It's no secret to readers of this column that I own a LOT of makeup!

But I'm one of those people who tend to wear the same things over and over again; MAC eye shadows in Mulch, Bronze and Satin Taupe, Stila Kitten and Caryl Baker Visage (a Canadian company) in African Violet.

Stila Eye Cosmetics

Stila Purrfect Eyes

Always black mascara and lipsticks in pink-brown shades like MAC Viva Glam 5.

It's easy to get stuck in a makeup rut; you find something that looks good on you and tend to go to that same colour/style over and over again. As the saying goes, “Why mess with success?”

The best reason to change up your look is a change in your life circumstances. Graduating school and starting out in the working world requires a level of polish that you probably hadn't thought of before. While makeup is not a requirement for work, the right amount of carefully applied mascara and a discrete swipe of lipstick can go a long way toward conveying professionalism. You might think it shouldn't make a difference, but as Stacy London and Clinton Kelly point out over and over again on the TV show "What Not to Wear" we are all judged on how we look and we never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Perhaps the best reason to change your makeup is the simplest one—getting older.

Natural Makeup

Natural makeup Is one way to go

For most of us, changes in our skin texture and tone require change in our skin care routines and how we use makeup. The lighter and frostier formulas we could sport as teenagers generally give way to matte finishes and stronger colours as we age. Then back to lighter shades as we get even older!

As I wrote over two years ago, makeup rules for “older” women tend to revolve around the word “don't.” And even though many of those “rules” no longer apply, clinging to the tried-and-true can be as aging as wearing frosted baby blue eye shadow.

For the new year, I've resolved to break out more of the colours in my arsenal. The neglected greys and greens and navy blue are calling my name. In fact, I got a head start last month when I went to a Christmas party and wore a simple, Marilyn-Monroe-inspired eye look using only Stila Oasis (a brown-tinged shimmering gold shade), MAC Showstopper as liner and false lashes. The face that looked at back at me was strangely fresh and somehow younger-looking.

In 2011, I resolve to:

  • wear my dark red lipsticks more often
  • use less eyeliner, and
  • wear different colours of eye shadow.

What are your beauty resolutions for 2011? Tell me below, in the comments section!