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Ultimate Guide to the Natural Makeup Look

Shreya is an avid makeup enthusiast who views makeup as an art form just like painting or music.

Makeup Flat Lay

Makeup Flat Lay

The Natural Makeup Look is In!

Gone are the days of heavy contouring, baking and overlining your lips into oblivion! If you’re someone who follows a ton of beauty influencers and makeup accounts on Instagram, YouTube or any social media platform, you’ve probably noticed that soft, subtle makeup is the new norm! As someone who started getting into makeup in the mid-2000s, I was only ever familiar with the Kardashian-Esque full-coverage makeup looks that were worn by popular YouTubers like Jeffree Star and Tati Beauty. That’s why I was super intrigued when I started to notice the recent cultural shift into the more natural makeup look, otherwise known as the ‘no-makeup makeup look'.

But to be totally honest, I did find myself feeling a little bit lost on how to navigate this new less-is-more makeup approach. For years, so many of us makeup enthusiasts were all about that full-beat, full-glam, pore-erasing style of makeup. To have to suddenly adjust to this trend of lighter, relaxed makeup was definitely a challenge. So I decided to put together this handy little guide to how you can easily pull off a natural makeup look! Read on to find out what types of products and techniques will help you achieve a gorgeous minimalistic look.

1. Swap Out Your Creams for Powders

Cream Blush Pot

Cream Blush Pot

A few years ago when I first started shopping for makeup, the shelves were filled to the brim with powder products. Powder blushes, powder bronzers, powder eyeshadows, etc. That has now completely changed – today cream alternatives are available in almost every category of makeup. Powder products tend to look harsh and usually end up highlighting any wrinkles or fine lines in the skin. Cream products, on the other hand, blend very naturally into the skin to give that lit-from-within glow.

2. Use your hands to apply your makeup

Applying makeup with fingers

Applying makeup with fingers

Hear me out here – I know there are endless different types of sponges and brushes out there that promise you incredible application and a flawless finish, however, pro-makeup artists actually prefer to use their fingers to apply makeup. Don’t believe me? Give it a quick Google search, and check it out for yourself. When you use your fingers to apply your makeup, your body’s natural warmth helps to gently melt the product into your skin. On the other hand, when you use a brush or a sponge, the product tends to sit on top of your skin rather than blending smoothly into it, which leads to a more unnatural, cakey finish.

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Applying makeup with your fingers may seem daunting at first, but once you get into it you’ll find that it’s actually a very intuitive process. Make sure you wash your hands first and then use your pointer and middle finger to gently tap the product onto your skin in a circular motion. You can apply foundation, concealer, eyeshadow, lipstick and more using just your fingers!

3. Use a finishing powder to go over your makeup

Makeup Loose Powders

Makeup Loose Powders

This is a trick I discovered when I was in a rush and ended up applying way too much bright pink blush on my cheeks. I didn’t want to take it off and start over again as I was already late for an appointment. Something made me think to grab my large fluffy brush, dip it in my pot of finishing powder and just dab it over my cheeks. To my surprise, this helped to almost dilute my blush and made it look much more subtle and wearable.

I did some research and found out that finishing powder is actually meant to softly blur and smoothen out your makeup. When I had initially purchased that finishing powder, I thought it was the exact same thing as a setting powder, which is meant to make your makeup last longer. Turns out that finishing powders and setting powders serve two very different purposes.

You can use a finishing powder all over your face or just on areas where you think you might have gone in a bit heavy with your product. This will smoothen everything out and give you a more natural finish. Just be careful with how much finishing powder you use, as using too much can leave you with a pale white cast on your face.

4. Stick to one Pop of Color

Bold Red Lip

Bold Red Lip

Adopting a natural approach to your makeup does not mean that you have to completely forgo vibrant colors. If you plan on incorporating some fun pops of color in your natural makeup look, by all means, go ahead! However, try to stick to just one pop of color. If you’re going for a bold, red lip, then stick to a very natural, neutral shade for your eyeshadow and bronzer. Similarly, if you’re going to choose to apply an eye-catching flamingo pink blush to your cheeks, go for a nude lip and minimal eyeshadow. This will ensure that there isn’t too much going on in your face all at once, and will keep your look fun but still very balanced and soft.

Why you should give the Natural Makeup Look a Shot

One of the best things about this more minimalistic approach to makeup is that it encourages you to embrace your own skin. This look is all about enhancing your existing features, rather than giving yourself an entirely new nose using contour or mimicking Botox using insane amounts of lipliner. Out of all the thousands of makeup trends we see come and go each year, the natural makeup look is something that I believe has the potential to change the narrative around unrealistic beauty standards in a positive way.

© 2022 Shreya Alagramam

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