When it comes to getting your gorgeous on, New Year's Eve is right up there with Valentine's Day, a night when you want to look your most glamorous to end one year and ring in the next. I'd even equate it to Oscar night for us mere mortals -- a chance to pull out all your beauty tricks and shine like a star! Sounds like a lot of pressure, but it doesn't have to be with these easy celebrity beauty tricks I've put together for women of all ages. Seriously, they're fast, mistake-proof, doable tricks that'll have you looking like a million bucks way before the ball drops (without breaking the bank, of course!)
Red-Carpet Pre-Party Secret:
Celebs use face and eye masks before big nights out to hydrate their skin and reduce puffiness. I'm a big fan of GlamGlow mud masks, and especially like their new BrightMud Eye Treatment, little pods you pop open and apply under each eye (in fact, I'm wearing them as I write this!) For something less messy, Celebrity makeup artist Jeffrey Paul uses Skyn Iceland Eye Masks and Lancôme makes a great paper sheet mask. I also love the Wen masks sold at Sephora. But you don't have to buy anything to get a similar effect. I take a sheet of paper towel and cut eye and mouth holes out, then drench it with coconut water, a key ingredient in some of these masks, and let it sit on my skin for ten minutes. See more of my feel-good freebies here.
For eyes, my two favorite big night out looks are the cat-eye and metallic smokey eye look. If you're going for the liquid liner look, another trick I picked up from my pal Makeup Artist Jeffrey Paul, who works with Jaimie Alexander, Freida Pinto and other top celebs, taught me is to use a post-it note or even a credit card as a stencil to make your upward swoop. Hold it out at a diagonal at the base of your upper lash line, and use it as a guide as you draw the line.
As for the metallic smokey eye, use cream shadow sticks you can blend easily with your fingers. Some of my favorites are from Rimmel Cosmetics. I also love the roll-on shimmer shadows from NYX Cosmetics.
The easiest way to get glam hair fast? If you're hair is long enough, put it up in a high ponytail then twist the tail and roll it into a topknot and secure with an elastic. When you take it out, you'll have lots of body and a nice wave, which is why celebs sometimes leave their hair up like this in the limo on the way to red carpet events, then take it out before they open the car door! If you want a little more wave, you can enhance what's there without heat appliances using a dry texturizing spray, like KMS HairPlay Dry Touch Up Spray. Just roll hair into a curl around your finger and spritz, repeating for more curls all over your head (or just in the front).
If your hair is short, these sprays will give you volume and a chic modern effect if you first brush your hair into place, then pull your hair up section-by-section and spritz. You can also add a few hair-color matching bobby pins or rhinestone-studded pins (Conair makes really affordable ones that look really expensive).
Don't forget to get your glow on! On your face, add a liquid highlighter into your foundation, and then add a bit on top of your cheekbones, under your brow bones, even the inside corners of your eyes and the bow of your lip. On your body, use a shimmer spray or moisturizer to "finish" your skin the way celebs do on the red carpet -- it's flattering, actually slimming -- as long as the shimmer is understated, not flashy. Bath and Body Works makes really subtle sprays that have flecks of gold.
You can also jazz up your look with some sparkle. Sonia Kashuk at Target and Mally Beauty and Sephora make great holiday sets that feature a chic cosmetic bag filled with makeup. They're great buys right now (on sale after Christmas!) and do the double-duty of working as a fun, sparkly evening bag. To make any old little black dress look new, I love the idea of a collar necklace like the one Kate Middleton wore or wearing matching cuffs on each sleeve of a long-sleeved dress. They'll even make a plain black sweater look festive. Here are a few of my favorites; as for the cuffs, you probably can't get them in time but check out Invisibelt KCuffs by Kathy Kramer, which just go over your sleeve to create fun new looks. And of course you can polish your nails to become fashion accessories! If you want a fast inexpensive nail look, Sally Hansen at the drugstore has some great textured top coats that make your nails look like gemstones.
That's all for now, though my book has tons of other great looks for glamming up -- and you can buy the kindle edition in time to use it tonight! Instagram me your New Year's Eve photos if you use my tips at @andreaplustig.