If you are wondering what the soft-focus beauty look is in the first place, then ‘look’ no further than Kate Middleton in her latest virtual appearance for the newly re-opened Museum of Natural History. The Duchess looked enviably fresh and glamorous thanks to the healthy and subtle, lit-from-within glow of her skin. Even in the harsh camera light, the Duchess’ skin continued to exude a confident glow. No bumps or shine to be seen, this is what is know as Soft-Focus skin.
So what exactly is Soft-Focus skin? It is the perfect balance between dewy and matte skin. The skin appears healthy with a gentle glow, but no shine at all. At this point you are probably asking yourself what the difference is between it and other natural makeup looks? Read On!
Layer It On
You may have been taken by surprise by the ‘eight steps’ needed.. Don’t worry there is no thickness or caking involved, the trick to soft-focus skin is in the number of very thin layers of product that are added. Keeping in mind that the first two products are actually to prep the skin, ensuring that the skin is supple and soft.
Start with a rich hydrating lotion or even an oil. We love Embryolisse . Massage the product into the skin well, giving yourself a mini massage which is always welcome, really feel the product seeping into the skin. Tissue off any excess. This will give the application of all the other products a smoother surface to work with. This actually means that less product will be needed, so no fear of caking.
Once you have prepped the skin, apply your primer. This is a vital step in the prepping of the skin. Traditionally the primer is used to create a uniform surface to apply the makeup onto. With Soft-Focus makeup we take it a step further by identifying a primer that blurs also. We love Laura Mercier’s Pure Canvas . This is an important step, as the blurring of the pores will minimize them giving us a good start when it comes to the Soft-Focus look. The primer will also eliminate any variations you have in skin tone, so the skin appears even-toned and blurred.
Pop of Color
Apply your blush now! Yes, you read right.. apply a stain to your cheeks, the tip of your nose and the top of your lips for a pop of freshness and color. The most popular stain of all comes from Benefit , and can now be found in more than one shade to suit a variety of skin tones. Bronzer goes on at the very end, but the blush is applied, untraditionally early on..
Many of us have been told to apply concealer after foundation. Using it as a corrector where there is uneven skin tone after the foundation has been applied. In the case of Soft-Focus skin, the concealer is applied first. This once again allows for a lit-from-within look. If you are wondering if the concealer should be added using a brush, sponge or finger tips.. there is not actual rule. Cle de Peau’s concealer will continue to be the very best concealer out there and comes in a handy tube which allows you to apply it to the skin from the tube itself!
You may be wondering whether or not you still need a foundation after all of the above, and the answer is yes. The foundation serves to even it all out, further blurring the skin. It is important to use a damp beauty blender here. Firstly it will allow for the foundation to come on smoothly, which will in turn require much less product, which means the possibility of it all caking is minimal. We love Armani’s Power Fabric Foundation.
Now that you have created the surface that you desire you need to set it with a translucent loose powder. This serves a number of purposes. Firstly it keeps everything in place, setting it.. Secondly, it matifies any shine that may have come about, and thirdly it further blurs the pores and creates that Soft-Focus finish. We love Milk Makeup’s Blur and Set loose powder .
It is now time to use a matte bronzer, apply with a bronzing brush in the traditional #3 technique, which is basically a backwards 3 starting at the center top of the forehead, going in between the cheekbone and jaw bone and coming out again, along the jawline. Once the bronzer has been applied, use a Kabuki brush, aka a blending brush to blend in all the product nicely. We love Charlotte Tilbury’s Airbrush Flawless Bronzer .
If you are going out to dinner you may not need this final step, if you are going to a club however or an outdoor party it would be a good idea to seal it all with an ‘all nighter’ product which will ensure that even if you do sweat, or there is humidity, your skin will remain unaffected! We love Urban Decay’s All Nighter Setting Spray .