The no-makeup makeup look is probably the biggest beauty myth to date: Looking like you’re barefaced actually requires a bevy of products to perfect your skin, brighten your eyes, and bring a touch of color and definition to all the right places.
One of the secrets to “no-makeup” success is glowing, even skin. To achieve the look, the secret lies in 50 percent skin care, because well-hydrated skin looks so luminous, the other 50 percent is based on your personal outlook in life. Smile more, do good and feel good.
A good makeup sponge is your no-makeup makeup secret weapon—a dampened sponge presses pigment into your skin and removes excess for the perfect coverage. It makes the difference between your foundation looking like makeup and your foundation looking as if it’s just your skin, but better.
This isn’t the time for matte or so-called luminous foundations; choose one with a natural finish. Choose a foundation which technically gives you a full-coverage foundation, but one you’d never notice. Iridescent particles obscure imperfections, even when you’re the target of a 50-megapixel camera. The trick is also to use it as you would concealer; smooth a drop or two under your eyes, around your nostrils, and around the inner corners of your eyes to cancel out any shadows. Then add a touch to your lids in place of eye shadow.
The only shadow you need for this look is a color that’s a smudge deeper than your skin tone to apply in the creases. This area is naturally darker than your lids, so you just want to enhance them slightly, which brings more attention to the shape of your eyes. Cream formulas are preferable (they mimic the texture of your skin). Choose a shade which contains a cool light taupe (good for pale skin) and a medium brown (perfect for olive complexions, perfect for Filipinas). For darker skin tones, try an espresso shade.
Brown pencil defines your eyes without looking as obvious and makeup-y as black. Choose a rich brown matte shade that’s soft and easy to smudge but stays put once it sets. To add subtle definition to your lower lash line, make three dots along the bottom lashes and smudge them together with a cotton swab.
For the top lash line, run an angled brush over the tip of your brown liner, then press it along the roots of your upper lashes. The bristles have to be stiff enough to give you control, but not so stiff that they jab you in the eye.
A lightweight mascara is best for this ‘no makeup makeup look’ because it defines your lashes without looking too obvious. Wiggle the wand into the roots of your top lashes. If your lashes are pale, don’t stop there; brush one coat through to the tips.
To make everyone think your brows are just that good, comb on a tinted brow gel, focusing the most color on your arches (where your brows are naturally darkest). It expertly tames rogue hairs and combs in just enough color, so you won’t end up looking like Anne Hathaway’s character, Mia Thermopolis in The Princess Diaries.
Natural Looking Blush
Cream blush without any shimmer looks most natural—it’s sheer and has a texture similar to that of skin. Wearing a blush gives your cheeks a lit-from-within effect that won’t disappear in minutes. Choose a muted pink or berry tone that looks dull in the pot. Trust us, it will look like your cheeks are naturally flushing, rather than covered in makeup.
Tinted Lip Balm
A sheer, tinted balm is the easiest way to boost your natural lip color. Tinted lip balm looks sheer red in the tube but gives your lips the subtlest hint of rosy pink. (Oh, and it’s good for moisturizing your puckers, too.)