COMPLEXION PARTY PREP
Translation: Put a little time into bettering your skin prior to the holidays, and you won't be worrying about pre-party breakouts or a dull visage. Rather than slough off skin with grainy exfoliants, look for chemical peel pads, with ingredients that soothe redness, shrink pores and give glow in just one swipe. Add a overnight facial treatment to your routine that gives serious glow. Look for one with Vitamin C that smoothes, firms and brightens--all while you're getting in your beauty sleep.
FLARE picks: Peter Thomas Roth gentle complexion correction pads, $36, ebeauty.ca, Korres Wild Rose + Vitamin C advanced brightening sleeping facial, $63, available at Shopper's Drug Mart.
THE ULTIMATE DRESS
Think of a leather shift as the ultimate dress for day and night. It instantly adds interest; making it a major upgrade from basic flat black. Plus, a slim-cut, sleeveless silhouette opens up your options for low-effort layering. This is the piece you can get away with wearing a few times on the party circuit (without anyone noticing!). It'll be our little secret.
A high-impact, low-maintenance holiday look that will fly at the office, and takes no time to apply? No sweat (seriously).Letting different features take centre stage for different events allows you to keep the rest of your look minimal and low-maintenance-play up your eyes one night, pout the next. Ditch the usual holiday shades like basic berry in favour of bold corals and festive fuchsia, and opt for a long-wearing lip stain with serious shine.For eyes, swap the standard smoky eye for heavy metals. Try a flick of bold silver liner, or a wash of shimmery colour all over lids using a chubby, creamy shadow stick, which take seconds to smudge on and enhances eyes.
Outshine the rest by ditching the spangly party dress for stand-out, embellished separates that don't require a head-to-toe outfit change before heading out. Look for blingy blazers, sequined hot pants (to be paired with tights, of course) and beaded crop tops that you can easily swap out your more conservative work wear for.
5 MINUTE REFRESH
No time to head home before the party? No problem. After spritzing on a light hydrating face mist, dust on an iridescent highlighter along your cheekbones, inside your cupids bow and just under your brow bone to get a glow going. If you've spent your fair share of time in front of a mirror trying to make sure your winged liner is even (we've been there), you're sure to appreciate a pair of self-adhesive eyeliner stickers (yes, they exist) which recreate the look of a perfectly drawn cat eye. Touch up your bold lip and hit finish with a pint-sized setting spray to ensure your sparkle stays the night. Time's up!
FLARE picks: Caudalie Beauty Elixir, $16, ebeauty.ca. Sephora Collection Velvet Eyeliner Appliques, $8, sephora.com, Benefit Moon Beam Highlighter, $30, sephora.com, Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray, $14, sephora.com.
We know it's all in the details but you don't need to compete with a parade of statement necklaces to stand out.
Look for playful extras that can be stashed at the office until you're ready to head out the door, take all of two seconds to throw on and instantly upgrade your look. If you don't already have a party pump, opt for a versatile colour, but choose a fun texture, like velvet or pony hair. While you're at it, swap out your bulky bag for an embellished minaudière or look-at-me clutch that's big enough to throw in the necessities: powder, a lipstick, phone and wallet.
Feeling extra lazy? Toss on a onesie and call it a day. You can get away with a strong trouser jumpsuit in statement-making fabrics and finishes at an office party, or save a short and sweet playsuit to wear with tights, playful heels and a leather jacket for weekend bashes.
HOLIDAY HAIR FIXES
After attending a few events, your pre-party blowout may begin to look less than brilliant, but it's nothing a little TLC can't fix. After spritzing a little dry shampoo at the roots, give your mane a good tousle, and pop on your accoutrement of choice. A delicate diamante headband will add volume and gives second (or third) day hair new life, while a wrap-around lace hair tie can be styled with a jaunty knot at the front, or as a demure headband, and give instant polish. Watch our video tutorial here.
FOOL PROOF PARTY GIFT
It can be tricky to nail down the perfect party gift, especially when you're not well-acquainted with the host. Stock up on small, thoughtful gifts prior to party season and you'll always be able to give good gift, even in a pinch. While you can never go wrong arriving with wine or champagne in-hand, a pick from the latest crop of fashion releases gives you an icebreaker. Try Love Looks Not with The Eyes: Thirteen Years with Lee Alexander McQueen, a heart-stoppingly gorgeous tome of photos captured by Anne Deniau, the only photographer allowed backstage at McQueen's shows for over a decade, or Grace Coddington's much-anticipated eponymous memoir, capturing her tenure at Vogue.
SOS SKIN SAVERS
Ready do it all over again tomorrow? Probably not, but duty calls, and preparation is key. Grab a glass of water and head to the bathroom to wipe away the day's damage with a cleansing cloth. Work in a rich, calming moisturizer with soothing ingredients, followed up by a few dabs of a depuffing cream to the eye area. And then it's off to bed, young lady!
More from FLARE:
- Holiday Eye Makeup: Be Jewelled
- 5 Foundation Tips For Flawless Skin
- Beauty Trend Alert: Coloured Mascara
- Beauty Crush: Anne Hathaway Channels Audrey Hepburn
- Beauty Q: Are There BB Creams For Darker Skin Tones?
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