Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Friday, April 15, 2011

About Face

by Kiesha Meikle

When it comes to the magic that is make-up, it really is amazing what you can achieve with the right products and the right technique. After all, where would Marilyn Monroe have been without her signature beauty spot, or Sophia Loren without her winged eyeliner and would we have been so taken with Judy Garland’s perfect pout if she had not found ‘her’ shade of red lipstick?

This said, there is a real difference between loving a look and being able to recreate it on yourself. And it really doesn’t matter if you are blind, partially sighted or fully sighted, the truth is, unless you are a trained make-up artist you will smudge, drip, smear and slip many times until you are able to master a new technique and actually make it your own.

For this reason, I learnt long ago to invest in a multipack of moist correction wipes (or wet wipes to you), which are now an absolute essential part of my make up bag. Sometimes, it is not how you put your make-up on; rather it is how you take it off.

So, to make things easier, I have listed some techniques you can use to master some of this season’s key make-up trends… and of course some of these will include the use of my old friend the wet wipe.

Going au naturel

The natural look is perfect for those who like to keep things simple.  For eyes and blush, opt for soft or pastel shades that compliment and blend well with your skin tone. A tinted moisturiser looks as natural as can be and is great for blind and partially sighted women who want light coverage, as it does not need to be applied precisely like a heavier foundation. Another great trick is to add a small amount of moisturiser to your fake tan, or use a moisturiser which contains tanning agents. Remember to go easy as these can build up over time.


Colour will be the word on everyone’s lips from superslick to ultramatte. If you are blind or partially sighted and find it difficult to get a neat finish, try applying lipstick to the bottom lip only and press lips together, do this twice for a stronger tone and then use your wet wipe to trace around the outer line of your lip to get rid of any smudging.


Again, colour is the name of the game, so don’t worry about being too heavy-handed if you want to stay on trend. Applying perfect eye shadow if you are blind or partially sighted is easy when you know how.  

  1. Stroke a clean eye shadow brush on to the eye shadow pallet twice and blow on it, then apply a stroke over the eyeball area three times.
  2. Turn the brush over and do the same to the other eye.

By applying your eye shadow in this way, you will get even coverage on both eyes. Using a clean brush or your fingertips (cue the wet wipe) you can then gently smudge the eye shadow.

Kiesha Meikle offers fashion and beauty advice for blind and partially sighted women. She works as a communications officer at Action for Blind People. Kiesha also works as a lifestyle journalist and launched StyleAble as an online fashion and beauty resource for blind and partially sighted women (and hopefully men in the future).

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