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How to stop mascara smudging around your eyes - an expert weighs in

Celebrity make-up artist Naoko Scintu shares her secrets

Bella Hadid make-up© VALERY HACHE
Emma North
Deputy Beauty Editor
June 10, 2023
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Makeup artist Naoko Scintu is the lady behind some of the most coveted A-list looks. With clients including Bella Hadid, Florence Pugh, Maude Apatow and Kaia Gerber, Naoko is entrusted with perfecting the skin and adorning the eyes of the most photographed people in the world. And frankly, what she doesn't know about flawless makeup, isn't worth knowing. 

That being said, makeup mishaps can occur. And one of the most common pet peeves? Smudged mascara. It doesn't matter whether you're oily skinned or not, longer lashes (thanks to our beloved eyelash serums) that touch your upper eyelids can result in black splodges. Luckily, Naoko has a few tricks up her sleeve to stop your mascara smudging ever again. 

MORE: 7 waterproof mascaras so good you could run a marathon in them

RELATED: Why tubing mascara is a total makeup game changer

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How to stop mascara smudging

1. Powder your lashes

"A little trick once mascara is applied, is to powder above and below on the actual lashes with a translucent face powder," says Naoko. "This will help the mascara not to  transfer." Which translucent powder you use is up to you but the more finely milled, the better. "I like Jurlique Rose Silk Finishing Powder as it is so finely milled." 

Jurlique Rose Silk Finishing Powder, £39
Jurlique - Rose Silk Finishing Powder

2. Opt for waterproof mascara 

"To keep your mascara in place, it’s imperative to use a good waterproof mascara. I like Armani Beauty Eyes To Kill Waterproof Mascara."  Applying a waterproof mascara isn't for everyone as they can be tricky to remove but they're an excellent alternative for those with oilier eyelids. The bristled wand on this particular one is great for reaching every lash - delivering length and volume without clumping. 

Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Waterproof Mascara
Giorgio Armani - Eyes To Kill Waterproof Mascara

3. Use a primer

When working with Hollywood royalty, Naoko always makes sure her makeup goes the distance: "Red carpet makeup needs to have more staying power so I’ll always use a primer." A great primer should stop any transfer of makeup, especially around the eyes. If you're particularly oily in this area, try using an eyeshadow primer, as well as a skin primer, before applying your mascara. We rate the cult status Primer Potion from Urban Decay. 

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion
Urban Decay - Eyeshadow Primer Potion

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