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How to get flawless skin after 40

How to get flawless skin after 40? All you need is a few additions to your skincare and makeup and you can say goodbye to dull skin forever.

The Solution for Dull Tired Skin after 40

How to get flawless skin after 40

Whilst I’m here to share skincare tips for your 40s and beyond which will help you achieve flawless skin, I’m also the first to advocate positive self-messages. Empowering self-talk goes way beyond how we look physically.

Saying that, it’s perfectly ok to look at making changes to your skincare and makeup if you feel your skin isn’t at its best and you are looking for solutions to lift your complexion or steer away from dull skin.  I am an advocate of anything that is likely to improve your confidence as you navigate your way through your 40s and beyond.

Before - skin has an unsightly rash

After - skin is clear and glowing

Dull skin could be a sign that you need to look into updating your skincare as part of your self-care routine. Adding these skincare tips as your skin matures can really support your existing skincare routine and should bring visible results.

This is particularly relevant after the age of 35-40, when the skin starts to change and you transition into perimenopause. It’s a fact that the skin loses its natural glow and elasticity as we age, but that doesn’t mean goodbye to flawless, glowing skin.

Adding a few tweaks to your skincare and makeup routine will help you get flawless skin after 40

Using myself as an example, above left is me before any targeted skincare intervention, and above right is my skin six months later.

I want to use my images to show you how, by making a few tweaks, you can really help the skin. The image on the left is how my skin looked for years while I was not looking after my body and skin adequately. Once I started taking care of my skin, I noticed an improvement within three months. I had glycolic facials regularly and I improved my skincare regime to include products that targeted my skin’s needs: products that were for sensitive skin and were anti-ageing. My rash had completely disappeared six months after making these changes. I have no doubt that hair dye was also contributing to the rash and I removed hair dye from my ‘toxic-load’ list.

When the skin is healthy and hydrated from the inside out, it has a lovely glow to it

Think about when you’re on holiday and the sun hits the high points of your face. It’s something we most probably took for granted in our youth. That’s what we get back by adding just a few steps to our skincare routine.

Once I started adding these skincare steps to my daily routine my complexion started to glow. After a decade or more of redness and acne I had great results.

As a makeup artist, I follow the steps below before I even think about applying makeup to my client.  Most clients love to hear of ways to bring out their natural beauty, which is why I am sharing these steps to flawless skin with you.

Note: I am assuming you have a basic skincare routine in place. Ideally this will consist of:


Hyaluronic serum

Eye cream


A separate SPF for the daytime.

Add steps 1-6 below to your standard skincare and makeup routine for flawless skin after 40.


Add a glow tonic or exfoliate a few times per week

I recommend you add either a glow tonic or AHA facial exfoliant after you cleanse.  I use REN Glow Tonic and/or Space NK AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser.

This addition will help slough away any dead skin cells and enable the skin to ‘breathe’.  I’m not a skin expert by any stretch (I’m a makeup artist), but I can tell you that I was amazed at how much difference it made to my skin, and at the results I see when I use it on my clients who have dull skin.


Moisturise and then moisturise some more

Make sure your moisturiser is really adding moisture and nourishment to the skin.  If you feel any tightness you may want to add a small amount of facial oil and press it into the skin.  Mature skin can often be on the dry side (not always but often), so make sure you give it enough moisture and nourishment; adding an oil can help with this.  You can use a skin oil on top of your moisturiser.

I recommend Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream and Elemis Superfood Oil.  Beauty Pie also do some amazing anti-ageing night creams.


Facial primer

Once you have steps 1 and 2 in play, it's time to look at your makeup.

Add a primer before you start applying your makeup, and use one that has an illuminating component to it, such as Charlotte Tilbury’s Flawless Filter.  This will give you that glow from the inside-out.


Less is more for your foundation

As a makeup artist I find it more flattering to mature skin if foundation is applied lightly - and only to areas that need coverage - then slowly built upon. This is particularly true when the skin is well looked after, or if I have had time to do a solid skincare routine prior to makeup application.

That’s because when the skin is healthy and has a natural glow from a good skincare routine, it doesn't need covering up with makeup. My favourite foundation for a glowy yet decent coverage is Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation.  If there are spots or pigmentation, I add more coverage just to those areas. I use these principles on my own skin. You can then finish your makeup look. See my articles on makeup below.


I do love an illuminator - a really good one, and there are a few on the market.  My all-time favourite is the Laura Mercier Illuminator. I use a small-to-medium fluffly eye-blending brush or a highlight-fan brush to softly ‘tickle’ the tops of the cheeks, middle of the brow, cupid's bow and down the bridge of the nose.  It can also be super flattering to add some highlighter to under the outer corner of the brow. Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter is another product which can be used to illuminate the skin.


Setting your makeup

Set your makeup to enhance your glow, not cover it. Don’t be afraid to use a loose setting powder but only if you have areas that tend to get oily throughout the day, such as the t-zone. I recommend Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder.  Great for mature skin.

I also like to use loose powder under the inner eye (where your under-eye circles are), as it can help stop mascara from moving onto the skin.

Once your makeup is complete, use a finishing spray that has a soft shimmer.  I use Anastasia Dewy Set Spray.  It sets the rest of your makeup but doesn’t mattify the glow like a powder would.

A great tip for applying finishing spray is to apply it to a makeup sponge. Make sure it’s damp and spray a really good amount of the setting spray onto the sponge. The sponges that have a flat surface on one side are great. I use the Real Techniques makeup sponge, then press it all over the skin.

In order to get flawless skin after 40 it’s important to note that you need to keep any makeup sponges and brushes clean.  Clean them most days, or every day if you can, with soap and water.  This will help you to achieve flawless skin by keeping bacteria at bay.


Consider the long-term benefits of drinking more water and of reducing alcohol and caffeine

Longer term, to get your skin glowing, you may need to increase your intake of water. Most days I fill up a litre bottle of filtered water and have a glass of water every time I go to the bathroom. That way I know I am drinking enough.

Keep caffeine intake to a minimum. This is the area I find difficult, but I have stopped drinking coffee after 2pm.  Caffeine is a diuretic and is therefore not your skin’s best friend.

Keep alcohol to a minimum.  Many of us love a drink and I am no exception, but I have managed to reduce my intake of alcohol to only now and then, with great benefits to my skin. Too much alcohol robs your skin (and potentially your health) over time.  Is it worth it?



Exercise is a wonderful way of getting the blood pumping and bringing a natural glow to the skin. If you’re not in a regular exercise routine, try one of the many apps out there to help you work out from home, or go for a brisk daily walk.

I am loving the Fiit app at the moment and I do classes 3-4 times a week, from Pilates to dumbbell weights. It’s convenient and varied so you never get bored. I do the 25-minute work-outs in addition to walking my dog most days for 20 minutes.

The above tips will help you achieve flawless skin after 40. Following these steps will lift your complexion from the inside out.

As a make up artist I have seen women in their 50s and 60s (those who take care of their skin and health), who have better skin than women in their 30s. That is certainly true for me and that can be true for you, too.

Adding these steps will be your answer to the question, 'How to get flawless skin after 40?'  They will give you an instant glow and you can say goodbye to dull skin forever. All you need to think about is adding these key steps consistently to your daily skincare and makeup routine, keeping optimal hydration, staying active and, most importantly, making your happiness a priority, because that always shines through.

Before you go, do consider joining the newsletter here and you will be automatically added to the waiting list for a free Fast Track To Fabulous Starter Guide as soon as it becomes available.  This way you can stay in the loop with all things self-care and beauty for the over 40s.

I hope to see you soon.


Please note: I am not an expert in skin.  These are tips that I have found personally helpful and that I use on my clients as a makeup artist.  Please consult a doctor before stating any new regime.

Disclosure: Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a small commission. Keep in mind that I link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission I receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.

  • I’m Mel and the author here on the blog.

  • I help women with grey hair thrive with beauty and lifestyle tips that inspire self care and confidence.

  • Wife, mum of 3, author, hair and make-up artist and lifestyle mentor for women who choose to embrace their grey hair.

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