Endless work days, crazy parties, kids, errands, school, whatever it is — some days, you’re just plain tired! But, hey, you hold it together, so don’t let your makeup trip you up and call you out on your long hours. Stay away from common cosmetic gaffes when you know you need more shut-eye.

Blue or Gray

Your face’s first sign of tiredness is darkness under the eyes. Combat it with a little concealer, but stay far away from blue or gray eye shadow. Even if you normally use a subdued navy or a subtle silver-gray, these colors are off-limits on days when you’re tired. Nothing enhances shadows below your eyes like shadows above your eyes.


Tired skin is often dry or even crepe-y. Powder only makes that more obvious. What you need when you’re falling asleep at your desk is a little bit of brightness on your face. Powder’s whole purpose is to dull the shine. Not only are you probably just not even producing enough oil to need it, it’s drying out your tired, dehydrated skin even more.

Black Eyeliner

Black eyeliner may speak to mystery in better circumstances, but when you’re tired, it makes no question about it. All you’re doing with that black ring around your eyes is making the tired rings around your eyes more noticeable. And if your eyes are bloodshot? Forget it! Black against sleepless red veins is just asking people to notice. Try a lighter brown or skip the eyeliner altogether.

Lip Liner

Lip liner probably seems like a good idea at first. If you can draw attention to your mouth, then no one will notice your tired eyes. Unfortunately, two things are happening on your face when you need more sleep — you dehydrate quickly if you aren’t already there, and the lines of your face become harsher. Adding another harsh line, especially in a matte finish, isn’t giving your visage the pep it needs. Gently dab a bright color onto your lips, blot with a tissue, dab a little more on and finish with some gloss, instead.


Your skin is probably blotchy or even a little vein-y when you’re tired. You definitely need some foundation! But try to be alert while applying it. A gentle hand is the only way right now. Anything else looks cake-y and calls attention to your exhaustion. Slather on some moisturizer and handle just the areas that truly need coverage.


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