Know your BB from your CC and DD creams: must-try makeup basics for mature faces over 55

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Makeup basics such as well-groomed eyebrows, a hydrating primer and a good colour correcting cream could have you positively glowing through the holiday season.

Regardless of age, stepping out with lightly applied makeup that looks polished, hydrated and fresh, is a commonly shared ideal.  As our skin elasticity, facial nerves and soft tissue declines (as part of ageing, but also depending on your skin type and sun care) it can be harder to achieve the dewy, youthful look flaunted on billboards and social media.

Less is usually more when it comes to makeup in our later years. Sticking to the same skincare and makeup routine you followed decades ago, may be ageing your appearance.

Do you know your BB from your CC creams? In this article, we’ll help you understand the skincare and makeup products on the market today.

Well groomed eyebrows to frame your face

Depending on genetics and overall health, your eyebrows may thin as each birthday passes. Eyebrows frame your eyes, and with good shaping can contribute to helping achieve a lifted look.

Finding a good eyebrow groomer will have you almost ready to step out your front door with minimal effort.  If you prefer to do-it-yourself (DIY), there are oodles of good eyebrow grooming tools on the market, including but not limited to:

  • Eyebrow micro-blading or semi-permanent tattoo eyebrows that mimic your natural hair
  • Eyebrow grooming kits
  • Semi-permanent DIY eyebrow gels that define, fill and thicken and usually last a few days without having to reapply
  • Eye brow gels and powders for daily application.

Anti-ageing moisturiser or serum to help plump

In most cases, as we mature, our skin loses hydration and you may experience some soft tissue loss. It is this dehydration and loss of plumpness that can lead to a sallower appearance than in our more youthful days.

A good quality, anti-ageing moisturiser or serum is the best base for helping your overall facial appearance. By hydrating your skin well, you reduce the amount of makeup that will settle in to drier fine lines and help stop make up bleeds. Serums which are oil based are effective for very dry skin but can be too heavy for those with a normal to oily skin type.

The inclusion of SPF 50+ is always a great idea, regardless of your age in our Australian sunshine.

Primers help refine your skin texture ready for makeup

Skin primers are possibly the best makeup technology ever. The trick is in finding the right one for your skin. A primer works almost like blurring a photograph. You apply it over the top of your moisturiser (make sure you give your moisturiser time to settle in to your skin first), and it works by minimising fine lines and pores. It is like the canvas for a great painting! And most primers promise to give longevity to the next layer of your makeup.

You may need to experiment with different types and brands. Now that I’ve found one that delivers on its promises, I’ve stuck with it! I did have a few fails along the way so ask your beautician or makeup salesperson for a sample first.

A nourishing and hydrating primer will work under your foundation and eye makeup like an image editing touch up!

Blemish Balm (BB) creams and Colour Correcting (CC) creams for a flattering blur

As our skin matures, it is time to consider ditching powder foundations. Powder settles into crevices and can emphasise our character lines.

BB or CC creams are a lighter option than a full cover liquid foundation. They often include moisturiser, primer, SPF protection, concealer and foundation all from the one tube or bottle.

Light reflecting particles can help lift a dull complexion.

The finish of a BB or CC (or DD) cream is lighter and dewier than a liquid or powder foundation. You can layer to achieve a heavier cover, but applied lightly, these creams can be very flattering on mature skin. These creams are bliss for more mature skin because of how the product refines your skin texture and tone, and blurs imperfections.

If you must use powder to tone down shine, use the smallest amount but just on your t-zone – a light sweep of your forehead and nose.

By the way, a DD cream is a ‘Daily Defence’ cream that combines BB and CC properties with added sun protection.

Ditch the powder and try a setting spray

A makeup setting spray applied over the top of your BB, CC or DD cream is a great alternative to a mattifying, line defining, ageing powder foundation. And it is so easy to use. Once you’ve applied your BB, CC or DD cream you simply hold the spray nozzle about 10 centimetres from your face and give it a spritz. Once it dries, your makeup is set for the day or evening.

Cream or liquid blushes to add colour and contour

If the natural skin pigment melanin loses its oomph with the years, a dab of blush colour on your cheeks can help add a healthy glow.  The same rule applies as for powder foundations. You’ll achieve more flattering results with a cream or liquid blush product, than ageing powder.

Contouring your face to highlight features with blush is quite a skill, but you’ll find hundreds of online videos showing you how to contour with blush, highlighters and illuminators to achieve the overall look you want. Contouring is a little like getting the shadows right on a drawing or painting to make it pop from its paper or canvas surface.

Mascara or tint to enhance curled eyelashes

Lift and lengthen your eyelashes with an eyelash curler. This is a decades old trick to opening up your eyes. And of course, the addition of black mascara or a dark tint will heighten the effect.

If you’re someone who wants to go beyond makeover basics, eyelash extensions or false eyelashes can make your eyes a feature.

Lip liner, lip balm, lipstick, lip gloss in that order

Lipstick bleed is an over 55s frustration that can easily be fixed. Lipstick bleed is caused by the moisture of your lipstick melting its way into drier, fine lines around your pout. By starting with a nutritious, hydrating moisturiser as part of your face routine, you’ve already helped halt a lipstick bleed.

Using a lip liner to define the outside of your lips, acts like a dam wall to help stop the fill (the lipstick) from seeping into those pout lines. By then applying a layer of lip balm, you’re hydrating your lips and helping plump them up. You’ll also then find that your lipstick will glide on easily, and you’ll use less of it.

If you’re then wanting to add an extra va-va-voom – apply a layer of high shine lip gloss over the top of your lipstick. Mind, you may find half your lips left behind on your coffee cup or wine glass, so always be ready to reapply!

Sources and helpful information

Look Fabulous Forever – for tips, tricks, makeup and skincare specifically designed for post-menopausal women

Now to Love | Beauty | Ageing – for articles about ageing and beauty tips from Bauer Media Group including Women’s Weekly and Woman’s Day.


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