How to ace special occasion make-up that will last all day (and evening!)

Weddings, sporting fixtures, cocktail-fuelled soirees – the summer social season is well and truly upon us, and it’s as exciting as it is exhausting. Fixing your face for such occasions is tricky – you want make-up that will look great in photos but not look like too much in real life, and products that will last for hours on end while also letting your skin breathe in the heat.

special occasion make-up

That’s why we turned to Rose Gallagher, Makeup Artist and Ambassador UK and Ireland for IT Cosmetics, for her tips on how to get special occasion make-up right. Read on for your guidelines to a flawless summer face.

Top tips for special occasion make-up

Hydrate your skin before applying make-up

A lightweight but densely hydrating moisturiser is what you need for summer occasions. If your skin is dry or dehydrated then your foundation could end up going patchy, as your skin will absorb the moisture from wherever it can. Look out for light gel textures with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid.

Be careful with the highlighter

If you want to look good in photos, avoid anything overly shiny towards the centre of the face. If the T-Zone gets shiny, you can look sweaty, whereas a bit of shine on other areas of the face can look more luminous and well-rested, so apply highlighter carefully.

special occasion make-up

Choose your SPF wisely

A common concern is SPF on the skin causing flashback in photos, which makes the skin on the face look almost like it as a white veil over it, and much lighter than the body. Choose a physical sunscreen like the SPF in the IT Cosmetics Your Skin but Better CC+ Cream SPF50 (£33), as this will ensure there is no flashback in the photos.

READ MORE: Wedding guest outfit ideas

Don’t go for a drastic change

Don’t experiment with a new eyeshadow colour on an important day. If you want to wear something different, get a trial and wear it for a full day to see how it wears. Or if you’re doing your makeup yourself, wear the eyeshadow to the pub or to dinner with your friends, because if you’re not comfortable you won’t be in the moment.

special occasion make-up

Line those lips

I would really recommend a lipliner for a special occasion; it enhances the wear of your lip product, and when your lips are neat and tidy, it makes you look more polished.

Look for tubing mascaras

I often recommend a tubing mascara for special occasions as it uses a slightly different technology – instead of coating lashes in pigment it wraps individual lashes in a rubbery polymer. It crumbles away like confetti rather than spilling like a paint if it gets wet, which is perfect if you might be sweating on the dance floor or crying at speeches. Basically, a tubing mascara won’t run.

special occasion make-up

Pack your essentials

Only got a small bag with you for the event? Without a doubt, the best thing to take with you is a setting powder such as IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed Powder (£27). You can use this on any part of your makeup that needs a bit of a freshen up, and it is suitable for all complexions.

Master the touch-up

We’ve all been there: you go the loo several hours into your event, and realise half your make-up has melted down your face. In this scenario, prioritise the centre of the face, in particular the end of the nose – it’s such a tone setter for your whole makeup. Press a tiny bit of concealer down the centre and sides of the nose and the inner corners of the eyes. People tend to have more high colour in these areas, such as redness or dark circles under the eyes, so may need more coverage. Unless your skin is super dry, you can apply a layer of setting powder on top of the concealer to finish.

Cleanse before bed

Even if you’ve had a lot to drink, try and remember to cleanse your skin before you go to bed. As well as having a full face of makeup and a layer of SPF on your skin, you might also have a build-up of sweat, so it’s a good idea to clean it all off. Using a cleansing balm leaves your face feeling moisturised too.

Images: Getty