Now Reading
My Budget No Makeup Makeup Routine

Welcome To Nutreats, South Africa's #1 Wellness Blog

For all official information and updates regarding COVID-19 visit

My Budget No Makeup Makeup Routine

My Budget No Makeup Makeup Routine

Everyone knows that a No Makeup Makeup look actually requires quite a lot of products and makeup artist level skills. I’ve been honing my routine for years and continuously get inspiration on application techniques by watching Katie Jane Hughes, Nikki Wolff and Nikki DeRoest’s tutorials on Instagram.


Another thing I’ve been honing for years is creating a minimal makeup kit that is friendly on the wallet. Although the below includes a few higher priced items, mostly from MAC, these items have lasted me years.


1. Skincare

The most important step to making makeup look natural is how your skin shines through. More foundation, covering up, layers and mattifying usual equal a made up look. Whether I’m breaking out or having a clear skin miracle day, I always prep my skin the same way. The goal is glowy and hydrated. I apply a few drops of jojoba oil as my moisturiser. It’s non-fuss, non-irritating and R100 for a facial moisturiser is a pretty good deal. If I have time, I then follow my Gua Sha routine to lift the skin and promote blood flow which helps with a natural rosiness. Lastly, I apply some sunscreen. Currently I’m loving Bioderma’s Photoderm AKN Mat. It isn’t mattifying in this application but doesn’t increase glow making your skin look overly shiny. I also always apply some Vaseline to my lips at this points to hydrate and smooth them.

2. Foundation and Concealer

Which products I use and how much I apply depend on the skin day I’m having. A few years ago, I tested out 17 foundations to find the best natural look foundation and my top pick still stands today. On clear skin days, I love to even out my complexion with Mac’s Face and Body. This is the most expensive makeup item I own but it’s incomparable. It gives the most natural, sheer, and comfortable finish. I apply it like I would a face cream. It gives you a little something without feeling like anything.


On days I need more coverage my current favourite pick is Revlon’s Candid. It is a medium coverage foundation and also natural and comfortable. I apply a few dots, blend down with my fingertips and then press it into my skin with a sponge. This sheers it down and smooths any excess product that might settle into lines. When it comes to covering spots or undereye darkness I use a concealer and again I apply a dot to the area, press it down into the skin with my fingertips so it almost melts into the skin and then pat it down with my sponge. I currently use Maybelline’s Fit Me Concealer which I’ve found to be the best of drug store brands. Blending is critical when you’re trying to achieve Natural looking foundation, so I make sure to spend time on this.

If I’m going to be leaving the house and thus wearing a face mask, I like to set the areas being covered by pressing my sponge into a translucent powder and gently tapping it onto my skin.

3. Eyes

When going for a natural no-makeup makeup look my eye routine consists of a lid base, a pop of leftover colour from my cheeks (See #4), brow defining and a light swipe of mascara. Sometimes if I want to be extra, I’ll create a tiny flick of black liner to bolden the upper lash line – Swiitchbeauty’s liquid liner is an excellent local option. To set my lids and cover any veins I like Mac’s Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Painterly. It’s very neutral, natural, and easy to apply with a swipe of the finger. Much like my foundation preferences, it’s like not wearing anything while wearing something. It’s also great for keeping eyeliner in place. For brows I’m currently into the soap brow look. For mascara, I prefer mine to be a bit aged – the newer it is, the more liquid the formula and the more product lands on the lash.

4. Color

Adding in a little colour goes a long way in making you look refreshed and natural, especially when you have a base layer that is somewhat one dimensional and can wipe you out. I am very versatile when it comes to what I use for cheek color but I usually go for a cream or liquid, and I dust any excess of the same product on my eyes and lips too. I have favourites depending on if I’m after a pink, red or peach tone. For pink I use Lip Ice’s tinted lip balm in Strawberry Sorbet (might sound weird but it gives the most natural touch of color and acts as a highlighter too). For red I use Justine’s Tissue Oil Lip tint in Raspberry Red. For Peach I use an actual cheek product that is sadly not locally available or very budget friendly, Glossier’s Cloud Paint in Beam (price multiplied by 15 to get an approximate rand value).

Share your tips for a No Makeup Makeup look and budget friendly products in the comments.


My Budget No Makeup Makeup Routine 2

View Comment (1)
  • I’ve never been much for makeup. Maybe a brush of mascara or eye shadow occasionally, and that’s it. I’m fortunately to have great skin. I wonder whether it is a cause and effect thing? Have I got great skin because I’ve never covered it daily in foundation and powders? (no matter how ‘good’ the foundation, it surely has an impact on the skin) As a child with dry skin living on the highveld, I was started on a cleanse-freshen-moisturise routine. I was never big on the first two but can’t go anywhere without a moisturiser. I think this has maybe been the key – moisturising and skin awareness when my age was still in single digits? I’ve been through a spectrum of moisturisers – none of them high cost – but in recent years my top favourite has been a kinda aqueous cream enriched with lanolin. I use it from top to toe.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

© 2021 Nutreats. All Rights Reserved.

Scroll To Top