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Posted on July 30, 2018

How to increase productivity when working from home

How To

Working from home can be the ultimate test to both your focus level and motivation, so today, I’m going to share some top tips on how you can increase productivity at home.

These working from home strategies should help you stay focused and have maximum productivity outside the office because I truly believe that your home can be as productive as the office if you have the right mindset!

Whether you have a dissertation to finish or a backlog of emails, here are some sure ways to help you increase productivity outside the office 🙂

Top 5 tips for increasing work productivity at home

1. Get up early. Having an early start to the day will help get you in the right mindset to get some work done. Waking up to an alarm particularly will give you a sense of purpose for the day and prevent you from engaging in unproductive tasks like spending hours on social media or in front of the telly.

2. Have an office space. Having a designated work space will help create a breeding ground for productivity. If you’re someone who gets easily distracted at home, then find a suitable coffee shop with free WiFi and a comfortable working space. You need a place that will help stimulate a working environment for you.

3. Give yourself breaks. Give yourself a schedule lunch time and appropriate breaks during the day so that you can recharge and give yourself the energy and motivation to get through that dreaded to-do list. Scheduled break periods are very important for increasing performance in your next task.

4. Have a set schedule. A set schedule or routine is also good for your morale as it gives you a sense of actually working. Without one, things can get a bit messy and it can be hard to track your work productivity in general. You might even find your day getting away from you without actually having done anything tangible by the end of it.

5.Turn off notifications. Eliminating as many distractions as possible will help increase your chances of having a productive workday at home. That can mean turning off notifications for some and reducing white noise (such as radio/TV) for others. Whatever the case may be, turning off notifications this will help keep you focused on the days work!

Do you ever find yourself taking your work home with you? If so, I’d love to know your tips for increasing productivity at home! Tweet me @FilomenaKaguako 😉

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Posted on May 14, 2018

4 simple ways to have a whiter and healthier smile!!!

How To

Growing up, I’ve always been blessed with a white smile. If there was one thing people often complimented me on, it was my bright pearly whites. This happened so regularly that it actually made me self conscious about strangers constantly looking at my mouth.  I will admit that I was rather shy about it during that time, but I have since then learned to embrace the whiteness and I now do the absolute most to ensure my pearly whites remain, well…..white!

I brush, I floss, I mouthwash and I use a smoker’s whitening tooth powder – even though I don’t smoke!

I am aware that not everyone will have the dedication to take the OCD approach that I’ve implemented into my tooth care routine, so if you need your teeth whitening in order to resemble the stunningly white smiles of A list celebrities, one option – that doesn’t include vigorous brushing or obsession – is to see your dentist and have them bleach away years and years of stains.

However, if you’re not in the position to see a dentist for cosmetic work because professional teeth whitening  is a little out of your financial reach, then worry not! I have some fool-proof ways to help you achieve pearly white perfection.

Here are the top four most natural ways to achieve a brighter, whiter smile without breaking the bank 🙂

1. Pay your dentist regular visits

dentist docklands dental

Photo Credit: Docklands Dental

Think about it, most of us wouldn’t avoid the hairdresser for years, so why do we avoid our dentist? Many of us are scheduled to visit every six months, which is great for picking up on dental issues before they take hold but if you’re looking for a brighter and whiter smile, you need to be sitting in the dentist chair every three months! Keeping your mouth clean and removing bacteria will help keep your smile white and bright – after 3 months, any bacteria left simply takes hold again! If you’re scared of your dentist…then you’re seeing the wrong one.

2. Brush, brush, brush!

dentist docklands dental

Photo Credit: Docklands Dental

Yes, it sounds obvious – but so many adults don’t follow this simple rule! To keep your pearly whites white, you need to be brushing at least three times a day – so only a minor OCD approach! Better brushing will give you better results! Yes, you can choose whitening toothpastes that might help the process along, but it’s the extra time you take to brush that’ll get you that beautiful smile. Most whitening products that are available at your local supermarket or chemist only contain a small amount of whitening agent because there are restrictions on how much is available to the public in everyday products, so don’t be fooled by too-good-to-be-true results.

3. The importance of food and drink CANNOT be understated

If you’re hoping to achieve a naturally white smile, then you need to be mindful of what you’re consuming during the day. Certain foods and drinks erode our enamel and cause tooth weakness – take it easy on that lemon water! And as you know, that morning cup of coffee is going straight to your teeth and staining them brown. The same can be said for tea and of course, smoking. You also need to be careful when it comes to certain vegetables as well! Whoever would have thought the list could be this long? Blueberries, beetroot and even carrots contain antioxidants that can stain your teeth.

4. A simple rinse!

bright smile docklands dental

Photo Credit: Docklands Dental

If brushing your teeth after every meal seems a bit awkward, especially if you’re at work during the day or you’re just busy running errands throughout the day. Then try having a simple rinse instead. You can wash away the remnants of your meal before what’s left behind can do any staining damage. Even if you just use a glass of water, you can be a step closer to your perfect smile.

If you want some more advice on your oral health, then speak to your dentist today.

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*This is a collaborative post, all views remain my own.

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Posted on May 2, 2018

5 tips and tricks for dealing with social media trolls

How To/ Tips

While it is not uncommon for content creators to receive online abuse every now and again, I was quite fortunate to have skipped those horrible experiences for the most part of my blogging career. Fast forward a few years since launching my blog, and now the peaceful days of not dealing with online hate have become a long and distant memory to me.

Thankfully, dealing with trolls is still only a new phenomenon for me. It is one that started around the time I publicly spoke out about my experience of being hypersexualised as a Black Irish woman on dating sites. Following the publication of my viral open letter, it’s become the norm for me to moderate the comment section of my various social media platforms.

Being called a ‘darkie’ on YouTube has become such a regular occurrence for me at this point that it surprises me not to get a negative comment that is racially motivated. While I am not one to take nasty comments personally, I sometimes wonder if reading them will have negative effects on me on a subconscious level – I guess, only time will tell!

As someone who is now well versed in dealing with faceless profiles, I’ve decided to share my top tips for dealing with social media trolls 🙂

1. Stay calm and composed

If you choose to give hateful trolls the time of day, then a calm and composed reply may be a way to go! Emotionally driven arguments can only take you so far -not to mention how upset you might get after giving in to their negativity! If you keep a rational mind and reply calmly, there’s a lower chance of being dragged down to their miserable level.

2. Laugh it off

Nothing drives a social media troll crazier than seeing how little someone is affected by their nasty words and backwards ‘opinions.’ Use a bit of humour to lighten up the situation, because at the end of the day – who is this person, really? Not giving a troll their desired response will eventually wear them down and make them lose at their own pathetic game.

3. ‘Like’ it

If you’re someone who believes that online trolls don’t even deserve a millisecond of your day, then a simple liking of a comment will suffice. If it’s a Twitter troll and you’re feeling a bit generous with your time, then a retweet will show them who’s bawse! 🙂

4. Dirty tactics

I’m not one who believes in fighting fire with fire. With that said, I do believe that there are some idiots out there who deserved to be publicly named and shamed. If you ever have it in you to play dirty then take a screen shot of the abusive comment, post it on the platform where you have the most followers, tag the person (if possible), then let your fandom deal with the rest *upside down emoji*

5. Report, block and ignore

If all else fails…report, block and ignore.  I know this can be hard, but deep down most of us know that this is the best course of action to take. If a stranger is so worried about what you’re doing, it means they must lead a pathetic and lonely life. Pray for their happiness and you keep doing you.

On a final note…

If you’re really struggling to deal with online negativity, then rant to a trusted friend over a cuppa and remind yourself that even Beyoncé gets hate. I don’t know about you…..but by my logic, that basically means you’re a #kween! 🙂

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[23-04-18]

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Posted on December 11, 2014

7 natural skin toners

How To/ Natural beauty

 natural skin toners

If your beauty regime consists of cleansing, exfoliating, toning, moisturising and the occasional face mask, then you’ve probably already noticed that things can get a bit heavy on your pocket – particularly around this time of year.

Fortunately, you don’t have to spend a huge amount of cash to find a toner that you’re happy with. You can use the very ingredients you have in your kitchen to make a facial toner that’ll do the job for just a fraction of the price!

Here are a few recipes you might like to try out. Bear in mind that not all of these will be effective and you just have to find the right one for your skin!

Tomato juice

Mix 3 spoons of tomato juice with 1 spoon of raw honey to make a thick paste. Dab the mixture onto your cleansed face and then remove after 10 minutes.

Benefits: raw honey helps absorb impurities from the pores of your skin while tomato juice helps shrink the pores.

Papaya

Put a ripe papaya in a blender with some apple cider vinegar. Apply it on your face for 8 minutes and then remove it. This recipe is great for those with dry skin.

Benefits: the acids in apple cider vinegar act as a natural skin exfoliators by digesting dead skin cells, while the papaya helps remove skin discolouration.

Lemon juice

Squeeze ¼ of a fresh lemon into a bowl and add one teaspoon of water to this. Apply the mixture to your face and leave it on for 10 minutes. Wash it off before applying your moisturiser.

Benefits: lemon juice helps your skin appear more vibrant. It has antibacterial properties which can help reduce acne too.

Vinegar & rose water

Mix two spoons of apple cider vinegar with two spoons of rose water. Use a cotton pad to apply the mixture onto your cleansed face. You will feel immediately refreshed after using this toner, it works well for those who are prone to acne.

Benefits: the acids in apple cider vinegar act as a natural skin exfoliator by digesting dead skin cells, while the mild astringent properties in rose water help remove excess skin oils.

rose water

Cucumber with curd

Grate a fresh cucumber in a bowl and then add 100g of curd to it. Mix it up and apply it on your cleansed face for about 8 minutes. Keep the remained in the fridge if you want to reuse it. This toner in particular works well for oily types.

Benefits: the water content in the cucumbers help flush out toxins in the skin, while the curd helps brighten the skin and take away any dullness.

Mint toner

Boil about a litre of water and the pour it over mint leaves. Let the leaves sit in the water for 15 minutes and then strain this mixture into a jar. Allow it to cool down before  using cotton pads to apply it to your skin.

Benefits: mint can help reduce the appearance or large pores. The longer you leave the leaves in the water, the better!

Ice cold water

Now we’re back to the basics! You can tone your face with a splash of ice cold water if you don’t have time to put something together. If you want to take things a step further, you could always put one ice cube in a bowl of water and then use that water to tone your face!

Benefits: splashing cold water on the face tightens up the skin and temporarily reduces the size of your pores.

If you decide to give any of these a try, do let me know how you got on!

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Posted on December 5, 2014

How to make your lips look fuller

How To/ lips/ Tips

ange

As much as I hate to admit it, we can’t all be Angelina’s.We can’t all be born with full lips and we can’t all have the courage – or money – to get fillers done. That’s just life!

But like most beauty-related dilemmas, there are ways around it. With the right tricks and techniques, you can make your lips look much fuller than they actually are – it’s all about perception!

Here are some of my suggestions for plumping up your pucker without getting any fillers. After these tips, you’ll be more than just a little ready for that kiss under the mistletoe 😉

Avoid the dark side

When it comes to making your pout appear fuller, lip colour matters. Avoid dark colours and shades, as they will only make your lips look smaller . Opt for lighter shades that are closer to your skin tone if you want to visually enlarge your lips.

Line it up

Use a lip liner close to the colour of your lips to draw around the natural line of your mouth. Try not to overdo it, because it will just look wrong altogether! When you’ve finish outlining, use the same pencil to fill in the lips. Smudge and rough lines before you apply your lippy/gloss.

Highlighting matters

Apply some highlighter right above your cupid’s bow and then use your finger to blend it in lightly. Then, use a brown liner beneath your lower lip line – the line shouldn’t be harsh at all. This highlighting and contouring trick will make your lips look like they are creating a shadow because they’re THAT much fuller!

A clever finish

If you want to give off the illusion of fullness, then it’s a good idea to avoid matte textures. They tend to diminish the actual size of your lips, while shiny finishes reflect light and make your lips look more luscious and full.

Pro tip: Use your toothbrush to exfoliate your lips every morning. This promotes blood circulation to the lips, which in turn will make them seem rosier and fuller. Added bonus? You get a temporary plump!

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Posted on November 5, 2014

Homemade Nutella

How To/ recipes

healthy nutella

All you Nutella fans are probably reading this with disgust and thinking ‘How could any homemade chocolate spread compare to the one you buy in the shop – especially to Nutella.

Believe it or not, it is possible to find a good recipe for a homemade chocolate spread that tastes even remotely like the store-bought stuff.  If you ever dared to search for a recipe online, you’d find that there are more than just a few floating around the net that don’t quite cut it.

This recipe however, is probably the closest you’d get to the real stuff and best of all, it is dairy-free and refined sugar-free too!

What you’ll need:

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 150C, then arrange the hazelnuts on a lined and rimmed baking tray.
  2. Toast the nuts for about 20 minutes and once the skins begin to crack, remove from heat and allow to cool.
  3. Remove as much skin from the nuts by rubbing them in a clean kitchen towel – don’t worry if you don’t manage to get it all off!
  4. Put the peeled nuts in a food processor and then process until creamy. You can stop to scrape down the sides if needs be.
  5. Once you have a smooth butter (usually takes about 5 – 6 minutes with a decent food processor), add the coconut sugar, cocoa powder, coconut oil and 3 tbsp of water and blend, blend, blend!
  6. Taste the mixture once it is well combined and add tbsp of pure maple syrup if it isn’t sweet enough for your taste buds. It will also give your chocolate spread that glossy look Nutella has (as if it isn’t irresistible enough as it is, right?)
  7. Keep processing the mixture until it reaches your desired consistency. If it’s too thick, add one tbsp of water at a time (5 tbsp are usually enough).
  8. Store the finished spread in a sealed container in the fridge for no more than a week.
  9. Enjoy!

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Posted on October 31, 2014

How to use makeup to hide your raging hangover

How To/ Natural beauty

hangover

Sometimes, the excitement of dressing up for Hallowe’en and heading out with the girls can lead to one too many drinks. Typically, you end up waking up with a mid-blowing headache and disgustingly puffy eyes that make you look and feel like you’ve gone through hell and back.

So if things get a little out of hand tonight, here are a few makeup tricks that will help bring some life back to your face.

Begin with the eyes

Dehydrating beverages and very little sleep can lead to puffy eyes.  You can tackle puffy eyes using one of the methods I previously discussed: sliced cucumbers, cold spoons or tea bags.

Conceal, conceal, conceal

Concealing is the name of the game. Some clever concealing will help you cover a multitude of beauty problems – especially when you need it the most. A touch of concealer will help neutralise your eyes and get rid of any redness.

Forget the foundation

I couldn’t think of a better time to skip foundation than the morning after the night before. Your skin couldn’t handle the thickness of foundation after a night of heavy drinking – it is just too dried out! Forget the foundation and opt for a tinted moisturiser or CC cream instead.

Add some colour

A bit of blusher always helps with the lifeless look the skin takes after a night out. Don’t go too heavy though, one or two sweeps should do the trick – with this one you can bring the freshness back to your face one sweep at a time!

Stay hydrated

As you know, alcohol robs your skin of moisture. So rehydrating is probably one of the most important steps you need to take when it comes to trying to make your skin look more radiant. Coconut water is absolutely great for this, it also keeps you energised!

Don’t neglect the hair

I always find that my hair isn’t at its best after a night out – it reeks of smoke (even though I’m not a smoker), and it generally doesn’t look like it’s on it’s A game. If you don’t have time to give it a good wash, then do use some dry shampoo to keep it looking and smelling fresh.

I hope you’ll find these tips useful, if you have any other tips, feel free to share them with me! Have fun tonight 🙂

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Posted on October 2, 2014

How to get rid of yellow nails

How To

I recently had an awful experience with a nail polish I bought in MAC. I hadn’t tried any of their nail varnishes before so I thought I’d start off with a gorgeous shade called Saint-Germain (which to my surprise, I now regret).

Although it did look quite lovely on, I must admit that the after math of using this nail varnish wasn’t very good. It left my nails discoloured and unhealthy looking – much worse than a smoker’s nails.

You and I both know that there’s nothing cute about having yellow nails, and if you’re someone who likes to take the natural route when it comes to nails, then this can sometimes be a source of embarrassment.

Here are some of the things that have helped me get rid of that awful curry-stained look that is a result of using nail varnishes that are highly toxic, or in this case, using Saint-Germain by MAC.

saint germain

Lemon bath
Quite possibly my favourite bleaching agent – it works like magic! Just fill a bowl with some fresh lemon juice and then soak your stained nails in it for about 12 minutes. Use an old toothbrush to gentry scrub over them for a few minutes and then rise your hands with warm water. Do this twice a week until you’re happy with the results!

Whitening toothpaste
The same way you can use toothpaste to get pearly whites, you can also use it to scrub the discolouration off your nails! Put a thin coat of whitening toothpaste on your nails and after 10 minutes use a soft toothbrush to scrub it off. Soak some cotton wool into warm water and then use it to wash off the rest of the paste from your nails. Do this 2-3 times a week.

Light buffing
I find this method quite relaxing to be honest and it doesn’t take as much time as the first two options. However, buffing your nails too regularly can lead to weakened nails so it’s a good idea not to buff them every day or to use a nail hardener on a weekly basis. Do this once every 2 weeks along with one of the other options above!

If you have any other solutions to getting rid of yellow nails, feel free to let me know. Other than that, learn from my mistake and remember to use a base coat!

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Giveaway winner will be announced this evening so don’t forget to keep an eye out on the blog later!

Posted on February 27, 2014

5 natural ways to whiten teeth

How To

Beyonce-white-teeth

Apparently, one of the first thing people notice about me is my teeth – I know, weird! who notices teeth right?

Those were my initial thoughts, but then I though about it. They have good reason to notice my teeth because in fairness I do a lot to maintain the whiteness.

As much as I love coffee I don’t drink it because I’m afraid it will stain my teeth, I don’t drink fizzy drinks because I don’t like the feeling it leaves on my teeth and I don’t smoke…. well you know where this is going!

So for those of you who are looking to get pearly whites yourself, then you don’t need to spend an arm and a leg to get your teeth whitened. If you want, you can use natural methods to whiten your teeth at home:

Baking soda and lemon

Before you brush your teeth, mix a teaspoon of baking soda with a few drops of lemon until you have a paste. Brush your teeth with the paste for a minute and then spit it out. Don’t leave this in your mouth for too long because the baking powder is quite abrasive.

Oil pull

Put a spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth and swish it around your mouth for a couple of minutes. This will get rid of all the bad bacteria in your mouth and leave your teeth feeling fresh and shiny.

Banana peel

Use the inside of a ripe banana peel and rub it on your teeth for no more than two minutes. The potassium and magnesium from the banana will absorb into your teeth and whiten them.

Strawberries

Mash a few strawberries to make a paste and leave it on your teeth for no more than two minutes. Rinse out your mouth with clean water and then floss out any seeds between your teeth. The malic acid in the strawberries help get rid of any surface discoloration on your teeth.

Charcoal

Dip a damp toothbrush into powdered charcoal and brush your teeth for 2 minutes. Spit it out and then rise your mouth thoroughly. Charcoal helps get ride of bacteria that cause cavities so if you do this a couple of times a week you won’t have to go to the dentist as soon as you thought!

At the moment I’m using the first method. I only do it three times a week, but if you’re new to whitening your teeth at home then you can start off by doing it every second day. I love strawberries far too much to try that out and the idea of putting charcoal on my teeth is a bit scary! Let me know if you have any favorite methods yourself 🙂

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Posted on February 10, 2014

3 ways to make your eyes look bigger using makeup

Eyes/ How To

cara-delevingne-profile

A lot of people forget that the eyes are the first thing a person sees when they look at you. Okay, so there’s the occasional eye drop down to your twins – yes there are some pervy people out there…..

But in general, the eyes are what a person first sees, so why not make the most of it and make your eyes bigger and brighter with these simple tricks.

1. Calm it down a few notches with the liner

Steer clear of black liner. The only thing black does for your eyes in make them look smaller. If you have pale skin stick to white liner on your water line and if you have dark skin go for a brown liner.

2. Brighten your inner corners

This is the oldest trick in the book, and possibly my favorite. My ‘go to’ makeup consists of a simple winged eye and gold shadow/ highlighter in the inner corners of my eyes to open them up. If you have fair skin then you should opt for a silver in your inner corners rather than a gold.

3. A good mascara

Nothing like a good mascara to get the job done! It makes all the difference in the world, believe me. With a good few coats of  a lengthening mascara, you will make your eyes look instantly bigger without using false lashes at all.

If you have any eye enhancing tips feel free to share them with me!

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Posted on October 14, 2013

D.I.Y Pore Strips

D.I.Y/ How To/ Natural beauty/ Skincare

diy porestrips

Photo credit

Yesterday, I decided that a bit of pampering was in order. I put on some relaxing music and started off by cleansing and exfoliating my face and then, I went on to steam it. This was followed by a not so pampering experience of peeling  pore strips off my whole face.

Not to scare you or anything, but it was pain-FUL! So please don’t make the same mistake I made and just keep it to a minimum!

So why use pore strips?

Using pore strips is a quick and easy way to get rid of the dirt/oil in the pores that cause blackheads. This is one of my biggest beauty concerns. I’ve used these strips more than just a couple times and I’ve found that they do actually make a difference.

So if you’re looking for an inexpensive way to get rid of pore-clogging build up, then I suggest you give this a try! 🙂

  1. Get two spoons of unflavored gelatine
  2. Mix it with two spoons of milk
  3. Mix up an microwave for 10 seconds
  4. Using a foundation brush, apply to affected area, namely nose, chin / forehead 

Let this set on your skin for about 10 minutes and when it dries up, let the peeling begin! Once you remove everything,  you should be able to see the dirt/oil from your pores on the actual strips! I know, it’s disgusting – but at least it shows you did a good job!

Note: DO NOT make the mistake of putting it all over your face, it WILL BE painful! Just put it on certain parts of the face that need it. Also, don’t let it dry with a blow drier as it will get too dry and will be even more difficult to peel off.

Let me know if you decide to give this recipe a try, feel free to comment below! xx

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Posted on October 9, 2013

How to make your lipstick last longer

How To/ lips

mac rebel

 If you are one of those people who have to constantly worry about retouching your lips, search no further because on enhancewhatsyours.com you’ll find the top tips for having your lipstick last longer so the last thing you have to think about on a night out is constantly doing retouches on your lips (can be pretty annoying!)

So here’s how to make your lipstick last longer:

Prep your lips:

1. Exfoliate: I can’t stress how important lip exfoliation is for your lips, as you might have saw in my D.I.Y lip scrub, regular exfoliation replaces old cells with new cells which is a great way to keep your lips soft and subtle.

Note: If you’re preparing for a night out you can give your lips a gentle scrub with your toothbrush for a quick/fresh exfoliation

2. Lip balm: Before lipstick comes lip balm, let it settle on your lips to keep them moistened and prevent them from cracking. If there is any excess balm make sure you blot it off.

The nitty gritty:

inglot lip pencil 857

1.Lip liner: Line your lips starting from the cupids bow and then fill them in with the liner. This will lay a foundation for your lipstick. Here I’m using a lip liner by Inglot which I love because it’s highly pigmented and also has a lip brush at the other end. (It’s so good, I sometimes use it as a lipstick on it’s own!)

how to make lipstick last longer inglot 857  how to make lipstick last longer inglot 857

2. Lipstick: For the best results, apply your lipstick with a lipstick brush, as it allows the color to really get into the lip and stay on longer. Get a tissue and blot your lips a couple of times to press the color into your lips. After this, go for a second coat of lipstick.

I will be using Rebel by MAC it’s another one of my favorites. And as you can see, the two colors are quite similar so it’s just perfect because the lip liner won’t take away from the lipstick’s true color!

how to make lipstick last longer inglot 857

3. Concealer: As we do to get perfect eyebrows, use concealer to tidy up around the lips and give them a clean edge.

how to make lipstick last longer inglot 857

Note: I also like to use the highlighter from my Gosh BB Skin Perfecting Kit and apply it to my cupids bow, this will give you and effortless pout!

And that’s that, 5 simple steps to have your lipstick last longer! How do you normally apply your lipstick?

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