Here are my best 51 beauty hacks, tips & tricks that every girl should know. From contouring to dandruff problems to nail woes, these simple hacks will help you get to your A-game.
Hey gorgeous! There’s so much to getting ready – skincare, nails, makeup and finally hair. But even the best of us are sometimes stuck with simple things at times. That’s why I’ve compiled a list of my very own 51 beauty hacks, tips & tricks, including those I learned from makeup artists, hairstylists and celebrities.
I personally have invented many of these myself to solve the problems I’ve faced over the years when getting ready for my photo-shoots. These makeup tricks and hacks will surely make you feel like a pro.
So let’s get started. There’s so many to cover…
51 Beauty Hacks, Tips & Tricks
1. How to make your nose look smaller?
Start with a flat brush and apply the contour from the inner corner of your brow to the side of your nose-tip in a slightly curved shape. The curve should be right between your eyes. Repeat on the other side. Then blend it so that no harsh lines are seen. Adjust the curve according to the shape you want your nose to be.
2. Urgent dandruff problems?
On a bad dandruff day, just take a few drops of coconut oil on your fingertips and tap them (don’t rub) onto your scalp after a wash to get moisturized scalp yet non greasy hair.
3. Wearing dark lipstick and wanna avoid getting it on your teeth?
Just fill the lips with matching lip liner first. Then wear the lipstick without taking it too much on the inner side of the lips. Finally, open your lips and run your index finger on the inner faces of your lips to remove any excess color.
4. Want a slimmer neckline and feminine collarbones for a strapless dress?
To get sharp celeb-like collarbones, use contouring above and below them, and use highlighter on the ridge. With these set of beauty hacks, you can make it seem like you’v been working out, even when you haven’t!
5. This is one of my favorite beauty hacks to give a doll-like look!
Contour under your jawline, and take it very slightly above on the sides of your face to mimic a smaller jaw.
6. Never apply liquid blush directly on face.
It never blends after a few seconds, and then it’s too late! When using a liquid blush, first take it out on a tissue or back of your palm and then apply to your cheeks so as to avoid a clown look with excess product.
7. Contour like a pro.
Use a separate brush to contour the nose and under the cheekbones. Cheekbones need a fluffy kabuki brush whereas the sides of nose are best done a flat foundation brush. That can give you precision.
8. If you want a shimmery face, mix a bit of liquid highlighter with your foundation and then apply. Ditto for arms and legs. This works great when you have a photo-shoot or going for a wedding.
9. When using liquid highlighter, take it out on your finger first, rub it and then lightly tap it onto your cheekbones to give a subtle but blended effect.
10. Never forget your brows.
Use your nearly empty mascara to do your brows. It takes off any excess makeup/powder from them and also combs them into place.
11. Don’t use compact powder all over your face!
Use compact powder only wherever you’ve used concealer. Avoid wearing it all over the face so that you can avoid an overly matte look.
12. Blend like a pro!
Use a teardrop or diamond shaped sponge to blend your foundation and concealer. This will help you blend it well even in the small corners like the corners of the eyes and the nose. Always wet your makeup sponge before you blend with it.
13. I learned one of these beauty hacks from Kim Kardashian!
For a flawless, professional look, blend the foundation on the temples all the way into the hairline. If you get foundation on the hair, lightly run a tissue once on the hair to remove any excess product on them.
14. When buying makeup like foundation or concealer, try it on your skin but then don’t buy it immediately.
Leave it on for the day, so that you can see it in different lights, like sun light, white and yellow light etc and make sure it really matches.
15. Same with perfume.
Before you purchase it, spray some on your fave spots and leave it on for the day. It’s worth investing in if it lasts the whole day. Or at least 6-8 hours.
16. Here are some beauty hacks to make a pouf without backcombing or spraying, which I learned from my hairstylist once.
When making a pouf, take the top section of hair, comb & detangle them. Then twist them once at the back of your head before pinning them with bobby pins in a criss-cross way. This will make your pouf last without even back combing the hair. Perfect for high ponytails.
17. These set of beauty hacks will help your lipstick last all evening.
To make your lipstick last longer, first wear a lip balm. Then create a base with concealer and then line and fill it with lip pencil. Then wear your lipstick but don’t rub it with the lips. Instead, kiss a tissue to remove the excess. Repeat once or twice so that you get layered lipstick that really sets on the lips.
18. For a light lip color that lasts for hours, just wear lip liner with lip balm.
I learned this tip from a makeup artist at Dior, and have used this trick to create an effortlessly glam pout for many of my photo-shoots like this one:
19. For bigger looking yet deep set eyes, use these set of beauty hacks:
Wear pencil eyeliner on the upper lash line. Make sure it gets between the lashes and makes them look fuller. Then proceed to do the eye makeup as usual. Finish by removing any liner that may have gotten on the lower lash line. Use a Q-tip to do so. Finally, wear pencil liner a little below the lower lash line. This will give the effect of larger eyes.
Loads of celebs use this tip, sometimes with a white eyeliner on the lower lash line. Here’s my personal example:
Also check out: What’s Your Eye Shape + Best Makeup for Your Eye Shape
20. For a natural makeup look, avoid concealing all your spots. Just conceal some random ones. And swap your foundation for a light coverage makeup. Finally, after you’re finished with the full makeup, use a clean fluffy brush over the tip of the nose and top of the cheeks to remove some of the makeup. This will make your freckles or marks slightly visible, giving a natural youthful look.
21. To make your nose baby-like and tipped, contour the tip of your nose by creating almost a circle around it. Then blend it well.
22. Tired of your elbows looking darker than the rest of your arm?
For naturally beautiful elbows and knees, scrub them with lemon (take out all its juice first) for a minute or two. Do this once every 2-4 days and you’ll begin seeing results within a couple of weeks. You can do this for knees and ankles, too.
23. For a homemade manicure, just scrub your hands and cuticles with apricot scrub for a couple of minutes. Rinse. Then massage them for a few minutes with aloe vera gel. Finally wash them and massage with moisturizer for about a minute.
24. These two beauty hacks will make your mascara look flawless.
Just run the back of your index finger or a clean mascara wand through the lashes after you wear mascara. This will comb and separate them as well as remove any excess product.
25. Want your colored eyeshadow or eyeliner to look more vibrant?
First draw over the lid, filling it with white eye pencil. Then apply the eyeshadow. It’ll give a long-lasting, extremely vibrant finish.
26. This is another one of those beauty hacks I learned from the Kardashians.
For plumper looking lips, when wearing your lip liner, go over the natural lines at the top and bottom of the lip, but stay on the lines at the corners of your mouth. This will give a more natural shape.
27. Wearing a light colored eyeshadow and can’t get it to show enough on the lid? Wet the brush slightly and then apply the eyeshadow with it. It’ll get more product to set on your lid, giving a bolder look. Works perfectly for subtle shades like sky blue, lilac, peach or cream. I used this trick for my fairy-themed photo-shoot.
28. Does your dark lipstick end up giving a smudged look?
Before you wear your lip liner, also wear a bit of concealer around your lips. Dust powder on it lightly and then proceed to do your lip makeup as usual. This will give a pro look. I learned this beauty hack from a makeup artist at M.A.C.
29. Wanna wear lip liner like a pro? Here’s a secret way I created after years of struggle!
Always start at the cupid’s bow and draw it in a V or X shape. Smile when you do this. Then proceed to line the center of the bottom lip while smiling too. Finally, open your mouth and then draw the liner till the corners.
30. Want your lashes to look beautiful without mascara?
Rub a drop of lotion on your fingertips. Then just lightly touch the tips of your eyelashes in an upward motion with the back of your finger. This will separate them, comb them as well as curl them, at least temporarily. Plus the lotion will set them in place. Be sure to not get it on the roots of the lashes or in your eyes.
31. Can’t get your nail polish to look like salon’s?
Be sure to wear it with a thick brush in one stroke from top of the nail to the bottom. Start in the middle, then do the sides. Remove excess nail polish from the brush before you apply it, to avoid drips and thick, gummy nail polish look.
32. Want a salon-like gel manicure at home?
A 3D gel effect top coat can give salon like effect. Wear it over two coats of nail polish. It’s a life-saver for weddings! Also check out: Beautiful Nails at Home with Our Natural Manicure Guide
33. Sensitive skin? These couple of tips are less of beauty hacks and more like a skin-safety precaution.
Store your makeup brushes separately from your other makeup, and be sure to wash them after every use, including the sponge. And never share your makeup. This will reduce any bacteria buildup which is responsible for zits and clogged pores. Also avoid storing your makeup brushes in a stand. Instead, keep them stored away in a pouch or box, so they collect less dust.
34. Want decent-looking nails but too lazy to file them?
While clipping nails, instead of making one horizontal cut, clip them in smaller half-cuts, while making a U-shape. Also read: Pro Beauty Supply Items & Makeup Tools Every Girl Needs
35. Want shiny nails at home without nail polish?
You need just a simple buffing tool. I personally use this one for my at-home manicures, which has 4 sides – one for filing, two for smoothening and removing ridges, and one for buffing.
36. When plucking your brow hairs with a tweezer, pluck only the thick ones that fall completely below the natural brow lines. This will help your eyebrows look natural and not overly shaped.
37. Here’s an eye makeup tip that the makeup artist of Marilyn Monroe used on her.
To make your eyelashes seem longer, you can actually do something that’s not mascara-related at all! Just take some brown eyeshadow on a small flat eyeshadow brush, and draw an arc at the outer corner below your eye to mimic the shadow of your eyelashes.
38. How to remove makeup the right way?
To avoid red eyes after an evening of eye makeup, make sure to remove it all before you sleep with proper technique. Instead of rubbing your mascara off, just keep a cotton ball with makeup remover on your eyelids for a minute and then lightly wipe it off so that the full eye makeup comes off without any rubbing or eyelash hurting. Once you’ve removed it all and washed your eyes, be sure to check your eyes for any stray makeup particles. If they get into the eye, remove them carefully with a clean fingertip (no long nails).
39. Ran out of makeup remover?
Use moisturizer instead. Either on a cotton ball or lather some on your face and then use a cotton ball to remove makeup as usual. Make sure it doesn’t get into the eyes.
40. To avoid yellow nails after a session of thick nail polish layers, take off your nail polish right after your event/party and scrub your nails with lemon for a minute.
41. Eyeshadow pro tip.
Always use at least 3 brushes to wear your eyeshadow. A flat one for application, a fluffy one for blending and another clean fluffy one for cleaning out any stray darker eyeshadow from the top of the lid. This will give a cleaner, more professional look.
42. For even fuller lips, wear your lipstick. Then keep tissue over it and dust powder on it with a fluffy bush. Then proceed to wear another layer of lipstick. Repeat if necessary.
43. When filling in your brows, avoid horizontal lines to shape the brow. Instead, draw fake brow hairs with light strokes in the direction of the real hairs. This will give the illusion of a naturally fuller and shapely brow. Finally, comb all the hair into place with a brow wand and use eyebrow gel to keep them in place if necessary. Perfect brows!
44. For a more youthful twist on the classic bun, make a side part only on the front section of your hair. Then proceed to make the bun as usual, leaving one of the front sections tucked behind the ear.
45. If you’re not in the mood to wear makeup but want a slightly polished look, here’s the trick.
Just wear a BB cream or tinted moisturizer, then line your upper lash line only with pencil liner. Skip the lower lash line. Finally, dab a natural pink lipstick a few times on your lips and just smudge it all over the lip with your finger over lip balm. To finish off, take out some liquid lighlighter on the back of your hand and use clean finger tips to dab it a few times on your cheekbones. I used this trick for this photo-shoot as honestly, I was feeling too lazy to actually wear full makeup!
46. Sometimes, instead of wearing a full eyeliner, you can just start in the middle of your upper lash line and then draw it till the end, with a wing. Thicken the bottom of the wing to create a cat eye. Mirror it for the bottom lash line too. This is called a kitten eye.
47. If you’re traveling but can’t take your perfume bottle along, just spray some perfume on a cotton ball. Then hide it somewhere between two piles of folded clothes in your suitcase (make sure it’s not directly touching the clothes to avoid perfume stains). This will make all your clothes fragrant until he end of a short trip. You can do the same for your closet.
48. Wanna wear perfume but just very subtly?
Just spray perfume once in the air in front of you and then step in it!
49. How to look beautiful without makeup on?
In the morning after you’ve washed and/or scrubbed your face, massage it for two minutes with aloe vera gel. Use circular motions and a light hand to massage all over the face, jaw, sides of the nose, under your eyes and over your brows. Then rinse and after your shower, massage it for another minute with moisturizer. The massages will nourish the face, relax your muscles, reduce the puffiness and give a fresh, awake look!
Check out one of the photo-shoots for which I used this hack: How to Look Beautiful without Makeup & Look Good Naturally
50. Have straight hair but wanna add volume?
Bend your head down bringing all your hair to the front, and make a very loose ponytail somewhere around your forehead. Spray salt water on them, and leave for 1 minute. Then loosen the ponytail, push them in their natural position, and run your fingers through them to create natural beachy waves!
51. Your lipstick can double up as an eyeshadow.
Use your fingertip to take a bit of product and then dab or apply it on your lid. Then use a fluffy brush to blend it. Finally, use darker eyeshadow like black or brown on the crease and outer corners to create a smokey eye look that matches your lipstick perfectly!
So I hope these makeup, hair, nails & skincare hacks and tips were helpful. Which of these beauty hacks do you already know and use? And which were new to you? Let me know below, and show me your fave beauty looks on Instagram by tagging me @shilpaahujadotcom!
Shilpa Ahuja the editor-in-chief of ShilpaAhuja.com, which she founded with the goal of inspiring confidence in the modern working woman through fashion. Other than defining the direction of the magazine, she also writes about fashion & beauty trend forecasts, industry analysis, and opinions.
Shilpa’s work has been published in the University of Fashion blog and Jet Airways magazine. She is also an artist, illustrator and cartoonist. She is also the creator of Audrey O., a comic series that represents the lifestyle of millennial women. She enjoys creative writing and world travel. Her art has been exhibited at Harvard Graduate School of Design and the Aroma Hotel, Chandigarh and been published in Chandigarh Times.
Originally from Chandigarh, Shilpa also has a professional degree in architecture and has worked in interior project management. She is also the author of the book “Designing a Chinese Cultural Center in India”. Shilpa has a Masters in Design Studies degree from Harvard University. For feedback and questions, please email [email protected]