Stop testing lipstick on the back of your hand
“Lips have lots of natural pigment , while the back of your hand is typically one of the palest parts of your body,” says Damboise. To use this spot as a stand-in for your mouth is common—but employs little common sense. A better bet, if you’re reluctant to use “tester” lipstick on your mouth (a wise move, we say, with the rampant spread of swine flu), is to dab lipcolor on the tip of your finger. This area of skin is deeper in color than the rest of your hand so scribbling lipcolor there provides a more accurate forecast of how it’ll look swiped on your lips.
Ditch your blush
And play up your cheeks with a bronzer instead. “The sunny brown of a bronzer minimizes any red or blotchy undertones while still brightening up your face,” says Damboise. The effect is more natural-looking than a pink or purple blush—and non-makeup artists (which would be pretty much everyone reading this) are less apt to overdo it.
Test foundation next to your nose
We’ve all been taught to stripe prospective foundations along our jawlines. But that’s not such a bright idea, says Damboise. “The skin along your neck and jaw tends to have less color than the rest of your face. Using this as your testing ground can leave you with a base that makes you look washed out,” she says.
Smooth your undereyes with silicone
Damboise’s must-have product: Too Faced Wrinkle Injection ($26; sephora.com). “This lightweight serum uses silicone to fill in fine lines and make the skin look instantly smoother. I top it with concealer to take five years off the face,” says Damboise.