Don’ts of Desi Makeup

Getting makeup right for Desi skin is always a challenge. DESIblitz looks at the don’ts of Desi makeup and not to make these mistakes when doing your makeup.

With small adjustments the don’ts can become do’s

Being Desi, you can get away with more dramatic looks when it comes to makeup. Desi women naturally have beautiful features, such as their beautiful almond shaped eyes and dusky skin.

The main purpose of applying makeup should be to highlight and emphasise natural features, rather than trying to change or mask features you don’t like.

Sometimes the application of desi makeup can go overboard and you end up with a result far from what was intended.  Using the wrong products  or colour tones can make a big difference to your look. With small adjustments the don’ts can become do’s.

Here are some some common makeup don’ts that Desi women make:

Wrong shade of foundation

One of the biggest no-no’s made by Desi women is choosing the wrong shade foundation, or purposely chose a lighter shade to make their skin appear fairer. This mishap can happen to everyone, even Bollywood superstar Rani Mukherjee!

A good tip when looking for the right shade of foundation is to apply it on the jaw line, making sure it blends into both the color of your neck and your face. Make sure to check your foundation color match in actual sunlight, as the light in the store may “distort” the shade that you are seeing. And don’t forget, you can always ask for samples!

Too much foundation/powder

The dramatic Bollywood style looks (that we all know from TV serials and movies) call for flawless skin, and this often translates into caked-on makeup. A repeat “offender” of this makeup crime is Celina Jaitley, with her extremely unnatural and caked on makeup.

Unless your skin is heavily scarred or discoloured, a sheer to medium coverage foundation should suffice, or you can even opt for a tinted moisturiser. If you don’t want to spend the extra money on a foundation and a tinted moisturiser, you can simply mix your moisturiser and your foundation for a sheer coverage and natural look.

It is important to set foundation with a bit of powder, but you should never go over the top with this, as it can be very noticeable and sit on top of the skin, creating that dreaded caked-on look. Instead, opt for a light dusting across the face, buffing skin with a kabuki brush.

Overdone eye brows

It’s a common beauty mishap, even among non-Desis to over tweeze eyebrows, thus ending up with very sparse eye brows. Another don’t is to fill in eyebrows with an eyebrow pencil, which creates harsh lines and an unnatural look. Fix the problem by filling in eyebrows with a dark brown/black eye shadow, as well as setting brow hairs with an eyebrow wax or clear mascara.

Too dark lip liner

Okay, so maybe this is a don’t reserved for the aunties out there, but it happens more than you think! Amisha Patel is known for her auntie-like lip liner, and it really does not suit her lips in any way. If done right, dark lip liner can give lips a fuller appearance, but as a rule, one should always wear a lip liner that matches the color of the lip stick. If not, it can end up looking very overdone and gothy, so stick to the natural look!

Also, keep lip liner on lips, rather than outside of lips. If you want your lips to look fuller, a trick is to apply gloss right in the middle of the upper and lower lip only. It will reflect the light in those areas, thus making your lips appear more plumped.

Highlighting more than one feature

Another common misconception is that you can get away with a dark lip as well as a dark eye, for example a smoky eye. Rather, you should keep focus on one feature of the face.

As an example, if you wear a bold red lip, the eye makeup should be close to minimal for a sophisticated look. Also, this explains why it is considered a “standard” to wear a nude lip with smoky eyes.

Wearing thick eye liner on both upper and lower lashline

We see this look on a lot of Bollywood stars, such as Kareena Kapoor and Bipasha Basu, but you can truly only really get away with this look if you are a rock star or a goth girl. On your average Desi woman it sometimes translates into the much known racoon eye, and ends up closing up the eye.

Keep the eye liner to the upper lash line as this opens up the eye and emphasises those beautiful eyes. If you must frame the entire eye with eyeliner, go for a more natural look by smudging eyeliner for a slightly smoky look, resembling Rani Mukherjee’s signature look.

Too much blush/applied in the wrong manner

In general, you should keep the blush neutral and not too overpowering. In this case, the don’t is blush applied as a full strip from apples of cheeks all the way up into the hairline, and too much of it.

Less is more. Blush is meant to give your face a little extra color, but should be done so in a very natural and unnoticeable way. To apply blush the correct way, lightly apply blush on apples of cheeks in a circular motion. For an evening look, opt for a darker shade.

Here are example pictures of Dont’s on some famous Bollywood faces. Click on the thumbnail to see larger view.

Amisha Patel - Unsuitable Lip LinerRani Mukherjee - Wrong Foundation ColourKareena - Overdone Eye LinerCelina Jately - Too much FoundationWashed out foundation and no blusherOverdone Makeup

As you may have noticed, most of the don’ts can be fixed simply by applying less of the product. Makeup is all about having fun with colors and enhancing your features, but it can easily be overdone which is why everything should be applied in moderation. Less is really more!

Nazhat is an ambitious 'Desi' woman with interests in news and lifestyle. As a writer with a determined journalistic flair, she firmly believes in the motto "an investment in knowledge pays the best interest," by Benjamin Franklin.