How to create a simple but pretty holiday makeup look + a review of the first foundation I’ve ever liked, Beautycounter Tint Skin Hydrating Foundation.
UPDATE: Beautycounter just announced a flash sale on some holiday products this weekend only (12/14 – 12/16) and the eyeshadow palette, highlighter palette and lipstick set mentioned in this post on are sale. See all the sale items here!
I’ve been getting asked on Instagram a lot for some holiday makeup looks, so I’m bringing you a simple tutorial today for a look that’s festive but still feasible for real life (i.e. this won’t take you forever to do and doesn’t require extensive makeup skills!!). Be sure to see some links at the bottom for more tips, including where to see makeup video tutorials!
What I think makes makeup so much easier (and more fun!) to apply is having skin that is well balanced and hydrated. My skin has NEVER looked or felt better since switching to Beautycounter (you can see my skincare routine here). So, that’s my actual first step for holiday makeup. I start with clean, hydrated skin! I’ll do a blog post soon about how I switch up my skincare routine in the winter, but in short, before I apply my makeup, I use the rejuvenating toner pads, radiance serum (read my review here) and rejuvenating day cream.
These two pictures are what my skin looks like without a trace of makeup!
My go-to’s for creating a holiday look are below. (This is what I do for any special night really, holidays or not!) Start to finish, my make-up takes me less than 10 minutes. I like to still look natural but made-up and I find if I spend too much time, it just starts to look like too much for my taste. And it’s just not as fun for me at that point! 🙂 I use mostly Beautycounter but I’ve noted where I use other brands.
- Dew Skin – I like to layer this under Tint Skin as a primer
- Tint Skin Hydrating Foundation – this is the first foundation I have EVER liked. It provides coverage but doesn’t feel heavy like every other foundations I’ve tried over the years. It blends beautifully with a foundation brush, beauty blender or just using my fingers. And, most importantly, I still look like myself when I have it on, which I can’t say for other foundations I’ve tried!
- Concealer Pen
- Nectar Blush
- First Light Highlighter Palette
- Liquid Liner
- Eyebrow Pencil
- Lipgloss or red lipstick, depending on how bold I’m going! (I really love the colors in the holiday lipgloss and lipstick sets too!)
- Mascara – I LOVE Ilia mascara. I get asked all the time if I have eyelash extensions and no, no I do not. 🙂 (I used to – and it took lots of collagen to recover from that hot mess once they came off.)
Makeup Application Tip: Good brushes are game changers for easier makeup application and blending! I have a mix of brushes from Beautycounter and Sephora. Invest in good ones – they’ll last you forever!
Step 1: Create a smooth base
- I put one pump of Dew Skin on top of my hand, tap my foundation brush on that and then apply in circular motions.
- Repeat with the Tint Skin. (Tint Skin isn’t dispensed as a pump, but I start with a small amount — about the same amount that comes out of the Dew Skin pump — and then add more if I need it.)
I use circular motions and keep blending it until it’s smooth and even. If necessary, I use my fingers to blend any spot that are standing out to me. I also smooth a little Tint Skin (or sometimes the concealer pen) over my eyelids to create a base there. And if my eyes are oily that day, I’ll tap some mattifying powder on top of that.
Step 2: Apply Eyeshadow & Eye Liner
- Next up, I apply eyeshadow! I have a video tutorial on how I apply eyeshadow here. Lately, I’ve been using the Necessary Neutrals palette. The same principals apply that I show in that video – base all over color, darker color on eyelid, darker color in crease! Blend blend blend!
- Eyeliner is up next! I really like the Beautycounter Precision Liquid Liner, but sometimes I’ll use a thin eyeshadow brush and a dark color from the palette to line my eyes.
Liquid liner tips:
- Pull your eyelid taut while you draw, short lines using short strokes. Eventually you may find it easier to draw one continuous line but to start, this helps!
- I start from the outside and work in then touch up on the outside for a slightly thicker outer edge. You can add a little flick up for a cat eye effect!
- PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. (Same goes for curling your hair!!) I never used liquid liner before Beautycounter’s but I found this one easier to apply that others I’d tried in the past. That said, it still took time for me to get comfortable with the liquid formula. And it’s still rarely perfect but part of the fun of makeup is learning new skills and playing around with it!
Step 3: Blush, Highlight & Bronze!
- I apply blush first (I like a coral color like Nectar for the holidays) and I easy on it since I’m typically playing up my eyes and/or lips! You don’t want all three to be super intense. Pick 1-2 features to highlight! To apply blush, smile and apply the color to the parts of your face that pop up! Easy as that! You can do like taps or a light brush stroke, working from the apples of your cheeks towards your temples.
- After blush, I make a fish face and apply a little bronzer under my cheekbones.
- Lastly, I apply highlighter on my upper cheekbones (slightly overlapping the blush), the bridge of my nose, above my eyebrows and on my brow bone.
- Nothing too precise! Then use a clean large, fluffy brush to blend!
Step 4: finishing touches – eyelashes, brows, undereye concealer
I do my eyelashes next, curling first. For a high impact look, I really like Better Than Sex or Ilia mascara. And I layer Trish McEvoy mascara over EVERY mascara I’ve ever used since it’s water soluable and won’t smudge. (It is NOT waterproof, however, so don’t wear it for your wedding day! I did my own makeup for my wedding – see that here!)
I fill in my brows with the medium brow pencil. If I want a little more impact, I’ll apply the dark brown (Espresso) from the Ultimate Nudes palette. (Yes, I have multiple eyeshadow palettes. Hey, perks of getting a major discount as a consultant!!)
- EYEBROW TIP: If you have never filled in your brows, it makes a HUGE difference, whether you’re doing a daily, natural look or a full face of makeup for a party. Start with a color slightly lighter than your brow color and try darker colors as you get used to it since it may feel strange to you at first. I feel so much more polished and put together simply by filling in my brows, even if I do nothing else but a little mascara and lipgloss!
Next up, concealer. Before I apply concealer, I dab off any powder that’s fallen under my eyes with a tissue so I’m not rubbing in shadow, which will make dark circles appear worse. I also do a little concealer around the edges of my nose and tip of my nose since I’m prone to redness there.
- Under my eyes, I focus the concealer on my inner eye (near the tip of the bridge of my nose) and the first third under my eye. I don’t go towards my outer eye since I find brightening the inner portion helps open my eyes. And I try to avoid adding too much makeup wherever I have fine lines showing up. 🙂 I blend by gently tapping with my ring finger, but you can also use a brush or beauty blender.
Step 5: Lips
TIP: I often hear from people who don’t wear much makeup that they don’t want to get an eyeshadow palette or a set of lipsticks/lip glosses since they won’t use them all. BUT, I actually think that’s the BEST thing they can do. It gives you the option to experiment to see what you like without investing in full sizes of individual colors. It’s more cost effective to learn that way and you’ll try things you may not otherwise buy.
The finished look!
Perfect Red Lip
I apply a layer, blot and then apply another layer. It helps it stay longer!
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Let me know if you have ANY questions and I’d love to hear what your favorite feature is to highlight with makeup – eyes, lips, something else?
Happy holidays!!! 🙂
All photos by Hannah Grace Pix.
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