Barely There Beauty

by ionarosemccabe

backstage-makeup-tips2Okay, I have a bit of a confession to make. After seeing model after model on the S/S ’15 catwalks showcase a significantly simple approach to makeup, I can’t say I was particularly thrilled. ‘Wait – no make-up? Like, at all?’ I caught myself thinking. I assumed designers such as Marc Jacobs and Thakoon, wanted the everyday woman to adopt this look for the summer months, but I think I can speak for most of us by saying they have, without doubt, a huge population of stubborn ladies on their hands. Ask any girl to ditch the foundation, put their lipstick down, or contemplate not possessing  ‘on fleek’ (awful term, I know) eyebrows and you may just have Word War Three on your hands.

Then, one night whilst staring inquisitively at my lacklustre excuses for eyebrows, my opinion shifted slightly and I wondered, ‘Could these things, possibly, maybe grow?’ Cue, the wonder product Vaseline which I have been applying religiously to them since the night of the eyebrow epiphany.  Although no scientific evidence has shown Vaseline causes hair growth, I’m the kind of girl that will believe any Wikihow tutorial that’s placed in my direct vision. However, it has to be said, I have seen somewhat of a difference…on one eyebrow – but still!

May I also add here, that eyebrow threading and extreme maintenance of the anorexic caterpillars were, at one time, an EXTREMELY important part of my beauty regime. Surprisingly, their recent (slight) growth has made me think twice about reaching for my favourite Mac eyebrow pencil. They seem almost too severe when drawn in now and only appropriate at night time accompanied by smoky eyes.

Another thing that shocked me, was hearing from a make-up artist that my everyday make-up was ‘heavy’. This took me back a little. I mean, if we were to compare it to 5 years ago when I favoured a deep orange tan and heavily lined eyes that made me look like the lovechild of an Oompa Loompa and an Anime doll, the look I was sporting a month ago was practically poles apart. Since then, I have reconsidered my general look and realised that although a catseye is cute for the evening, it’s a bit much for my larger-than-life eyes during the daytime.


For a pared-back effect, I prefer to use a light application of MAC‘s Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation applied with a powder brush, along with MAC‘s Studio Fix Concealer under my eyes or to cover any pimples. I love the high-shine effect of highlighter on the cheekbone right now, but after buying  All Over Glow Liquid Illuminator from Topshop, I have been left disappointed. It is quite hard to apply, leaves streaks and doesn’t leave as much luminosity as I would like. Here’s to not making gambles on high street fashion stores make-up lines again! Maybe I’ll try Benefit High Beam next which has proven to be a trusty product among beauty fans.

If your face is quite round like mine, it may also be necessary to contour your cheekbones, temples and jawline to add definition. The MAC bronzing powder in ‘Golden‘ is really good for this as the formula is not orange which is great for the fair skinned and you can build it up gradually.


The eyeshadow palette that I’m currently using is Revlon‘s PhotoReady Primer + Shadow in ‘Metropolitan‘ and is the first product I have tried from the brand. Usually, I like to use MAC’s eyeshow palettes or little pots, but I am actually really enjoying this. I use the petal pink shadow on my lids and highlight my brow bone area with the lighter pink primer. It gives a nice, natural finish with a subtle glow.


For mascara, only a light coating of L’Oréal‘s Double Extension Curl is needed.  I highly recommend this mascara – it does exactly what it advertises and I would even go as far as saying this product is better than Lancome Hypnôse.  Lips can be left completely free from product, but I’m a sucker for a good lipgloss. Try Bobbi Brown‘s Lipgloss in ‘Tangerine’ for a fresh feel which will not only compliment your natural tone but will also add a pop of colour.

It all sounds like a hell of a lot of effort for barely there makeup, but trust me, once you’ve mastered this look, it can be done in the space of 10 minutes, and it may also change the way you think about applying make-up. The main aim here is to enhance features, but not to disguise them.