to bring attention to your eyes. For your eyeshadow, use natural tone eye colors, but nothing too heavy.
2. Apply your eyeshadow in thin layers. To avoid a heavy, caked-on look, start by swiping on just a little of the color you want to use. Swirl a small, fluffy makeup brush over your eyeshadow to blend out any harsh edges, then continue adding layers and blending until you get the look you want.
If you already have any sagging or wrinkled skin, a lot of eyeshadow will only emphasize those problems.
You can use this approach whether you’re going for a subtle, natural look, a dramatic smokey eye, or anything in between.
3. Stick to matte eyeshadows for the most part. If you have any fine lines, creases, or other texture, shimmery or glittery eyeshadows will draw attention to these areas. Instead, opt for eyeshadow with little to no shimmer at all. That way, the attention will stay right where you want it—your gorgeous eyes!
Although you should avoid anything with glitter, you can make your eyes look brighter by applying the slightest bit of a pale eyeshadow with a hint shimmer right on the center of your lid.
4. Try using a single medium-dark shade to create a natural, flattering look. Swipe an eyeshadow brush across a medium-dark eyeshadow like caramel, sage, or bronze. Then, apply it to the outer corner of your eye, right at your lash line. Sweep and swirl your eyeshadow brush inward and upward to blend the eyeshadow up and over your crease. Continue adding light layers until you’re happy with the look.
While you can certainly use every color in your eyeshadow palette if that’s what you want to do, your eye makeup can start to look heavy and cakey if you do that.
As the skin around your eyes starts to lose elasticity, it’s common to notice some sagging. As this occurs, the crease on your eyelids will likely become more pronounced. Doing traditional eyeshadow, with a lighter color on the lids and a darker color on the crease, can emphasize this effect even more.
Using a single eyeshadow color will help lift your eyes and make them look bigger. It will also create the illusion of a new crease.
5. Opt for cream eyeshadow for a softer finish. Cream eyeshadow goes on silky and smooth, so it can give you a natural, soft look. Keep in mind that a little goes a long way—swipe a brush into the container, then brush the shadow across your lids. Blend it out with a brush, a damp beauty sponge, or your fingers, keeping the color darker at the outer corners and lighter as you go in and up.
Powder eyeshadow can settle into your creases and can make your eye area look dry. Primer helps with that, but if you’re still noticing a problem, cream eyeshadow can be a good solution.
Finishing the Look
- Shape and fill in your brows. Your brows naturally thin with age, and they may not grow back in after you tweeze or wax them. Make them look fuller by brushing on a brow powder, pencil, or tinted gel. Fill in any sparse spots, and especially pay attention to the area near the tail of your brows, where they tend to thin the most.
- Opt for a color 1-2 shades lighter than your natural hair or brow color. Avoid very dark colors, and don’t fill in your brows too thickly, or they’ll look unnatural and cartoonish.
- Curl your lashes to make your eyes look wider. Clamp an eyelash curler at the base of your lashes and hold it there for about 10 seconds. Then, repeat on the other eye. If you’d like, you can even curl your lashes again for a more dramatic look.
- If you curl your lashes, you won’t need to use as much mascara, which can help you avoid the spider-lashes look.
- For even more lift, try a heated curler. If you don’t have one, try blasting your lash curler with your hairdryer for about 15 seconds before you curl your lashes.
- Swipe on a single coat of lengthening mascara to show off your lashes. Since your eyelashes become more sparse with age, a volumizing, lengthening mascara is a great way to help them look fuller and longer. Press the mascara wand into the base of your lashes, then sweep it upward to coat each lash all the way to the tip.
- Mascara opens your eyes, making you look more rested and refreshed.
- Avoid applying multiple thick layers of mascara, which can look clumpy and obvious.
- Dot on your eyeliner pencil, then smudge it with a cotton swab. Trying to draw a perfectly straight line can be difficult on mature skin, as over time the skin on your eyelids softens and wrinkles begin to form. Instead, use a sharp, soft eyeliner pencil and apply dots of color all the way down your eyelid. Then, use a cotton swab or an angled eyeliner brush to smudge the liner, giving you a soft, even line.
- You can also use black or dark brown eyeshadow for this.
- You can do this for your top and bottom lashes.
- Line your waterline with a nude shadow or liner. Lightly apply a neutral eyeliner to your waterline, or the thin line just above your bottom lashes. This will make your whole face look more refreshed and alert.
- Work quickly to ensure your eyes don’t water; otherwise, the liner will be washed away.
- Apply the liner lightly—the look needs to be subtle in order to be effective.
- Pat on concealer in a V-shape under your eyes to cover dark circles. Use a concealer that’s 1-2 shades lighter than your skin and apply it in the shape of a V from just under your eyes down to the tops of your cheeks. Then, pat the concealer with your fingers or a damp beauty sponge until it’s completely blended in to your skin. This will give you a bright, rested appearance while camouflaging any darkness.
- Since the skin under your eyes is thinner after the age of 50, dark circles can form, or worsen if you already had them. These can look like bruising, or they may make you look very tired.
- If you plan to wear foundation on the rest of your face, you can apply it at this time as well.
- Set your concealer with a light dusting of pressed powder. Pat a powder puff or powder brush onto the surface of a pressed powder compact. Then, lightly tap the powder onto the area under your eyes where you applied concealer. This will help lock in the look so it stays in place, and it will also help prevent eyeshadow, mascara, or eyeliner from smudging onto the concealer throughout the day.
- Avoid using loose powder, which can look cakey and may emphasize lines. Similarly, use a light hand when you’re applying the pressed powder.
- You can apply the powder over any other areas of your face where you used concealer or foundation, also.