How to Start Wearing Make-up

By Cindy, age 14, New York

Make-up. It's a billion dollar industry, a form of self-expression, and a personal choice. Make-up done right can empower you and make you feel grown up. Done wrong, it can make you look like a clown. (No offense to clowns.)

Feeling nervous yet? Here are some tips to getting started the right way...

How Young is Too Young for Make-up?

Wearing cosmetics is, like I said, a personal choice, so there's no hard and fast rule about when you should start using make-up. Just make sure you feel mature enough for the responsibility. There are some potentially harmful chemicals found in make-up, and removing it every night gets to be a pain in the you-know-where. If you have any doubts about whether you are ready or not, ask your parents. Which brings us to the next topic...

Parental Approval

Yes, your parents' opinions really do matter in this case. Besides the fact that they're the ones who are going to be driving you to the corner CVS and buying the make-up, your parents can help you decide whether you are ready for make-up. If they disagree with you on this issue, they probably have a good reason.

The Actual Stuff

Before you head off to Sephora, check with your mother or older sisters to see if they have any make-up to experiment with. This way, you'll know what you like and need. Speaking of need, a teenager does not need $200 wrinkle minimizing foundation. What you'll want to get is decent quality drug store brands, and not too much of it. Basically all you need as a first-timer is:

* Lipgloss or Lipstick: I'd go with lipgloss if you want to be more subtle. One of my personal faves is L'Oreal's Color Juices. (Bonus: they smell and taste good too!)

* Eye shadow: I like NYX brand's eye shadows because their colors are really intense. Milani also has an eye shadow quad palate designed for different eye colors.

* Mascara (that's the stuff for your eyelashes): Mascara is a little trickier to put on, and you don't really need it, per se. If you want it, one really popular mascara is Maybelline Full 'N Soft.

* Eyeliner: Eyeliner is also trickier to apply and rather dramatic looking. I don't recommend it for a first-timer, but I personally love it, and Rimmel's Exaggerate eyeliner rocks!

* Concealer: Concealer covers blemishes, and should be a bit lighter than your skin tone. Different brands are better for different skin tones and types, so just experiment for yourself.

* Other products include blush, bronzer, eye pencil, highlighter, and powder. A young person doesn't need so much stuff, but if you like the dramatic look, go for it.

Lastly, while not exactly makeup, having a good moisturizer and make-up remover are also important.

Now, to get it on your face...

Practice, Practice, Practice. After you have all your make-up, play with it in front of the mirror. Everyone's face is different, so only you can figure out what works for your face. If you need some help, and your elders are willing to give it to you, great. For the rest of us, try YouTube or the blogosphere.

This article at is helpful:

This YouTube video is a very through tutorial on make-up:

Good luck, have fun, and stay beautiful!

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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