Why I like ‘natural’ make up

Most of the make up looks I share aren’t the most outrageous and out there kinds. Sure, I love experimenting with make up and try out different techniques and color combinations on a regular basis. However, on the daily I go for a fairly natural look. I will still wear a full face of make up. By natural I do not mean minimal, and my aim is to look put together, yet not too overdone. While overdone seems to become the norm. I see it in students, I see it on the streets and mostly I see it on social media. In today’s blog I’d like to advocate my preference for a natural make up look.

Why I like 'natural' make up

‘Natural’ vs ‘Instagram’ make up

Make up to enhance…

My aim with wearing make up has always been to look more fresh and awake. It’s why I started wearing make up in the first place. I didn’t start wearing it until I was well into my twenties and started my first job. Those 6 AM starts were killer to my under eye bags and slowly but surely different products made its way into my make up routine. I started with just eyeshadow and then added concealer and powder, blush, and lastly, foundation.

As I got better at doing make up and was able to do it more quickly my routine became more elaborate and I now contour and highlight on a daily basis, do my brows, a full fledged 6-shadow eye look and a statement lip. I do all that in 15 minutes, which means there is little time for experimentation. I usually do not try new products during those early starts, as I need something that can be more routine. So no winged liner, no nose contours and no lip liner: anything that is too precise I cannot deal with during an early morning.

Still, I try to not look overdone either. I like natural, dewy foundations that have a light coverage and apply concealer where necessary to create a more flawless base. The only reason why I do that is because bolder lip colors and smokey eyes look strange if your skin isn’t free from any major discolorations. My skin naturally has quite a bit of redness and my eye bags are a deep blue most of the time, so I like covering things up to ensure I don’t look like I’ve been punched in the face or am getting ill.

… not to create a mask

However, the current trend seems to be to not go out the door unless you’ve covered the PEEP out of your face, have drawn on eyebrows that look like you’ve used a stencil, have winged liner that is so sharp it could kill and have a lip line that is mathematically precise. Naturally, I’m exaggerating, but I think you get the point. In my opinion it is overdone and most of the time: unnecessary. Why would you want to hide behind a mask of make up?

Rather than using make up to enhance your features, the IT-thing to do seems to be to alter your face. Contour your nose so it looks like you’ve had a nose job and chisel your cheek bones and create a cut crease to make yourself look like you’re made of stone, not flesh. Everything is about creating a flawless, super highlighted look that might look great under studio lighting, but in real life actually looks quite scary. It’s no longer about appreciating what’s already there, but to cake on so much make up just to look like Kim K or Kylie J.

True story: I once had my make up done in such a way by an MUA. Including a nose contour, a baked under eye concealer with banana powder in the infamous triangle shade and a super bronzed face. I hated it and the compliments I received were: your make up looks great, rather than YOU look great. See, I love to wear make up because it makes me feel good. When my make up is on point, I just feel a little bit better about myself, but I don’t want to create a face that isn’t mine. In fact, I still go out the door with no make up on. Especially when I’m merely running errands or going to the gym, I don’t bother putting on make up as I also appreciate my face just as it is.

I scroll through Instagram and look at the type of make up looks people love and share mostly in the beauty community and it saddens me. It saddens me to see that for some reason good make up now means more, more, more rather than less is more. I very consciously stopped following Youtubers and several Instagram accounts because I was fed up with the overly done, over the top make up looks.

In short…

…make up makes me feel more put together and professional and that’s as far as it goes. I like to experiment and try new things. I love a good highlight, my love for eye looks goes to the moon and back, and I am apparently nearly unrecognizable without my statement vampy lip in various shades of red. It’s not so much about what you wear, but how you wear it that makes the difference. Keep it classy! My rule of thumb: if my make up doesn’t look good in the hideous fluorescent lighting at work, it won’t look good in any lighting at all.

What is your opinion about ‘Instagram’ make up?

8 responses to “Why I like ‘natural’ make up”

  1. I like IG makeup but only to some point. I can’t stand overdrawn lips or those pouty duckfaces a lot of girls do. Duckfaces should have stayed in 2012 or smth. I like false eyelashes but only if they compliment the naturals and don’t look like a piece of plastic. So, basically I like bold makeup but I don’t like bold overdone makeup.

  2. I’m not good at instagram makeup. I’m a big fan of no, minimal, & natural makeup. I think a lot of that comes from Jane magazine make unders & Carmindy’s 5min face rule on What Not to Wear. Same as you I also don’t have the patience or energy in the early morning for anything experimental or too complicated.

    • I still like a full face of makeup mostly, but you don’t have to make it look like you’ve sculpted your face into oblivion either. I really enjoy Lisa Eldridge’s make up tutorials.

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