Could stepping out of your beauty comfort zone boost your confidence? The DARE team gave it a go…

In the wacky-yet-wonderful world of makeup, there are countless ways to give our day-to-day look more (or less) oomph – drag queen-inspired baking, anyone? Yet it can be easy to get so stuck doing the same-old, same-old that even the prospect of applying a slightly brighter lipstick can seem like a mini beauty Everest. Although here at DARE we’re surrounded by a mountain of new beauty products, we, too, tend to stick to the status quo. So what better way to shake up our makeup than trying out a new look?

Senior beauty editor Natalie: From blow-out to curl crazy


There’s nothing quite as ego-boosting as a bouncy blow-dry, so giving my hairdryer the heave-ho was the ultimate step of bravery. The thing is, my curls hadn’t seen the light of day for years. I’ve blown them into submission since I was 18, so I had no idea how they’d dry.

To get my head in the game, I’d swotted up on some curl queens’ regimes and learnt that moisture is EVERYTHING. I swapped my sudsy shampoo for a cowash, fed my thirsty curls a moisture mask and discovered mousses that won’t weigh your curls down and just give high definition.

While the dry time was daunting, the curls weren’t. I wore my hair curly the rest of the week, combing it up into a curly topknot for Friday night. And I’ve switched between curls and waves since. After all, the time-saving, heat-busting benefits of a wash-and-go are on a par with that bouncy blow-dry feeling.

Art editor Hannah: From plain pout to loud mouth


The way this beauty bravery story came about? When I got a bit overheated at my desk and tied my hair back loosely. The next thing, hands were going to mouths and then the compliments came in. ‘I LOVE your hair up. Why do you never wear it like that?’

So I committed to the updo for a full week. And while I was at it, why not throw a red lip into the mix? (I only ever wear lip balm.)

We’ve probably all got a hair and makeup style we’re used to, and for me it’s been wearing my hair down. But after embracing the bun, I’m a convert (and I’ve found it works best when I apply a texturising spray through my hair beforehand). I wouldn’t say I’ve done a complete 180, but my hair bobble gets a BDA (big day out) at least twice a week.

I can safely say, though, that the red lipstick was way out of my comfort zone. Friends who are reading this: if you’re in the market for a rouge lippy, hit me up.

Beauty coordinator Annie: From full face to no base


I’m the self-confessed full-coverage addict of the office. From falsies to contouring, you can call me a colour chameleon. While I have no problem experimenting with makeup, could
I really forgo foundation?

The prospect of having an extra half-hour in bed in the morning was the only thing that convinced me to see this look through, and I’m glad I did. I loved it!

I concentrated on applying a moisturiser, a tinted SPF and a vitamin C serum rather than primer, foundation and contour. I then swept blusher onto my cheeks, applied mascara and I was good to go – all done in 15 minutes.

For me, wearing a lot of makeup acted almost like a shield. With a full face, I felt ready to handle any situation. Now, I feel more comfortable showing off my natural skin, and it’s boosted my confidence massively. I’ll always love a full coverage, but this new look is not going anywhere in a hurry.