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French women are experts on how to look effortless and chic. To them, it seems almost second nature. Today, I’ll dive into how you can create a simple, yet elegant makeup look. And: the best thing about it is that if you use makeup already, you will probably have all the items it takes to make a French makeup look.
Less is more
In almost all instances you can “frenchify” your life by thinking “less is more”. What I mean by this is that French women have tuned in on what is important to them and removed everything that’s unimportant.
French women use makeup to enhance their features, not hide them away or alter them in any big way. That’s why you will rarely see a woman with full contour and smokey eyes on the streets of Paris. It’s all about looking like the best version of yourself, not turning into someone else.
So let’s dive into what makes French makeup so effortless and “I woke up like this” chic.
8 steps to create a French makeup look
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It all starts with skincare
To make the most out of your canvas, you should always prep it. French women prep their skin by taking care of it. If you need some tips on how to best take care of your skin, you can read my article on French skincare.
And if you just want to jump right in: always let a moisturizer be the first step in your makeup routine.
Skip the foundation
Remember, less is more. French makeup is all about discretion. So you won’t see French women wear a ton of foundation. What they’ll do is dab a little concealer on, or maybe use a BB-cream. A BB-cream is perfect for a French makeup look as it is a three-in-one product. A BB-cream will moisturize, give you light coverage and, most importantly, has SPF.
French makeup is basically there to enhance. The idea is that no one should notice the makeup before they notice the woman.
A hint of blush
French women love to glow and accentuate their healthy skin. In order to get this look, you need a good blush. However, it should never be too bright.
You can brighten up the face by applying a touch of rose or pink coloured blush to the apples of your cheeks.
Cream blushes are more popular because they are easier to blend to get a natural look.
Tip: to make your look even fresher and more sunkissed, you can throw a little bit of bronzer into the mix. Just be careful to not use too much.
Keep your brows full
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You’ll find no perfectly sculpted brows in a French makeup look. Rather, the brows will be kept full, and never overly filled in. The French look is all about looking clean and groomed, but not overly polished. Stay away from eyebrow pencils and pomades. Keep it simple with some eyebrow mascara.
For a natural brow, apply the mascara in short upward strokes. Make sure to follow the natural curve of your eyebrows.
Just a touch of mascara
If you want a French makeup look, you should keep your eye makeup simple. Give your lashes a good curl, treat them with a good lash conditioner and add just a hint of mascara.
Skip the eyeliner and focus your attention on a good mascara that will give your eyes dimension.
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Most French women will not wear a lot of eye shadow on an everyday basis, but if you want to add some colour to your eyes, go for neutral tones. To achieve a French makeup look you should dab on a minimal amount. It does not have to look perfect, but it should be well blended with no sharp edges.
The signature red lip
To go with the very simple eye makeup you can add the staple of any French makeup look “la pièce de résistance” if you wish: the bold red lip. The red lip can be worn with any outfit, whether it is a t-shirt and jeans or an evening gown. The red lip will add drama where you need it.
Just remember that the french will most often wear this bold colour with the rest of the makeup being very minimal.
When you wear a red lip, nothing should steal attention away from it.
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Focus on one feature
If you want one simple piece of advice you can take away from this, it is to keep it simple. Focus on one feature at the time. If you wear a red lipstick, make everything else discrete. If you wear a bold eye makeup look, keep the lips natural.
Focusing on one feature at the time will make your face look brighter and fresher.
Keep it relaxed
Casual makeup application has become a popular trend which emphasizes French women’s relaxed approach to makeup. The point of this type of application is to make it less perfect and more lived in.
Do a smokey eye by blending out your eyeliner with your finger or use your fingertip to apply lipstick by dabbing it on (only with clean hands of course!)
This helps you achieve a more natural less polished look. Just like French women!
Did you like this article? Then you might also like my article on French skincare.
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