How to look like you've not been crying

By Andrea Zanetich 

I woke up this morning all puffy-eyed and drained. What was meant to be a very quiet, very chilled-out Saturday night at home ending with me tucked up snugly in bed before 9.30pm, ended up as a late-night marathon cry session with me tucked up with a bunch of soggy tissues crumpled by the side of my bed around midnight.

Affleck and Gosling were to blame.

Last night, while flicking through the TV stations, I came across the movie Armageddon starring Ben Affleck. I know it’s as cheesy as a burrito, but it gets me every time. Oh how I cried.

And after the credits rolled to the strains of ‘I don’t want to miss a thing‘ by Aerosmith, I flicked stations around again while wiping my eyes, to find The Notebook on another channel. It was half-way through, but I wasn’t going to let that deter me from watching. Not as though I’d never seen Ryan in all his scruffy, puppy-dog-eyed glory and Rachel McAdams in the world’s best shade of red lipstick before. Again, the tears flowed and I even did that weird hiccuppy-sobby thing that you do when you’re still crying but it’s like you’ve run out of tears.

I’ve always been a serial crier.”

Certain songs on the radio, heartfelt conversations with people, and the way my little boys give me soft kisses in the morning when they climb into my bed to say good morning. Some are sad tears. Some are happy. I’m not uncomfortable with it.

But all that crying is making me look like crap. So I’ve compiled a bunch of tips to perk up a cried-out face so no-one is any the wiser about your sob fest. Just make sure you hide those soggy tissues.


1. Take the red out

Stock up on eye-drops that claim to take the red out of your eyes. A couple of drops of these will wash away that salty tear-sting.


2. Wash it away

Especially important if you’ve been wearing makeup and made the rookie mistake of not wearing waterproof mascara. A splash of water on your face or a cool washcloth will soothe your face, clean off those tears, and reduce any blotchy redness. Carry a small pack of facial wipes in your bag if you’re an on-the go crier.


3. Spritz

A cooling facial spray will act as a little get-your-act-together face slap. I’m a particular fan of Benefit Ultra Radiance Facial Re-Hydrating Mist $35.

4. De-puff

If you’ve got the time and inclination, you could take the old-school approach of slices of cucumber or cold teaspoons over the eyes plus a good lie down. But who’s got time for that? And whenever I try those kinda things, my kids mock me and call me things like “salad face”. Recently I discovered Eysilix Instant Eye Rescue 15.0 ml $34.99 at Priceline which immediately tightens the under-eye area and reduces the appearance of puffiness in less time than it would take to say to Ryan “Yes, our love is powerful enough.”


5. Camo

A quick dab of concealer under the eyes and a flesh-coloured eye-liner on your inner rims will work wonders to camouflage that tear-fest. An eye-brightener like one of these can come in handy too.


6. Open up

Curl your eyelashes, and apply mascara. Make sure it’s waterproof in-case you come down with a case of Ricochet Tears*.


7. Cover up

If in doubt, whack on a pair of large sunnies and fake it. This is also handy if you can’t stop crying but need to go somewhere – but be warned that they can get kinda fogged up if you cry too long. I’m a fan of mirrored sunglasses for this type of gig, because anyone who’s talking to you just can’t help being distracted looking at themselves, so they’ll be none the wiser about your tears.

Mirrored sunglasses Oliver Peoples Oliver Peoples Eyewear Afton Mirrored Sunglasses $400

8. Sneeze

If all else fails, fake a fit of sneezing – people will think your eyes are all red from the sneeze attack.  “Gesundheit!”


And if you’re in NEED of a good cry, have a watch/listen to this song by INXS, and then administer steps 1-8 as outlined above.




What gets you crying? A particular song? A certain movie?

Hit me. I’ve got plenty of tissues ready to go. 


*Ricochet tears: When you start crying all over again unexpectedly.


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  • Oh my gosh. I’m an empathetic crier. If I see others crying, I cry. Things that have triggered my tears?

    Watching the animated movie Up. My grandmother had recently passed away & the sad old man reminded me of my grandpa with out my grandma. I might cry again.

    An early episode of CSI:Miami….there’s a mentally disabled man who witnesses a murder, and later the bad guy beats him up, and he’s dying in the hospital. At the end, he dies and is being given a paupers funeral, but the main cop (Horatio) shows up, and tells them that he’s handling the body. And he puts his badge on his chest and says “I don’t know if your father was proud of you….but I know I am.” Awwww. 🙁

    And yes, of course The Notebook.

    • Oh Amanda, you got me going there too. Who knew you could cry over CSI: Miami?

      Love the empathy cry. You’re a great friend xA

  • any sort of farewell or welcome home at the airport – and it doesn’t even have to be me – total strangers being reunited or parting ways just gets to me! I am also HOPELESS at watching a you tube clip of a solider surprising their family on return from the war – instant hysterics!

    also, listening to the song I walked down the ailse too, but those are happy tears 🙂

  • I have never owned a pair of mirrored sunglasses. It is true though that it keeps people distracted when speaking with you. Maybe I should get some. Thanks for tips!

  • Ricochet tears = totally a thing! I am an epic serial crier, made only worse during pregnancy! Will definitely be implementing these tips!

  • I am a crier at the last 2 episodes of Offspring I cried so hard I was sobbing,movies and books and real life make me cry,good tips Andrea thankyou x

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