In recent years, beauty and makeup grew significantly more complicated. Between the beauty YouTuber phenomenon and the transformative powers of contouring, makeup is far from low-maintenance these days. And let's face it. We've more than enjoyed experimenting.
Still, there’s also demand for simpler, easy-to-do makeup for the days when you just don’t want to do that much (if ever). Low-maintenance beauty is my thing, especially this year when my social activity has dramatically reduced. On a day-to-day basis, I try to do my best off-duty model impression with neat brows, a quick slick of concealer, and blush. The idea isn't to be perfect but presentable and refreshed.
Now, low-maintenance beauty does not have to mean zero maintenance. Instead, we prioritise convenience over long, drawn-out routines and seek products that work overtime doing more than one job. Minimalist brands such as Glossier and BareMinerals are known for their simple yet effective products that speed up the makeup process. Yet what to buy?
If low-maintenance beauty is your thing, try these speedy beauty tips to help save you time.
While it may look like a medieval contraption, an eyelash curler can transform the look of your lashes and make you look more alert in a matter of seconds. And yet why do we often forget to use it?
Last year, we spoke to international makeup artist Pati Dubroff who told us, "Curling your lashes is like drawing the curtains or blinds in a dark room."
The underrated tool is a necessary step before mascara and is far cheaper than getting a lash lift.
Simple Skincare Routine
For low-maintenance makeup to work, it's worth adopting a low-maintenance skincare routine, too.
While Korean skincare trends and the much-hailed 12-step routines have transformed how we see skincare and how much time we invest in taking care of our skin, skincare can now be overwhelming. (Let's face it. The Ordinary is a very complicated brand.)
With this in mind, there isn't anything wrong with reverting back to the familiar three- or four-step routines. Many brands have put together simple trios for morning and night-time maintenance. Cleanse, tone, moisturise, and apply SPF during the day and then drop the SPF at night. Repeat.
Here's a familiar scenario: You're extremely tired, but you've got a face full of makeup. You really don't want to do your skin routine, but alas, you've promised to be better. I've been there. Cleansing balms are not only extremely good on the skin, but they also help remove your makeup in record time.
When I first started playing around with makeup, foundation sticks were my best friends. They're a handy tool for when you're in a rush and are also great for traveling. Brands such as Fenty Beauty and Bobbi Brown have created simple-to-use makeup sticks—foundation, contour, and highlight included—that make it easy for you to try trickier makeup techniques.
Makeup artist Hannah Martin believes foundation sticks are "hugely underrated." She says, "Stick foundations are fantastically handy, portable, and buildable, being the features that I appreciate the most."
Cheek stains and tints have been popular for a long time, but it's worth revisiting some of the new versions out on the market. Cream or liquid blush can help create a natural skin-like texture. With their light, creamy texture, they blend nicely and can be applied quickly with fingers or a damp blending sponge, even on top of bare, foundation-free skin.
A great tip is to apply cheek tint in a "C curve" from your temples to your cheekbones. Again, the aim is to add some colour to your skin for a youthful, fresh-faced appearance.
Eyebrow products need not be overcomplicated. If you're blessed with full brows, then a slick of eyebrow gel can tame hairs in place and create a flattering shape. For those with lighter, faint brows, opt for brow gels with pigment and focus on sparse areas.
If you prefer to ditch foundation on a daily basis, you can still use concealers to hide pimples, dark circles, and scars. Via Instagram, makeup artist Frankie Noone says you should first assess where you actually need concealer. For dark circles and smile lines, she advises taking a blending brush and applying concealer to the inner corners of the eye and blending out. She also recommended a light application to prevent creasing and caking.
If you have more prominent imperfections, Noone suggests investing in a more heavy-duty concealer such as MAC Pro Longwear.
Mascara doesn't really need much of an introduction, as it is a staple in most people's makeup routines. But it will just add a nice bit of polish.