Mastering No-Makeup Makeup

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Photo by Kalan Briggs

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There’s something really beautiful about being bare. Whether that’s having bare skin or being emotionally vulnerable, I love things as they are: natural and raw. All of that said, breakouts and acne scars aren’t cute, and although I don’t mind dark circles too much myself, I’m sure many of you do. That’s why I made it my mission to mimic natural skin in my everyday routine. Makeup was meant to enhance our natural beauty, not create something entirely new. That’s why no-makeup makeup is my absolute favorite. Don’t cover up your pretty, highlight it.

The Basis for any Minimal Makeup Look is Good Skin
For some people (myself included), this sounds discouraging. We all have break outs, so don’t freak out, we’re not even talking about that. We’re talking skin texture, which is a much easier problem to tackle. Make sure that you’re established in your routine of taking off your makeup, gently exfoliating, moisturizing regularly, and drinking plenty of water. Trust me, none of us is drinking enough.

Color is Pretty Much Everything 
To truly get the no-makeup look, you’ll want to find a low to medium coverage foundation. Because I’m so fair skinned, I have always had trouble finding a foundation that was a great color match. After searching and searching, I finally found two that match pretty well and that I like: Make Up For Ever and DermaBlend. Although mine are medium to full coverage (I have some not-so-cute acne scarring and dark spots), it matches my skin well, which is the most important thing. To color match, head into Sephora sans makeup and try out a foundation. I try to color match my face to my neck because my face is a tad paler than the rest of my body. Don’t purchase the day you try. Trying out a new foundation for a full day allows you to see how long the foundation lasts, how it wears, and how it looks in natural light once you’ve left the store. Foundations oxidize throughout the day, and this can cause them to change color. So you might start off with a perfect match and find that by the end of the day you’re looking a little pink or yellow.

How to Apply
I’m the queen of on-the-go living, but I’m gonna be honest, that is not the best for great makeup. If I apply my makeup in the car, it just doesn’t look right, even though I may have awesome natural light. Wet a beauty blender and apply primer. Apply your makeup in a mirror, but stand at a bit of a distance. When we apply makeup up close, we focus on minor imperfections which can result in an uneven, less flawless application. Wet a beauty blender (side note: I could not be a bigger proponent of owning one of these… PERFECT application), and apply foundation all over, blending as you go. I try to use as little foundation as possible knowing I can always build coverage if I need to. From here, I apply concealer. I squeeze a little onto the back of my hand and apply with the tip of my middle or ring finger, lightly patting – not rubbing – the product in. Top off with a translucent powder to set everything. I like Laura Mercier’s.

Blush + Bronzer + Highlighter
I know this combination has come to be associated with not-so-natural makeup, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it in your daily routine. The trick is to use just a kiss of each of these. Tap your brush after you you’ve swirled it through to remove any excess product.  A little bit of bronzer under the cheekbones and into the temples, at your hairline, jawline, chin, and down either side of the bridge of your nose. Feathered blush from the top of the apple of your cheek up the center of your cheekbone. Highlight the top of your cheekbone, bridge of the nose, inner corners of eyes, brow bone, center of the lids, and cupids bow.

Easy on the Eyes
Now, I keep it really minimal when it comes to everyday eye makeup. I focus on brows and lashes. 90% of the time, I don’t wear liner or shadow. I save that for nights out and special occasions. A sweep of tinted brow gel for fullness + shape, a curl of the lashes, a quick curl of the lashes, a few coats of black mascara on the top, a barely there coat on the bottom, and you’re done!

Luscious Lips
I love a just kissed look when it comes to lips — just a slight color. Take your favorite  shade of lipstick, gently dab it onto your lips, then blend in with your finger. Top off with balm.


S H O P   T H E   P O S T

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