Get My Coveted 'Mom's Surprise Party' Makeup Look

I'm pretty pleased with how my makeup came out for my mom's recent surprise party, so I'm gonna show you how I did it.

Hello, darlings! It has been a little bit of a while, and part of the reason for that is because I was saving a KILLER makeup tutorial for when I saw my sister in Mexico this past weekend. We planned a surprise party for my mom, and for events like these, I'm often the unofficial family makeup artist.

I’m not saying I’m some kind of a makeup genius, because I’m not; but I am saying that I own an autographed copy of Maria Menounos’s The Everygirl’s Guide to Life, wherein she offers a step-by-step approach to makeup application.

Unfortunately, my sister and I fought from the moment I landed in Mexico to the moment I rushed onto the AirTrain at the airport heading back to New York, which I had to do because of some Cinco de Mayo manifestations taking up the entire road to Terminal 2 at the Benito Juarez Airport. I didn’t realize that Mexicans actually celebrated the holiday, but apparently, THEY DO.

Anyway! Once I finally had a chance to sit my sister down to begin the makeup tutorial, something would inevitably go awry; namely, I would take a joke a little too far and she would get mad, storm off, and yell, "I'm never helping you with anything ever again!”

THAT BRINGS ME TO NOW: I am doing the makeup on myself, which I didn’t really want to do because my face is puffy from the flight--NOT because I ate three days worth of tacos al pastor.

So this is how I apply my makeup for a fun event such as my mother’s surprise party.


I use the Magic Mitt, which removes all makeup and is amazing.


I often don’t because it feels cakey to me and dries out my skin. I'm more likely to use BB creams, which do a good job in covering up dark spots and blemishes, or tinted moisturizer.

Don’t forget to put it on your neck, too, or else you’ll look like my two-toned ninth-grade geometry teacher.


You know I love this. After covering up blemishes (FINE--PIMPLES. FINE! I SAID IT!), I dot a lighter concealer under my eyes and over the bridge of my nose. Then, with my fingers or a concealer brush, I dab it in.


Translucent powder sets in all of the gunk you’ve already put on your face and gives your skin a more uniform, even tone. I make sure to put more on and around my eyes to set in concealer and prevent my eye makeup from creasing.


Apply bronzer on your temples, on your cheekbones, and on your jawline. This is crucial because it contours your face and gives it a healthy glow.

Contouring is always tricky, though, because if applied on the wrong areas, your face could look, like, lopsided instead of nicely shaped. So try the Rule of 3: Draw a “3” along your profile, tracing from your temples to the sides of your cheekbones, and around and down to your jawline. Make sense?

I recommend sucking in your cheeks and applying the bronzer right where you see a natural shadow.


I use NARS The Multiple in Orgasm and apply by pursing my lips and smiling. I put the blush right on the apples of my cheeks.


You’ll need any eyeshadow palette with THREE colors made to be worn together, with a light, medium and dark shade, like one of the Wet n Wild Color Icon Collection Trios. I usually use beiges and browns, but sometimes I use PURPLES and SILVERS when I’m feeling CRAZY!

First, apply the medium color all across your lid, from the lash line to the crease of your eye.

With a rounded crease blush (which I seem to have left in Mexico), apply the darkest color along your eye crease, with increasing pressure from the middle of your eye to the outer corner, so that the outer edges of your eyes are darker.

From the outer edge of your eye, run the dark eyeshadow down and along your lash line, as though you’re outlining your eyelid with a pointed corner on the edge of your eye.

Brush the lightest color along your brow bone and in the middle of your eyelid. This will draw light and attention to your eyes and make them pop. Yeah, girl.


I usually use a pencil all across my top lid, and just lightly on the outer corner of my bottom lid.


Maria (Menounos) and Maria (me) love L’Oreal Voluminous mascara. I apply several coats to my top lashes and just one or two to my bottom lashes.


We’re almost done, people! I darken my eyebrows using an angled brush and Anastasia Brow Powder Duo. You can also save yourself the $23 and use the dark shadow you used on your eyelid crease (the medium one if you're lighter-haired).

With such heavy eye makeup, I rarely use anything on my lips--just a neutral balm or gloss.

THAT’S IT! OMG THE END YOU’RE DONE. That sounds like it takes forever! It only takes like 15 minutes tops, I promise.

Tell me you've done your makeup for a recent party, how to win altercations with your siblings, and where I can find a moderately priced tripod. Oh, brother.