October 15, 2018
When I was in Paris last year, I tried to take in everything about French style. I looked at what women were wearing on the streets of Paris, and when I talked to women that worked in shops and cafés I was surprised and pleased to see that they all seemed to be wearing very little makeup (if any!). It’s so different from the US, where dramatic eyes, thick foundation, and contour rule.
I used to love the art of putting on my makeup. Taking the time to blend my eyeshadow, getting the perfect winged eyeliner, appreciating a flawless finish in my skin. Over time I began to realize that I wore that much makeup because I was insecure. I thought I needed the makeup to be beautiful and to look polished and put together. I started getting tired of the time I took in the mornings to put on my full face, how my oily lids made any kind of eye makeup impossible for extended periods of time, and for possibly perpetuating the idea that women should look like me – taking the 45 minutes in the morning to slowly paint on the perfect facade.
Over the past year, my makeup routine has slowly evolved to only the basics. I slowly stripped away one product after another, and adjusted to my new, slightly less polished exterior and began embracing my flaws.
One of the reasons I’m so drawn to French style and makeup is that the focus is mainly on the flourishes (like blush and lipstick) rather than trying to mimic a perfect everything. When I looked around at French women I saw a lot of people proud of their faces and their natural gifts. You don’t have to contour to make your nose look smaller, line your eyes to make them look bigger, or overdraw your lips to have the appearance of a Kylie Jenner pout. It’s focusing on the parts of you that make you beautiful and drawing the eye to those areas, while also not working so hard to hide your flaws.
A few rules of thumb when going for a minimal French makeup look:
- Play to your strengths, hide your flaws (a little bit).
- Either eyes or lips, rarely both.
- Take care of your skin by using moisturizer, SPF, and other calming products.
- Fresh faced, with moisturizer and sunscreen (you want at least SPF 30). I love this moisturizer and I’ve been using it for years for my combination skin. It’s water based, unscented, and doesn’t leave residue or make it difficult to layer with other products.
2. I like to use color correcting drops to balance my skin without foundation. These drops are very light and settle in seamlessly so you can’t tell I have anything on my skin at all. I like to use apricot colored drops under my eyes for dark circles, and green drops on my nose, around my nose, cheeks and other red areas.
3. Concealer placed strategically on blemishes. I find this one stays well, has great coverage, and blends well with my skin.
4. My eyebrows typically take the longest of my makeup routine. I like for them to look full and natural, and I use this tutorial to help me achieve the look I want. I use Beneift Browvo to set them in place and the Mac Shape + Shade brow tint in the color spiked.
5. Next we have highlighter and bronzer. I place highlighter on my cheekbones (my nose gets oily, so I don’t place any there). Bronzer in the hollows of the cheeks, sides of forehead, and jawline. I usually try not to use bronzer, but I tan really easily and my body usually gets tanner than my face, so I try to even my skin tone out just a bit!
6. I’ve been loving a red lip lately, so I place this matte shade on my lips from Mac in the color Chili. I love this color for fall and on my skin tone because it’s a deeper red with orange undertones and it’s super flattering!
7. Finish off the look with setting powder. I like to use a simple Revlon powder for a slightly matte finish on my nose and forehead and to keep the oil in my skin at bay throughout the day.
And you’re done!
And there you have it! My everyday fall makeup. You may have noticed that I’m not wearing any mascara, and that’s for a couple of reasons. Since I went with a bright red lip, I wanted to play down my eyes so my makeup looked really minimal. I also think it looks really fresh to have no makeup on my eyes since most women don’t leave the house without mascara (and not having to remove it in the evenings is a plus).
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What is your typical everyday makeup like?
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