How To

How to Do Your Own Formal Makeup

 School Formal Season Makeup

Doing your own makeup is tricky enough for every day wear if you are unfamiliar with applying it. But Formal season is fast approaching and it is important to start considering whether you will do your own formal makeup, or have it completed by a professional. It is becoming increasingly popular for girls to do their own formal makeup to avoid disappointment and save valuable dollars. It is also becoming increasingly common for celebrities to do their own makeup for special events. For example, Kate Middleton did her own makeup for her royal wedding, Carrie Underwood does her own makeup when on tour, whilst Kate Winslet, Michelle Obama, Taylor Swift and Rihanna are also known to do their own makeup from time to time.   DIY formal makeup gives you the control over the style and finish you desire.

Gaining confidence through practice and research is the best way to conquer the stress and anxiety of doing your own makeup. Within this guide you will discover the secret tips on how to do your own formal makeup to ensure you look flawlessly fabulous and turn heads!

 1. Select the perfect dress and hairstyle

It is important to first have your dress picked out and hairstyle chosen so you can then centre your formal makeup style around this.  After all, you do not want everything clashing!

2. Maintain a regular skin care routine

article-page-main_ehow_images_a02_82_pn_keep-healthy-skin-care-regimen-800x800Adopting a regular skin care routine a few months before the formal will ensure your skin is glowing and free of blemishes for your big day. It is important to begin the routine a few months before as it can take your skin a short while to adapt to the routine. However, if you have left the perfect skin routine until too late, do not do anything drastically different to what you normally do. This is because you will increase the risk of upsetting the balance your skin and end up suffering from breakouts and skin irritations. No matter how close your formal is, it is never too late to drink plenty of water, eat well, exercise and get plenty of sleep. For 5 simple tips for healthy looking skin, visit our  blog:

3. Get your eyebrows waxed

Eyebrows are more important to your facial features then you probably realise as they can help shape your face and eyes.  This is why it is important to have them waxed at least 3 days before your formal. This gives enough time for redness, swelling and irritations to disappear. For more information on the importance of waxing your eyebrows, and  how to do it by yourself, or by a professional, visit

4. Fake Tan?

Decide whether you want to invest in a fake tan or just go ‘al naturale’. If you are new to fake tan, make sure you research the most reliable brands and salons offering quality services. If you are considering doing your own fake tan, follow our tips on to ensure you get the perfect tan and avoid looking streaky or like an oompa loompa. It is also important to remember that having a fake tan will make your skin darker, so it is important to take this into consideration when purchasing a foundation.

5. Decide whether you’ll focus on your eyes or lips

Choosing one of these focal points will ensure your makeup does not look over-the-top and help highlight your best features.

So how do you know which one to highlight?
To answer this question, ask yourself what do you get the most compliments on – your lips or your eyes?

Accentuating your eyes involves applying eye shadow, eyeliner, mascara and possibly eye lashes if you feel they are suitable to your formal. Smokey and earthy tones are more suitable for formal events. Coloured shadows tend to date your pictures and you do not want to have any regrets when you look back on your photos. If you choose to highlight the eyes, go for a neutral lipstick or a shiny lip gloss. To determine which eye shadows best suit your eyes, take a look at:

If you are highlighting the lips, make sure you are using a colour which compliments your skin tone and dress. Women who have full lips can wear darker and brighter lip shades much better than women with thin lips. It is also important to consider that some tones, such as oranges, can cause your teeth to look yellow, whilst darker reds make the appearance of your teeth whiter. Wearing lip liner is also important to prevent your lipstick from bleeding beyond the natural lip line.

6. Copy a celebrity’s style

Researching and analysing pictures of celebrities and their makeup styles can help you decide which styles you like and which ones you don’t. It is also helpful to find celebrities with similar skin complexions, hair colours and facial features to better understand what will suit you the best! Once you have found the styles you like, it becomes easier to copy and apply the looks to yourself.

7. Purchase your tools and products.

If you do not already possess quality products, it is important to set yourself a budget, research suitable and effective products and then purchase them. stocks a variety of authentic quality products at discounted rates.

Remember, it is your tools and makeup (combined with your skills) which will make you flawless, so be sure to follow this checklist when selecting your products:

  • – consider if you’ll be having a fake tan. If so, your foundation, bronzers and powders will have to be a shade or two darker than normal
  • – also research will type of foundation best suits your skin type
  • – you want long lasting makeup
  • – primer and illuminator for glow and durability

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8. Research makeup application tips and tutorials

Researching the best ways, and how to apply different makeup is crucial to attaining a flawless finish. It may even be beneficial to keep a look out for any makeup classes being held in your area and attend them in order to gain practical experience and learn secret tips. also has a selection of  simple tutorial blogs which you can visit to learn invaluable tips:

Cosmetic brush for applying the powder

9. Makeup Trial

Practice, Practice, Practice! The only way you’ll achieve perfect, flawless makeup is through practice. Practicing the application of everything by following the tutorials and tips you researched will ensure you master the techniques. Once you have the skills sorted, allocate yourself the same amount of time you will have on your formal day to practice doing your makeup under pressure. This will help determine what skills you need to work on and what outcomes you like and don’t like. It will also reveal how much you time you actually need in order to achieve the perfect look! Another important thing to do whilst you’re practising is to test your makeup in different lights. It’s even a good idea to take a picture of yourself with flash on and see if you like the finish. This simple tip will ensure you look beautiful in all lights and don’t get any ugly surprises when you see your makeup in photos.

10. Leave yourself plenty of time on the big day

This is crucial to ensure you avoid stress if something is to go wrong, or your makeup application takes longer than expected. Just  remember, it is your big day and it is important to relax and enjoy the moment so you have amazing memories to look back on in years to come!

James Patten

James Patten

Writer and expert