classic makeup: au naturel

Today, I'm pleased to kick off the first of an eight-part series on classic makeup looks. In addition to being my own personal go-to looks, many of them are the ones best loved by my clients, too.

First up is the Au Naturel. With an emphasis on glowing skin and nude colours, it's perfect for anyone who wants to jeuje (zhush? tszuj? I can't find the official spelling for that word anywhere!) themselves up a bit but not look too made up.

I personally am least comfortable in this look because I like to wear a lot more colour (hence the awkward photos below), but I would say this is the most requested look from my clients! It looks great on absolutely everyone, and is really made for people who don't wear makeup day-to-day but who want to kick things up a notch for special occasions. Because you spend time focusing on luminizing the skin, it photographs beautifully.

Here are some examples:

 Here's my version:

Here's how to do it:

After using your favourite tinted moisturizer, light coverage foundation or bb cream, set the foundation with a dusting of iridescent mineral powder. I like MAC's mineralize. Apply a nude blush under your cheekbones, towards the centre of your face rather than the outer part. This looks more natural and less sculpted.

Use a brow pencil lighter than your own brow colour with light strokes to fill in your brows slightly.

Prep your lids with an eyeshadow primer. I like Covergirl's Beige Blast because it has a bit of shimmer and you can also use it to highlight your cheekbones and cupids bow. Do that too, if you like!

Apply a warm light brown eyeshadow to the outer third of your eyelid, and a shimmery peach tone to the inner two thirds. I used MAC Kid and Stila Oasis. Line your upper lashline with a brown pencil, such as MAC Teddy. If you're like me and eyeliner doesn't stay well, I would recommend using a gel liner (like Sonia Kashuk in Cocoa) to make sure it doesn't stray. Line your lower waterline with a white eyeliner. I like NARS Santa Monica Boulevard because it's waterproof. Finish your eyes with a few coats of mascara.

Line your lips lightly (we don't want a 90s disaster here) with a nude pencil. This is really important if you're pale like me to help define your lip shape. It's less important if you have deeper skin and your lips are naturally more defined. Apply a nude lipstick, taking care to blend it into the liner.

You're done! Final look:

A note on nude lipstick: I don't know about you, but I find it extremely hard to choose a nude lip colour that doesn't make me look zombie-esque. I have too many photos that should be burned where I look seriously ill because I chose an unfortunate shade of nude. I recommend talking to the great people at your favourite makeup counter and having them help you choose the right shade.

My preferred shades are:

Rimmel Nude Delight (featured in this look)
NARS Chihuahua
MAC Hug Me

Lastly, have you entered my portrait session giveaway?