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Beauty: Eight Common Beauty Blunders Solved

Mar. 12 2009, Published 10:27 a.m. ET

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Tick-tock, tick-tock! Time’s flying and you’re already late when disaster strikes. Your mascara clumps. You accidentally soak yourself with perfume. Or deodorant streaks have ruined your clothes.

Such beauty blunders can not only put you off schedule, but ruin your day. Luckily, has the scoop on how you can fix these problems in a snap and prevent them from happening again. So you can get out the door cool, calm, and looking great every time!

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Beauty Blunder: You went crazy with your blush brush -- and someone’s singing, “Send in the clowns.”

Quick fix: To lighten excess color, put a little foundation or concealer on your fingertip and very gently pat it on top of your blush. But be gentle! If you press too hard or rub with a tissue you’ll smudge it and make the problem worse.

Prevention: Dip your brush into your blush, and then gently blow on the bristles to remove excess makeup.

Beauty Blunder: Your mascara clumps – making you look like Tammy Faye Bakker!

Quick fix: While the mascara is still moist, gently comb through your lashes with either a dry, clean mascara wand (recycled from an old mascara tube) or a lash-comb. This will remove the excess product and separate lashes so they look smoother. If you don’t have an old wand or lash-comb, use a clean, dry toothbrush.

Prevention: When you pull the mascara wand out of the tube, always wipe the brush on the barrel of the tube or a tissue. This removes any excess product before you apply it.

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Beauty Blunder: Instead of applying a dab of perfume, you accidentally drench yourself.

Quick fix: To diffuse the strong scent, dip a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and pat it on the over-perfumed areas.

Prevention: Spritz your perfume in the air, and then walk through it, instead of spraying the scent directly on your skin.

Beauty Blunder: You apply too much hair gel or some other styling product, leaving you with greasy locks and no time to shampoo.

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Quick fix: Styling products are actually easily removed. Simply use a flat brush or your hands to comb the product out of your hair.

Prevention: Place the styling product in the palm of one hand and rub your palms together. Apply the product to the underside of your hair and the ends. Then put it on the top of your hair. This way you’ve only got a small amount of product in your hands and won’t overdo it.

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Beauty Blunder: Popping pimples is always a no-no, but this one time you just couldn’t resist – and now the pimple is red and inflamed.

Quick fix: Disinfect the blemish by dipping a cotton swab in rubbing alcohol and dabbing it on the red area. (Avoid surrounding skin.) Next, apply ice or a very cold compress for several minutes to soothe the redness and inflammation. Then dab on a bit of over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream to further reduce inflammation.  Follow this with concealer and powder.

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Prevention: When a pimple starts to erupt, ice the area and then apply an over-the-counter product containing benzoil peroxide or salicylic acid. Follow that with a cover-up.

Beauty Blunder: After spending 10 minutes applying your makeup, you brush on mascara, only to have it fall onto your perfectly made-up cheeks or stick to your eyelids.

Quick fix: Give the wayward mascara a few seconds to dry. Gently press a cotton swab to it, and – voila! -- it will just flake off. The key here is to be patient. If the mascara is wet when you start dabbing it, it will spread. If that happens, put a bit of concealer or foundation on your fingertip and lightly massage it right over the mascara.

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Prevention: Go slow. You can rush through certain things when applying your makeup, like eye shadow or lip gloss, but mascara is not one of them.

Beauty Blunder: Your lipstick catches in the dry flakes of your chapped lips – and it looks awful!

Quick fix: Apply Vaseline or lip balm on top of your lipstick and gently rub your lips together.

Prevention: Hydrate lips before putting on lipstick by slicking on a lip balm or Vaseline. If lips are chapped often, regularly apply lip balm or Vaseline and use a more moisturizing lip color, or look for products with ingredients that include vitamin E.

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Beauty Blunder: After putting on a blouse or dress, it’s marked with white stripes from your deodorant.

Quick fix: Use baby wipes to remove streaks. But be sure to dab – not rub -- the area so the fibers from the wipes don’t get into the fabric of your clothes. Or use the Magic BrushOff ($6.95 at, a two-sided reusable sponge that you rub over deodorant marks to erase them. It works on most fabrics, including cotton, rayon, and Lycra, and even gets rid of some makeup stains.

Prevention: Put your deodorant on after your clothes. Or use a product that guarantees no white marks like Dove Ultimate Clear.



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