|Probably the only nice-ish picture of me without make-up!|
Today's blog post is going to be quick and simple - I was originally going to be posting a make-up tutorial for my lips in yesterday's post, but because I left it too late in the day to take pictures, I had no natural daylight to use and so my camera had them coming out looking blurry and rubbish! So as for my lips tutorial, that might have to wait til later in the week.
Anyway, upon trawling through my old phone's pictures this evening, I stumbled upon this picture (above) and was quite surprised! Recently, I've been so fed up of my skin and the way my face looks without make-up, I'd been searching everywhere for ways to get it looking just a bit nicer without having to pile the make-up on. Then I remembered this photo, which I must of took around last September, with me not wearing any! It surprised me because I actually look okay-ish here - and I suddenly remembered these little things I did to get my skin and complexion looking much nicer, without the use of foundation or concealer, or anything like that.
So today I will share with you my top three tips on how to look your best au naturale!
1. Fake tan!
Personally, for me, fake tan is my life-saver. It makes me look better almost instantly whenever I apply it, my body, my face, everything! I think it's because it gives your skin that lovely, healthy-looking glow, which then makes us look 10 times more attractive, and that's certainly the case with me. I know you're probably thinking "she doesn't look brown at all in that photo" and, well, I guess you're right, but it was only just developing and I distinctly remember putting it on that night! (I'm also a very pale-skinned girl naturally, so yes, I'm usually even whiter!)
So my number one rule is to slap that tan on - not too much, obviously, you don't want to look like a carrot, but just apply it very liberally over your cheeks, chin, and forehead. Use a wash-off one in case you're afraid it comes out too strong, and make sure you exfoliate and moisturize your entire face and hairline before applying.
I used St Moriz Instant Self-Tanning Mousse in Medium (usually cheap and well worth it!).
P.S If you can get a natural tan on your face.. even better!
(Lack of sunny weather in England and pale genes make this impossible for me)
2. Groom those eyebrows!
This may seem fairly obvious, but I think it dramatically improves the whole appearance of your face when you're not wearing make-up. Okay, I confess, I do actually have eyebrow pencil on here, so I'm slightly cheating with the whole 'no make-up' thing, but who cares! It works, and doesn't take long to do at all!
I obviously plucked them first, so if you do anything make sure it's that - you want them to look neat and tidy, no stray hairs! And then really, the only reason I applied pencil was to get them looking darker and more refined - my eyebrows are quite sparse and light-brown coloured naturally so I kinda needed to, but if you have naturally dark eyebrows, feel free to skip this step!
I used Soap and Glory Arch De Triumph (£8.00) to fill in my brows and create a more defined shape, using light, feathery strokes with the taupe end, and using the highlighter end to smudge underneath the peak of my brow (the arch). I pretty much use this every time I do my eyebrows, so I swear by it, but any eyebrow pencil/highlighter will do!
Having your eyebrows looking great will open up your eyes so much more, making you look great too! :)
3. Angles and Lighting
Now, really this step is for people wanting to actually take nice pictures of themselves without make-up, or just nice full-face pictures altogether, but I really believe this method is probably just as crucial as the actual appearance of your face!
There are, generally, two main reasons as to why this photo came out looking good - one is lighting. Firstly, I took this on my old phone camera, so it's not a digital camera - it's not capturing every single little detail/imperfection on my skin! I also didn't have it set to flash, which is hugely important. If I had, it would of probably washed out my entire face, highlighted any spots, and just made me look plain weird! And lastly, I took this at night-time, with dim lighting coming from the other side of the bathroom. You don't want any harsh, bright, over-head lights, but you obviously don't want it extremely dark either, as it will likely just create unsightly shadows on random areas of your face. But as you can see, the lighting falls nicely on the left-side of my cheek, almost like highlighting my cheekbone!
So, obvious lesson - if you're taking natural pics, I would recommend not using daylight. I don't have perfect skin (in fact, quite the opposite) so light from outdoors will only make every blemish on your face visible to the camera!
And the second thing - angles!
I actually had two pictures like this on my phone, in the same setting, also not wearing make-up. The difference? One of them was of my face straight-on, and the other, as you can see, is with my face angled slightly to the left. This one came out looking so much better than the straight-on one, and it's a tip I've seen countless times for photo taking! When taking a picture of yourself, lift your chin up slightly, and position your head slightly to left, or whichever you think is your best side (I had more zits on the right side of my jaw, but it's actually been proven that the left side of our faces shows more emotion anyway, which is why we seem to find them more attractive!) and raise your eyebrows slightly, or 'smile with your eyes' as they say.
Next thing? Smile with your mouth!
But not too harshly - figure out what your best smile looks like (I prefer to smile with my mouth closed on photos rather than big teethy grins) but anything that's slight and not too forced looks good! I think it's also a good idea to have your hair down when you're not wearing much make-up, I didn't really do anything to mine and it's a bit of a mess but I think it helps frame the face and makes you look less bland!
Oh, and one last thing - you can kinda see how my under-eye shadow is worse on the right side of my face, which is just one more reason I accentuated my left!
So, that's all there is to it really - if you're lucky and have enviable skin, you'll probably have no problem with getting away with the natural look, but if you're anything like me, let me know how it goes and whether these tips helped you!
Some other things I've read around the internet that can supposedly enhance your looks on days where you're skipping make-up is by curling your lashes with an eye-lash curler to, again, open up your eyes, and simply using lip balm to get your lips looking softer yet still natural at the same time.
What's something you do to get your skin looking it's best when you're baring it all?
Let me know in the comments!
*Photos taken by me using my Sony Ericsson Cybershot C905