Natural VS Neutral Makeup: What's The Difference? And How To Apply Them?

Mariam Youssef
6/23/23, 11:00 AM

Virtual high-five if you’re reading this article and think that natural and neutral makeup are the same. Many of us don’t know the difference between both of them, and that’s absolutely fine. While you may think that the difference is minor and it’s all makeup at the end of the day, we need to confirm that it is not. Natural is, as the word suggests, simple, basic, and not too much while neutral is all about the choice of colors and shades of makeup. In this article, we’ll explain the difference between natural and neutral makeup and how to achieve them both.

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Natural makeup

Look at these two pictures and try to tell which one is natural and which is neutral. Some people refer to neutral makeup (the left picture) as "No-Makeup Makeup" or "Second Skin." This style highlights your characteristics without making significant sculpting or color adjustments. There's hardly much makeup on! It is just an upgrade to your daily makeup routine. Models like Hailey Bieber and Kendall Jenner have helped to popularize the natural makeup style, which is frequently featured in ads.

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Neutral makeup

Neutral makeup (the right picture) aesthetic is frequently described as Natural Glam Makeup. Using neutral tones, neutral makeup offers you a perfect appearance! A neutral style frequently includes sculpting, more defined neutral colors all over your face, and heavier foundation coverage. This makeup may feel too much for girls who don’t often wear makeup.

Look at the Kardashians if you want a contemporary, popular representation of someone who consistently wears neutral makeup looks. They are the masters of stunning, understated makeup! This look frequently requires hours and numerous layers of makeup application though!

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How to apply natural makeup?

There isn’t a specific guidebook or just one way to apply natural makeup, but the whole idea is to look naturally beautiful without adding too many products or covering your skin with foundation. The more minimalistic you are, the closer you’ll get to natural makeup.

Moisturizer and eye cream

Regardless of what type of makeup you intend to wear, make sure you moisturize your face, neck, and eyes beforehand. You will notice a great difference and your skin will thank you because it will be hydrated and ready for the makeup.

Tinted SPF

Instead of covering your face with foundation, start with a nice, multi-purpose base. A tinted SPF will give decent coverage and a dewy and glowy finish that will make your skin look amazing. You may also replace the tinted SPF with a BB cream.

Tinted brow gel

If your brows take you forever to fill them, ditch the brow pen and opt for a tinted brow gel that with just one swipe, will give the desired natural look you’re after. It will take you only a minute to apply it. Brush your brow and give yourself this fluffy brow look that is super popular nowadays.

Hydrating concealer

Use a hydrating concealer on the areas that you want to brighten like your under eyes, below cheekbones, mouth corners, and any other area that needs brightening. Make sure to choose a shade that is close to your skin tone, not too bright and not too dark so you can look as natural as possible. Moreover, opt for low to medium-coverage concealers instead of high-coverage ones to get a more natural look.

Liquid blush

Apply your liquid blush on your cheeks, nose, and below your eyes for a cute look. Choose a shade that suits your skin and don’t apply too much of it; a few dots go a long way.

Eyelash curler and mascara

Eyelash curlers have this awesome effect of making your natural lashes look flawless and gorgeous. Curl 4-5 times before applying mascara and notice the dazzling difference.

Natural lips

For the most minimalistic, natural lips, dab some liquid blush on them so they look naturally rose. However, if you want to do some more work on the lips, go for a rosy or clear lip gloss to make them look plump and sexy.

How to apply a neutral makeup look?

As mentioned earlier, neutral makeup looks are all about the choice of colors rather than the technique. So, instead of writing down the steps of full-glam makeup, it is recommended to watch neutral makeup looks on YouTube. Watch this one for inspiration.

If you’re wondering which makeup suits which occasion, you can simply keep the natural makeup to ordinary days, at work, or brunch with girls. However, when you have a special occasion where you want to look nice but not super fully-glammed, neutral makeup is the way to go.


Mariam Youssef

Growing up, I've always wanted to become so many things: a fashion designer, painter, singer, actress, and anything that revolves around art. It wasn't until I watched "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days" t...

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