Whether it’s a spot making an appearance on the ONE NIGHT you have a date lined up or a mascara wand to the eye, beauty emergencies are the absolute worst. There should really be a word invented to describe the utter frustration caused by finishing an amazing eyeliner flick and then ruining it when your hand randomly twitches. Make-up mistakes and beauty emergencies happen to the best of us, and they can really get on your nerves if you don’t know how to handle them. Luckily, we’ve put together a list of the most common ones, and what to do when they occur.

  • Mascara mess up

Ok, so you’re hand has randomly twitched right at the exact second you pulled your mascara wand away from your lashes and said mascara is now on your nose. Don’t panic. You might be tempted to start furiously scrubbing at the inky black patch, but rubbing it at this stage will only smudge it further. Your best option is to continue with the rest of your make-up, letting the mascara dry, and then return to it with a clean, dry cotton bud. Gently scrape the mascara off your nose before re-blending your foundation.

  • Lipstick on teeth

Is there anything worse than looking in a shiny reflection hours after you’ve left the house to discover lipstick on your teeth? A lesser-known trick that needs to be shouted from the rooftops is to put your finger in your mouth after you’ve completed your lipstick. Once you pull your finger out again, any lipstick that would’ve ended up on your teeth is instead on your finger and your pearly-whites are lipstick free. Wash your hands and you’re good to go.

  • Dry, flaky lips

Got dry, flaky, lips and no time to spare? Grab and old toothbrush and some lip balm, and gently use it to exfoliate your lips. The toothbrush bristles will gently remove any dry skin, and the lip balm will help to restore some much-needed moisture. If you’re in a pinch and without a spare toothbrush, a washcloth will also do a similar job.

  • Tired?

If you’ve skipped on sleep and your body is feeling tired, blood is circulated towards the vital organs, leaving you with a pasty pallor and puffy eyes. Adding a face-full of make-up can leave you feeling cakey, so the best thing to do when you’re looking like a zombie is to focus on re-hydration. Slap on your best moisturiser, apply some eye-drops, lip gloss, and stick some sunglasses on your face.

  • If your foundation is too dark

As good as the lighting at cosmetic counters can be, it’s no match for natural daylight. If you take home your brand new foundation only to find it’s a shade too dark – don’t despair completely. Mix about 2/3 foundation with 1/3 moisturiser on the back of your hand before applying with your usual brush or beauty blender. The formula will be a little lighter, and you can darken it with bronzer if necessary.

  • Nail polish disasters

Nail polish has a funny way of getting just about everywhere it’s not supposed to be, especially when you’re painting with the hand you don’t normally use. If you’ve overshot the mark when applying your polish, don’t remove the varnish and start again. Instead, just dip a Q tip in some nail varnish remover and swipe down the sides of your nails where the excess polish is lurking.

  • Run out of Dry Shampoo?

If you’ve woken up with no time to wash your hair and no dry shampoo, don’t panic. Sprinkle some talcum powder (or rice powder from grocery store) in your roots and make sure to massage in well. The powder soaks up excess oil and should see you through the day. If you’re all out of talc, as a last resort you can also use facial, loose, translucent powder to blot up small areas of grease at the front of your hairline.