If you’ve worked in the beauty industry long enough, you’re bound to pick up beauty tips and tricks. As beauty editors, we regularly talk to nearly everyone in the industry, from nail pros to dermatologists. Along the way, we’ve each picked up hacks that we’ve taken with us and incorporated into our own routines.
Personally, the hacks I’ve learned have been nothing short of mind-blowing. I’ve learned how to style my waves to make them perfectly beachy, make my dry skin so dewy that it looks lit from within, and even found a way to firm and plump my lips (sans fillers). Luckily, my co-workers have also picked up some beauty hacks over the years (including a glow-boosting trick from J.Lo's makeup artist). Keep reading to learn our absolute favorite tricks and how to make your own beauty routine easier.
Katie Berohn, Associate Beauty Editor
The hack: thermal water for extra moisture
I have incredibly dry skin that’s prone to flaking and cracking. Hyaluronic acid is such a game changer for me, but there is a caveat: Hyaluronic acid only really does its job if there’s moisture for it to pull from. In fact, if you put it on dry skin, it may create an initial plumping effect and then make your face appear drier later on. Mist your face with water or a hydrating spray, then use hyaluronic acid afterward to soak in all that moisture. I saw Charlotte Palermino do this on Instagram (I trust her with anything and everything dry skin–related), and once I tried it for myself, I never looked back.
The hack: applying body lotion on wet skin
This is very similar to my hyaluronic acid hack, but if you have dry skin no matter how much you moisturize, you’ll want to try this. Keep lotion in your shower, and use it while your skin is still wet and before you towel off. You can use any lotion for this, but I will always recommend Curél’s Wet Skin Moisturizer to anyone who will listen to me. It is easy to use and super hydrating and doesn’t leave any residue on your towel.
The hack: style waves and curls when hair is sopping wet
I’ve always had wavy hair, but no one ever taught me how to style it. I’ve never been one to do much to my hair, but I used to think my natural curl pattern was really inconsistent and weird-looking because I just brushed through my waves. Last summer, April Story styled my hair at the Fekkai Salon in Soho and changed my entire life by explaining to me that waves should be styled by scrunching product in when they’re soaking wet. Since then, my hair has never looked better.
The hack: using eye cream on your lips
When I first started working in beauty, a makeup artist told me that they always use eye cream on their lips. As someone who can’t sleep without a lip mask and panics if I don’t have lip balm in my purse, I was immediately intrigued. I’ve now been doing this for three years, and I think it’s made a major difference in how firm, plump, and lined my lips are. It’s also one of the easiest tricks to incorporate into your routine. After you swipe eye cream under your eyes, just smooth any remaining on your finger onto your lips. I love layering a lip mask on top to seal it in.
Shawna Hudson, Associate Beauty Editor
The hack: peel pads before makeup
After hearing from a few celebrity makeup artists that these facial radiance pads are actually the secret to their clients' glowing looks on the red carpet, I had to snag some for myself. Many of them stress the importance of skin prep for any flawless makeup look, and this key product really proved that to me. I use them right before my serum and moisturizer if I'm going to put on makeup and was actually really surprised by what a difference it makes. My foundation just glides and blends easier on the skin whenever I use them, and you really have nothing to lose with that price tag.
The hack: using setting spray as a makeup base
I'm not going to lie. I thought using a setting spray before and after your makeup sounded like a bad idea before hearing from a few celebrity makeup artists that this is actually the way to go. I decided to be brave and try it using this MUA fave from Iconic London, and it did not disappoint. This particular spray is really hydrating and adds some serious glow. It actually does create a smoother canvas for foundation and doesn't look greasy when you add another layer on top to set. It's just the right amount of radiance.
The hack: strategic bronzer placement
I'm no contour expert, but when I learned from some makeup artists that placing your contour slightly above the cheeks helps to lift the face, I tried it for myself and loved the results. It's amazing that such a subtle change in where you place your makeup can make all the difference. I like to do this using Refy Beauty's Cream Bronzer. The formula is ultra blendable and creamy and looks gorgeous all day long.
Erin Jahns, Senior Beauty Editor
The hack: blink or you'll miss it
One of my favorite makeup tricks of all time is something I learned from Michael Ashton (ahem, Adele's longtime makeup artist). I have super-long eyelashes—both top and bottom—and avoid wearing a lot of eyeliner or mascara on my lower lashes since it treads heavy and spidery real quick. That said, if I don't wear anything on my lower lash line, it looks a little unbalanced. Michael told me to simply close my eyes for a few moments after I apply a fresh coat of mascara (when it's still a tad wet), which will slightly coat your lower lash area with some color. I've been doing it religiously ever since!
The hack: wet your beauty sponge—but not with water
I'll never not use my Beautyblender to apply makeup, but instead of just water, I like to dampen my sponge with something that has even more skin and glow benefits. I've heard a lot of makeup artists say they use rose water, but I take it a step further and keep Caudalíe's iconic Beauty Elixir, Tatcha's Luminous Dewy Skin Mist, and Maya Chia's The Optimist Essence on standby. Choosing one to spritz my Beautyblender with truly does make a huge difference!
The hack: de-puff with ice
I don't know about you, but every morning, I feel like a puffy mcpuff no matter what I do. If I have time, I not only use a strategic toning and cooling sheet mask (111Skin's Sub-Zero De-Puffing Facial Mask is actually life-changing), but I'll also take my ice roller out of the fridge and roll it over the mask to enhance the cooling, de-puffing, and toning perks and help push all of the mask's amazing skin-loving ingredients into my skin even further. Now, I never do a sheet mask without my ice-cold roller in hand!
Sarah Yang, Managing Editor, THE/THIRTY
The hack: using dry shampoo for volume
One hair trick that really surprised me is using dry shampoo to create volume. I always thought the product was just for keeping your days-old hair fresh, but I learned from Dakota Johnson's hairstylist, Mark Townsend, that it can be a secret tool for giving fine and flat hair some much-needed volume. "The biggest key is hair spray sticks hairs together, which can actually make your hair look even thinner or even finer, whereas dry shampoos have powders and starches in them that keep the hair separated, so it does give you thicker-looking hair," he told me. You can add it to your roots and blow-dry if you're dealing with damp hair, or if you have day-old hair, use it to soak up any oils or dirt and then go back and use dry shampoo to tease the roots.
The hack: spray and set your flyaways
I was recently getting an updo for a friend's wedding, and a hairstylist dropped a game-changing tip on me. I'm always dealing with flyaways—no matter how much hair spray I put on it, it doesn't seem to go away (and then my hair looks "crispy" because I've put too much product on it). She told me to apply hair spray to the flyaways but apply some heat to it right away to let it set. It works like a charm!
The hack: slugging
When I was working on a story about dehydrated skin, I learned about slugging, the K-beauty skincare technique where you apply an occlusive product, like Vaseline or a rich ointment, to your skin to trap moisture. This is extremely helpful if you're constantly battling dry skin like I am. When I have a bout of dry skin, I do this for a night or two, and my skin feels so much better. And Heather D. Rogers, MD, dermatologist, dermatologic surgeon, and founder of Doctor Rogers Restore, gave me another slugging tip: Before you "slug," dampen your face with water or add a cream (water and oil mixed) for extra hydration since ointments do not contain water.
Caitie Schlisserman, Beauty Director, Branded Content
The hack: Mario Dedivanovic's lip flip
Mario Dedivanovic's "lip flip" hack is a total game changer. Basically, he says when applying lip liner, you should follow the natural shape of your lip except for right above your Cupid's bow and the middle of your bottom lip. Over-lining these areas truly helps make your lips look fuller and more lifted. It works like a charm every time!
The hack: sunscreen for a glow
J.Lo's makeup artist Scott Barnes once shared that he likes to use the Neutrogena Sunscreen Mist on skin for some added glow on the red carpet. I might not make appearances on any red carpets, but this hack still works wonders for weddings and other special events. I love misting my décolletage and legs with it—it's a subtle sheen that always looks great in pictures.