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How to Look Flawless With Very Little Makeup

Getting a flawless look doesn’t require a lot of makeup if your skin is healthy.
Getting a flawless look doesn’t require a lot of makeup if your skin is healthy.
Dimitri Vervitsiotis/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images

So, how does Eva Longoria's character, Gabrielle, on TV's "Desperate Housewives," look so gorgeous when she wakes up on Wisteria Lane? Well, unlike other housewives across the world waking up, Longoria is wearing makeup.

One of makeup's greatest tricks is to help you look like you're not wearing any at all. And, thankfully, you don't have to be a celebrity. You too can have a flawless face using just a touch of makeup. But, first, you've got to have the basics.

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Any makeup, heavy or light, looks best on healthy skin. A good skin regimen should include these steps:

  • Cleanse and moisturize your skin daily. Clean with gentle cleansers, mild water temperatures and pat your skin dry, leaving on some moisture. Use a good moisturizer morning and night. It's quick and simple but it's amazing how many women omit this routine, adding years to their faces.
  • Exfoliate a few times a week. Use an exfoliating cloth or a facial scrub to slough the dead skin away, renewing your skin's healthy glow. Removing that topmost layer allows products like moisturizers to penetrate into your skin. For oily complexions, exfoliation unclogs pores that cause you to break out.
  • Live a healthy lifestyle. Say yes to daily sunscreen, with both UVA and UVB protection, and no to smoking which damages your skin's collagen and elastin. A diet with foods high in vitamins (A, C and E) and antioxidants as well as plenty of water gives your body and your face a glow. And, regular exercise keeps you healthy, manages weight and de-stresses you, which fights those fine lines and wrinkles that stress can cause.

In your youth, you have the skin you're born with; as you age, you get the skin you work for. Now read how to use makeup to complete that flawless finish.

Today, foundation is no longer just cosmetic. It protects your face from pollutants and bacteria and gives skin a smooth, even look. Here are a few tricks for a natural, light makeup look:

  • Use primer: A foundation primer with silica "fills" in lines, smoothing your skin so foundation won't cake up or sink into wrinkles.
  • Warm it up: Warm your foundation in your palm, giving it a more liquid consistency that goes on smoothly

Other options, in lieu of foundation, include tinted moisturizers, concealers, mineral powder or bronzers; these will even out your skin tone, giving your face that smooth, silky look. Likewise, look for foundations described as "sheer" and "lightweight."

Here are some other ways to get a natural look with makeup.

Blush: The "Seinfeld" character, George, described his ideal blind date as having "a pinkish hue." In reality, most women apply blush too low and often too heavy, looking like Bozo the Clown. For a healthy, natural glow, cream blushes are a great option or try a cheek stain that simply enhances your natural color without the sharp color of traditional blush.

Eyes: Eyes are the windows to your soul, so even when going for a light look, focus on your eyes. A neutral, all-over lid color or a tinted eye primer is easy, looks natural and evens out the eyelid's color. If you don't like mascara, curl your eyelashes to define them. If eyeliner is too heavy for you, omit it, applying extra coats of mascara and really working the brush into the roots of the lashes.

Lips: To avoid Great Aunt Hilda's "old lady red" that always bleeds into her wrinkles, exfoliate your lips by brushing them with a toothbrush. Then, choose a tinted lip balm (with SPF) that gives you moisture and a touch of color, making your lips look younger. Lip stains and light, neutral glosses have the same effect and give you a natural look that Aunt Hilda wouldn't dare wear.

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Sources:

  • Becker, Kate. "Best Natural Looking Makeup." Prevention. 2012. (April 24, 2012). http://www.prevention.com/defy-your-age/best-natural-looking-makeup
  • Blushing Basics. "No Makeup {Makeup Look}. October 23, 2011. (April 24, 2012). http://www.blushingbasics.com/2011/10/no-makeup-makeup-look.html
  • Health.com "Exfoliating 101: How to Let Fresh, Radiant Skin Shine Through." (May 8, 2012). http://www.health.com/health/article/0,,20410841,00.html
  • Levitt, Shelley. "Tips for Glowing, Gorgeous Skin." (April 25, 2012). http://www.webmd.com/healthy-beauty/features/tips-for-gorgeous-skin
  • Magsaysay, Melissa. "Creating a flawless 'no-makeup' summer face." Los Angeles Times. May 30, 2010. April 23, 2012. http://articles.latimes.com/2010/may/30/image/la-ig-beauty-20100530
  • The Mayo Clinic. "Skin Care: 5 tips for healthy skin." (April 26, 2012). http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/skin-care/SN00003
  • Miller, Alisa. "50 Tips for Healthier Skin at Any Age." RNcentral.com. May 6, 2008. (April 24, 2012). http://www.rncentral.com/nursing-library/careplans/50_tips_for_healthier_skin_at_any_age
  • Peel, Anna. "How to Get Healthy Skin with Minimal Effort." Dailyglow.com. (April 26, 2012). http://www.dailyglow.com/how-to-get-healthy-skin-with-minimal-effort.html
  • Total Beauty. "How to Get the No-Makeup Makeup Look." (April 25, 2012.) http://www.totalbeauty.com/content/article/no-makeup-makeup

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