Top 10 Makeup Mistakes: How Not to Apply Makeup

Updated on November 25, 2019
Londonlady profile image

Laura has been an online writer for over eight years. Her articles often focus on issues of diet, nutrition, and beauty.

How to Avoid Makeup Mistakes

Here are the top 10 makeup mistakes women make when applying their makeup.

The first unwritten mistake is being timid. Confidence in oneself has always been at the top of every beauty geniuses list out there. If you allow fear of what others think of you then you won't be willing to be as experimental and try out new things.

You should listen to constructive criticism when it's given, but remember that the ultimate decision is up to you.

Makeup Mistakes

What Was Your Biggest Makeup Mistake?

See results | Source

1. Not Blotting Lipstick

Red lipstick can be a girl's best friend! It can also be our worst nightmare and makeup mistake.

If you don't blot the center of your lips, either by rubbing off excess with your finger, or gently biting down on a tissue, then you run the risk of having the lipstick smear on your teeth every time you smile wide or attempt to eat something.

Don't forget to always blot excess lipstick.

Whatever shade you may be, make sure you blend!
Whatever shade you may be, make sure you blend! | Source

2. Not Blending

Curious as to why your makeup looks blotchy? This might be why. Just like cells are the building blocks and foundation of life; blending is the base and foundation of makeup. All in all, it is the art of makeup. When colors are not properly blended and merged together you end up looking like a "paint-by-numbers" painting.

Make sure you blend your concealer, blush, foundation, eyeshadow, and setting powders. It's often best to purchase a special blending brush that will get all these tasks done, but if you don't own one, a clean finger or makeup sponge will get the job done well.

Another good tip here is to check your makeup in different lights. Often makeup will look better under natural sunlight or a yellow-toned light, but under the classic office neon light, the colors and lines take on a whole new look, so make sure you look put together under all lighting.

Brooke Hogan's overly colorful look
Brooke Hogan's overly colorful look | Source

3. Abuse of Bright Colors

Bright colors are amazing for the summer and spring (any season really), but there is such a thing as too much color. Make sure you remember that bright colors attract attention to the regions they are applied, so if you have huge eyes and hate them, maybe neon green is not the way to go.

Neutral tones are easier to work with. Bright colors are best used when they are added as an accent piece to an already neutral palette of colors. A good example would be using a colored eyeliner or mascara on a relatively neutral eyeshadow color like brown, taupe, tan, and other woodsy colors.

Be Careful With Your Blush Colors

Sheer out dark colors if you need to, blend blend blend!
Sheer out dark colors if you need to, blend blend blend! | Source
Taylor. You are 17 here. Not 40. Or a raccoon.
Taylor. You are 17 here. Not 40. Or a raccoon. | Source

4. Not Adapting to Your Age

Let me be as blunt as possible.

You can not wear the same makeup you wore when you were 16, at 60. That's all there is to it. Not only will your skin require different methods of application and different skin regiment routines, but also, that is a difference of 44 years.

A woman can be beautiful at any age, but your face WILL change over time, and so should your makeup. You don't wear the same CLOTHING you did when you were 16, so why should makeup be treated any differently?

Choose your exact shade, a shade lighter, or a shade darker if you want tan looking skin, but keep the shade close to your own skintone.
Choose your exact shade, a shade lighter, or a shade darker if you want tan looking skin, but keep the shade close to your own skintone. | Source

5. Wrong Foundation

I don't blame you ladies. There are SO many choices of foundation out there all claiming to do amazing things, and in the end, few hold true to the hype.

Most people have predominantly yellow undertones in the skin, not pink. And most foundations on the market are pink toned, so there's your problem. When looking for a foundation, go with a color that will blend with your neck color and the hairline, because ultimately, this is where foundation needs to be blended into. It isn't wrong to use two different shades of foundation if you have more that one color on your skin, just make sure you blend well where the two colors meet.

A little too thin
A little too thin | Source

6. Waxing Gone Wrong

When you wax or pluck your eyebrows, you don't want to over-pluck. It will give people the impression that you are hairier than you really are and that you need to wax constantly. Make sure that when you wax your eyebrows, they still remain as long as the length of your eyes, and that the outer edges hit just slightly further than the end of your eye.

The idea that hair will grow back thicker is a myth. In fact, constantly waxing will eventually dissuade the hairs from growing. However, there is a downside to this. If you constantly wax the wrong way. Eventually, you will never have that hair back, and then it'll be pencil for the rest of your life. Avoid that fate and wax correctly.


7. Not Curling Your Eyelashes

Many people think this isn't necessary. And it isn't. Nothing is REALLY necessary. But if you actually want to use mascara for the purpose and way it was intended to, then buy a lash curler, and curl your eyelashes. It will open up your eyes so much better and make you look more awake.

Blotchy blush
Blotchy blush | Source

8. Blotchy Makeup on a Bare Face

Another reason your makeup can look blotchy is because the skin has a lot of natural oils, whether you have oily skin or not. If you apply blush without applying foundation or at least a setting powder underneath, don't expect it to last for more than a few hours. The oils in your skin will make your makeup look blotchy because applying any kind of liquid (normal body oils you produce also count) to makeup, makes it look darker and more prominent (why do you think black liquid liner is darker than regular pencil eyeliner?)

However, if you have a powder or foundation underneath, the oils will soak up that powder first, and you'll be left with that original vibrant color.


9. Applying Matte Lipstick Wrong

There is something just wrong about applying a matte lipstick without moisturizing your lips first. It looks BAD. Don't do it.

Since matte lipstick has most of the essential oils that help moisturize your lips, stripped away in order to give it a matte finish, you need to compensate.

Apply a moisturizing lip balm first. Then line your lips with a color that matches the matte lipstick. And lastly, apply the matte lipstick. This way, you don't sacrifice the matte finish that you want from the lip color, but you also don't damage your lips while you're at it.

How do you put on matte lipstick on chapped lips? You don't. In skip lipstick altogether and apply lip balm and a light gloss on top. Eesh.

Smoking dries out your skin. It will make trying to get a nice glow, or apply foundation evenly, very difficult.
Smoking dries out your skin. It will make trying to get a nice glow, or apply foundation evenly, very difficult. | Source

10. Smoking

If you ever want to be able to wear matte lipstick, you better not be smoking. Smoking dries out your skin faster than coffee, the sun, the wind, the anything will. Smoking constricts blood vessels and deprives your skin of oxygen.

There is only so much makeup can do. Makeup always looks better when applied to a healthy face, but if you are trying to cover up health mistakes with makeup, you can't expect to go far without using half the bottle of foundation, layers of concealer, and face powder.

Over application of makeup should be the 11th makeup mistake on here. Remember, less is more.

Get a photo finish, flawless look
Get a photo finish, flawless look | Source

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2011 Laura Writes


Submit a Comment
  • Bri Hive Writes profile image

    Briannah Rose 

    5 months ago from North Carolina

    Love this post! Check out my top 10 tips!

  • Mbrousse878 profile image

    Milli Miles 

    2 years ago from LA on the sides of my face i have really dry skin..i hate the way it feels..i hate the way my makeup, no matter what i use, looks splotchy after a few hours. I've tried everything from oil of Olay to every kind of mask to get rid of it..nothing has worked..until now..FINALLY!

    Only a week into using the Made from Earth Rosehip Serum my skin is getting so soft..i can still feel abit of the dry skin but its less and less every day..i can't wait to see what it feels like in 2 weeks!

    There really is no smell..the little i can smell is actually kinda pleasant and soothing. Ladies..just get it..stick with it..its worth it..i will be rebuying when I'm out..There is finally some hope.

  • BuyMeBeauty profile image


    4 years ago

    I have to say that I often forget to curl my lashes, and then after I put on my mascara I immediately regret it! Curled lashes really do make a huge difference.

  • JLClose profile image


    5 years ago from OreGONE

    Ohhh, I'm sure I've done all of these at one time or another. How lovely to be a woman! :0)

  • Nicole S profile image

    Nicole S Hanson 

    6 years ago from Minnesota

    Awesome hub. You highlighted some great tips and pointers (and not-to-do's) Thanks!

  • profile image


    7 years ago

    Very good

  • profile image

    WebWatcher Review 

    7 years ago

    Have you ever thought about publishing an ebook or guest authoring on other websites? I have a blog based on the same ideas you discuss and would really like to have you share some stories/information. I know my visitors would enjoy your work. If you're even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e-mail.

  • teacher stories profile image

    teacher stories 

    7 years ago from San Diego

    Loved this article! So drinking coffee dries out your skin? Yikes!

  • Vieenrose profile image


    7 years ago

    Nice hub! As a beginner at makeup, this helped me with some of my mistakes (wearing lipstick w/o moisturizing, etc).

  • Londonlady profile imageAUTHOR

    Laura Writes 

    7 years ago

    Haha, yes it's over the top but it does make an impression.

  • profile image

    Cathy love 22 

    7 years ago

    This hub video is ridiculous

  • Snenickiminaj profile image


    8 years ago from Mumbai

    nice hub .. video was funnyyyyyy =D instructions were good

  • EuroNinila profile image

    Fotinoula Gypsyy 

    8 years ago from NYC BABY

    Loved this! If only the world could read this and learn how to NOT walk around looking rediculous! Great hub

  • Worldofwow1992 profile image


    8 years ago from Michigan

    Awesome hub! Awesome pictures! Awesome video haha. Just great

  • My Curls profile image

    My Curls 

    8 years ago from London

    OMG I can't get over some of the pictures above. The first one shocked me! I think women need to realize that less is definitely more when it comes to great makeup application

  • profile image


    8 years ago

    Oh my...I think I have that foundation color problem...might need to get a new shade :P

  • breakingnews profile image


    8 years ago from Pakistan

    Gooood lips >>>>> hahahah

  • BethBrown profile image


    8 years ago from Florida

    I just turned 37 and had a baby. I feel my make up application needs a bit updating. This article was very helpful and I loved the pictures and links for examples.

  • profile image


    8 years ago

    Beautiful hub. Very informative indeed. Make up is very essential for ladies.Thanks for sharing.

  • Londonlady profile imageAUTHOR

    Laura Writes 

    8 years ago

    Thanks for the comment makeupbrush, I'm glad you found this helpful :)

  • profile image


    8 years ago

    I learn a lot.. I usually dont put make ups it is because I am not sure what makeups is good for me... thank you for the info.. it really help..

  • Londonlady profile imageAUTHOR

    Laura Writes 

    8 years ago

    Thanks fucsia! I thought it would be a good idea to make a hub like this :)

  • fucsia profile image


    9 years ago

    Nice Hub! I like the pictures and your advice are very useful! I usually use only a bit of make up but the mistakes can always be present.

  • profile image

    Beauty lover 

    9 years ago

    You really hit some good points!

  • puddingicecream profile image


    9 years ago from United States

    This hub is very useful. Thanks for sharing!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 

    9 years ago from Sunny Florida

    This was a great article covering all the mistakes some of which I have made. Thanks for the information.

  • Sylvia's Thoughts profile image

    Sylvia Van Peebles 

    9 years ago from Southern California

    This was great! I've witnessed them all and been guilty of a few over the years! LOL

  • Londonlady profile imageAUTHOR

    Laura Writes 

    9 years ago

    Thank you Marellen! I hope women will find this useful. I know I'll be keeping these tips in mind.

  • profile image


    9 years ago the useful tips. I have bookmarked this hub because I can use all the help I can get. lol

    Thanks for sharing and doing your research. Voted Up!!!


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