A lot of people believe that shimmery makeup has no place on a face older than 19. They think women over 35 should only wear matte foundation, eye shadow, and lipstick.
Well, times have changed. Makeup textures have lightened up, and shimmery, dewy, glossy finishes are in style. They're so in style that they're difficult to avoid--and we shouldn't avoid them.
If you stay away from shimmery makeup because you think you're too old to wear it, you'll end up looking older, because your makeup will be caught in a time warp. The trick is to wear shimmer discretely, and only where it won't accentuate your lines.
These are my favorite place to add a little shimmer:
Eyelids: Naturally, I'm wary of having chunks of god or silvery glitter lodged in my crow's feet, but highlighting the middle of my eyelid does the opposite -- it draws attention away from them. Light attracts and dark detracts, so the light, shimmery champagne beige of Urban Decay Primer Potion in Sin ($18) draws attention to my eyelids. I prime my eyelids with Primer Potion, then finish with a matte bone-colored eyeshadow. (For a more dramatic use, check out Karen's look and Temptalia's review and swatch.)
Cheeks: If you're over 35, blush is one of your best friends. Of course you don't want bright, unblended streaks of magenta on either checkbone, but a soft flush is very flattering.
Here's the trick: buy a shade of blush that is lighter than you think you need, then apply it generously over the apples of your cheeks. Don't use it under the cheekbone; you're not trying to contour your face. You're just trying to look healthy and well-rested.
And this is another place to wear a bit of shimmer. Unless your skin is extremely oily, and your cheeks produce their own shine, a little shimmer on the cheeks can look dewy and fresh.
Nars famous (infamous?) Orgasm blush is a peachy-pink and loaded with fine golden shimmer.
Lips: I'm not sure that "Lipstick" and "natural" even belong in the same sentence, but a little shimmer on your lips can look very soft and natural. It can add the optical illusion of more fullness, and full lips are youthful lips.
I wear a shimmery shade of my-lips-but-better lipstick (Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Smoky Rose) or lipgloss (Revlon Colorstay Mineral Lipglaze--which makeup artist Elke Von Freudenberg also liked) almost every single day.
But if you have any vertical lines in your lips (and at 53, I do) shimmer will accentuate them, so I add just a touch of clear, non-shimmery gloss on top.
Believe it or not, I wear shimmer on my eyelids, cheeks, and lips almost every day. On a base of a soft, matte foundation, a small amount of shimmer looks soft and natural. In fact, my new motto is "Shimmer: it's not just for breakfast any more!"