11 Awesome But Subtle Makeup Tips For Dudes
Looking for some subtle ways to get stuck in with male makeup? Head over to MTV.co.uk for all the tips and tricks.
There’s a million and one makeup tutorials out there designed with girls in mind, to get them covered for every eventuality from au natural, no makeup makeup, to full on glam night out necessities. But at the end of the day, makeup is in fact genderless, and it’s a genius tool that anyone can use.
What about the guys out there who fancy picking up the concealer to experiment with some untraceable, minimal tricks for maximum touch ups? Why shouldn’t guys turn to makeup to create the best looking version of themselves, just like gals do? EXACTLY. But don't worry, we're not talking Ichiban a la Joey Tribbiani.
Here’s 11 awesome but subtle tips for dudes to try if they fancy giving makeup a go for a day to day look.
1. Fake it ’til you make it
If getting to grips with actual makeup sounds slightly terrifying to you at the moment, using a good fake tan could be a clever compromise. A light coat will not only give you a natural glow like you’ve just come back from a week in the sunshine, but it’ll also minimise the appearance of blemishes, redness and scarring.
Make sure you moisturise and exfoliate properly beforehand, but once you've got the hang of the application, your base will look a whole lot more flawless, radiant and healthy, without having to get to grips with foundation and sponges.
2. Brows on fleek
Your brows are kinda like a photo frame for the masterpiece that is your face. They’re the finishing touch, the piece de resistance, and a full, thick, strong pair of eyebrows is a good look on women AND men. You might already have a whole load of hair around there, but they need grooming and pruning to reach their full effect.
For a finish that’s still natural but slick, you need a good pair of tweezers to neaten the shape, a brow pencil the same colour as your natural hair to fill in the gaps, and a brow gel to keep everything in place.
3. Build up your beard
Blokes who haven’t been blessed with a full on, bushy lumberjack beard to cover half of your face, fear not. Beard extensions haven’t quite hit the mainstream yet, but if you’ve got a few sparse areas in your stubble, eyebrow powder is the one for you. You can pack the dark powder onto facial hair to cover up shaving mistakes, or just to fill in areas that are a bit thin.
Alternatively, an angled brow pencil means you can draw in individual hairs one at a time to build up the volume of beard, and perfect the overall shape of the ol’ beard and tash.
4. It’ all about the undertones
Woah woah woah, put the foundation and concealer DOWN, Mister. First of all, you need to figure out your skin’s undertone to make sure you get the right colour, shade and tone of base products - otherwise it’ll all look bright orange and blatantly obvious.
If you have a cool undertone, the veins on your wrist are blue or purple, and silver jewellery flatters your skin more than gold. A neutral undertone will have blue-green veins, and suits gold and silver jewellery. A warm undertone will have slightly green or olive veins, and skin appears yellowish in the sun. Now you can match and blend to your skin perfectly.
5. And your skin type, too
Hold up until you’ve worked this one out, too. Different skin types will work best with certain types of products, so for a foolproof method, you can do the tissue test. Wash and dry your face, and tear a tissue into four little pieces. Put one piece on your forehead, nose, cheek and chin.
If all four pieces stick for a moment and then fall off, you have normal skin. If all pieces fall off straight away, dry skin. All four pieces stick? Oily skin. And for tissue that sticks to nose or chin, it’s combination skin. Do your research for skincare, foundation and concealer that suits you properly and will work with your skin effectively.
6. Brighten up those dark circles
Probably the makeup technique that most guys fancy trying, using concealer to cover up those pesky dark circles is super simple but makes a huge difference. When you've had a big night out, the colour drains from your face, making you appear more grey and sallow with purpley blue circles right underneath your eyes.
To hide ‘em asap, start with a small amount of creamy, light reflecting, brightening concealer. Blend it out and build it up as you need it. You can also follow that up with a light powder to set the concealer in place. Genius.
7. Tap tap tap that concealer
Concealer is GENIUS, welcome to the start of your new life. If you’re on a quest to cover up your spots as a priority, do not go smearing concealer all over your face. Instead, try the much-loved tap tap concealer method.
Rather than wiping it around all over the place, precisely dap the product with the pad of your finger on top of the blemish and close surrounding area, until everything is covered, hidden and blended out. You’ll need half the amount of product, it looks super effective and stays put for ages.
8. Give tinted moisturiser a try
For the ultimate in natural, invisible makeup, tinted moisturiser is pretty much foolproof - even for someone who’s diving into a makeup bag with ZERO knowledge. Just apply the product over your face with your fingers in exactly the same way that you would your regular moisturiser. It only needs a small amount, but provides sheer, natural looking coverage to help even out overall tone, and some brands can also help tackle issues like oily, dry or blemish prone skin while you’re wearing it.
9. Wake your eyes up
The key to a gorgeous face is bright, glistening, wide awake eyes that look like you’ve just had a reeeal good sleep, and luckily there’s tons of super easy, subtle ways to use makeup to look more awake. But first, invest in some eye drops - they’re super cheap but are a great secret weapon for faking the bright eyed, bushy tailed look.
Try some eyelash curlers to give your lashes a lift. They might look like a scary contraption, but you won’t be wearing any product afterwards and lifted lashes can really open up your eyes. If you’re a fan of that wide-eyed look, clear mascara could also be a great shout for you to give an undetectable, soft boost for your lashes.
10. If you really fancy a challenge, contour
This is next level makeup talent that even the Kardashians get wrong sometimes, but mastering the art of the subtle contour and highlight means you can literally sculpt your own facial features to perfection. Yes, when done badly, it can look fairly disastrous, but when done properly, it’s a powerful technique; you can define your cheekbones, structure your jawline, enhance a natural glow and even slim down your nose. Maybe give this one some proper practice first before debuting your new cheekbones in public, and remember to blend blend BLEND.
11. Or y’know, forget the subtle part altogether
Because ANYONE can wear whatever makeup they want, and anyone can get as creative as they feel like with it - including dudes. Happy blending.
Words by Lucy Wood
Now that you've got to grips with all of that, why not check out this vid all about feminism. MAGICAL.