Nude makeup may sound like a contradiction in terms. Why use makeup if not to look made up? But in truth, nude makeup doesn’t have to mean bland makeup. Creating a nude look simply involves using natural and neutral tones to complement your facial features in a subtle way. Nude makeup is anticipated to be a huge cosmetics trend in fall 2015, but it’s also a timeless look that’s appropriate for almost any occasion. Here’s a primer on how to achieve a nude look that looks natural and classy, without looking unfinished.
Base: Start off by finding a foundation that’s very true to your skin tone. Bodyography’s Natural Finish Foundation is a great line of oil-free foundation that truly does achieve a natural finish. Take extra time to find a foundation color that really does match you. Don’t be shy about asking cosmetics store employees to color match you–they’ll have a better idea of your skin tone than you do, believe it or not!
Once you find your perfect shade of foundation, apply it with a brush or a sponge. If you opt for a sponge. take caution to apply only foundation enough to even out your skin without looking too heavy. After you finish that base layer, use a powder brush to lightly apply a finish powder, again in a color that very closely matches your skin tone. You should apply just enough powder to give your face a nice matte look.
Eyes: A nude face doesn’t mean going without color around the eyes. In fact, a good nude look should predominantly emphasize two facial features: the eyes and the lips. To make your eyes look naturally beautiful, start by brushing on both a brown and a bronze eyeshadow on your lids. Try Bloom’s Espresso and Bronze shades. Apply the bronze shade first, then layer on the brown shade to add depth. Add a subtle touch of eyeliner, right up against your lashes, to give the eyes more definition. Don’t go too heavy on the eyeliner– we loved the high school goth look in the 90s, but it is far behind us now. After applying eyeliner, curl your eyelashes and brush on one coat of mascara–again, not too much. For extra credit, add a tiny dot of off-white eye highlighter to the inside corner of your eye. The highlighter is very subtle, but gives your eyes an added sparkle that can be really charming.
Cheeks: For this natural look, you’ll want to highlight your cheeks only very slightly. Keep in mind that for the perfect nude look, you want to highlight your eyes and lips, so the cheeks should take a backseat. Find a shade of blush that has a slight tint, but is very close to your natural skintone. This may sound limiting, but it’s not. There are a ton of rose, beige, peach, and brown shades that all qualify as nude, and will give your face a nice, warm glow without giving you cheeks like Pikachu. If you’re unsure what shade to choose, err on the side of caution: if you’re fair-skinned, avoid pinks and oranges, go peach. If you’re darker-skinned, avoid pinks and reds–go coffee or brown!
Lips: Besides the eyes, the most important feature of a nude look is the lips. However, your lips still shouldn’t look dramatic, just pretty and nicely noticeable. Begin by finding a nude lipstick that works well with your skintone. Fairer-skinned folks should lean toward a sheer, peachy tone that’s not too orange (similar to choosing a blush). Those with olive or dark skin will do well with a caramel or chocolate-brown color, and should stay away from pinks or extreme reds. Whatever your skin color, apply just one coat of your lipstick or lip gloss–not too much, lest it look too heavy. If your lipstick is on the matte side, consider going over it with a lip top coat or Lip Plump to give your lips a nice sheen and make them stand out a little more.
Nails: Nude nail polish does an amazing job of making your nails look perfect without the use of extreme colors. Try out Bloom’s shade Lucy I. It’s an easy way to make your nails look naturally shiny and even-toned. Plus, if the unthinkable happens and your manicure chips, it’s barely perceptible with a shade so subtle.