The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

PARTY season is here and whether your festive function is on the dancefloor, down the pub or at your dining room table via video, your face is front-of-house.

But many of us feel lockdown has aged us. So where do we start?

The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

Lisa Armstrong reveals how to knock years off your face with clever make-up tricks

The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

Lisa Armstrong's youthful party look on the model

Strictly Come Dancing’s head of make-up Lisa Armstrong tells Beauty Writer Siobhan O'Connor how to create a youthful party look.


1: EYE MASK THEN MASSAGE TO BANISH DARK CIRCLES: CLEANSE the skin first and then spritz face with a mist to hydrate before applying make-up.

Next, I love to add an eye mask like Garnier hyaluronic acid and orange juice hydrating brightening eye sheet mask (usually £2.99, now £1.99, Boots) to hydrate the skin, reduce puffiness and make eyes appear brighter. Then I move on to step two — eye make-up — while the mask is working its magic.

When you take the mask off, massage the leftover moisture under the eyes. The skin is thinner here so the blood sits in the pocket — if it sits there too long it becomes deoxygenated and the blood becomes darker and shows through the skin.

If you massage and pat it you encourage blood flow and this takes away the darkness.

The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

Masks hydrate, reduce puffiness and help make your eyes look brighter

2: USE EYESHADOW BASE TO PREVENT CREASING: FOR your eye make-up, start with a base over the eyelid for the shadow to sit on. This prevents any creasing in wrinkles.

Next go over with a wash of a medium colour similar to your skin tone — opt for a slightly darker hue in the outer corners of your eyes and along the lash line.

3: AVOID HEAVY LINER AS IT WEIGHS DOWN EYES: KEEP eyeliner to a minimum. When it’s thick it can be heavy and pull the eye down. I’ve used MAC eyeliner (£16, now £12.80 maccosmetics.co.uk) in “teddy” — a soft brown shade that is not too overpowering.

Keep it right into the lash line to make your pupils pop. Apply mascara in a zig-zag motion. If using stick-on lashes, go for individuals rather than a strip, which can weigh down the lid.

4: FEATHER BROWS TO DRAW THE EYES UP: BRUSH brows up from the outer corner of the brow to make eyes appear wider and to lift the whole face.

Using thick, heavy pencil to fill in the brows can make them appear strong. This looks too harsh and is ageing.

Using feathery strokes makes brows appear light and fluffy, and complements the face rather than overpowering it.

Highlight underneath the brow to give that wider eye appearance, but keep it matte as shimmer attracts too much attention.

5: AVOID HEAVY POWDERS ON SKIN: IT’S best to start with eyes to avoid any eyeshadow fall-out ruining your base. Then blend a light foundation — L’Oréal Paris Plumping Tinted Serum (£13.99, Superdrug) into the skin with a buffing brush.

Next, use a cream concealer under the eye, avoid heavy formulas and try a light reflection option like Creaseless concealer (£23, tartecosmetics.com).

Use a fluffy brush to blend in before using your fingers to pat the concealer close to your bottom lash line.

Set the concealer with a fine powder such as E.l.f. High Definition Powder Sheer 331, (£6, Boots). Use a small brush to dab this on to the skin — this will set and smooth any fine lines, whereas a dense powder will cling to creases.

The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

Thick eyeliner can be heavy and pull the eye down

6: CREAM BLUSH TO PLUMP CHEEKS: AS we age, we tend to lose plumpness in cheeks and definition in our jawline. Create the illusion of plumpness by using a cream blush such as Kosas High Intensity Colour + Light Creme Blush & Highlighter (£32, naturisimo.com) on the apples of cheeks.

Cream will give a nice dewy finish rather than a powder blush, which can stick to an uneven texture. Swoop up towards the temples to draw the eyes up.

7. BRONZER TO DEFINE JAW WITH contour, don’t use anything shimmery.

Use bronzer to sculpt, but going up and out along the cheekbones rather than in the hollows of your cheeks as this will make your face look gaunt.

Finally, draw lines along the jaw bone and blend. This creates shadow and gives the illusion of a stronger jaw.

The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

Red lipstick is a great go-to – it's festive, mood-boosting and distracts from skin woes

8: USE A POUT PLUMPER BUT DON’T OVERLINE LIPS: OVERLINING the lips does not make them appear plumper.

If your pout is thinning, try a lip plumper. I use the Too Faced Lip Injection Extreme (£22, asos.com). It increases fullness immediately with avocado oil and vitamin E to soften lips.

Next, line the lips and keep it extra sharp to add definition, then fill in with a matte lipstick.

Red is always a great go-to. It’s festive, mood-boosting and distracts from skin woes. Try Avon x Lisa Armstrong MATTEiculous Lipstick in My Joy, (£12, avon.uk.com).

9. USE A VERY LIGHT POWDER TO SET IN PLACE
FINISH with powder on the forehead, down the T-zone and either side of the nose. Try a light, translucent pow­der such as Nars light-reflecting loose setting powder (usually £29, now £20.30, narscosmetics.co.uk) — it’s weightless and luminous.”

  • Strictly’s make-up guru Lisa is one of our Fabulous Beauty Ambassadors – a panel of industry insiders bringing you all their expertise.

The clever make-up tricks to knock years off your face at Christmas, by Strictly make-up queen Lisa Armstrong

Strictly’s make-up guru Lisa is one of our Fabulous Beauty Ambassadors

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