The first time I had my makeup professionally done was at a cosmetics counter at the mall for high school prom — and I've been chasing that high ever since. Having an artist perfectly recreate the celebrity headshot I brought for "inspiration" (likely Emma Stone circa 2010) felt exhilarating. Today, now that I'm better educated about makeup application, I'm extremely happy to know that how to make your makeup look professionally done comes down to a few choice tools and products, rather than of a drive to the local mall.
Whether you're curious about how one goes about waking up to glowing skin, or you're seriously bored and looking for a productive way to up your beauty game, there's a tool, trick, or gadget crafted with flawless coverage and elevated style in mind. If you've forever given up on creating Ariana Grande wings of your own, easy eyeliner stencils could make you reevaluate that outlook. Or, perhaps you're tired of painstakingly matching foundation to your skin, only to get an unintentional tan one day, rendering your new shade completely useless. But a slight color tweak (blended by you on a cosmetic palette for customized coverage), could be just the thing you need. Ahead, I outlined eight super weird beauty tools that will help you craft the makeup look you really want — no professional makeup artist needed.
1. A Vibrating Makeup Applicator
Viproo Electric Makeup Applicator, $25, Amazon
If you're tired of blotting away powder by hand, let this electronic applicator blend a perfectly airbrushed look for you, instead. Vibrating at a speed of 1,000 pulses per minute, it can deliver more even coverage than free-handing powder alone, and it's definitely a whole lot less work for you (and likely produces even better results). The gadget is battery-operated, too, so no need to worry about more tangled cords by your bathroom sink.
2. A Face Brush Press
Etude House Secret Brush, $11, Amazon
If getting even foundation coverage to last is an annoying problem for you, consider brushing your face. No, seriously: This foundation brush presses foundation down into skin with fine bristles — helping skin absorb creamy foundations better than traditional sponges that just smear makeup around. One user said she's a professional makeup artist, and that she noticed foundation doesn't get caught at the base of bristles. She said, "I use it personally, and it truly is a great brush... It has cut down on my application time." The head also clips off for easy cleaning, so you can keep breakout-causing bacteria at bay.
3. Eyeliner Stencils
Dinair Eyeliner Staples , $12, Amazon
Get ready to be on Ariana's eyeliner level. These eyeliner stencils come in a bunch of different sizes and shapes for effortless cat eyes by hand — whether you using liquid liner or darker eyeshadows. Eight different cutouts make it easy to experiment knowing you'll still come out of this makeup adventure looking like you've got your own stylist on speed dial.
4. Brow Pomade & Mini Brush Shape Arches
Perfect Brows Styling Pomade & Mini Brush, $33, Amazon
If your brows get a little messy throughout the day, this tinted brow balm and accompanying brush could be your ticket to keeping epic brows all day long. The formula is 100 percent organic, comprised of shine-producing botanical ingredients, and it helps groom your brow hairs into place for a polished, pro-level makeup look. One fan of the brow pomade, who mentioned she over-plucked her brows before, said, "Now I do not have to fill in my eyebrows with a brow pencil like I had to do before."
5. Mascara Guard Keeps Flecks Off Your Cheeks
Tweezerman Mascara Guard , $11, Amazon
Ever sneezed after a fresh mascara application, and, well, ruined everything? This mascara guard is the everyday essential you didn't know you needed — until now. Save yourself a whole lot of makeup remover and Q-Tips when you place this guard underneath your upper or lower line for professional-looking lashes. One user, who claimed her long mascara'd lashes frequently rubbed against freshly done eye makeup, said she had no trouble using it and was elated she finally found the tool.
6. Sleek Palette For Custom-Blending Shades
Stainless Steel Cosmetic Palette & Spatula, $10, Amazon
While mall makeup counters offer a wide selection, once you buy pick your palette, you're stuck with that foundation and cover-up for months. In that time, your skin tone can fluctuate. Stock up on this stainless steel palette and mixing spatula that lets you blend the perfect shade every single time — whether you have a sunny glow or are just combatting dark circles. A rubber-covered grip provides slip-proof handling, so you can mix and match with ease.
7. Dermaroller Improves Circulation for Healthy Glow
Beauty Star Facial Cleaner , $10, Amazon
This spiky handheld dermaroller is an awesome addition to anyone's makeup routine. Its roller tip is lined with 540 stainless steel needles, which really aren't as scary as they sound — they just stimulate circulation in your face for a healthy flush. A little glow makes a good base for any makeup application that follows, as the tiny pinpricks help your skin to better absorb products. Dermarollers have also been credited with boosting skin's collagen production when applied with a .25 mm needle cleaner (like this one) about every other day. (Pro Tip: Typically, the shorter the needles are, the more frequently you can apply them.)
8. Lash Curler Adds Dramatic Height
Japonesque Go Curl Eyelash Curler , $11, Amazon
Have you already tried the old-fashioned lash curler to no avail? This one looks funky, but it works with an open cage design that carefully bends lashes — without pinching, pulling, or ripping them out. Padding is tucked inside to cushion your lashes a little extra, and users say the curl that this gadget produces actually lasts all day. One reviewer said, "I would go and purchase this product immediately if you are unsatisfied with your eyelash curler."
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Images: Fotolia (1); Amazon (8)