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Bollywood Style: How to Do Indian Makeup

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Makeup in the Indian style is a great idea for a stunning transformation. It’s rather bright for everyday wear, but perfect for a night out, a party, or a wedding.

Peculiarities of Indian Makeup

India is a country of vibrant colors and rich spices. This vibrancy and spiciness is also reflected in the looks of Indian ladies. The traditional Indian makeup is truly outstanding. Let’s look at its main features:

  • Two accents: on the lips and on the eyes. In such expressive makeup, it’s important to pick shades and their combinations carefully to create a balanced look.
  • Natural colors. Say no to artificial neon shades.
  • Shimmer eyeshadow. The most popular hues include gold, olive, violet, and lilac. Pinks, sands, and blues are a bit less popular.
  • Carefully painted eyebrows with clear outlines.
  • A bindi — a red or black dot between the eyebrows. Nowadays, it’s mostly worn as an accessory, but in the past it had many meanings, signifying, for example, that a woman was married and practiced Hinduism.

What you’ll need to do Indian makeup?

This makeup can be done with common makeup products. To recreate the look of a Bollywood star, you’ll need:

  • primer, concealer, foundation (the same color as your skin or slightly darker)
  • rouge or bronzer;
  • eyebrow shadow or pencil and gel;
  • eyeshadow (light and dark, shimmer);
  • black eyeliner and a soft eye pencil;
  • mascara or fake eyelashes;
  • lipstick and a matching lip pencil;
  • brushes and a sponge.

Step-by-step tutorial

1. Prep your skin

Wash your face, clean it with toner, and use moisturizing cream. Once the cream sinks in, apply primer. Use concealer to hide red spots and other blemishes.

2. Even your face tone

Cover the face in foundation with a sponge or a brush. If your skin tone is on the darker side, choose a matching shade. If you have pale skin, go for foundation one shade darker than your complexion. Don’t forget to apply some foundation to the neck and chest.

3. Gently highlight the cheekbones

Use rouge or bronzer in peach, brown, or apricot hues. Don’t create any sharp angles on your cheekbones — go for smooth lines.

4. Outline the eyebrows

Paint your eyebrows with shadow or pencil. Indians boast naturally thick and dark eyebrows so they pay special attention to the shape and outlines. Again, no crisp lines and sharp angles — everything should be smooth.

5. Accentuate the eyes

In Indian eye makeup, makeup artists use the horizontal layering technique in applying eyeshadow:

  • Light eyeshadow goes to the inner corner of the eye.
  • Make the outer area and the crease somewhat darker.
  • Highlight the eyelid with shimmer eyeshadow.
  • Carefully blend everything.

You can also do smokey eyes with a trademark Bollywood accent — raised and pointed eyeliner to make cat eyes.

6. Draw winged eyeliner

For more authenticity, you can buy Indian eyeliner — kajal. Of course, an ordinary soft eye pencil or liquid eyeliner will also do.

Draw wings along the eyelash line. Choose the thickness depending on your eye shape. For close-set eyes, the line should start as thin as possible and get thicker from the middle of the eyelid. Those of us who have wide-set eyes, should opt for thicker lines.

Winged eyeliner should be black, uninterrupted, and flawless. The tip should go slightly beyond the lid in the direction of the temples.

7. Highlight the waterline

Place kajal liner or an ordinary waterproof eye pencil on the waterline of the lower eyelid.

8. Apply mascara

Long and thick eyelashes are an important element of an Indian makeup, so apply two or even three layers of mascara. If your eyelashes are not naturally full, go with fake ones.

9. Do lip makeup

In its classic variation, Indian lip makeup cannot do without pomegranate, coral, and brown hues. Caramel shades are also used occasionally.

Outline the lips with a lip pencil and then apply lipstick of a matching shade. Carefully blend the border between the main color and the outline.

10. Paint a bindi

You can paint a bindi yourself, but it’s much easier to use special stickers that come in such shapes as a circle, oval, half-moon, or triangle. Ladies with big eyes should go for large round dots and small ones are better for small eyes.

To give a stylish finishing touch to your look, pick fitting accessories. A look with Indian makeup can feature large earrings, massive necklaces and bracelets, Indian headgear, or a nose ring imitating piercing.

Indian makeup is the easiest way to try on the look of a gorgeous Bollywood actress. Practice with our step-by-step tutorial and visit the FineAdviser gallery for more inspiring examples of Indian makeup!

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