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How To: Get the New Matte Finish

When we think matte skin, we’re immediately transported to our high school years, when we desperately powdered away even the tiniest hint of shine. But at the Spring/Summer 2013 runway shows, makeup artists showed a different kind of matte: velvety, shine-free complexions that were anything but flat. We asked celebrity makeup artist Dora Salgado for tips on getting the new matte finish.

Step 1: Prep and prime

Start with a clean, moisturized face: Try MyTM Multi-Purpose Mattifying Moisturizer to hydrate skin without added shine. Follow with a primer suited to your skin type to help fill in any fine lines: Laura Mercier’s oil-free foundation primer is great for oily skin, while silicone-based Laura Geller Spackle Under Make-up Primer is perfect for drier complexions.

Step 2: Choose your foundation wisely

With a matte look, if your foundation doesn’t match your skin tone exactly, you could end up looking downright ghostly. Matte formulas, like Jouer Matte Moisture Tint or cream-to-powder versions like Urban Decay’s work best, but application is key. “Apply foundation with a round, flat-topped brush in a circular motion to diffuse foundation evenly and create an airbrushed effect,” Salgado says. To add some warmth to your look without adding shine, try applying a matte bronzer like Cargo Bronzer.

Step 3: To powder or not to powder?

Salgado recommends setting foundation with a colorless or high-definition setting powder such as Youngblood Hi-Definition Hydrating Mineral Perfecting Powder, but only if your skin is oily. “Never use a tinted powder, which can oxidize throughout the day and create a dry, cakey finish,” she says. If your skin is normal to dry, skip the setting powder altogether to preserve the velvety finish of the foundation.

Step 4: Coordinate your eye and lip looks

Salgado loves pairing matte skin with “a smoky eye, bold lip, or classic winged eyeliner.” Lip and eye colors with a subtle sheen are especially flattering against a matte complexion; think flesh-toned neutrals for eyes and warm-toned pinks and plums for lips.

Step 5: Maintain your gorgeousness

Despite our best efforts, oil still happens, so be prepared. Apply small amounts of blotting powder with a brush to any shiny spots, or try boscia®Green Tea Blotting Linens if you’re on the go. If dryness is your biggest concern, a face mist like Jurlique’s rosewater variety is the quickest way to restore suppleness without ruining your makeup.

Photos: NARS

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