After 2 Years of Dating, I've Mastered This Fast, Glowy First Date Makeup Routine


My name is Alisha and I’ve got a confession to make. I’ve been on 35 first dates in the last 18 months. 

Now, that might not sound like a lot, but considering the state of the world (hello covid), that's around two dates a month, give or take a date. Or a lockdown.

So, if there’s one thing I've nailed, it’s my go-to makeup look.

To those reading who are happily relationship-ed up, this might seem like a bizarre skill to have mastered.

But when you’re committing at least 90 minutes of your time every other week to spend with a stranger, knowing how to put your best face forward (literally) is going to leave you feeling like the 12/10 you are. 

Who knows how that hour and a half will play out. But at least your makeup's sorted.

My First Date Makeup Look Routine.

first date makeup lookfirst date makeup look

Here’s what you’re going to need:

It might seem like a lot, but these 10 products and 30 minutes is all you’re going to need to get first date ready.

Now, for the first date makeup tutorial.

You can watch the video below, or keep scrolling for the step-by-step break down.

Step 1: First, let’s get your skin cleansed. Done? Perfect. Now, it’s time to pour a glass of wine or a cuppa, and put on your favourite playlist.

I used to hate getting ready for dates. I’d spend hours playing out different scenarios in my mind, that when it was time to get dressed, I'd anxiously rush through my makeup, only to spend the night overcompensating for how uncomfortable I felt. 

After spending some time with myself when Lockdown 1.0 hit, I realised dating shouldn’t be viewed as a chore. Instead, I decided to see it as an opportunity to learn more about myself and meet some interesting people along the way.

That's why this step is crucial.

Step 2: Nothing makes me happier than glowy skin, so prep your skin before applying foundation.

Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré Moisturiser is a staple in every makeup artists' kit because it just works.

A dollop of this cream and you’ll be instantly luminous. Not to mention, it leaves the skin plump, smooth and ready for makeup.

Step 3: Primers can be hit or miss, so feel free to skip this step if they're not for you.

But because I want maximum glow, I love to add a few taps of M.A.C Cosmetics Strobe Cream on the high points of my face to bring my favourite features front and centre.

Give it a couple of seconds to set, because pilling ain’t cute. (That's when your products ball up from not having absorbed into the skin properly.)

Step 4: I have a rule when it comes to foundation and dating. Anything more than $40 is saved for third date territory.

Bargain foundations like Maybelline Fit Me Matte & Poreless Foundation are great, cost-effective first date options.

I can't go past M.A.C COSMETICS Studio Radiance Face & Body Radiant Sheer Foundation - This one’s a sheer, buildable foundation and it evens out your skin, but still lets it shine through.

Step 5: Even though I like my foundation sheer, I want my concealer to be full coverage.

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Illuminating Anti-Aging Concealer is a new product (to me) I've been loving lately. Use sparingly, because a little goes a longgggg way. 

You can blend with your finger or a brush, or using a pouncing motion with a beauty blender.

Step 6: Now your face is feeling juicy, it’s time to add some colour back in with the Clinique Chubby Sticks.

These bronzer, blush and contour sticks are truly something special. They’ve been around forever, but I’ve only recently become obsessed with them. Creamy and blendable, they're so easy to use, and multi-purpose!

After I've applied them as I usually would blush and bronzer, I turn them into eyeshadows.

Take a fluffy eyeshadow brush and blend the Clinique Chubby Stick Sculpting Contour shade onto the outer 'v' of your eyelid.

Then, add some of the Clinique Chubby Stick Cheek Colour Balm shade to the centre of the eyelid to tie the look together.

Step 7: Length and volume are all I want from a mascara.

Thankfully L'Oreal Paris Paradise Mascara - Black does just that and more.

I like to layer it on and smudge the brush ever so slightly on the lash line to thicken it up. Again, cheap and cheerful products are great for first dates.

Step 8: For my brows, I keep it simple. They’re full enough already so I grab a spoolie brush and run the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Freeze through the hairs in an upwards motion.

Unlike soap brow formulations, this one has an extra strong wax-like texture.

And let me tell you, Brow Freeze grips every bloody hair, which is exactly what my stubborn, unruly brows need.

Step 9: Highlighter is by far my favourite step. Cream, powder, liquid – I don’t discriminate. All are welcome and found in my makeup bag.

I choose the Bobbi Brown Highlighting Powder - Pink Glow for first dates because it's buttery and pearlescent.

And your date will be able to spot you from across the room, which let’s be honest, is exactly how it should be. You’re the main character, after all.

Step 10: Finally, it's time for some lip gloss. I honestly can’t remember the last time I put on a bold or bright lipstick for a date.

Here’s my logic: You’re going to be eating, drinking, and staying on top of conversation to avoid awkward silences. So why add ‘smudged lipstick’ to your list of worries? No thank you.

Grab a gloss with a slight tint and you’re good to go. I love the Eye of Horus Bio Lip Elixir because the non-sticky formula conditions, softens and plumps my lips. 

Voila! Glam done. Here's a closer look at the finished makeup.

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Now our glam is done and you’re feeling 100/100, it’s time to add your signature touch. 

For me, this means hoops. Silver, gold, small, big, round or square – I’ve got hoops for every occasion.

They’re my non-negotiable because without them, I just don’t feel like myself. 

Find what that 'thing' is for you and buy different variations of it so you've always got a fail-safe date option you know will make you feel great.

All that's left to do now is to get swiping and report back. I’ll be waiting for the post-date debrief.

Want more glowy makeup tips? You can also watch Ruchi Page's glowy makeup video in our YouTube tutorial below!

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