How to Achieve the Natural ‘No Makeup’ Look

In Fresh Magazine, Makeup for Women, Makeup Tips, Natural Look by Julie Brown0 Comments

NOTE: This article originally appears in Fresh Vancouver magazine on page 37 of the February 2011 issue.  Download the original article PDF here, or read the entire article below.

nomakeupIf you are like the rest of us, your new year`s resolution most likely includes some form of an outing for physical exercise. Whether it be going out for a run or a yoga class, going to the gym or on a walk to the grocery store, you may also wonder, “Need I bother applying makeup for these occasions?” The answer is yes and no. If you were blessed with flawless skin with no blemishes or dark circles, then moisturize and away you go! But if you are like the majority of us and need a little bit of help looking naturally impeccable, read on. No one needs to know you didn’t wake up looking this flawless!

Prepping The Skin

The natural look is all about the appearance of the skin. Properly prepping the face is the key for superb looking skin. That soft, dewy skin we all dream of having is achievable with a few basic steps.

Exfoliate: Start with exfoliating the skin. Exfoliation helps promote the renewal of skin cells and slough away dry skin. There are many exfoliating creams and gels on the market, but l have to say, l prefer the good old fashioned face cloth most of the time. It works exceptionally the cost is minimal, and it’s natural and chemical free. Nothing feels better on the face than a warm face cloth! Iust gently rub and focus on the areas that tend to get dry, such as the nose, forehead and chin. I recommend exfoliating two to three times a week; more than that will start to strip away those precious natural oils our skin needs.

Cleanse: I recommend using a cream or milk (non—foaming) cleanser as it will not strip away these necessary oils like harsh foaming cleansers and soap tend to do. Cream cleansers do a wonderful job of cleaning the skin while keeping moisture intact. Most non-foaming cleansers can also be rubbed gently into the eye area to remove eye makeup without the irritation or stinging caused by soap. Some of my favourite cleansers include shuuemura Cleansing Oil, Biotherm Biosource Softening Cleansing Milk and Avene Gentle Milk Cleanser.

Moisturize: For normal/combination skin to dry skin types, apply a hydrating moisturizer to the face. If your skin is very oily, apply an oil—free moisturizer. Be careful not to under—hydrate your skin. Very few people have truly oily skin, and this common misdiagnosis leads to under—hydration and less than perfect looking skin. Without proper hydration, your skin produces excess oil — and the result is the opposite of what you intended. My favourite moisturizers are the anti—aging, super moisturizing formulas made by Clarins, Ren and Avene. For a little extra smoothness and a subtle skin surface, apply a makeup primer. This is a perfect base for any makeup. The one I recommend: Cover FX Skin Prep Nourishing Foundation Primer and Anti—Aging Serum.

The “Makeup”

Once your skin is cleansed and nourished, it’s time for the quick final steps of the natural “no makeup” look. Apply a little concealer under the eyes and anywhere you may have redness or blotchiness, such as around the nostrils and chin, and on any blemishes. Blend well into your moisturized skin. My current favourite concealers are Dior Nude Concealer and MAC Pro Longwear Concealer. At this point, I like to also add a small amount of foundation all over the face for evenness, as without foundation, the concealer tends to be noticeable. If you are doing an activity where you will be perspiring, this is a good occasion to use a powder foundation. I recommend Dior Forever Compact, and MAC Face and Body Foundation.

Next, apply a little cheek stain to the apples of the cheeks, which will not rub off during your workout and will give a youthful flush to the cheeks. Beneiit Benetint is perfect for this. I like to apply one light coat of mascara most of the time; you may omit this step if you desire a very natural look. Finally, a very important step for the look and for nourishment is lip balm. Choose one with a little colour and gloss to it so your lips have a little hue and shine, and are moisturized at the same time. Hands down, one of the best for this is Clarins Moisturizing Lip Balm, which comes in three different lip-coloured shades.

Et voila: the natural look! Don’t leave home without it, ladies: that coveted, polished yet effortless fresh face. Au naturelle? Ah, but of course!

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