I’ve mentioned here and there that I’ve not been wearing foundation in the past few months due to sheer laziness and just a change in how I feel about makeup lately. When I first started with makeup, it was really about playing and experimenting with new products and new techniques. I had so much fun slapping on the various products onto my face and going full glam every single day. Recently, I felt a little overwhelmed with all the new product releases and how YouTube’s beauty channels evolved. It could be age as well, but I currently am fancying the more natural and less-is-more outlook on my makeup routine.
As I do have oily skin, I still would dust a thin layer of setting powder onto the skin to help mattify the skin (as my sunscreen makes me skin look greasy) and make my powder products go on more smoothly.
To start, I always begin by applying my sunscreen. This should be the last step of your skincare routine but I usually like to wait till I am applying my makeup versus in the mornings as I personally feel that the protection would last longer when I am outside.
After, I would apply my primer, if I were to apply one that day. My current favourite is the Becca Backlight Priming Filter which gives such a dewy glow to the skin and even after powder, it still leaves an inherent glow. This primer is said to help prep, prime, and prolong foundation wear. Even without foundation, I am still huge fan of how this primer makes my skin looks and because of its mixture of crushed pearls, it diffuses the light and thus, my imperfections as well.
Next, I would go in with my IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Undereye Corrector to colour correct and neutralise the dark brownish undertones under the eyes. I can’t sing the praises of this undereye concealer enough and I really recommend it. In short, it neutralises well, doesn’t cake up and isn’t heavy on the skin.
Once my skin is prepped, I would go in to do my eyebrows. My product of choice lately has been a pencil, as I find it to be quicker and fuss-free. My eyebrow pencils are constantly in rotation, as I don’t have a particular one that I absolutely adore. I generally prefer the 3 in 1 pencils, which incorporate the brow pencil, brow powder and a spoolie to help blend everything out. This just reduces the hassle! Currently, I am enjoying the Excel Powder and Eyebrow*. I use mine in the shade EX PD05 which is a dark brown with warm undertones. The brow pencil isn’t too waxy nor creamy, giving me enough control to draw in the shape. I then will go in with the powder to set it and to fill in any gaps that I might have missed. If you’re interested, Excel Cosmetics can be found in Tokyu Hands and Don Don Donki.
Eyeshadows would be next and I still do love to play around with them, so there isn’t a set eyeshadow palette that I would use constantly. However, I do find myself doing more natural looks recently, with just a shade or two in the crease and a shimmery one on the lid.
I currently have eyelash extensions on so mascara is a step that I have not been incorporating in my routine for the past month or so. I do miss applying mascara and since my eyelashes have been dropping, it’s about time before I go back to them.
That brings me to my favourite step, concealing! As I have dark undereyes, nothing pleases me more and makes me look more awake than applying concealer under the eyes. I generally prefer liquid concealers that come with a wand for easier and quicker application and one with at least a medium coverage to ensure that any darkness is concealed. My current favourite is the Clio Kill Cover Airy Fit Concealer* as it blends into the skin and it does not look nor feel heavy on the skin. I generally prefer to apply the concealer onto the spots that require some concealing and under the eyes and I’ll leave it on, without blending it, for a moment or two while I apply my mascara. I leant this little trick from Jackie Aina and I did find that this lil nifty trick helps to increase the coverage slightly and since it has time for the concealer to warm up on the skin (due to our body temperature), the concealer does blend nicer too. If you prefer a bright undereye, you can opt for a lighter concealers under the eye and one that matches your skin tone for any spot concealing if you prefer. I am generally lazy so I use the same one; I’ll just use apply a powder of a lighter shade under the eyes if I intend to brighten the undereye a tad bit.
Next, powder! I am currently obsessed with the Everyday Minerals Finishing Dust (which I mentioned here as well). I would just use a big fluffy brush and apply a thin layer over the skin to help set the concealer applied and remove the sheen. Afterwards, I would simply go into my powder bronzer (if I do), blush and highlight which rotates every single day to ensure all my love is distributed over my collection. Side note though, the Essence Sun Club Shimmering Bronzing Powder for Lighter Skin is absolutely lovely for giving a warm glow to the skin.
My second last step would be to use a lighter powder under the eyes and to clean up any areas (such as if my bronzer gets too low). Currently, I’ve been using my Makeup Revolution Pressed Powder in Translucent. You can clearly see the love in the images (and I rarely ever hit pan on items!). Even though it states its translucent, I do find that this powder does apply with some colour so do take note of that if you’re planning on trying it out. I don’t know if I am seeing things as well but this seems to impart an ever so slight coverage to the skin too. It feels creamy when I swatch it with my finger and I do like that it does not cause additional powdery finish or cakiness after application. Applying this under the eyes gives it a lift and adds noticeable brightness and I am really enjoying it. This, by the way, is only £2 on Tam Beauty!
Lastly, I would go in with a setting spray or facial mist to help set the powders and reduce any cakiness that can be created with all the powders.
These may seem like a ton of steps but I find that by eliminating the foundation step, I save quite a bit of time that would otherwise be used for blending the foundation into the skin. This isn’t a routine that came about to save time, but it just reduces the hassle in my opinion. It also gives a more natural look and feel to the look and I do thoroughly enjoy it. I do not foresee myself stopping anytime soon, but if I do, you’ll probably see a foundation product popping in my favourites probably.
If you didn’t get the steps as I talked way too much, here they are listed once more for you. Please feel free to change them up or eliminate them as you please. I even change it up sometimes with liquid blushes and highlighters! These steps are just what I have been doing currently for the past few months.
3. Colour correct
8. Powder the face
9. Blush, Bronzer, Highlight
10. Ligher powder for under the eyes
11. Setting spray
Here is a look at how these products look on me. Please don’t mind my messy and sparse eyelash extensions, they are currently holding on for dear life these days. As you can see, my imperfections still show, but that doesn’t bother me anymore. Also, I have been using retinol recently and I do have some dry patches on my cheeks, chin, around my nose and between the brows. The powders tend to cling onto these areas so the setting spray or facial mist is crucial for me as it adds a boost of hydration while reducing the cake. By the way, my lips are the Ultra Satin Lip in Dreamy by Colourpop (the collaboration with Kathleen Lights! Love it). Eyes are the Dream Street Eyeshadow Palette from the same collab with Super Shock Shadow in Frog over the lids.
Hope these steps were useful in some way and if you have not gone without foundation before, I recommend you just trying it once! I used to think of foundation as a shield of some sort, to cover any imperfections that I wasn’t too big a fan and to strive for my idea of looking presentable. But now, as I grow older, I realised that perfection does not exist and I have also developed a more DGAF attitude to societal pressures. I know imperfections and scarring isn’t something we’d like to show to the world, but ultimately, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with having those and I like my skin to breathe once in a while.
Do you ever go foundation free?