If you are one of the people who suffer from the phenomenon that is Resting Bitch Face or RBF, firstly please don't hurt us (just kidding, we know you're not really uber cranky... right?). But secondly it might not actually be your face that's the problem... it could be your makeup. Especially if any of the following comments sound familiar:
“Oh wow, you’re actually so nice!” Thanks? Because I look like the Grinch or something?
“What’s wrong? You look upset. Are you mad?” No, I'm fine. But keep asking and that might change.
“Fine. I’ll stop talking, because you’re clearly bored” Oh no, I’m really not! Seriously!
While it sounds harsh, the face is the first place people look to interact with you and there are certain makeup mistakes that can enhance the devastation already caused by your RBF. Or MAYBE you have a really kind-looking face but you're slapping on that foundation and swooshing on that blush in a way that creates a whole new phenomenon: MBF (Makeup Bitch Face). That eyeshadow? It could be ruining your chance at perfecting the first impression. Here are the biggest issues and how to fix them.
1. You’re using WAY too much
A caked-on makeup look usually has people assuming you’re fake in both looks and in personality. "What's she hiding under all that slap?" people may whisper. Of course WE know that’s not true; we're sure you're a lovely, geniune, and definitely-not-hiding-anything-nasty person, but with RBF and MBF its hard for unenlightened people to tell these things. Pare back your look and go with a less-is-more approach. Not only will it save you time applying and money on products, it could make your appearance more relatable and approachable. After all, you're more than a troweled-on collection of cosmetics.
2. You're wearing night time eye shadow during the day
Your eyes are the windows to your soul and harsh dark eyeliner around the eyes in the daylight hours can make you appear strict and irritated. Or like you've just stumbled home from a party the night before and may or may not still be slightly drunk. At night this look was dark and mysterious, during the day it's just plain dark and frankly, a little bit scary. And since we know how lovely you really are, scary might not be the vibe you're trying to put out there. Changing your black eyeliner for a softer brown shade or even white will make your eyes pop and appear more open and attentive. Smudging eyeliner softly under the waterline and lower lash line will create a softer look and will help prevent the dreaded panda eyes later from eyeliner leaving the waterline.
3. Your look lacks natural tones
Want to appear more approachable? It’s time to step away from regularly wearing the bright blue eye shadow and baby pink blush combo. Using a colour pop now and then is part of the fun of makeup, but if you suffer from RBF, using clashing, jarring tones is like lighting up your face with a giant neon sign that says, "P**s off." Using natural tones in your eye shadow and blush can help you appear more casual and friendly. Unless you want to roll with the RBF in which case, keep the vibrant colours coming!
4. Your dark circles have dark circles
You’ve actually had plenty of sleep and are in a great mood but people are being extra cautious around you. Why? It could be because your dark under eyes are screaming, “Leave me the hell alone, I haven’t had three coffees yet!” Which is great if you want people to leave you alone until 10am, but what if you're actually a morning social butterfly and your RBF and MBF is messing with your plans? A bit of concealer under the eyes can help avoid the inevitable comments of “You look exhausted, you should really go home and rest”. If the circles are bluish tinged, then go for a yellow-based concealer that's one shade lighter than your skin tone; this colour hides the discolouration and brightens up your skintone. If, however, your circles are more a brown colour, then go for a concealer with a peach or orange base. Or don't, and revel in your interruption-free morning solace.
5. The pout factor is missing
Openness and approachability can be linked to your mouth’s expressions when you talk to people. The expression "tight-lipped" isn't used to describe cranky people for nothing! Smiling is obviously the best tip, but for those with RBF, semi-bright lip colours with a nude lip liner can really make the lips look less catty, more chatty. For extra plumping, put some highlighter on your cupid’s bow to instantly make your lips appear larger.
6. You’re experiencing a curse of the curves
We’re talking eyebrow curves and arches, ladies. If you’re grooming your brows or colouring them in to be slightly angular, fairly dark or with a heavy arch it can make you appear more commanding, tempered and hostile. Think about it: there's a reason most evil cartoon characters have brows that are sharply angled with no curve whatsoever. A well-groomed, soft arch that curves at the last quarter will open the face and create a more polished and confident look.
Of course, all this advice is assuming you want to appear more approachable but let's be honest, some days we just wanna go with our RBF bad self, purse our tight lips, glare with our dark circled peepers and scare the living crap out of anyone who comes withing spitting distance (that's just an expression, we would never really spit. It's Resting Bitch Face not Resting Bitch Personality).
And you can follow this advice until the cows come home but remember: no matter how impeccable your outfit, hair or makeup, it always pays to smile and be kind, RBF or no RBF.
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