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Get the party started

It’s party season and we all want to look and feel our best. Here are our top tips to help you sparkle at the Christmas party – the natural way

Prep your skin

“Before starting to apply any make-up, I feel it’s important to get your skin as prepped as possible,” says Kim Brown, a make-up artist and brand ambassador for bee yü ( “There are currently so many natural products on the market that are incredibly active and will transform the surface of the skin.”

“Mineral make-up is perfect if you have sensitive or reactive skin and you’re planning to party over the festive period,” adds Denise Rabor, founder of “The reason that it’s become popular in recent times is because it’s considered to be kinder to the skin than regular make-up due to the fact that it includes anti-irritating ingredients like zinc, mica and iron oxide, which can be soothing to sensitive or breakout-prone skin.” In order to prep your skin for your party look, Denise recommends cleansing and moisturising first, allowing your moisturiser to dry before you start applying your mineral foundation. “You can be left with a hard-to-blend patchy outcome if your moisturiser is still moist,” she adds. “The best way to apply it is with a brush, starting with a little and building up.”

Get the party look

“I always like to highlight the cheekbones for a party look,” says Kim, “but instead of using strobe creams and glittery highlighters, try using a dot of oil (like the French ladies do) and just lightly press it into the skin. This gives a much more natural look and makes your skin look youthful. I particularly love rose oil for this.”

Go metallic!

“This party season, there’s a big trend for metallics: gold, bronze and copper in particular,” says Kim. “These shades look amazing and suit most skin tones. Copper and bronze colours make blue eyes pop, whereas cooler tones are great when blended with grey and charcoal shades on brown and darker eyes. Try applying a dot of eco glitter in the middle of the eye lid – this creates drama and is a lovely highlight. A cat eye flick is always a very flattering look. I always start by looking directly into a mirror and whilst following the under-eye shape, I make the first line from that outer corner up. Then look down and bring the line in along the upper lash line. This way you get the best shape for your eyes. Experiment with different liner colours too. Navy is lovely on brown eyes and gold and copper works great on blue. I love using a deep purple on those with green eyes.”

Pay lip service

“Another great party look is a bold lip,” says Kim. “I personally prefer this on its own – just great skin and maybe a little mascara on curled lashes. Warm orangey reds work well on warmer and olive skin tones and cooler/blue reds work well on paler skin. Try applying a little foundation around the lips first. This stops the colour bleeding whilst also helping the lipstick to last. It also helps to apply with a brush, blot and re apply. A highlighter will help the lips pop when applied to the bow of your lips. It will also add the illusion of volume.

When you’ve finished your party make-up, try spritzing a fine mist of rose water over your face. This is great for hydration and really helps skin achieve that glow.

Hair flair

If you’re looking for some hair inspiration, try this styling tip from Gina Conway of Gina Conway Aveda Salons & Spas ( She says: “My favourite look is currently on the show Big Little Lies; it’s a half up half down, tall teased crown and twisted ropes leading into the back bun. Easy to do yourself by using a thickening tonic before you blow dry and, during the blow dry, add volume in the top of the hair with a large round brush. Pull the sides of the hair at the temple out and leave down for now. Then tease the roots of the crown and gently brush over to create a smooth finish on top and secure back using hair grips. Take the left out front pieces and sweep back into the rest of the hair, twisting to form a rope at the back and making little circles. Use hairpins here to secure onto the base. You can decorate the hair this year as accessories are huge!”

Boost your confidence

While some of us look forward to the annual Christmas party, others are filled with dread. Don’t let your nerves get the better of you, with these confidence-boosting tips from Antoinette Dale Henderson, a women’s leadership expert.

Get into the right mindset

Start by deciding that you’re going to have an amazing time. Tell yourself that it’s going to be the best party you’ve ever been to and that everyone is going to have an incredible time. Then think about how you want people to see you on the day. Think about all the fun you’ll have and the nice things they’ll say about you after you’ve met.

Be prepared

Most people love talking about themselves, so prepare a few questions in advance. Rather than asking the same questions as everyone else – for example about what they do or where they live – have a few questions up your sleeve that lead to common areas of interest.

Strike a pose

Choosing positive body language will not only convey confidence to others but also make you feel more confident yourself. Stand up straight with your shoulders back, rather than hunched. Avoid folding your arms as this can look defensive. If you want to attract attention to yourself, stand in the centre of the room, rather than hovering with your back to the wall, or even worse, facing the wall.

Quit while you’re ahead

I always think that the best time to leave a party is just before it starts to wane. This means that you’ll come away with a great memory of the occasion and people will remember you at your best.

Antoinette Dale Henderson is the author of Power Up: The smart woman’s guide to unleashing her potential. To find out more go to:

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