PALE SKIN & MAKEUP
I’m particularly happy to be writing this post in the middle of the spring and summer season: pale skins are the stars of the winter, but they tend to be forgotten as soon as the sun comes out, even if they are very unlikely to tan. I won’t take advantage of the sun to complain about mine, but rather to embrace it because I don’t believe a pale or fair skin to be incompatible with a healthy looking one, even during spring and summer. And so after many years with a pale skin and a little bit less with some makeup on, I have decided to share what I’ve learned along the way.
As with any other skin tones, a pale skin makes certain things easier and others more complicated. Foundation is the very first obstacle to overcome: the choice of formulations for very fair skins is quite restricted. However when the shade selection -for once- seems wide enough to match them, the first reaction is to go for the lightest shade: I did it for many years and once properly applied and blended, something always felt wrong. It took me a while to realize the existence or rather the importance of the undertone. Pink, yellow or neutral, a pale skin can have many different faces and the perfect match for it comes more from the undertones than the lightness itself, especially since a couple of lightening drops can take care of that issue. Finally, a sheer foundation is always a better match as the skin appears underneath it.
Body Shop Shade Adjusting Drops
L’Oréal True Match Foundation, a wide range with different undertones
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Gel Touch Foundation, the ultimate sheer foundation
Another obstacle is the dull, sometimes lacklustre skin. Whilst a thorough skincare routine has the power to tackle dullness quite efficiently, staying away from matte foundations is the best way to prevent the flat and chalky look which a white skin already naturally resembles. A satin, glowy or even dewy finish always brings back some light and dimension to the face and if it isn’t enough, highlighters or illuminating primers brighten the skin in a much more precise way. Everything with a lot of white or pearl tones in it will flatter the skin without completely changing its colour.
Mac Strobe Cream
Mac Cream Colour Base in Pearl
Mac Prep+Prime Highlighter Radiant Rose
I personally love the warm tones of a bronzer against a pale skin, it just has to be done gradually and delicately: if orange or golden tones are involved, it just has to be applied towards the inside of the cheeks, almost as a blush, a sculpting powder can then take care of the contours of the face. And then just like that, the muddy look is avoided. To give the impression that the bronzer is part of the skin, I like to expand it to the hairline, jawline, eye crease, and finally, the top of the nose. It means that the colour of the eyes and the hair get involved and the overall face becomes more harmonious and natural.
Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder in Light
Urban Decay Beached Bronzer in Sun-Kissed
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in N°20
DEFINING THE LIPS
It doesn’t have to be a bold lip or an opaque consistency, but adding colours to the lips is an essential when it comes to enlightening the skin. Just as a bronzer, a lipstick is a lovely way of adding colour to the face and defining it at the same time. A pale skin has a tendency to look flat, so any pop of colour and subtle definition are more than welcome and the lips play such an important role in providing the healthy skin we are all chasing!
Huda Beauty Lip Contours, for a strong definition
Giorgio Armani Lip Magnets & Viseart Lip Palette in Neutral 02, for a custom-made definition
Revlon Ultra HD Gel Lipcolors & Tom Ford Lip Color Sheer in 10 Rose Soleil, for a soft, sheer one