How To Look Younger At 40
This post is your ULTIMATE guide to all things beauty…and all the beauty tips to look more youthful over 40! These tips and tricks will take 10 years off, believe me! I’m covering how to look youthful with everything you need to know about skincare, makeup, hair, and more!
Face & Makeup
First, I want to make it clear that I am not a makeup artist. But I have been doing my own makeup for TV and for YouTube for several decades during which time, I’ve picked up some awesome tips and tricks.
#1 | Brows
Even though they seem to be quite polarizing (who was around for #Browgate?) 😉 thicker brows are definitely IN! A thicker, fuller, more natural brow is much more youthful. Did you over tweeze in the 90s’ like I did!? My brows were SO thin. I’ve grown mine back over 6+ weeks using NeuBrow growth serum. My brows have grown 2-3 times thicker and I’m loving it! Tip: you have to use the NeuBrow gel consistently for it to really work. One of my favorites for filling in my brows is this eyebrow gel.
Another option for brows is microblading. I tried this a few years ago and liked the look but decided not to do it again. You can watch that experience here. You also have the option of dying your eyebrows if you want them to be a bit darker!
#2 | Update Your Makeup
You can get in a makeup rut. I wore the same makeup and did the same routine for a solid 10 years and thought I couldn’t try anything new. Keep things updated to look and feel more youthful, fresh, and modern. Take a risk! Find my most recent makeup update here.
#3 | Skip Matte Makeup
In general, as we get older, our skin gets drier and has more wrinkles, creases, and cracks. So you’ll want to go with a creamy, hydrating, dewy makeup routine (unless you are lucky enough to have oily skin). I like to do a foundation/glowy primer combo to add some radiance to my skin. Lately, I’ve been obsessing over 2 killer combos! First, I’ll mix Charlotte Tilbury Glow Primer with a pump of Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops. This magical duo is a recipe for glowy, fresh skin on its own…even without any foundation. I don’t do a full face of makeup most days. I want my skin… to look like skin! But, when I am doing a full face of makeup, or I want to focus on covering the red areas of my skin only, I’ll also add my second dynamic duo. I mix Charlotte Tilbury’s Hollywood Flawless Filter and Tarte Foundcealer Dewy Foundation. This provides more coverage, evens out my skin tone, and color corrects.
If you’ve been around for a while, you know I’m also a fan of It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better Illuminating CC Cream SPF 50. Sometimes I’ll even mix in some Colleen Rothschild face oil for extra hydration. As we get older, the key is to keep your skin looking fresh and hydrated, not cakey, so I tend to lean more toward creams than powders. I would definitely skip glittery formulas that can settle into and actually highlight your fine lines and wrinkles. Instead, choose light-reflecting or shimmery shades. Less is more.
#4 | Curl Your Lashes
This is an integral step in your beauty routine! Curling your lashes is simple and will help open up the eyes and look more lifted. Another option is magnetic lashes. Angie from Hot & Flashy did a video about magnetic lashes that actually work. I’ve tried these and really like them! Instead of doing the full strip, I like to add a cluster just in the corners.
I’ve also tried eyelash extensions but decided they were too much maintenance for me and I was worried about damaging my real eyelashes so I stopped. If you’re looking for a new eyelash curler,
Shop eyelash curlers here.
#5 | Erasing Dark Circles
I don’t know about you, but my dark circles have gotten a lot worse with age! Anyone else!? The first step to covering up those dark eye circles is to use some sort of eye primer. I use the Colleen Rothschild Retinol Eye Serum which also works as a primer. Let it sit for a minute and then you can add concealer. I like a waterproof concealer and I’ll use my ring finger to press it in. The concealer I use most is the waterproof It Cosmetics Bye Bye Undereye Concealer. I also love the Tarte Shape Tape Ultra Creamy. You can read more about that wonderful concealer here.
#6 | Apply Concealer Correctly
You want to make sure you prep your skin before putting on concealer so that it doesn’t settle into the creases. As I mentioned above, I typically use the Colleen Rothschild Retinol Eye Serum as a primer. Using a concealer that’s more liquidy versus creamy will help. Another thing you might want to try… Swap your concealer with a color corrector!
#7 | Apply Blush Strategically
Apply your blush higher on the cheek (not right on the apple) and apply it in a circular motion upwards to give that lifting effect. I like to use this Becca highlighter that has a little bit of peach in it (I use Champagne Pop). You can also do a little contouring along with your blush which is something I’ve been doing more recently thanks to this incredibly fool-proof Westman Atelier contour stick. It blends beautifully! I’ve also been loving this blush/highlight trio, The Weekend Set by Westman Atelier. again for its ability to blend so easily and how luxe it feels on my skin.
#8 | Lip Lines
In your 40s you start getting those annoying fine lines around your lips. It makes us look older and sometimes causes your lipstick to feather, creating the joker effect. You want to find ways to minimize and hide those lips lines. At night, I always use some sort of lip mask. Right now I’m loving this Kiehl’s lip mask. To get the dead skin off and make your lips look extra smooth, use an exfoliator like this one or this one.
To prevent the lipstick from feathering, use an eyelid primer around your upper lip to really keep that lipstick in place.
I like to line my lips with a liner that matches my lip tone. You can also use the natural liner to draw the shape of the lip you want…I usually overdraw them to make them look bigger and fuller. After that, I’ll fill in my lips with the liner. Then, I’ll use creamy, hydrating lipstick over it! Exceptions to that are when I wear red or burgundy lipstick because I like the look of a matte lip for those shades. Finally, you can also do some light reflection concealer on your Cupid’s bow to add pop and fullness to the lips!
#9 | Fight RBF (Resting B*tch Face)
I shared a story in my Zoom tips video about how I noticed my RBF in a Zoom call so now I try to put a little smile on! But there’s actually a makeup trick you can use to help prevent RBF. Lisa Eldridge did a video on how to do your makeup so you don’t have this problem. Essentially what you do is you take concealer and you cheat the bottom corner of your mouth out. Once you’ve concealed the bottom corners, you line them to create a different shape. It will make your mouth look happier. You can watch my video demo here.
#10 | Eyelid Primer
It’s a small step in the makeup routine but can really help make you look younger! My favorite eyelid primer that I keep coming back to is this one by Too Faced. It’s hydrating, helps hold my eye shadow, and conceals the little veins on the eyelids. It does have a bit of color in the primer which helps to cover up those veins.
#11 | Match Foundation To Your Skin
When you’re wearing the wrong foundation color, you can look a lot older! When you’re trying on a new foundation, make sure you look closely at the shade in natural light by a window. Another great test is to put it on the back of your wrist. I can’t tell you how many times I have purchased expensive foundation, only to get it home and think… what was I thinking?? It’s so easy to buy the wrong shade. I also suggest asking for samples so you can test them at home first.
#12 | Makeup Tricks
There are specific makeup techniques you can use to actually look younger. Almost every beauty YouTuber out there has some special eye tricks and these are some of my favorites…
Dominique Sachse has a video about her “makeup facelift” that you can watch here. She suggests only lining the upper waterline (not the lid itself). If you have hooded eyes, eyelid real estate is already hard to come by. So lining that waterline instead gives you more space on the lid and gives that lifted look. I’ve been using this Maybelline eyeliner and really love it. It’s waterproof and stick-thin so it’s easy to get to that water line. For more tips on makeup for hooded eyes, make sure you check out this post. I’ve also recently tried Magic Stripes that create the illusion of more real estate on the lid. They DO work…but they take a little patience to get it just right.
Light colors make something look larger while dark colors will recede the area and make it look deeper. Lighter shades go on the lid and dark in the crease for hooded eyes. Find everything you need to know about hooded eyes in this post.
#13) Contour and Concealer BEFORE Foundation
For a youthful, dewy makeup look, try applying your contour and concealer before you apply your foundation. I know, it feels wrong. But it looks SO good and creates a flawless face and finish. This is the perfect hack for women over 40 because the makeup is so much lighter and more natural.
#14) Contour Cheeks
This is a new contouring hack that I LOVE! It creates a more sculptural face and cheekbones that will make your face look slimmer and more youthful. Here’s what you do…
- Take two fingers by your lips to determine where to start your contour line.
- Make a contour line that’s about 1.5” at a slanted angle on your cheek.
- Make another contour line directly downward from the edge of that contour mark you just made (on the side closest to your lip). You can see in the photos above it kind of creates the look of two sides of a triangle. This line should be thinner than your cheek line.
I think the smaller contour mark on the cheek is genius because it makes the blending a cinch and it feels almost impossible to overdo it. When you do a more traditional contour and go all the way up, sometimes it’s harder to blend in and can blend into the hairline, which I don’t like. But with this 1.5” mark, it really does blend beautifully and creates that gorgeous dramatic cheekbone! I used the same contour stick and an angled contour brush to blend it out.
#15) Contour Your Lips
This next tip is simple but genius. Especially if you want the look of fuller, more luscious lips! Using the same contour stick or whatever contour powder you love, grab a small, thin brush and then outline your lips with the contour. Yep, it’s that easy! Shading around the lips with a darker line will create the illusion of fuller lips in a super subtle way. NOTE: In order to demo this technique I went a little heavier with the shading, but you only need a very subtle light line. I think this technique is great for mature women because the dark line can mask fine lines in addition to making lips look larger (vs. using a highlighter). Remember dark recedes and light brings forward. Next, apply your favorite lipstick, and voila! The lipstick I’m wearing is the shade Penelope Pink.
I share a lot of information on skincare and skin care products here. Finding what skincare works best for YOU is key! Just because something works well for one person, doesn’t mean it will work well for everyone. Feel free to ask your skincare questions in the comments below if you need help finding something specific!
#16 | Sunscreen
We can’t talk about beauty and looking younger without emphasizing the importance of sunscreen! I did an entire video about sunscreen, different types of SPF, and more. It’s very educational and a must-watch! I’m a huge fan of Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen because it doesn’t have a strong smell and it layers beautifully under makeup…making it an easy way to make sure you wear sunscreen.
#17 | Build A Skincare Routine
As women over 40, we should have a pro-aging routine. Here at Busbee, we don’t like to take an anti-aging approach to the aging process…it’s all about pro-aging! You don’t have to go overboard. But there are three key ingredients you should include in your skincare routine.
The first is Vitamin C! I’ve been using the Josie Maran Bright Skin Vitamin C Serum and really like it!
The next ingredient or category of ingredients is Alpha Hydroxy Acids or AHAs. These will reduce fine lines and wrinkles and help brighten your skin. Within the category, there are hyaluronic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid, and citric acid. A couple of my favorites are Sunday Riley Good Genes, and Colleen Rothschild Mandelic Acid.
The last ingredient to look for is hydroquinone. This really lightens and brightens the skin. If you have dark spots and sun damage, this will take care of that! I use this Obagi Clarifying Treatment and LOVE it!
Another ingredient that’s a little controversial is retinol. There are a ton of retinol products out there to choose from! Just make sure you slowly integrate it into your routine so your skin can get used to it because it can be strong and drying.
#18 | Hydrate Your Skin
I live at a very high elevation so hydration is a constant struggle… I now only use oils and balms to keep my skin glowing, hydrated, and smooth. For extra hydration, I love the Colleen Rothschild face oil combined with her Extreme Recovery Cream. But I have a constant rotation of any balm or oil I can get my hands to moisturize daily.
Getting older and going through menopause, our hair just isn’t what it used to be. I’ve personally gone through a hair transformation over the past few years and the following tips are what I’ve learned and what’s working for me!
#19 | Exfoliate Your Scalp
If you use a lot of dry shampoo or any other products, you need to make sure you exfoliate your scalp with a scalp massager and do a scalp mask to get rid of buildup and dead skin cells. It will help eliminate that product buildup that inhibits new growth. If we want to have healthy hair, we have to start by taking care of it at the roots.
#20 | Don’t Dry & Curl On The Same Day
Sometimes this is unavoidable. But if you want to reduce damage, it’s best to avoid drying and curling your hair on the same day! The extra heat makes it more damaged, brittle, and dry.
#21 | Get Regular Trims
Just like we need daily exercise to keep our energy levels up, regular trims are important to keep up with hair maintenance and growth. Make sure you get your hair trimmed every 6-8 weeks to keep it healthy, growing, and thick!
#22 | Get Thyroid Checked
Depending on your age, it’s important to make sure you’re on top of your thyroid. After I had my daughter, my hair got super thin and I thought it was just a post-pregnancy thing. Turns out, it was actually a problem with my thyroid. I have hypothyroidism and had to start taking medication. After I started that, in combination with collagen powder which I talk about below, my hair got a LOT thicker!
#23 | Biotin Supplement
This is a really common supplement you can take for your hair, skin, and nails. But as always, make sure you talk to your doctor before trying something new. Biotin is tricky with thyroid meds so again talk to your doctor before taking it.
#24 | Nutrafol
People LOVE Nutrafol and have seen great results. I ordered one bottle, but couldn’t commit to the four pills per day. Felt like too much for me, but if you are open to trying it, it is highly rated!
#25 | Collagen Powder
As I mentioned above, my thyroid meds coupled with collagen powder in my morning coffee have literally CHANGED my life!! I’ve noticed a HUGE difference and cannot recommend this enough! This video gives you a coffee demo along with other hair-thickening tips.
#26 | Hair Extensions
Hair extensions can be kind of high maintenance if you get permanent ones. But you could also try the clip-in ones or even the Halo. I share more about Halo in this video. I used it for a while but decided to stop because I didn’t love how I felt wearing it but it’s still a great option to explore!
#27 | Root Touch Up Spray
Use root touchup spray to conceal bald spots, thinning hairlines, and grown-out roots! It’ll fill in any spots you don’t like. It will make it look like you have WAY more hair!
#28 | Thickening Treatments
This can be thickening shampoo, thickening conditioner, thickening mousse, thickening serum…you get the picture! I use this Bumble & Bumble Thickening Spray before I dry my hair and it really works! If you try it, let us know what you think in the comments below. I’ve got my friends and family using it now.
#29 | Tease Your Hair
This trick is so simple and quick! If you don’t like the volume of your hair…just tease it! It can really help!
#30 | Right Hair Color
Don’t underestimate the power of the right hair color! The wrong hair color can make you look a lot older than you are! Finding the right shade can be tricky. Try a virtual try-on technology to see what works best for your skin tone! And make sure you watch this video to see me with some pretty funny hair colors.
#31 | Shiny Hair
Dry, frizzy hair can be aging while shiny hair looks more youthful! Make sure you’re using a good shampoo and conditioner for this. I love Colleen Rothschild’s haircare products and have been testing out the highly rated Olaplex shampoo and conditioner! You should also make sure to do a hair mask at least once a week. My favorite is the Obliphica hair mask!
#32 | Don’t Use Too Many Products
Using too many products can weigh your hair down and all of those products can build up. If you have to use a bunch of products, make sure you have a clarifying or detoxing shampoo to help get rid of the buildup like Quai Detox Shampoo. If you want to DIY it, try adding a capful of apple cider vinegar to your shampoo.
#33 | Change Up Your Hair Style!
If you’ve had the same hairstyle for the past 20 years, there’s a chance it’s outdated. For example, I got curtain bangs to update my look and I LOVE them!! They are low-maintenance bangs for sure. You just have to make sure you dry them pretty soon after the shower. I’ve been using the Dyson Airwrap to dry them. Between my curtain bangs and fuller brows, I feel like a new person! You can also play around with hairstyles. Wear your hair up in a ponytail or bun, try a new part, or curl it. It’s great to mix things up to stay youthful and modern.
#34 | Ponytail Facelift
By simply pulling your hair back in a ponytail or bun you can create the look of a lifted face! It’s genius! I’ll talk more specifically about youthful hairstyles below. If you don’t have enough hair to do a ponytail or bun, don’t despair! My friend Ashley has a product that will create that ponytail facelift without actually having to create the ponytail. It’s a clip that you can put in your hair that’s super simple and actually works! You can check out the demo here.
#35 | Youthful Hairstyles
I absolutely LOVE doing hair! I can do a ton of different hairstyles and I’m actually pretty good at it…it’s my jam! BUT, I don’t have a ton of time. So I have to come up with hairstyles that don’t take a ton of time, make me look youthful, but are also sophisticated! These are a few of my go-to styles for medium to long-length hair…
High Top Knot
Bonus Tip | Whiten Teeth
Nothing ages you faster than yellow teeth. Drinking coffee, tea, etc., and eating certain foods will inevitably turn your teeth a little yellow. I’ve tried a couple of things…ultraviolet light, whitening strips, etc. But in my opinion, the best option is to go to the dentist and get the impressions done, use the gel they give you, and your teeth will get a lot whiter! I have sensitive teeth so the dentist was able to give me a lower potency gel, which I wear overnight once every couple of months. It is a game-changer!
Make sure you check out the rest of our beauty posts here. And watch more of my beauty videos…
Look 10 Years Younger with These 10 *Life Changing* Beauty Tips (Over 40)
10 SIMPLE Beauty Tips to Look 10 Years Younger
5 Quick and Easy Up-do Hairstyles to Look Chic and Stylish In A Hurry (You NEED To Try These!)
10 LIFE-CHANGING Secrets for Thicker Hair *Must Watch!*
5 Hair Mistakes Making You Look 10 Years Older
5 Ways to Style Your Hair to Look *10 Years YOUNGER!*
10 Beauty Mistakes You Should Stop Making Now
Do you have an awesome beauty tip that didn’t make our list? Please share in the comments. For more youthful beauty tips, get my blog posts delivered directly to your inbox, along with some next-level resources, when you sign up for my newsletter here. If you liked this post, please share it using the buttons below! Pin it, tweet it, share it, email it…however you want to share, we appreciate it! Thank you so much for stopping by!