Basics for a Newbie

 I am a makeup newbie and I was wondering what are some basics I should start with. I've played around with eyeshadows every now and then, but thats as far as it goes.  I would love to be able to pull off a look that does not look overdone, especially for every day.  My Sephora Beauty Profile is black/dark brown hair, dark brown eyes, dark complexion and oily/combination skin. Any tips or advice will be greatly appreciated! Smiley Wink

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The other posts gave you some great info on skincare products.  I wanted to add a few tips about choosing the right colors for your eye, hair and skin colors.

To make your brown eyes really stand out, wear an eyeshadow that’s the opposite of your eye shade on the color spectrum.  Brown eyes should be lined with a brown liner, not black—it’s softer yet still dramatic.  Brown eyes can wear almost any combination of colors.  However, some of the best shades for brown eyes are:

  • cream / eggshell
  • dark brown
  • plum
  • warm gold
  • deep blue
  • forest green
  • deep grey

Urban Decay Eyeshadow is one of my favorite eyeshadows and it comes in the colors I listed above and many more which you can find at:

Here are a few tips to help you when selecting blush:

Warm complexions look best in yellow-based blush shades like peach and terracotta.  Cool undertones are flattered by blue-based pinks and berries.

To find your perfect cheek color, go to a store that sells paint and has paint samples and pick colors that you think could work as a blush.  Hold the samples up to your face in front of a mirror in natural light and you’ll see instantly what brightens your complexion versus what makes it look sallow or gray.

A universally flattering color for all skin tones is a light pink such as Make Up For Ever “Powder Blush” in the shade “Candy Pink 85” which you can find at

Choosing the lipstick color that suits you best can make all the difference in whether your makeup makes you look overdone and washed out or radiant.  My well-worn beauty book gives the following guidelines to follow when choosing a lip color:


  • Determine whether you have fair skin tone, medium skin tone, olive skin tone or dark (brown or black) skin tone.
  • Use your skin tone to determine which shade of lipstick will look best on you.
  • If you have fair skin, choose deep plum and wine reds with a blue undertone, light browns or beige with a pink undertone, or light shiny pinks with blue undertones.
  • If you have medium skin tone, choose deep browns, deep reds with blue undertones, warm reds, medium browns with pink or yellow undertones, deep, rich pinks, and pinks with brown undertones.
  • Choose deep and rich browns with reddish or mahogany undertones, dark berry shades, and rich and dark pinks with yellow undertones if you have yellowish or olive skin tones.
  • Choose dark reds with blue undertones, deep plums, any shade of brown, soft sheer pinks and beige shades, and deep berry shades if you have a dark skin tone.
  • Wear lighter and glossier shades if you have thinner lips, as they generally make thin lips appear fuller. Dark lipsticks will make your thin, small lips even thinner and smaller.
  • Wear darker, matte lipsticks if you have very full lips.
  • Wear deeper, darker or bolder lipstick colors and shades with light eye makeup.
  • Wear a lighter or more neutral lip color to complement heavier eye makeup.
  • Wear lighter and more neutral colors of lipstick with a matte or cream finish during the day (at work, for example), and save your darker, glossier and more dramatic colors for a night on the town.

Beauty Talk's home page has some great video tutorials, especially the one called "no makeup" makeup look.  You can watch these tutorials at:

I hope this helps you.  Smiley Happy

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