#TuesdaysWithLarry: The Best Makeup Tool You’ll Ever Need

You already own it


The best makeup tool out there is something that we do not have to buy.

Our hands.

Let’s take a look at their beautiful construction. Located on the outer end of the forearm, the hand allow us to do minor movement and adjustments with accuracy. Most of us have five digits on each hand. The first digit is the thumb, then the index finger, the middle finger, the ring finger and the little/baby/pinky finger. Each has its own variable strength that allows us to manipulate makeup across the facial plane.

Did you know that our fingers have one of the densest areas of nerves? This enhances sensorial feel, which can help us understand our skin state better as we handle makeup on our face.

One of the world’s top makeup artists, Pat McGrath, works textural magic with her fingers – the way she works skin glow onto a model’s face brings a natural, beautiful radiance to her face - a far cry from some IG strobing horror.

How should we keep our hands clean before applying makeup? Just cleanse them with a simple hand wash. You do not need an anti-bacterial one, as it is more damaging to the environment and studies have also shown that there is no difference between washing with an anti-bacterial product and a regular hand wash.

Lather your hands up properly and get the hand wash into every part of your hands, including under the nails, in a good cleansing time (about the same duration taken to sing the birthday song). Dab dry with a paper towel and you are ready!

Use the back of your hand as a palette

The back of our hand is a great palette for makeup that can be used to remove excess product from our brushes, mix cream products into the right colour, and also as a platform for picking up just the right amount of product for our face.

You know you’ve perfected the use of your hands when, after your makeup is done, the only mess left behind is on the backs of your hands.

Use the palm when applying skincare

The entire palm is excellent for applying skincare, primer and sunscreen, as we can work the product by spreading it across the whole palm and apply it on your face in a centre-out motion, which allows a consistent delivery of product to the face with a single movement.

Make sure you have enough product on the palm for the application movement to be consistent. If there’s not enough product to work with, the movement will be short and abrupt on the face, and this will leave the prepping of your face uneven (which affects makeup application later).

Use your fingertips to feel out areas on your skin that still feel drier and rougher, and all you have to do is work more skincare product over these areas.

You can also use the palm as a loose powder brush

Did you know that you can use the whole palm to apply loose powder across the face? Just pour a small amount (slightly smaller than a one-cent coin size) of loose powder onto your hands and distribute it evenly across the palms, then use both palms and press them across your face, moving from the centre-out, pressing as you move along.

This works especially well in drier climates, when you need powder to set your foundation, or on certain days when your liquid foundation is bit patchy and requires some powder to set. Try Shu Uemura Face Powder Sheer for a more translucent finish.

Use fingers to work liquid foundation

A brush gives your liquid or cream-based foundation a smoother finish with a brush, but use your fingers to diffuse the foundation on areas where you need sheerer coverage.

Make sure you apply consistent strength as you move the foundation, so there is a dilution of concentration across the skin.

Your ring finger comes into great use when you are trying to get foundation or concealer into the smaller crannies of your face, like your nasal fold and the ends of your lip. Remember to put some concealer at the back of your hand before applying on specific spots on the face. 

You can also use your ring finger to dab concealer onto zits, as the fatty pad of the tip allow a gentler application without diluting coverage (if you use the right strength).

Use your palm for natural contouring

The Venus Mount of the palm (the fleshier part area just below the thumb) is amazing for applying contour cream/liquid products and keeping it fuss-free.

Use the Dior Diorblush Light & Contour jumbo stick and apply the darker shade across this fatty part of the palm. Press your left and right hands together to distribute the product evenly across both Venus Mounts. Move them to your cheekbones and start pressing from your hairline inwards to your face, then into the outer apple of your cheek. Viola! Contouring is done without excess guesswork. #NoMoreKimKScaryContour

Use your thumbs for applying blush

Our thumbs are excellent for picking up cream or liquid blush. Just apply the right amount of blush on the thumb before placing on the apples of the cheek, and dab in a circular motion outwards, dispersing the colour while keeping the centre concentrated with the flushed hue.

Experiment with the Moonshot Cream Paint, which comes in 16 shades and a scoop applicator that can be easily controlled to pick up the right amount of product. #TheRightFlushFromWithin

Use your fingertips to blend eyeshadows

Eyeshadow application just got easier with various brands offering cream-based colours. Use a crema shadow like Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint For Eyes and Burberry Eye Colour Cream, which are long-wearing and blend effortlessly well with finger application.

Simply use the pencil to glide across the whole eye from lash line to the socket area, and blend out with your fingers (in this case, the index or middle finger)!

You can also use your fingers for correcting mistakes

Applied too much mascara and your lashes feel too wet? Just blink your eyes while keeping a finger under the lashes, and the blinking action will transfer excess mascara onto the body of your finger, rather all over the eye area (obviously this has to be done before the mascara dries up!).

Want a beautiful, freshly-stained lip? Use your ring finger! Pick up that bold-coloured lipstick with your ring finger, and gently pout and dab it from the inner lips outwards. Go for an ombré lip by taking a touch of liquid foundation or concealer, apply onto the whole tip of a finger and run it carefully along your lip line – done!

Too much gloss? Dab it off with a touch of your little finger! The little finger is also great for smoothing out soft smudges at the ends of your eye makeup. #SimpleAsItSounds

There is something organic about makeup application when it is wielded across one’s face, the movement brings out the elemental feel of the face. Try it with the above mention steps, you might just enjoy it and that will make you understand your face shape more! 

(All methods above are only recommended for short nails, longer nails are more of a hazardous risks to your face.)

For more from Larry, check out #TuesdaysWithLarry: How To Pull Off A Makeup Glow and #TuesdaysWithLarry: Do Lip Plumpers REALLY Work?

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