Pain keeping you awake at night? It’s one of the chief complaints of the chronically pained. I can’t tell you how many nights I tossed and turned, or whimpered and stayed really, really still hoping to find some relief, only to crawl to the mirror the next morning and see the consequences of pain-triggered insomnia all over my almost-unrecognizable face.
Puffy eyes? Check. Sallow skin tone? Check. Permacrease in between the brows, dark circles under the eyes, and a general sense that I’d aged about 20 years overnight? Check, check, and, oh yes, check.
If pain is causing you a run of sleepless nights, the most important thing you can do for yourself and your health is to tackle that problem head on; for some specific strategies on how to get more sleep on a regular basis, check out our article on improving sleep hygiene.
And to get the most out of the day that follows, read on to learn the three easy steps to mask the tell-tale signs of insomnia, using cosmetics and items most every Doll already has on hand.
Step One: The Power of Cold Water
What you’ll need: glass, water, ice, and half a lemon
Start with some ice-cold water — inside and out. For a quick pick-me-up, and an added boost of Vitamin C to help shore up your immune system (which is impaired by regular lack of sleep), add the juice of half a lemon to a tall glass of cold water and sip as you get ready for the day.
Then tie back your hair and wash your face, finishing with an ice-cold rinse. Cold water will help wake up tired skin, refresh you psychologically, and reduce swelling. Pat on a moisturizer with sunscreen, and get ready for step 2!
Step Two: Brighten Those Doll Eyes
What you’ll need: brightening concealer, mascara, eyebrow brush/powder, eyeliner brush, highlighter
Now that the “canvas” is clean and prepped, move on to combat those dark circles. Not just any concealer will do here: you want a cream-based product that contains a brightening agent. The one I use is Almay Bright Eyes (affiliate link) – it’s a concealer and an eyeshadow base in one, and I love the texture – goes on smoothly over my aging (ahem!) skin.
You’ll want to dab it on gently and cover the entire undereye area, from corner to corner, then blend well. If you’re using the Almay product, also apply to the eyelid itself sparingly.
Next, pay some attention to your eyebrows. A well-arched, well-groomed brow will have the visual effect of lifting your face and negating that “slack” look that tired skin develops. Using an eyebrow brush with a powder that’s within a shade or two of your natural brow color, apply the powder in upward, short strokes, gently emphasizing the natural arch of your brows. (Note: now is not the time to tweeze! That will only add to redness and swelling.)
Add a pale, shimmery highlighter on the brow bone only — use a light touch here, because too much can make you look clownish. Then — and here’s the top-secret secret a lot of Dolls need to know: add a little bit of that same highlighter in the inner corner of your eyes. Just a little bit will brighten the entire eye.
Add eyeliner if you like, but don’t encircle the eye completely. Instead, concentrate the liner on the outer corners of the eyes, and if you’re very skilled with the eyeliner brush, wing it up slightly at the edge.
Add mascara, concentrating on the outer lashes — again, this will create the illusion of a wide-eyed awake look.
Step Three: Add a Little Color
What you’ll need: cream-based blush, light lip gloss in natural shade
Stay away from powder blushes when you’re combating the fatigued look. Cream based blushes work much better and are more blendable. You want to apply it very lightly to the apples of the cheeks, and blend outwards extremely well. There should be no noticeable lines here — just a gentle flush of color. Pinks work well for most skin tones and convey a look of overall health, which will make you look more alert.
Eschew the lipsticks. When you look tired, a light gloss works wonders. Again, use a pink-toned shade that’s right for your coloring — nothing too bright or garish here! Look for a shade that approximates your own lip tone, and apply a light coat.
If you like, you can finish with a very light dusting of powder to set your makeup.
That’s it. Three steps, and you’re out the door, looking much more awake than you feel!