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Applying make-up is like most skills in life – it's a definite case of use it or lose it. So it's not surprising that after months of lockdown and working from home, millions of us feel we hardly know one end of a lip liner from the other.

That's why we've enlisted the help of royal make-up artist and TV star Hannah Martin to reveal the easy way to get your make-up mojo back for 2021 – without breaking the bank.

One of her favourite hacks involves a £2.99 trick for getting the easiest-ever defined eye – we've tried it and it's brilliant!

Hannah is the make-up artist who created the beautiful wedding look for Princess Eugenie, and reportedly gave Kate Middleton make-up pointers ahead of her 2011 wedding, where Kate famously did her own (flawless) face.

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Here, the make-up guru on Channel 5’s 10 Years Younger In 10 Days reveals her foolproof ten-point refresher to help you put your best face forward for the new year.

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Step 1: Don’t dive face first into foundation

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“After months off make-up, you really need to moisturise first, otherwise your skin will look all kinds of dry,” says Hannah. “If you have thirsty skin, Weleda Skin Food, £7.95, is divine. On shoots I’ll often use just that without base because skin looks so good with it on. If you have oilier skin, go for something like La Roche-Posay Effaclar Moisturiser, £17.

Step 2: Only disguise what you need to

"If your skin has done well from not wearing much make-up during lockdown, a bit of concealer under the eyes and over any areas of redness might be enough,” says Hannah. “If you want more coverage without the risk of tidemarks, use a sheer base like L’Oréal Paradise Tinted Moisturiser, £10.99, which is really forgiving as the shades stretch across a couple of different skin tones. There's no need to bother with brushes; fingers are fine.”

Step 3: Boost instantly with bronzer

“Once you’ve got rid of redness with your base, putting warmth back into skin does wonders for how healthy you look,” says Hannah. “Use a brush to apply a no-shimmer formula like NYX Professional Makeup Matte Bronzer, £8, on the top of forehead and across your temples and tops of cheeks, then use what’s left on the brush on the jawline and down the neck.

"Focus it around the edges of your face and keep the centre bronzer free. If you put bronzer everywhere, you’ll make your face look flat and too dark.”

Step 4: Blush in exactly the right spot

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“Get a cream blusher – Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blusher, £6.99, is really pretty – and dab two fingers into the pot. Then pat the blush onto the bit of your cheek that puffs up when you smile, and blend it back into your bronzer. You'll get a soft glow with none of that dry, powdery look.”

Step 5: Master softly defined brows

"You’re not trying to draw on new hairs, you’re just defining your face by creating shadow behind your actual brow," explains Hannah. "Iconic London Sculpt & Boost Eyebrow Cushion, £24, is so easy. Or you can just use a matte eyeshadow similar to your hair colour and gently draw it along your brows with an angled brush.”

Step 6: Try the cheat eyeliner

Rather than worrying about wobbly, mismatched flicks, Hannah advises "tightlining" – a foolproof technique where you apply liner to the upper waterline. Trust us, once you've tried this genius hack, you won't go back.

“Use one hand to gently pull your lashes onto the lid, then use either a pencil like Rimmel Soft Khol Kajal Eye Liner Pencil, £2.99, or gel liner to paint the exposed waterline," says Hannah.

"This ‘hidden liner’ will make the eyes look more defined and lashes look thicker and darker. It’s good for anyone with a hooded eye who feels liner on the top lash line makes their eyes look small.”

Step 7: Switch to a mess-free stick

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Why battle with a 24-pan eyeshadow palette when you can use just a single eyeshadow crayon? “There’s no messy drop-down, they just glide on then stay put,” says Hannah. "A neutral shade of Beauty Pie Wondercolour Eyeshadow Stick, £5.35 (member’s price), is a good everyday option."

"Gently sweep it over the lid and into the crease, then use a finger to soften the edge with a windscreen wiper motion so you don’t see a hard edge.”

Step 8: Down-skill your smoky eye

“This technique gives a smoky eye in five minutes that looks like you could have spent half an hour on it,” says Hannah. “Stick with an eyeshadow crayon but go for something dark like Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow Stick in Bark, £24."

"Take it all over the lower lid, then blend with a ring finger up through the crease. Apply more under the lower lash line and then use the other, clean, ring finger to smudge it. Finish with lashings of mascara – L’Oréal Air Volume Mega Mascara, £10.99, is brilliant.”

Step 9: Fake the foolproof way

Hannah reckons anyone can manage shorter-length false lashes and the instant eye lift is really worth the effort. "Eylure Fluttery Light 008 Lashes, £5.45, are a dream as you don’t need to worry about getting them right to the edge,” she says. (If you only have full-length strip lashes, just snip them in half and pop them in the outer corners.)

Step 10: Refresh your lips in a flash

Lipstick might not be top of your list right now, thanks to face masks, but you can make your lips instantly presentable – even without make-up. "Prepping your lips is key, because lip colour will show up any dryness or cracking. Scrub with a towel or toothbrush, put on a bit of Carmex and you’ve instantly got a healthy, fresh lip,” says Hannah. “That alone might be enough for now."

"However, if you want to jazz it up, you can’t go wrong with a slick of red. Either use an easy-wear liquid lip colour like NYX Professional Makeup Matte Lip Cream, £6, or, for an even softer look, just outline your lips with a red pencil, then fill in the rest.”

If you want more expert tips from Hannah, follow her on Instagram for more brilliant insider tricks and product recommendations.

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