How Much Makeup is Needed to Create a Natural Look

I wanted to write a post regarding natural makeup and what it takes to create a full face natural look.  There seems to be a misconception that creating a look that appears to be natural requires less products.  The truth is, it actually still requires just as many products as a look that appears more dramatic.  When you use more products, the good news is that you do end up using much less of each product so a little goes a long way.

For someone who wants to keep their products to an absolute minimum, it can definitely be done but the face typically will not look as complete, potentially will not last as long throughout the day, and might not look as flawless by the end.  As a professional makeup artist, my visual standard of perfection is much higher than the average person so that is why I will continue to use this many products because I understand how they work and the exact purpose they serve.  I do not like to cut corners when it comes to any makeup application so however many products it takes to get to the end result, I will still use them.

I made a video to show every single product I was wearing today.  I do not wear the same exact products every day as I do enjoy switching up the eye shadow, lip color, and blush.  This is just a general idea of what an every day look for me entails.  I will list the products below that are mentioned in my video:

  • MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot “Soft Ochre” (eye shadow primer)
  • MAC “Vanilla” eye shadow (lid color)
  • Kiko Milano #09 eye shadow (highlight)
  • Addiction “Flash Back” eye shadow (crease color)
  • MAC “Bronze” (outer crease color)
  • Maybelline Line Stiletto “Blackest Black” liquid eye liner (top liner)
  • MAC “Teddy” eye kohl pencil liner (bottom liner)
  • Lancome Hypnose Drama mascara
  • Red Cherry “Wispy” false lashes
  • Benefit Porefessional face primer
  • NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer “Custard – Medium 1”
  • NARS Sheer Glow “Deauville – Light 4” liquid foundation
  • Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Talc-Free “Translucent” pressed face powder
  • Becca “Moonstone” pressed highlighting powder
  • NARS “Benares – Dark 1” powder foundation (cheek contour)
  • Chanel “280 Golden Sun” powder blush
  • Anastasia “Ebony” brow powder duo
  • Lancome “Sable” eye brow pencil
  • NARS Velvet Matte lip pencil “Bahama”
  • Lipland “Fifty-Fifty” liquid lipstick

As you can see, the final look is very natural looking.  However, I ended up using a total of 20 products to create it, hard to believe (I know)!

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Eye Makeup Brushes – What I Use and Why

I created a makeup video to briefly go over the makeup brushes I use most of the time when applying eye makeup.  I have used various brushes but these are definitely my go to brushes.  Before going into any detailed videos on eye makeup application, I wanted to first go over the tools because without the right brushes, it is hard to really apply the techniques.

In this video, I talk about these eye makeup brushes:

  • Makeup Designory #300 brush – I use this for applying eye shadow primer/base (cream based product).
  • MAC #239 brush – This brush is specifically used for applying eye shadow (powder) onto the lids.
  • MAC #224 – This brush is great for applying eye shadow highlighter under the brows.  It is also a great multi-purpose brush and can be used for applying under eye concealer.
  • MAC #217 – This is an absolute necessity when it comes to eye shadow blending into the crease.  It is fluffy but also tight to really get into the crease area.  I own at least 10 of these brushes!  I recommend having at least two of these, one used in the entire crease and one to blend at the outer corners of the crease.
  • Sephora #207 – This is a double ended brush serving different purposes.  The angled side I like to use for filling in the brows (powder product) while the smudge side I like to use for applying eye shadow as bottom liner or for smudging the bottom liner for a more smokey effect.
  • MAC #266 – This angled brush is best for applying a gel or liquid liner and is especially great for creating a winged eye liner.

Overall, as long as you can find brushes that are similar to the ones I mentioned in terms of the shape and size, then they should be sufficient.  The only one I strongly recommend you get specifically is the MAC #217 brush, I find this to truly be the best eye shadow crease blending brush.

The First Step to EVERY Makeup Application

Harmony's bridal makeup applicationEver wonder when doing your makeup, if there is a “correct” sequence in which you should be applying your makeup?  I find this to be a very important subject matter to discuss when it comes to makeup artistry as the steps of the application can make a difference.  Keep in mind that this series of steps can also vary from artist to artist.

Before getting into makeup artistry on a professional level, I always used to apply all my face makeup first (that includes skincare, primer, foundation, powder, blush, etc.) followed by eye makeup and lastly a lip color.  I think for most people, this is what feels most normal and natural.

As I began my journey doing makeup professionally, I realized that it actually makes much more sense to start with all the eye makeup first!  Yes, I know this seems backwards and for me, this was a hard adjustment to make initially but I can explain from a professional point of view the main benefit of starting with your eye makeup first and foremost.

Often times when I begin a makeup application on a client, many are surprised that this is the first step.  For starters, when applying eye shadows, there is often times fall out–which is the excess shadow that flakes and falls underneath the eyes.  This is difficult to prevent because blending the eye shadows with a brush causes the eye shadow to fall and can sometimes get a little messy (especially when using dark shadows for a smokey eye effect).  By applying your eye makeup first, you can clean any excess shadow with a wipe or makeup remover afterwards.  If you had already completed your face makeup, you would be removing the under eye concealer and foundation, meaning you would now need to reapply it.  This wastes times and product.

If you just apply eyeliner and/or mascara, I guess it does not make too much of a difference whether or not you put your eye makeup on first but I still would highly suggest making the switch to applying your eye makeup before anything else!