Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Despite spending most of my day with my head in the beauty realm, I honestly don’t find I wear full makeup as often as I used to. Maybe it’s because I’m busier, or maybe it’s because I’m lazier (I’m going with the latter), but nonetheless, I tend to go for a minimal face. There are even a few days (when my skin is being nice) where I will even go sans makeup altogether!

What exactly does the “I’m Not Really Wearing Makeup” look entail? I have discovered that with the right mix of products you can get that totally natural look and look good in it.

I used Studio Fix Fluid in NC30 applied in dabs using the 194 brush, then buffed in with the 182 brush. Sculpt sculpting powder to contour cheeks using the 168 brush. Select Sheer Loose Powder in NC25 applied using the 187 brush (stippling brush). Dior Skin Shimmer in Amber Diamond with the 150 brush on apples and high planes of cheeks. Espresso and Carbon eyeshadows to fill in brows with a 266 brush. I finished by wearing 3N lipstick with 2N lipglass on lips.

What do you need? Since we are not all the same shade of skintone, nor do we all own the same products, let me give you some more generic ideas as to what you need for that super natural look.

Find out…

For the face | Start out with a foundation that is lightweight but really evens out your skin. I have always felt like liquid does a better job than pressed powders, personally. Many achieve the look of flawless skin with mineral foundation, too! Conceal if you choose to (I generally just put a little extra Studio Fix Fluid over any trouble spots) with a product that is creamy and not drying. If you contour lightly, it helps to accentuate your cheekbones without calling too much attention to them; just enough to polish. Choosing a contour color is not actually that difficult; you simply need a product that is a shade or so deeper than your natural skintone. Try matte blushes or bronzers, or even products designed for contouring (e.g., sculpting powders). Apply a light dusting of loose powder to set your foundation so it doesn’t fade or move throughout the day. You want a blush/cheek color that is incredibly subtle, that’s “barely there.” I have found love in Dior’s Skin Shimmer in Amber Diamond; it gives me the perfect touch of bronzy-rose flush. I like to use a product with a modicum of shimmer in it, just to help highlight at the same time. Sometimes for extra punch, I use Margin blush underneath Amber Diamond. Some ideas… Well-Dressed blush, Springsheen blush, MSFs.

For the eyes | I opt for no shadow, but sometimes a dusting of a matte or semi-matte neutral shadow on the lid is nice. Even a matte contouring of the outer crease area can help to define the eye without making it look “done.” Normally, I would apply two coats or so of mascara (I didn’t in the photo, because I was planning to do a full makeup look later on), but I don’t line the eyes. Filling in brows really does polish a look for most, because not everyone has full, natural brows that are well-shaped and have no sparse spots. You want to choose a brow color that is a shade lighter or the same as your natural brow, as a rule of thumb. Going darker can often be too stark (which is why many artists do not recommend black as a fill-in color) and unnatural.

For the lips | I like nudes, neutrals, and light to medium pinks. If you want to truly stay in the “I’m Not Really Wearing Any Makeup” look, choosing light colored lipsticks gives your lips some color without drawing attention to them. Of course, with everything else so natural, this just might be the perfect time to use that Russian Red lipstick you keep stashed away!

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

58 thoughts on “Looks – Ultra Natural, The “I’m Not Really Wearing Makeup” Look

  1. lisa

    Love this type of look!

  2. Rebekah

    It’s good to see a post about this–I love over the top makeup to go out, but I don’t do a full face every day for work either!

  3. Carrie

    This is really beautiful. you naturally look like you have a bit of subtle eyeliner on! lucky!

  4. victoria

    you have lovely features. the makeup just enhances them, oh that’s what this is all about right, duh.

  5. lala

    yeah I love the no makeup look as well…my day really is just, N MSF, contour/blush, mascara, lipbalm or a nudie.

  6. ilovecheese

    Oohh..you look so glowy-pretty! Your cheeks draw attention – hey look sun kissed! Usually I have this look when I’m really really late and had no time for blush/eye-shadow. Still in search for the best foundation which can cover my acne scars without seeming like I’ve caked it up! MAC Studio Fix offers good coverage, can you suggest anything else? I’ve deep pitted scars – Do I need concealer as a rule?

    • toni

      in my opinion bare minerals makeup does a great job covering exsisting acne and scars from old acne. It was my saving grace for years!

    • Tanya

      Ms. Cheese – have you looked into microdermabration? It really worked wonders for my acne scars. There is also lasar work done by a Derma which is a longer term solution for removal of scars. Its pricy but I did it and OMG did it work wonders on my skin.

      • ilovecheese

        I’m actually very seriously considering this, but afraid of any permanent damages! (If any..just scared)

    • Thank you so much! I really like Studio Fix Fluid, much better than Studio Fix powder. Not sure which you were referring to. I have heard really good things about mineral makeup for coverage, though.

  7. tricia

    I so love this look, and again really great advice. thanks Christine.

  8. ham

    any rec for the eyeshadow to use?
    thanks

  9. Your skin is definitely being nice in this one girl! But then, when is it not? Your skin always looks so flawless.

    • Thanks! It’s *almost* recovered from its last bout of nastiness. In photos it tends to look decent at all times (thankfully?!), but I never seem to escape a few patches of bumpy yucky stuff.

  10. Nell

    This is my kind of look, really great for work!
    As always you are right on point, thank you, Christine!

  11. Zsofi

    Really natural yet beautiful,easy to do and it inspires me not to go to school without a totally bare face no more :-D i used to do this because this way i could sleep a bit more in the morning.
    i really like the way You wear your hair on this pic.
    and i am delighted,that i’m not the only one,who’s skin is acting nice on some days,very bad on others….
    sometimes i don’t even need makeup,sometimes i could cry when i look at my skin…

    • Definitely! I go barefaced if I’m REALLY pressed for time and the skin is “okay” on its own. I’ve been using a new shampoo, which I’m liking, so maybe that is helping the hair.

      Oh, trust me, my skin makes me feel the same way. I call myself “pizza face” whenever it’s being mean to me.

      • Zsofi

        “pizza face” LOL!!! :-DDDD i wish You never have a pizza face again!
        stick with this new shampoo,Your hair is glossy,full of life.the word “split ends” really wasn’t invented for You :-D
        this makeup makes the nice shapes of Your brows really obvious :-D

  12. Lindsay

    for my au natural look i usually use a mineralize that has no glitter or sparkly stuff (i.e. medium deep). I apply that all over with a large brush, then i shade by brow with texture, and apply three coats of zoom lash..

  13. Great ultra natural look with easy, quick steps.

    You look flawless!

  14. Tanya

    I adore your natural look and really apprecite you adding variety to the site, its nice to see variety in color but I really dig this very different look.

    • Thanks, Tanya :) I know natural isn’t always the most exciting or fun to look at, compared to bold colors, but I know at the same time, many of us aren’t sporting bright blue 24/7. I’m glad you liked it!

  15. Pia

    Great natural look, Christine. Very natural yet made up. I was wondering, though, how do you decide on which SFF shade to choose? Do you go darker that your natural color or go lighter? The same with the choice of powder? I see that your powder is lighter than your foundation. Any guideline here?

    The reason why I ask is I use select loose powder nc20. But when I went to MAC counter yesterday to try out SF powder/foundation, the MA said I should try NC35 as NC 20 will be too light on me. However, when I put it on, it’s still very light. NC40 looks better on me. I went home empty handed (powder wise as I still bought Avarice lg and bronze powder).

    Your thought will be much appreciated.

    • Hey Pia!

      Thank you so much :)

      Actually, I’m NC30, based on when I got matched at MAC. Your foundation should be the same shade as your skin – probably go lighter rather than darker if there isn’t an exact match… My powder is a different color only because I bought it like, five years ago, and only started using it (and I figure, it’s only a slight difference, and I use it sparingly). Otherwise I’d have a matching one :)

  16. Tonee

    Nice make up, Christine! I use similar colors (Smashbox Soft Lights instead of Dior) and MAC Blot pressed powder when I do a “no make” up look. I love Touch topped with Revealing for a nude lip – haven’t tried N lipsticks and glasses yet.

  17. LALALALALOVE

    OMG I LOVE THAT LOOK!…I’ve been waiting for this for a long time LOL. I basically look like that everyday, but I never thought of using contour before=/.

  18. Hannah

    Hey! Finally, a more natural and do-able look that I can walk out in public in without looking like a nightwalker!!! I like the natural look, and you look so much prettier here. The fresh and natural look is my favorite look for you =)

  19. Lydia

    I love this look too! This is how I usually wear my makeup to work :)

  20. Sara

    you look GORGEOUS, with or without a lot of makeup.

    this is a semi random question: the studio fix makeup i use is C2, what type of undertones does that mean i have? the sales person who was trying to find my shade picked that but when i wear it i feel like i am a slightly different shade than i am with out it.

    sorry i know that was random but i know you can help me. :D

  21. Leanne

    You are gorgeous and your tips are really helpful =]

  22. cilla

    omg, I love this look! thank you for putting this up, I found your site really helpful. this is my favorite look because of my daily circumstances and the convenience. I’m just starting to get into makeup, MAC mostly, and I love everything you have here!!

    btw, for the eyeshadow, do you think something like soba, seedling, shroom from mac would be good for this natural look??

  23. Michelle

    I think You are Very beautiful. Keep up the good work!!! Also thanx soooooo much for your tutorials, I’m becoming a MACaholic,Teehee.

  24. gaby

    Thanks …. you look cool. I use an awesome mineral makeup range from New Zealand called Radiessence. Their foundation and bronzing powder rocks.Hardly looks like I’m wearing any makeup cause I love a no makeup look. Check it on http://www.radiessence.com