Smile and sparkle: get holiday photo ready

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The holidays are upon us! In addition to the usual gift buying and baking, there is always one other important factor of the season–family time!

If you have the annual family photos coming up or just want to look gorgeous during the holidays (and don’t we all?), figuring out how to do your hair and makeup can also be a bit of a struggle. Here are some of the top tips for creating a beautiful look for your next holiday party or family photos.

Prepare your skin
During the winter, your skin is naturally drier, so it’s a good idea to consistently hydrate your face and neck area. Whether you follow your everyday skin care routine or you add extra hydration to your daily winter regimen, consider using a deeply hydrating facial mask at least two days before you take any photos. This will give your skin a much-needed boost of hydration and keep your makeup looking flawless and refreshed.

High-definition makeup
Photo-ready foundation offers full coverage and contains a light-reflecting formula to minimize the appearance of fine lines and pores. The full-coverage makeup also works to cover hyperpigmentation, dark circles under the eyes and small blemishes. Beauty experts recommend choosing a concealer that features yellow undertones to balance out any dark circles under the eyes or a green-tinted formula to counteract redness around the mouth or nose.

Don’t be afraid to use color
Photos tend to wash out color, so it is a good idea to use various products as a foundation for the rest of your makeup, such as using a cheek stain under a powder blush or lip stain under your favorite lipstick. While it might sound like overkill, these products create a foundation for the rest of your makeup and help the color stand out in photographs. For some, using a cheek stain can be a bit intimidating. Beauty experts recommend paying special attention to blending products thoroughly into the skin to keep the look as natural as possible.

Don’t overdo it
While the holidays are the perfect time to wear a little extra makeup for family photos, the common beauty tip applies: choose whether you want to play up your lips or your eyes–don’t do both! If you are choosing to use a bright or deeply-hued lip color, keep a light shadow on the eyes. Add a little extra drama to your look by using a lipstick and a lip gloss for a hint of shimmer in pictures. If you want to go with a dark smoky eye, complement it with a nude or light lipstick.

Brighten up your skin
Highlighting creams or brightening sticks are essential for holiday pictures because they give the skin a luminous effect. Add a little bit of highlighter cream anywhere on the face that usually contains shadows, such as under the eye or on the chin. Beauty experts also recommend using a highlighting cream above each eyebrow to brighten up the overall area.

While a beauty look is important for the holidays or family pictures, don’t overlook your hair style! Here are a few tips to keeping your mane looking fabulous throughout the entire day:

Keep products to a minimum
Adding too many products to the hair can weigh it down, especially if your hair is naturally fine or on the thinner side. Hairstylists recommend keeping volumizing products, such as root lifting sprays, to a minimum because light will shine through the hair in photos, placing a spotlight onto teased hair or lifted roots. Instead, use volumizing shampoo before any holiday parties or family photos, which will give the hair all-over body and fullness.

Choose the right style
A perfect styled look can end up appearing overly done or severe in photos, so hairstylists suggest loosening hair just a bit to keep the look more natural and provide movement to the style. If you have your hair down, run your hands through it a few times even after styling to soften the look and keep it more natural.

Refrain from trying to add more volume by teasing the hair; your hair will look fuller if it is smoothed or pinned up. Balance is key when finding the perfect hairstyle, and unless it’s a formal event, keep your hair as natural-looking as possible.

Smooth the hair
Keep those pesky flyaways to a minimum in photos by using a smoothing serum. Add a very small amount to the hands and rub palms together, then gently smooth your hands over your style to keep strands in place around parts or hairlines.
The holiday season is the perfect chance to dress up and enjoy taking photographs. These tips will help you enhance your natural beauty while still keeping everything flawless for that timeless image. ■