Mom Knows Best: Makeup Tips and Tricks You Can Learn From Your Mother

We’ve all heard the old adage, “Mother knows best.” From boyfriends to beauty, a mother seems to know everything – but is her advice always sound? When it comes to makeup tips that are passed down from one generation to the next, it’s a good idea to do some investigating to make sure that Mom’s advice is still relevant for current trends. Below, makeup expert, Founder and President of FACES Beautiful, and creator of the Brush-On Liquid Mineral Makeup, Gail Sagel, shares with us her favorite time-tested beauty tricks and gives them a modern day twist.

Put Down the Tweezers

Most mothers warn their daughters when they attempt to sculpt their own eyebrows. Maybe their warning is a reaction to a “loss of innocence” – the moment when the little girl becomes a pre-pubescent and facial hair becomes an issue. “Leave such an important part of your face to the professionals,” my mother would say. And even though I have a knack for tweezing, I listened. But through my personal years of professional beauty experience, I learned that with a few tips, women can feel comfortable shaping their own eyebrows, but Mom didn’t get it all wrong. Consulting a professional to achieve the best eyebrow shape for one’s face, will help establish a natural look, and then maintain it.

Gail’s Tips

After visiting a professional, your only task should be to maintain your brows. The biggest mistake I see at the FACES Beautiful salon is when women over wax or over-pluck. To measure correctly, hold your finger parallel to the side at the tip of your nose. This is where your brow should begin. When you point your finger diagonally away from your nostril, toward the outside edge of your eye , you’ll find the correct end point for your brow.

  • Invest in a great pair of slanted tweezers and pluck hairs at an angle, following the direction that they grow. Give yourself lots of light, pluck slowly and take breaks. Make sure you don’t eliminate too much hair – bold brows are in!

Less is More

Mom always said, “With makeup, don’t overdo it. Let your natural beauty shine through.” Natural looking makeup has a time and a place, like the workplace or school. But since makeup is about self-expression and playing up best features, having one key element accentuated is not only attractive, but trendy. To update your look, take heed of the good in Mom’s advice, and keep most of your makeup natural while choosing either a dramatic lip or eye color.

Gail’s Tips

  • This season, the red lip is the trend to embrace. When updating your look with one bold feature like the lips or eyes, it is essential for the color to compliment the skin tone, especially with a bold lip color. For fair skin, choose an orange-based red; for medium skin, choose a berry-red or brown-red; for dark skin, choose a red that has a blue base.
  • To get the perfect pout, make sure that your lips are moisturized well prior to application. Use a lip pencil (in the closest color to your lipstick as possible) to create a frame and to prevent your color from bleeding onto the skin.

Match Your Eye Shadow to Your Outfit

I remember the day I went to school wearing lime green eye shadow to match my lime green top, back when I first began experimenting with makeup. My mother always told me to match my eye shadow to my clothes, and that morning I distinctly remember that she told me that I looked great – something tells me that was not the inner beauty expert in her speaking. I’m all about whatever colors look best on you, and there are no real “rules” when it comes to eye shadow matching. It’s important to note is that even if a color matches your outfit, it will not necessarily compliment your eye color and skin tone; know which colors work best with your skin tone and be aware of colors that just don’t work.

Gail’s Tips

When it comes to eye shadows, experiment! Try different shades to see what works best on your eyes, keeping in mind that skin tone has everything to do with it. Here’s a quick rundown of what colors work for common eye colors: blue eyes should stick with earth tones for maximum impact, green or hazel eyes should have fun with a purple or gold-flecked earth tone, and brown eyes are the winner in this game – they can get away with pretty much anything!

  • For a universal tip that everyone can benefit from, use gold or white eye shadow on the inner corners of eyes to make them pop. Purple is also a great color to try for every eye hue; its place in the color spectrum makes it a flattering choice for any skin tone.

For more from Gail and information on makeup trends and tips, visit