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5 Pro Tricks for Nailing Date-Night Beauty

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Whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s with your bae, Galentine’s with your squad, or just grabbing drinks on a regular old Wednesday night, there are a few strategic moves that will help you look and feel your best. And it all stems from skincare, because if you don’t prep properly, it’s pretty much impossible to achieve flawless makeup. Los Angeles-based makeup artist Katey Denno, whose celebrity clients include Felicity Jones and Lily James, shares her top date-night tips for scoring a photo-ready finish.

Boost radiance with a gentle exfoliant


“The biggest misconceptions about exfoliation is that the grittier the scrub the better, but I prefer to use gentler chemical ingredients like lactic and glycolic acids to slough off every dead skin cell. You get the same brightening, smoothing, and whisking away of any wintertime flakes minus the redness and irritation, which takes a lot of work to cover up. I like to start my going-out beauty routine by swiping down with a peel pad to even everything out and make my skin glow. Plus, it helps foundation look so much better and last longer.”

Try: Wish Formula Squish-and-Bubble Mesh Mask ($7)

Break out the face spray


“One of my favorite skincare steps is spraying my face and neck with a hydrating toning mist. It’s a wonderful act of self-care whether you’re getting ready for a night out (it gives skin the dewiest finish), just waking up to greet your day, trying to relax, or even winding down for bed. And I’ve learned that it’s crucial to apply any treatment products like serum or face oil on skin that’s slightly damp, so I always make sure to spritz down with a facial mist in between steps. The theory is that as the water is being absorbed into the lower layers of your skin, it brings along good skincare stuff like hyaluronic acid and oil molecules with it. Another important tip: Inhale deeply as you mist—it’s just as much about uplifting your spirits as it is about hydrating your skin.”

Try: Whamisa Organic Flowers Damask Rose Mist ($38)

Slap on a sheet mask for a quick pre-party glow


“I love treating myself to a mask—I use it as a time to rest and recharge in a forced time out away from my phone and laptop, which to me, is just as important as is any product. Plus, it’s a super quick, easy, and fun way to up your glow. Make sure to rub any extra serum onto your neck and décolletage for seamless luminosity.”

Try: Gesgep Preparing Mask ($6)

Prep your pout


“By now, my clients come to expect that I’ll send them into the bathroom to scrub their lips before we start on makeup. Flakes of any kind will completely ruin a lip look. I like to scrub mine in the shower each morning with a soft muslin cloth to gently exfoliate away dead skin cells. Or you can make your own lip scrub by mixing a little sugar with coconut oil. Work it in small circles over your lips to gently scrub away dryness and and plump at the same time. Finish by slathering on a moisturizing lip balm.”

Try: Whamisa Organic Flowers Lip Moisture ($12)

Hydrate those hands


“Hands say a lot about how well you look after yourself. So often, as busy women, we get a professional manicure once every two to three weeks, but in between we don’t think twice about caring for our hands, despite how on display they are! Take an extra few minutes a day to show your cuticles and knuckles a little TLC by applying your favorite heavy-duty cream. And at the very least, rub whatever’s left from doing your daily skincare routine into your hands.”

Try: Blithe Intensive Hand Cream ($15)

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