Look Natural: The Minimalist’s Guide to Makeup

"Minimalist makeup should take a minimal amount of time," says beauty expert Susan Giordano. "But a monochromatic look still needs a little bit of color to it." Here's how to achieve an effortless, chic nude look for all skin tones.

Step 1

Squirt a pea-size amount of sheer liquid foundation onto the back of your hand. Swirl a foundation brush into the foundation and then blend it all over your face to even out your skin tone.

We like:

  • For Fair Skin: Shiseido Sheer and Perfect Foundation SPF 18 in Natural Light Ivory ($35)
  • For Medium Skin: By Terry Sheer Expert Foundation in Intense Beige ($65)
  • For Dark Skin: NARS Sheer Matte Foundation in Tortuga ($44)


Step 2

Take your lipstick and place a dot on each cheek. Blend the lipstick into the apples of your cheeks with your fingers.

We like:

  • For Fair Skin: Jouer Lip Sheer in Maui ($22)
  • For Medium Skin: Boots No7 Sheer Temptation Lipstick in Lovely ($9.99)
  • For Dark Skin: IMAN Luxury Moisturizing Lipstick in Wild Thing ($10)

Step 3

Work a black or brown eye pencil into the upper lash line, as close to the lashes as possible, and smudge with a cotton swab. Next, define your lower lash line by gently smudging the same pencil on the outer two-thirds of the eye. Swipe one (and only one!) coat of black mascara onto lashes.

Step 4

Groom brows with a brow brush, and use a brow pencil to fill in any sparse spaces. Use small quick strokes that mimic brow hairs. Try the Mally Beauty Brow Brush Combo ($15).

Step 5

Pat the same lipstick you used on your cheeks onto lips with your finger to create a soft stain.

Step 6

Finish the look by using concealer where necessary -- under your eyes, around nostrils, or anywhere you have a blemish to cover. 

We like:

  • For Fair Skin: Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer in Ivory ($24)
  • For Medium Skin: Stila Perfecting Concealer in E ($23)
  • For Dark Skin: Dermablend Quick-Fix Concealer with SPF 30 in Deep ($23)

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