Effortless, Natural Holiday Makeup.  By Lauren D. Weinstein

Effortless, Natural Holiday Makeup. By Lauren D. Weinstein

. 4 min read

If you’re looking to perfect your natural-makeup look, our resident expert has the tips and tricks

Pre-pandemic, I always wore makeup, even to throw out the trash. (Don’t judge me). Yes, I’m vain, but makeup helps me to feel awake and ready…for anything). Friends would gently tease that I must have come out of the womb wearing mascara and my signature, shimmery, bubblegum pink lip gloss. I love everything about makeup and its transformative powers over my mood and appearance.

Then COVID engulfed us with its destructive presence, cancelling plans and stamping out lives. It created chaos, uncertainty, Zoom meetings, remote learning, drive-by birthday celebrations, and shiva calls. Isolation was my friend and days that turned into months of lounging, wearing my worn-out flannel PJs, became both my comfort and prison. This new reality signaled the demise of the world as I knew it and the end of my daily makeup ritual.

Now that we are almost two years into the pandemic and are starting to tiptoe back into our lives, it’s a perfect opportunity to reclaim and revamp our makeup routine. Nothing elaborate or over the top, a la Joan Collins circa Dynasty: Something just a notch above natural. That seems just about right during these bare-lipped and precarious times.

Here’s how to do it by simply swapping out a few tried and tired staples for something modern, fresh and new. With a few changes, you’ll be looking in the mirror and belting out “I Feel Pretty” in no time.

Start with your eyebrows. They frame your face and accentuate your eyes. Routinely, trim, shape and fill in, if needed. Choose either a pencil or a tinted eyebrow gel or eyebrow mascara. They can add volume and keep feral hairs in place without looking stiff or like you filled them in with a Sharpie.


Thrive Causemetics Infinity Waterproof Eyebrow Liner. 5 shades, holds like a wax, blends like a powder.

NYX Professional Makeup Tinted Eyebrow Mascara. 5 shades, sets, tames and tints.

PRO TIP: If your hair is light, choose a color one to two shades darker than your hair color; if you have dark brows (brown or black) match your hair color.

Wipe off any excess product from the wand (drugstore brand is fine!) BEFORE using to avoid putting too much on. Start at the arch, don’t forget the tail end of the brow, then go to the front and fill in with short, light strokes. Use a spoolie or a toothbrush to brush up and through the brows to keep it natural , yet defined.

Ditch the powder eyeshadow and embrace cream based. Creams are easy to apply with your fingers or a synthetic eyeshadow brush.


Beautycounter Lid Glow Cream Shadow. Available in 10 buttery shades.

Revlon Colorstay Creme Eyeshadow. Available in a variety of matte and shimmer, wear for 24 hours. I like Crème Brulee, Praline and Chocolate.

PRO TIP: If your lids tend to be oily, use a matte eyelid primer first or pat a light coating of concealer on your lids.


Milani Eyeshadow Primer, found at most drugstores.

If eyelids are dry and discolored, I suggest Urban Decay Original Eye Potion Primer.

Personally, I don’t like heavy, full coverage foundation on anyone. Foundation should give you a flawless finish, melt into your skin and not settle into pores or fine lines. Remember to only apply where needed and blend with fingers or a dampened sponge. Blend thoroughly to achieve a seamless finish. Experiment with lighter textures such as tinted serums, tinted moisturizers and let those freckles fly!


Pat McGrath Labs Sublime Skin. Available in 36 shades, sheer to medium coverage, vegan.

ILIA Super Serum Skin Tint. 30 shades, clean, light coverage, mineral SPF40.

PRO TIP: A dampened sponge uses less product and will gently bounce off the skin.

Toss the powder blush and embrace cream based or liquid blush which impart the skin with a dew-like radiance that makes your face come alive.


Kjaer Weis Cream Blush. Certified organic, can be used on lips and eyes, too. I like Suntouched (soft coral), Embrace (nude pink), Desired Glow ( warm, soft, neutral).

Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush. Great shade range.

SECRET: E.L.F Putty Blush is an affordable dupe for Fenty. Shhhh!

PRO TIP: Dot on apples of cheeks with pads of fingertips, then and swipe up and out. You can also use a small blush brush to buff in small circular motions.

Swap your matte, full coverage lipstick for creamy, balm -like lip color or sheer long lasting lip tints.


Jouer Essential Lip Enhancer Shine Balm. 9 shades.

Ogee Sculpted Tinted Lip Oil. 15 shades, with jojoba and hyaluronic acid, buildable color, organic, gluten and cruelty free. I like Viola (blackberry brown) Gardenia ( auburn nude).

Chantecaille Lip Veil, $49.00, formulated without sulphates, detergents,  synthetic colors or fragrance. I like Honey Pot (pink nude), Tamboti (warm nude).

Now go look at your badass, beautiful self in the mirror, and strut your stuff out the door. Happy Holidays, Everyone!

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