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How to wear shimmery and glittery makeup

You don’t need sequins to claim your glitterati spotlight on the year’s-end party circuit.

You don’t need sequins to claim your glitterati spotlight on the year’s-end party circuit. Strategic use of this season’s sparkle and shimmer cosmetics will do the beauty trick.

Of the two, shimmer is more wearable for faces of all ages. “It’s an easy way to add glamour,” says Physicians Formula celebrity makeup pro Joanna Schlip, who is artist to Rachel Bilson and Ellen Pompeo.

Schlip’s favourite look is a wash of gold, copper or bronze shimmer powder over an espresso or chocolate-brown smoky eye lined with black pencil. “Highlight your browbones with gold, and sweep shimmer under the lower lashes, too," she says.

Definitely rock a shimmery lip with shimmery eyes, but choose colour based on your eye makeup. Schlip likes a bold mouth with a gold eye. Her key bold-lip tip: “Prep with a stain first so that as your gloss fades you won’t end up with that ugly colour outline.” If you go for a dark smoky eye, however, choose a light lip hue.

Balance all that sheen with subtle cheeks that glow rather than glimmer. Avoid anything with a frosty finish.

If you prefer less shiny shadow, go for a touch of gleam wherever the light hits your face, advises Toronto-based artist Kevin Smith, who has worked with Kirsten Dunst and Helen Mirren. “Anyone can wear shimmery highlight on the brow bones, tops of cheek bones, down the centre of the nose and on the bow of the lips,” he says. Champagne or white is especially pretty at the inner corners of the eyes.

Smith also says a sparing approach is best, so whether you choose a cream or powder formula, always dab excess from fingers or brush on the back of your other hand before applying it to your face.

Best left to the under-30 set, glitter adds a twinkle as liner along the upper lashes. Smith says to hold off on foundation until after your glitter application so you can easily wipe away stray particles.

For New Year’s Eve, Smith’s suggests that adventurous types might try painting a little glitter triangle on the centre of the lids, with the base toward the lashline. And why not add a smaller upside-down triangle under eyes, harlequin style? “It’s a theatrical look, great with an 80s-vibe batwing dress and frizzed-out hair,” he says. “It’s not for the makeup meek, but what’s fun about makeup is showing up with something you wouldn’t normally do."

 
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