My Tips and Tricks for a Special Occasion Look!


Every so often, I am asked how I prepare my skin for special occasions so with the holiday season here, I decided to share my tips and tricks to achieving a great and lasting look.

Let’s get started!

Skincare Essential Tips 

1) Exfoliate!  One of the steps to achieve a smooth complexion is to exfoliate and a go-to favorite is Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment.  In the shower after cleansing, I apply it to my face, wait 2 minutes while the enzymes and lactic acid remove dead skin cells and rinse away to reveal a rosy glow. (For a full review, click here.)

Lips can also use some exfoliating to remove flakiness and allow your lip color a smooth application.  I like Fresh Sugar Lip Polish.

2)  Moisturize!  After exfoliating, it’s crucial to add in moisture to your skin.  This step can also help prevent a cakey look.  Choose a moisturizer that’s appropriate for your skin type.  I use Dermalogica Active Moist when my combination skin feels more on the oily side as it’s light-weight and works well under makeup.

3)  Use an Eye Cream!  Adding hydration underneath your eyes will give a youthful look and can lessen the appearance of fine lines.  A good eye cream I like is PCA Skin EyeXcellence.


Pre and Post Makeup Essentials 

1)  Face Primer!  A face primer creates a barrier between your skin and makeup.  It helps make your makeup last longer and depending on the formula you choose, it can minimize the look of pores and ‘fill in’ lines and wrinkles (silicone based). 100% Pure Luminous Primer Vitamins + Antioxidants with Resveratrol has a nice blend of green tea and vitamins C and E for added antioxidant support.

2)  Eye Primer!  Eye primer is a must to even out any discoloration you may have on your eyelids and keep eyeshadow from creasing/fading.  My absolute favorite that I have used for years is Too Faced Shadow Insurance.

3)  Lip Balm!  Just as it’s key to moisturize your face, your lips also benefit from it too.  Swipe on a little bit while you’re getting ready so it has a chance to set.  Helpful tip: Mix it with your favorite lipstick to get a sheer look.  I love Vintage Sister Lip Balms (featured here: Chai Tea).

4)  Finish the look! (optional)  To really help set everything, use a finishing/setting spray or a light dusting of powder.  I alternate between  Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder and Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray.

And there you have it.  Whatever makeup colors/brands I choose depends on what I want to achieve, but these steps ensure a polished look.

What are your favorite products or tips for special occasions? Comment below! 

Thanks for reading,



Special Event Makeup Tips!

Makeup SE

Any special occasion- be it prom, a performance or dinner party- can send you into a frenzy to find the right dress, shoes and hairstyles.  Makeup is usually the last item on the checklist but in my opinion, it’s the most fun and helps pull the look together.  While many hire a professional makeup artist to achieve their coveted look, if you opt for the DIY route, here are some tips to help you look your best so you can be less worried about touch-ups and more focused on the event.

Skin care

Having a good skincare regimen in place facilitates your makeup application.  Cleansing, toning, moisturizing, and exfoliating are basic steps that can help you achieve a fresh, youthful look.  Proper exfoliation can also minimize the appearance of pores and ensures makeup does not cling on to dry, flaky patches.

*Note: While facials and microdermabrassion are excellent in enhancing your complexion, always schedule your appointment at least a week before your event to avoid an unwanted surprise.


Liquid foundation is a popular choice as it’s easy to apply, and can benefit all skin types.  However, mineral makeup works especially well for those who have acne and cream foundation doesn’t melt as fast so it lasts longer.

Using a primer underneath your foundation and then setting your foundation with loose translucent powder makes it last longer and can keep oil in check.


You can spot correct imperfections with concealer.  A concealer with a yellow undertone is great for counteracting the redness found on blemishes and scars while a concealer with a peach undertone is a good option for dark under eye circles.

Concealer can also be used as an ‘eraser’ to fix any mistakes- think eyeliner and lip color.


Use a brow powder on your eyebrows, and fill in only sparse areas to get a natural but defined look.


Whether you are going for a natural or smoky look, using an eye primer helps eye makeup from creasing and can even enhance the eyeshadow color(s).  My personal favorite is Too Faced Shadow Insurance.

Water-proof eyeliner is a must to keep your eye makeup from smearing. My current liquid eyeliner obsession is Stila All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner.


False eyelashes (falsies) are always a fun way to give that extra pop.  If possible, try out a pair of eyelashes a few days before the event to rule out the possibility of having a reaction to the adhesive (glue).

If you don’t have false eyelashes or can’t wear them, a few coats of waterproof mascara should do the trick.


Powder blush flatters most skin types (except dry) and lasts longer. Dry skin can use a crème blush.


For long-wearing lip color without the fuss, lip stains are the way to go.


Most important, have fun with your look and embrace your unique beauty!