You Asked It

Damn Girl Ya Look Good

Advice for round-faced, glasses-wearing, and dark-skinned beauties.

I have a super-round face with no discernible cheekbones. This isn’t fishing for compliments; strangers have told me this. How do I learn to like my face? It’s plagued me forever, and I gotta get over it. Any women I should look to for inspiration? —Lauren, Atlanta

Lauren, I could teach you all about contouring your cheeks like a professional drag queen, but I don’t think that’s what you need. Every one of us wishes something on our faces and bodies were different. It’s almost like we are programmed to be assholes to ourselves by constantly making comparisons with other people. In the end, that’s all bs. Since you already KNOW you have to get over this, you will. It’s one of those things about getting older and living life—after a while, those things don’t bother you anymore. Now you MIGHT have those insecure days once in a while. Sometimes I’ll look at my friends who don’t have a speck of anything on their faces and I’ll imagine myself like them, without freckles, moles, or acne scars, and be like “UGH I HATE YOU AND YOUR PERFECT DOLL FACE!” Then I remember I’d probably look weird with a porcelain face and realize my clear-complexioned friends are probably jealous of my long luscious locks and perfect nail beds. It’s just how it is. You aren’t going to ever have Kate Moss’s cheekbones, but so what? You, me, all of us, are hot in our own ways. Some ladies that come to mind with roundish faces and/or wide cheeks are Devon Aoki, Christina Ricci, Margaret Cho, Aimee Teegarden, Drew Barrymore, and Selena Gomez. They (as our favorite uncle Tim Gunn says) make it work. How you feel about yourself on the inside is always going to show on the outside. So love yourself good, because you’re gonna be with you for a long time, girl.

Gorgeous full-cheeked Devon.

I wear glasses but I wanna have fun with makeup too. Any ideas? —Anonymous

Since your pretty eyes are hiding behind glass doors, it might be hard for all of your admirers to gaze at them longingly. Bring them out with a lil’ curl of the lash and a good mascara! Have a good eyelash curler on hand, like this one from Shiseido or this one from Revlon. For mascara, I’m really into Benefit’s They’re Real and Maybelline’s Lash Stiletto. Go to a M.A.C. counter and try out a bunch of their fun eye shadows. You can even use a glitter eyeliner from Too Faced or Urban Decay to add some sparkle to your ojos. Final tip: don’t forget that you’re wearing eye makeup and accidentally rub your eyes (which I did just now while wearing my glasses). Good luck, my bespectacled sista!

Do you have any tips on foundation, eyeliner, lipstick, and other colors to use for darker skin? —Anonymous

I personally believe you should wear foundation only if you have an uneven skin tone or need coverage for zits and scars. Otherwise, you’re probably OK using just a powder, like Maybelline’s Fit Me or a mineral powder from Bare Escentuals. If you still want to try foundation, Bobbi Brown has a great range of products for ladies of all skin shades.

With lipsticks, you can do almost anything. Women with darker skin can pull off a nice berry, which can sometimes look harsh on lighter girls. M.A.C.’s Hang-Up is a very nice deep plum. And if you want to try red lipstick (my favorite) their Ruby Woo looks good on almost everyone! It’s been a staple for girls I know with very fair to dark skin.

For eyes, I’m always a fan of black liner. It opens them up. You could also line your lids with a smoky gray matte like NARS eye shadow in Thunderball.

Plan a day at Sephora where you can try a bunch of different brands out and see what you like. You can also schedule a free makeover at department store makeup counter to learn some tricks. In the meantime, I’ll be over here jealous of your eternal tan.

If you have a style/beauty question for Marie, please send it to


  • Claire October 18th, 2011 7:12 PM

    I count myself among the round-faced, and just the thought of it used to plague me. This was before I realized that although some people are also very attractive and have high cheekbones and narrow faces, that’s just not how my face is, even though it can be hard to love something as basic as your own face. (And your olive skin with its yellow undertones…and your thick, frizzy Balkan hair…and your thin lips that don’t actually need needles and plumper, I promise!)

  • darksideoftherainbow October 18th, 2011 7:29 PM

    for the girl in the round face: i have one, too! i always wanted cheekbones but the older i get (i’m 24), the more i like it. a lot of it has to do with the face that toward the end of high school a lot of people began commenting on how i look like a doll. round faces are just more doll-like and it’s WONDERFUL! sometime there are things that just take us a bit to either get used to or start to like! and now for the girl with the glasses…there is someone on youtube with the user name “HollywoodNoirMakeup” that has a gorgeous pair of glasses and does beautiful eye makeup. even on youtube i can see her gorgeous tricks! check her out…she has great hair, too! and the last girl…i have medium dark skin and ruby woo and russian red work really great. everytime i wear it i get many compliments! i also like to try dark purples…even those that are close to black. you know, for a fun girl’s night out! <3

  • connie October 18th, 2011 7:40 PM

    i like my face i just dont like the scabs and pimples and dark blue under eye circles that mask it.
    and i find those just want to stay there.
    i deal by ignoring them until i see my face in the mirrored elevator walls and go “oh boy”.

    sigh good thing i have a gr8 personality.

  • katycruel October 18th, 2011 7:41 PM

    Allison Pill is another gorgeous lady with a round face.

    • Whatsername October 18th, 2011 7:54 PM

      YESS! Loved her in Scott Pilgrim.

  • Sunny October 18th, 2011 7:48 PM

    Karen Gillan is one of the most ravishing ladies I have every seen, and her face sports nary a cheekbone.

  • Zoe October 18th, 2011 7:50 PM

    I really like that the “I don’t like my face” question was addressed. I’d ask for more posts like that, as I am just as self-concious about my appearance as any other girl in our school (big nose), but I guess it’s just that simple: live with it. Thanks!

  • lelelikeukulele October 18th, 2011 7:52 PM

    I used to hate my round, plump face too. Then I decided to embrace it and stop trying to look like someone I’m not. I realized that when I’m older and a mom, I’m not going to look like an aging trophy wife, with tons of makeup, bleached hair, and scary cheekbones. I’m going to have a pleasant plump round face and I’m not going to try and look young. I’ll be like Molly Weasley.

    And Molly Weasley is a BADASS.

  • Hazel October 18th, 2011 8:06 PM

    I’m a roundfaced girl with no cheekbones and I’m lovvvvvin it!

  • diny October 18th, 2011 8:56 PM

    yeah, i have round face too. and it is not a problem at all. but acne is a problem! Clean & Clear works for me. i use the deep action cleanser, the moisturizer, and the powder. also the speed acne gel which i use rarely. it works!

  • donutsundae October 18th, 2011 9:09 PM

    So I have glasses and I have always felt like even when I wear kind of a lot of eye makeup, it’s hard to see. The shadow of the frames and the glare of the lenses are pretty good at obscuring my hard work!

    Two ways you can go with this. 1: lipstick and cheeks! Attention grabbing lip color balances well with bold frames, so you can “own” it better than our 2-eyed sisters.

    2: Fair warning, I’m white and this might work better for light to medium skin, so use yr best judgement if your skin is darker than that, but I’ve taken to applying super light, almost white eye shadow across my lid. The. I use black liner (sometimes just a little, sometimes verging on Winehouse may she rest in peace) to make my eyes “pop”, finishing with an accent of high-pigment color in either my inner or outer corners. There’s a lot of contrast so you can totally see its beauty despite the goggles, but it’s a pretty classic style so you don’t look cartoonish.

  • vanessa October 18th, 2011 9:17 PM

    I love the advice to just accept yourself as you are and not worry about trying to look like someone else. I grew up the only dark haired latina among a group of fair-skinned friends. Finally coming to terms with the fact that no matter how hard I tried, I’d never look like them gave me such a great sense of freedom. We’re our own harshest critics, we gotta learn to lighten up on ourselves!

  • erin October 18th, 2011 10:01 PM

    I can really identify with hating aspects of your face… I used to hate several different things about my face. My eyebrows, which I now control with tweezers and liner, my nose, which isn’t a perfect ski slope, but very slavic looking (which I now like because it gives a link to my ancestry) and my rather small chin, which is kind of… I don’t know, puffy? below my lips. But I’ve just accepted that. Learn to like your face, and find out what works for it! i.e. straight across bangs do not look great with a slavic nose. Also, my eyesight is slowly dying (I’m only sixteen, but that’s about when my mom lost hers), so I feel like in about a year, the bit about how to look good with glasses will be very helpful to me!

  • Emily Condon October 18th, 2011 10:02 PM

    Yay to no foundation! Every few years I break down and buy some because someone convinces me it’s essential for every woman, then I use it twice and go back to my cheap Covergirl powder, and am way happier (and prettier) for it.

  • emilyelizabeth October 18th, 2011 10:05 PM

    i love the Bare Escentuals powder!

  • Dani October 18th, 2011 10:42 PM

    whoa. i have dark skin. and i own hang up. so including that specifically made me happy. i just thought you should know…

  • broguishrogue October 19th, 2011 12:58 AM

    i never wear makeup because i feel that it doesn’t suit me. i’ve come to terms with my round face, but am still peeved about the German bridge on my nose and the smallness of my eyes. as an odd sort-of pro, i have hereditary dark circles under my eyes at all times and i find it pretty cool. weird what you start liking about yourself, eh?

    • bumblebee October 19th, 2011 6:54 PM

      this is very true and interesting when you like something about your face/body that is often seen as a negative, like dark circles. It reminds me of this thing Cathy Horyn once said that the best outfits aren’t “perfect” but have something a little wrong, in a way. It’s like I have these freckles on my nose that the photo company airbrushed off for my senior year portrait and I was SO pissed. I love my freckles and get lots of compliments on them, too!

  • julalondon October 19th, 2011 2:55 AM

    Oh look at Devon Aoki! She is so amazing. This picture is a perfect example that you really DONT need cheekbones like kate to look unbelievably beautiful!

  • jeanette October 19th, 2011 4:16 AM

    Having big cheeks and glasses used to totally get me down a few years ago.. As a Chinese girl, not only did I feel like it made me look ugly but it also made me look like every other Chinese teenage girl as well, with straight, black hair. Looking at beautiful pictures like Devon Aoki just brought me down because well, just because she’s BEAUTIFUL, it doesn’t make her, yanno? But in the end, I got over it and grew into my own face. Now I don’t feel the need to wear contact lenses or make up or contouring. It’s a very profound change of mind that I hope every teen girl gets to experience! :)

  • M. Kitka October 19th, 2011 5:36 AM

    Don’t forget the VERY old school Claudette Colbert! Gorgeous with a very wide almost moon-face: (that’s her getting friendly with the hot Clark Gable)

    Also, for all the ladies mentioning worry about their noses I have one argument:×1583-574kb-media-1340-media-153877-1257312906.jpg Babs, especially early movie Babs, is super movie-star glamorous and the camera LOVES her profile… which prominently features a *major* nose.

  • RachelNgaire October 19th, 2011 9:43 AM

    “I personally believe you should wear foundation only if you have an uneven skin tone or need coverage for zits and scars. Otherwise, you’re probably OK using just a powder,”

    I don’t think this comments works with what you’re trying to achieve, Rookie. Basically what you’ve just said is, if you have perfect skin (no uneven tone, zits or scars) and you MIGHT JUST get away with ONLY wearing powder.

    Come on.

  • Filia-Zissy October 19th, 2011 12:38 PM

    I wear glasses too and I never had any make-up problems because of that. With glasses you can wear more eyeshadow than without.
    I love my glasses and I don’t want to change them into contact lenses. Without my glasses it’s not me.

  • Valeska October 19th, 2011 2:38 PM

    I really have a big nose and sometimes I just wan’t to have a little snub nose ( is that the right word in english, I do not really trust google translate:)) but then I always think that my face would be so boring with a little nose. And what kind of world would that be if everybody would look the same and “perfect”?
    But I have to admit that it is hard to be self-confident sometimes. What is really helping, is to know that everybody has those problems.

  • Kaetlebugg October 19th, 2011 2:40 PM

    I really appreciate that this article is trying to make you appreciate yourself and your unique beauty – but I’m not sure, for the first response, I’d say, essentially don’t compare yourself to other people – except when they serve to make you feel good about yourself. In this case, I really don’t think its at all negative cause the attitude is “here are hot people. You have stuff in common. You’re hot too!” but I also think that mentality could be a slippery slope.

  • yourenotfunny October 19th, 2011 4:12 PM

    I wear contacts now because I prefer the freedom, but I’ve been kind of thinking of getting a new pair of glasses for some days. I think in general, larger glasses tend to be more flattering than the little narrow ones that make your eyes claustrophobic. Theres this girl at school who just got a pair of big torts (prescription) and I can’t get over how ADORABLE she looks.

  • bumblebee October 19th, 2011 6:50 PM

    Lily Cole for another round-faced beauty!

  • Kikimator October 21st, 2011 12:27 PM

    I have a square face bit very vague cheek definition and a bump on my nose (which is large already), but I did a little photoshop experiment and changed these things and I hated it. That made me happy to have the face I do (:

  • kayce. October 21st, 2011 5:59 PM

    1) m.a.c.’s viva glam 1 is also a great red.

    2) not sure how i’m feeling about the last line of this post… some might call it racist, and since it seems to stem from a non-person-of-color point of privilege (as a lot of racism does), i can’t wholly disagree. what i DO know for sure is that it’s definitely off-color (no pun intended) and should probably be nixed. saying someone has pretty skin tone is one thing, but it’s really privileged for a white person to “want to be black” as it over-simplifies the experience of non-white americans to simply a difference in skin color. it also disregards all the social and societal bullshit that comes along with said skin color. being non-white is not strictly about skin, and i feel like you could be marginalizing the very real experiences of some of the readers here.

    • Marie October 24th, 2011 11:32 PM

      I’m not white. And I’m just mad ’cause my summer tan is gone, das all.

  • Amber Dawn October 22nd, 2011 7:32 PM

    The bit about the round face reminds me of reading the Arabian Nights and stories from a similar place/era where they talk about girls with a “face like the moon” as pretty much the highest standard of beauty. i imagine that didn’t involve a lot of cheekbones. Just goes to show, even though there seems to be a “one way” to be hot some of the time, everybody has their own tastes – rock what you’ve got.