"Who cares about pretty? I'm going for noticeable."
― Veronica Roth, Divergent
Let's just get down to it, then, shall we?
Looking pretty or beautiful is a matter of perception. If you're confident about it in your mind, it will show in the way you behave, lending an instant radiance to your personality. But if outward beauty is what you're aiming for―and that's important too―there are a few concrete steps you need to take.
We're listing the steps right here.
1) Hygiene is above all else.
A clean, fresh-smelling person is instantly attractive―there are no two ways about it. Therefore, make it a point to shower everyday, cleanse yourself all over, and shampoo your hair regularly. Not only will this make you feel fresh, it will also keep your skin and hair healthy and clean. Similarly, follow a rigorous dental hygiene routine; brush your teeth twice a day because bad breath is the yuckiest thing in the world. Ensure that your nails aren't broken or chipped―unkempt hands and fingernails can be very unattractive, no matter how "pretty" your face is. The same applies to your feet―keep your toenails clipped, or file them in a decent shape. Remember to regularly slough off the dead skin from your feet to keep them soft and pretty.
2) 'Pretty' doesn't happen overnight.
You have to keep working hard towards looking pretty, as ignoring the basic needs of your body won't reap any benefits. So, make it a point to eat regular, healthy meals everyday, so your skin and hair can gain the nutrients they need to look nice. No kind of cosmetics can help you if your body lacks basic nutrition. Next, remember that your skin needs to be cleaned and moisturized at the end of each day, and this is an absolute rule. In case you wear makeup, be sure to thoroughly remove it before bedtime, as it can clog your pores and result in acne. Regular moisturizing will keep your skin supple and youthful, and if you're also eating right, lend it a nice, healthy glow.
3) Complicated makeup is not for everyone.
It takes a lot of effort, a lot of expensive cosmetics, and an army of helpers to make a movie star look like she does on the red carpet. If you are in your teens, your skin is at its best, so there's really no need to hide it beneath layers of makeup. A basic eyeliner/mascara/lip gloss look is enough to make you appear radiant. And in case you have acne, more the reason to steer clear of using heavy makeup; you'll clog your pores if you're not careful, resulting in a fresh outbreak. You can use concealers to hide scars and pimples, but make sure that you clean your face properly before you hit the bed at night.
4) Pick clothes that are flattering instead of trendy.
It just doesn't make sense to wear whatever is the flavor of the season, especially if you don't feel comfortable wearing it. Don't you feel a surge in confidence the day you choose to wear your favorite outfit? Where do you think that comes from? It comes from within, obviously, because you know that you're looking good in it and you're also comfortable wearing it. So, it's important to pick clothes that you like, that you think look good on you, rather than buying something because Vogue tells you to.
5) Being pretty will make you pretty.
Finally, is there anyone who finds nastiness, rudeness, or arrogance attractive? If they do, you'd rather stay away from them! But seriously, a well-mannered, soft-spoken, friendly person can charm the pants off anyone―literally anyone. Believe it you may not, as in our younger years we tend to place emphasis on outward beauty rather than the overall personality. But think about it―every Disney story has harped on about the same basic idea, so that ought to convince you to a great degree.
Before we wind up, remember to keep a genuine, heartfelt smile on when you're socializing with someone new. It will impress just about anyone.