It's true—the sun-kissed, outdoor festival-ready, bare necessities, nude makeup look perennially rebounds each spring. And while there's something to be said for toning things down and getting back to basics, you can still play up your features and look perfectly natural without going completely bare. But putting the nude look together can be far from effortless, with typically laid-back shades many times resulting in washed out lips or too sallow skin. So to curb any anti-au natural tendencies, we rounded up the best nude makeup and consulted experts Jessie Powers, Make Up For Ever's National Educator, and Christina Zilber, founder of Jouer Cosmetics, on how to go fresh and flawlessly nude this spring.
Thumbnail image: Bottega Veneta fall '11 image courtesy of Redken.
Lips: Powers recommends picking lip colors that correspond with your skin's undertone and level: "Choose shades that are at least as dark as your skin color, if not slightly darker. If you go too light, you risk looking washed out. Lip gloss is usually a bit more transparent and it allows your own lip color to show through. If you choose a pale nude gloss you're basically making a slightly lighter version of your natural lip color; and using a transparent peach tone gloss for fair to medium skin or a transparent orange tone gloss for deeper skin, can add a little life to your lip if a straight skin tone shade looks too dull.
Eyes: A soft, brownish shadow that's a shade slightly darker than your skin tone is an easy way to enhance your eyes, but Zilber's neutral go-to shadow is peach. "I'm a big believer in peach eyeshadow. It doesn't come off chalky, it brightens without looking like you're wearing any color, and it neutralizes any blue on the lids or around the yes (like veins or shadows). Apply it to the inner corners of the eyes, across the lid, and dust a bit onto the brown bone. I like to finish the look with a few swipes of brown mascara."
Cheeks: "If you're entire makeup look consists of nude and neutral tones, the trick is to make sure you have enough color on your cheeks," says Powers. "Try a mat bronzer that isn't too orange, and apply it to your forehead, bridge of the nose, chin, center of the neck as well as your cheeks. If you make sure that your skin has a healthy glow you won’t risk looking washed out."
Above, from left: Make Up For Ever Mat Bronzer, $29.99, available soon at Sephora; Catherine Malendrino spring '11 image courtesy of MAC.