Spring is finally here, and I know it not just because March snows have turned to April showers,
But because my In Box is full of e-mails from make-up and skin care companies touting “The New Look” for spring and how to achieve it with their products.
And The New Look for spring is…..drum roll, please……No Makeup Makeup. I guess to the cosmetic world Fifty Shades of Grey means Fifty Shades of Neutral.
Of course, pulling off the perfect No Makeup Look doesn’t mean running around with no makeup. Oh, non, non, non – jamais de la vie!! You still need about the same amount of makeup as before, if not more, but in different colors. How clever of you, Cosmetics Companies. You almost had us fooled.
Look closely at the picture of these two young models. The neutral makeup here depends on three important elements for impact: contouring, highlighting and emphasizing one strong feature, in this case, the eyebrows. With a strong eyebrow, you can use less eye makeup and still draw attention to your eyes. (M-T Tip: A quick and easy way to turn daytime eye makeup into evening eye makeup without globbing on the mascara is simply by creating a more dramatic eyebrow.)
Here, Laura Mercier, herself, shows us how to use her new Contouring Makeup Palette to create that perfectly made up No Makeup Look.
A note of caution, Ladies, contouring can be a bit tricky for those of us with fair skin. It has to be applied very carefully and very lightly or it just looks like smudges. Every summer I see young girls with slashes of bronzer all over their faces in the mistaken belief that it gives them that natural, healthy, sun-kissed glow. No, it doesn’t! Their faces just look dirty.
The No Makeup Look, when done well, is a fresh and beautiful look, but it’s not easy to get right, especially for those of us d’un certain âge – too much and it defeats the purpose; too little and we look washed out.
Pick one feature to highlight. I always opt for the lips. A bright lip color is an older woman’s best friend. It quite simply lights up your face. Notice that I said “bright” not “dark.” Dark lipstick on a neutral face at our age can be quite deadly.
Add some subtle color to your cheeks. While still staying in the neutral palette, try warming them up with a color a shade or two darker than your foundation, tinted moisturizer or face powder. Don’t go too dark or the subtle effect will be lost and your cheeks will look muddy.
Stick to highlighting for daytime. A wash of highlighter across the cheekbones, on the brow bones and down the center of your nose will have a subtle, brightening effect. Save the darker contouring for evening when the lighting is more diffuse and forgiving.
So, go ahead and give the No Makeup Makeup Look a try this spring. Who knows? Maybe they’ll think you just woke up looking like this.
Speaking of spring, I’ll be taking off for my Spring Break this week. Why should college students have all the fun? And, where does this femme d’un certain âge go for Spring Break? Paris, of course. A bientôt!