Fresh-faced beauty: a guide to mastering the iconic natural makeup look

No-makeup-makeup, everybody knows what it is — the glowing, your-own-face-but-better look — but not everybody knows how to achieve it. That’s because it’s harder than you would think to nail glossy skin, perfectly-arched eyebrows, full lips and just the right pinch of natural blush without looking as though you have spent any time in front of the mirror. In saying that, it’s not impossible if you know what you’re doing. Here, we outline the best way to nail this timeless makeup look.

Lay the groundwork
It’s important to remember that all good makeup starts with a clean palette, as your beauty looks will only ever be as good as the skin underneath. Treat yourself with regular facials, once every month or so, to keep skin in optimum condition. Forme Spa have an array of glorious treatments, (the LED Light therapy treatment is a firm favourite of ours) while East Day Spa‘s skin saving medley of facials infused with CODAGE skincare are just the ticket to a refreshed and revitalised face.

All about that base
Similarly, you need to make sure your skin is exfoliated and moisturised before any makeup touches it, if you have any dead skin cells sitting on your face then it will look gloomy and dry regardless of what foundation you use. Exfoliate skin with a gentle but effective exfoliating mask, like Josh Rosebrook’s Active Enzyme Exfoliator, and be sure to use a brightening, glow-inducing moisturiser each morning (Dermalogica’s light activated Prisma Protect SPF30 works wonders for dull, lacklustre skin). If your face is extra dehydrated, try applying an oil at night, NUORI Perfecting Facial Oil is a firm favourite amongst the Denizen team, and rinse it off before you start your makeup routine in the morning.

L-R Josh Rosebrook Active Enzyme Exfoliator, NUORI Perfecting Facial Oil, NARSRadiance Primer, Dermalogica Prisma Protect SPF30

Once skin is prepped and ready apply a brightening primer, like NARS’ wonderful, complexion revitalising Radiance Primer, before dabbing spots of concealer under the eyes and around the nose to cover any redness, not forgetting any other spots or blemishes that may need extra coverage. (Estēe Lauder’s Youth-Infusing Brightening Serum and Concealer is a failsafe, skin-resurrecting double whammy.) Next, use a small drop of velvety CC Cream (we recommend Giorgio Armani’s Prima CC Cream for smooth, easy coverage) and blend across the face to create an even but natural looking base.

To sculpt the brows, opt for a creamy pencil that glides onto the skin, like Laura Mercier’s brow-boosting Eyebrow Pencil, before infusing the cheeks with a soft, natural blush via a creamy blusher. (Just a quick dab of Bobbi Brown’s Pot Rouge is enough to give that rosy, just-pinched look.) To hold your natural look in place, use a fine, setting mist like MAC Cosmetics Prep + Prime Fix + Coconut, (which also refreshes your face wonderfully throughout the day, FYI). The final touch? A swipe of clear lip balm. Ecostore’s nourishing Manuka lip balm is a natural choice that ensures lips look plump, healthy and moisturised at all times.

L-R Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge, Laura Mercier Eyebrow Pencil, Giorgio Armani Prima CC Cream, MAC Prep + Prime + Coconut, Ecostore Manuka lip balm


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