It’s not easy to maintain a soft, shine-free matte look, especially during the summertime. But it is possible, even if you have naturally oily skin. You just need the right products applied in the right places. Here’s how to create a smooth, shine- and sweat-proof canvas with few of our favorites.
A good primer is essential for filling fine lines, minimizing the appearance of pores, and creating a overall soft, shine-free, and even face for foundation application. LORAC’s version is infused with salicylic acid (an great extra measure if you have very oily skin and are prone to breakouts) as well as antioxidant-rich vitamins A, C and E.
For a clean, matte look, you want a foundation that won’t settle into creases, large pores or fine lines (which you’ve already covered with your primer) during the day. This compact from Sephora glides on smooth and contains micronized pigments that blend into the skin for hours of coverage and shine-stopping protection. It also comes with the perfect application sponge, which is great for quick touch ups (which you might need if, say, you’re running around hosting a fab summer kick-off cocktail party).
Large pores and oily skin are the two major culprits for sabotaging a smooth, flawless-looking face. These two pore minimizers (which should be applied before your face primer) work as extra insurance against shine and uneven spots. You may not need them if you are blessed with naturally small pores and/or non-slick skin. But if your T-Zone can be a problem, both of these formulas are excellent for shrinking pores and adding extra mattyfying and shine-absorbing power.
To give your cheeks a matte rosy hue, you want to steer clear of cream blushes, which produce a moist, dewy look. A pressed powder, like this one from Physicians Formula, helps even out skin tone and texture, so it will keep your cheeks smooth while it adds color. It’s goes on light (this version is actually on all-over face powder, but it also works well for contouring specific areas), so you can build on as much or as little blush intensity as you’d like.
There is one place that you do want to add some shine to a matte face, and that’s at the inner corners of the eyes. This step gives your peepers a beautiful pop and your face a wonderfully refreshed look, and it also shows off your smooth skin. Givenchy’s cult classic pen is perfect for this task; just dab some in the upper and lover corner of each eye, and blend with your pinky or a Q-Tip. You can also add a little under your eyes to deflect dark spots.
Finally, a bold red lip really gives this look it’s glam appeal. Of course, you can wear any shade you’d like (a matte face goes with most any color), but a sexy crimson, like NARS in Jungle Red, is about as hot as it gets. I love NARS’ Semi-Matte formula, because all it takes is a blot if it feels too shiny, however NARS also has a line of Pure Matte shades to choose from, as well.
Extra Tip: Always carry blotting papers in your purse. Even the most perfectly prepped skin can experience oil and sweat during the day. Try Boscia’s Green Tea sheets, which are formulated for sensitive skin and won’t mess up your makeup.
by Susan Linney
Photos courtesy of Pinterest.com, Nordstrom.com, Sephora.com, Beauty.com, Drugstore.com, Sephora.com, Narscosmetics.com