6 Fast Fixes for Makeup Boo Boos

Published in: Makeup, Makeup Tips/How To

audrey of makeup by audrey

Follow me on TwitterFriend me on FacebookWritten by Audrey

Freelance makeup artist Audrey of Makeup by Audrey shows us six fast fixes for common makeup mishaps in today’s guest post.

Do you ever have those “Doh!” moments when it comes to makeup? Those little hiccups from time to time? I sure do. Here are six that I encounter with some simple solutions for each.


Boo Boo #1: Glitter Fallout

The Boo Boo — I recently busted out my Urban Decay Naked palette and was in the process of applying the Sidecar shade across my lids when I saw them: tiny flecks of glitter. Grrrr… That’s definitely one of my makeup pet peeves, and although I did my best to tap off any excess from the brush before applying, there were still tiny flecks of glitter all over my cheeks.

The Fix — If you can’t wipe them away with a clean brush, here’s a trusty trick (I mentioned it before in a previous post). Just grab your Scotch tape, tear off some small pieces, and lightly press them to your face. It picks up all of the tiny bits of glitter while preserving my makeup.

Boo Boo #2: Stray hairs on your face

The Boo Boo — I like to use a wide variety of brushes from drugstore to high end, and, on rare occasions, one of my brushes will shed, leaving a tiny hair (or perhaps a stray eyelash) on my (or my client’s) face. Sometimes, you can simply brush them away; other times, you’re tempted to scrape them off, but that would probably not end well. πŸ™‚

The Fix — I learned this quick tip at a MAC Pro Master Class. Simply take a clean spoolie brush or a disposable mascara wand, and lightly run it across the face. It will pick up that bad boy straight away.

Boo Boo #3: Dry gel eyeliner

The Boo Boo — Don’t you hate it when you notice that your favorite gel eyeliner doesn’t apply as smoothly as it used to? It might just be a little dried out, but there has to be a way to salvage it, right?

The Fix — I took my problem to Twitter to see what my makeup community there had to say. I got a lot of great tips, like mixing it with a bit of either baby oil or Visine, or even heating it up with a hair dryer. I ended up taking the easy way out. I took my brush and scraped off the top layer of a section of the pot, wiping away the excess on a tissue, and what remained underneath was the creamy gel eyeliner I love. Sure, it’s a tad wasteful, but not as much as throwing it away would have been. Plus, it takes me forever to go through one of those pots anyway. πŸ™‚

Boo Boo #4: Dried up makeup wipes

The Boo Boo — Ah, here we are again with the drying problem! I personally love using makeup wipes to remove my makeup before cleansing my face. It’s nice to remove every single drop of makeup, including that pesky eyeliner and mascara that would be hard to remove with facial cleanser alone. The problem is then going to grab the next wipe and finding that it’s bone dry because all of the moisture has soaked down to the bottom. Doh!

The Fix — Just flip it! Store your container of makeup wipes upside down. That way the top one always sits at the bottom, moist and ready to use.


Boo Boo #5: Stubborn dirty brushes

The Boo Boo — Most of my brushes are pretty easy to clean, especially the ones I use with powder eyeshadows. But every now and then, one of them refuses to return to its original pristine condition. For me, that’s usually my lip brush — especially after I’ve used it to apply one of those long-lasting lip colors (go figure).

The Fix — When standard cleaners like brush cleansers and baby shampoo have failed, head to the kitchen! Olive oil will do the trick. Place a small amount on a paper towel, and rub your brush in it. I’ve seen it erase the most stubborn of stains! And, on one desperate occasion, I was even able to get the job done with Pam! Who knew!

Boo Boo #6: Broken blush

The Boo Boo — You might drop one or have it crack during travel, or maybe you just wore it down to bits and pieces. What do you do when you get stuck with a broken blush?

The Fix — Here’s a tip I picked up from celebrity makeup artist Maya Shapiro. I haven’t had a need to try it yet (knock on wood!), but it’s so brilliant and simple that I had to pass it along. Maya recommends crushing the rest of the blush into a powder and then mixing it with a little bit of Vaseline. Presto! Almost like having a brand new lipgloss. πŸ™‚

Now I’d love to hear your favorite fixes for makeup boo boo. If you have any good ones, please let me (and everyone else) know in the comments.

audrey of makeup by audrey

Follow me on TwitterFriend me on FacebookWritten by Audrey

This post was written by Audrey, a freelance makeup artist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her makeup creations can be found on Makeup by Audrey. She welcomes you to follow her makeup adventures on Facebook and Twitter.


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So far, 25 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Radhika says:

    “Store your container of makeup wipes upside down.” That would be my favorite…tx πŸ™‚

  2. Olga says:

    These are great tips, especially the 1st one – I always end up with glitter on my cheecks, but never thought of using scotch tape to remove it before! Thank you for the post, Audrey πŸ™‚
    Olga recently posted … New 500 point perk at Sephora

  3. sam says:

    Be careful with tip number 6… many blushes are not safe for use on the mouth (or the eyes, for that matter). Otherwise, great stuff!

  4. Sherri says:

    Great tips πŸ™‚ for broken shadows or blushes or bronzers I just crush them up and put them in a jar with sifter, instant loose powder product πŸ™‚
    Sherri recently posted … WnW Holiday Palettes

  5. Appu says:

    Amazing tips!!! I have a problem with gel liners drying up too, but nowadays I store them upside down to avoid moisture loss and it helps πŸ™‚
    Appu recently posted … CVS 75 off LOreal haul

  6. Nina says:

    awesome post! πŸ™‚

    i actually do the upside down storage tip for my baby wipes and makeup remover wipes! πŸ™‚

    the spoolie trick – super neat!

  7. Tracy says:

    Awesome tips! Especially the spoolie trick-I love it! πŸ™‚ I hate getting stray brush hairs on my face.
    For broken shadows(if possible)I repress them with some rubbing alcohol, and a quarter wrapped in kleenex and push down. After the alcohol evaporates, the shadow is good to go!
    Tracy recently posted … Theres Been A Void In My Makeup Without Sue Devitt

  8. Vikki says:

    I love the idea for broken blush, but what about broken eye shadow or face powder?! Mixing Vaseline with either of these wouldn’t end good haha!

  9. Cyra says:

    For any broken powder (blush, eyeshadow, etc), I always crush it into a loose powder, put rubbing alcohol in it to make it a liquidy paste and pour it back into the pan. Once it’s dry, you can press it down to compact it a little more. This not only fixes your broken makeup, but completely sanitizes it also πŸ™‚ Plus, the alcohol evaporates really quickly, so it will be ready overnight!

  10. Vanessa says:

    Great tips! Do you know how to revive dried up paint pots? My bare canvas paint is sooo dry and a good portion of the product is still in there πŸ™

  11. Sandra says:

    Great ideas, thanks for sharing!!!!

  12. Cody says:

    I had an entire package of make-up wipes that ended up lost in a drawer for months and months with the seal open… by the time I found them, they were all dry! But it turns out they’re really handy. I keep them in my purse for emergencies. You just need to add a few drops of water to one and it’s restored to its former glory. I actually like having them dry, I always keep a couple in my make-up bag just in case and it’s way easier to take them out with you than wet ones.

  13. Alice says:

    This is great! I’ve been wondering what to do with a pot of gel eyeliner I’ve had for about 8 months that has dried out a fair bit. I love the stuff and wanted to rescue it, but didn’t really want to alter the composition by adding something to re-wet it. Definitely just going to scrape off the top layer tomorrow morning.

  14. Keerthi says:

    I’m going to use tip #5 on my skunk brush… Exhibit A stained it red and now I can’t see how much blush I’m getting on it! Thanks!
    Keerthi recently posted … swatch- opi the show must go on!

  15. Harshleen says:

    Awesome tips! Thanks for sharing.
    Harshleen recently posted … Beauty Advice – Solutions to Common Beauty Problems

  16. Soo says:

    I love this post! I’ve learned so many helpful tips. thank you~
    Soo recently posted … Lisa over at He Qi Crystal Designs is having a holiday giveaway

  17. Kim says:

    Great stuff, Audrey. Thanks for all the tips, especially the brush cleaning. That one is very timely! πŸ™‚

  18. NeenaJ says:

    I totally used the scotch tape tip this morning. Fracking BRILLIANT! Thanks Audrey!

  19. SaraJane says:

    Great tips! I’ve been using the scotch tape trick for a while now and it’s amazing! And this is coming from a gal that uses lots of those sparkly Urban Decay shadows. πŸ™‚

    I also find that holding a tissue under my eye while applying my shadow helps trap some of the glitter before it falls onto my cheeks. Then I can just get the rest with the tape.

    I do get a few odd looks from people who wonder why there’s scotch tape in the bathroom cabinet, though. haha.

  20. sparklehead says:

    Thank you for the olive oil idea! I have a skunk brush that looks permanently black and pink!

  21. Hunny Bunny says:

    For dried up gel liners just spray with some MAC fix +! It’s awesome. And for the broken blush I’ve heard you can mix it with some lip balm to use as a cream blush.

  22. Ru says:

    What a great post. I tried the scotch tape trick last week and it worked like a charm. To my dried gel pots, I’ve added a drop or two of almond oil to restore them (and in the process found out how awesome almond oil is as a body moisturizer!). I will have to try the scrape off tip, and also storing them upside down as another poster mentioned! The makeup wipes upside down is briliant πŸ™‚

  23. Jamie says:

    these are some good tips. I also heard that for a broken blush or bronzer if you have bigger pieces you can use alcohol to mend it back together. not sure if this works on eyeshadow since I hadn’t heard anything.

  24. Gloria says:

    Awesome tips!! I hate it when a stray hair falls onto a client’s face and I’m there trying to get it off with a powder brush. Will use a spoolie next time. =D
    Gloria recently posted … 5 Minute Smokey Eye Video

  25. Jess says:

    Any tips as to how to get glitter out of your brushes? I clean mine with brush cleaner, olive oil, etc. routinely but the glitter still sticks in them and then it gets all over my face even if I’m working with matte shadows πŸ˜›

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