Mastering "No-Makeup" Makeup

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If you've spent any time on the internet in the last year, you're already well aware that "no-makeup" makeup is trending. This fresh-faced take on a classic look is one that, while simple, might be intimidating to attempt if you're unsure where to begin. You're using makeup to make it look like you're not wearing hardly any makeup, after all.

For insight, we connected with expert Angie Miller (a.k.a. Makeup by Angie Miller), whose impressive career spans 20 years—10 of which were spent at M.A.C. Cosmetics as a retail makeup artist and in management. For the last 10 years, Miller has worked in West Michigan as a full-time commercial, corporate, TV, film and video makeup artist. She explained the "no-makeup" look is one that gives fresh, effortless and natural vibes, while still using a full face of makeup.

"This look is trending because it focuses on healthy-looking skin without the look of heavy products sitting on the skin," Miller said. "It's perfecting eyes, cheeks, lips and skin, minus all the vibrant colors and textures we see in other makeup trends. It's a look that promotes looking natural and authentic. If you want to visually see makeup on the skin, this look probably isn't for you."

With the help of Miller's tips, let's dive in.

"I love using a sheer to medium foundation like Ilia True Skin Serum Foundation, which has skincare built into it to achieve a beautiful, natural glow. Try pressing it into the skin with a damp Beauty Blender. The result is healthy, radiant skin!"

"I'm big into cream blushes. Any blush that you can warm up on your fingertips and tap in with a blush brush or Beauty Blender will look natural and effortless."

"Forget the pencils and super defined brows for this look. Opt instead for a tinted brow gel, like Glossier Boy Brow. The small wand allows you to softly groom brows with a tint of color, and the pomade holds the hairs in place."

"I love using a bronzer softly washed over the lids with a fluffy brush to create a soft diffused look! Charlotte Tilbury is fantastic. Another tip: There are so many products available that are multi-functional for eyes, cheeks, and lips for just a tint of color. These are also fantastic options for a soft wash of color."

"I'm really loving tinted lip balms right now for this look. The MAKEUP BY MARIO MoistureGlow™ Plumping Lip Serums are gorgeous for this look. I use them on set all the time."

According to Miller, mastering this look overall means there are some products to set on the backburner.

"Avoid bold colors, glitters, metallics, graphic eyeliner, and dramatic contouring and highlighting," she said. "If you're looking in the mirror and noticing the makeup before anything else, then you've probably added a bit too much. If you've achieved this look correctly, be prepared for compliments on how great your skin looks!"

And though it's easy to be a bit heavy handed at first, the beauty of makeup is that it can be whatever you want it to be.

"The great thing about makeup is that it's easy to remove and try again," Miller emphasized. "Practice makes perfect and there are so many products on the market these days to help you achieve any look that you are going for. Have fun with it!"

Written by Sarah Suydam, Managing Editor of West Michigan Woman.

This article originally appeared in the Oct/Nov '22 issue of West Michigan Woman.


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