What's the best makeup book for a woman of a certain age?
September 21, 2016 4:31 PM   Subscribe

My 77-year-old mother still likes to dress up and wear makeup (as she says, the vanity is the last thing to go), but her makeup skills leave something to be desired. I would like to get her a how to book on makeup for Christmas. What's the best personal makeup book on the market for an elderly woman who just wants to know how to apply a natural, classic look to best effect? This book should includes tips on how to work with aging skin, as I understand that's a skill in itself.
posted by orange swan to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
This isn't a book suggestion, but if it is possible, what might be more useful is to book her a consultation with a makeup artist who can show her some specific techniques in person (and recommend products!)
posted by nuclear_soup at 4:37 PM on September 21, 2016 [16 favorites]

She has not done an entire book on it, but Lisa Eldridge is great and does periodically feature looks specifically for mature people on her YouTube channel - there are other episodes on skincare, makeup prep, eyebrows etc.
posted by Lyn Never at 4:58 PM on September 21, 2016 [9 favorites]

(I should say - most of her simpler, daytime, and quick evening looks are all pretty ageless, and she does tend to mention adaptations in all her looks for things like hooded eyelids or crow's feet, so really most of her everyday looks are fine for anyone, if you are also familiar with her specific guidelines for older faces.)
posted by Lyn Never at 4:59 PM on September 21, 2016

Bobbi Brown is the first person I think of for this.
posted by AliceBlue at 5:25 PM on September 21, 2016 [2 favorites]

Second Lisa Eldridge
posted by asockpuppet at 7:10 PM on September 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

Seconding an in-person trial or consultation, if possible; if she's been using the same makeup types for a long time, she may find that different formulae or techniques work better if her skin has changed at all.
posted by jetlagaddict at 7:23 PM on September 21, 2016

She might also need some assistive equipment such as magnifying mirrors and cheater glasses which flip up 1 side at a time to help her see what she's doing* and grips on her brushes, mascara, eyeliners and other thin-handled makeup items to offset decreased dexterity.

*I'm nowhere near 77 but age-related farsightedness means the only way I can see my eyeliner application without help is if it's crayoned on.
posted by jamaro at 8:40 PM on September 21, 2016 [5 favorites]

The personal consultation would be a good idea but I can't afford it. YouTube videos won't work for my mother because she doesn't have a computer or a cell phone and has never used the internet. I do like the idea of a magnifying mirror. I don't think Mum needs grips for her implements as I've seen no indication that her hands are any less dexterous than they were 35 years ago.
posted by orange swan at 1:58 PM on September 22, 2016

You can book a consultation at Sephora for "free" if you buy $50 worth of products--not that much more than a book, and you'll get new makeup out of it as well. And I've walked in lots of times for free advice on a slow day, too.
posted by serelliya at 12:18 AM on September 23, 2016

I ended up buying my mother a copy of The Makeup Wakeup: Revitalizing Your Look at Any Age, and a free-standing chrome magnifying makeup mirror. She seemed more pleased to get the mirror than the book, but if she even picks up a few tips from the book it'll have been worth it.

Thanks all!
posted by orange swan at 12:35 PM on February 4, 2017

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