The new ‘no makeup’ makeup routine that only takes 4 minutes with 4 products.

Maybe it’s just me, but isolation completely changed the way I see my face.

Literally. I see it multiple times a day on FaceTime, in Zoom meetings, and in the mirror staring back at me at home.

Personally, I reckon I’d forgotten what my face looked like without makeup. And this could very well be different for you, but now when I put on a face of makeup, it feels like it looks a bit too much.

WATCH: Here’s a guide to doing your brows at home in three easy steps! Post continues after video.

Video via Mamamia

It’s for this reason I’d like to propose we move to a new version of ‘no makeup’ makeup.

Traditionally, no makeup makeup is meant to make you look like you just woke up with a lovely, even complexion, long, black lashes, and the brightness only a good highlighter can provide.

But at the moment, I’m more interested in a speedy makeup routine that very subtly enhances the parts of my face I’ve been reintroduced to lately – freckles, fresh skin, my natural flush. And one that truly takes less than four minutes and only requires four products.

Keep scrolling to learn how to nail this no makeup makeup look before your next video meeting or socially-distanced outing.


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1: Tinted moisturiser/BB cream OR bronze primer.

If foundation feels like too much effort right now, that’s OK.

It’s a tinted moisturiser and/or BB cream’s job to give your face a bit of radiance, and even out your skin tone, without covering it completely.

Sure, you can apply this product with a brush or beauty blender if you prefer, but slapping it on with your fingers is the quickest and easiest option. Pro tip: be careful not to get it in your eyebrows!

And if tinted moisturiser still feels like too much, or you’ve been really focused on your skincare in iso and feel comfortable without coverage, allow me to introduce you to bronze primers.

bronze primer
THIS is a bronze primer! Image: Supplied/Amy Clark.
A bronze primer will give you an all-over bronzed glow, without bronzer. Image: Supplied/Amy Clark.

Bronze primers are exactly what they sound like - lightweight primer-esque products with bronze shimmer pigment through them. My favourites are:

A pea-sized amount of this will instantly give your mug a healthy, glowy wash of colour that says 'I've been living my healthiest life in lockdown', even if you absolutely haven't. If you're nervous about being too bronzed and shimmery, mix a few drops into your moisturiser.

These products won't cover up any blemishes or even out your skin tone, though, which brings us to step two.

Looking for product recommendations? You can read my road test story on the best tinted moisturisers here.

2: Concealer.

Concealer really is a pretty magical beauty product.

For a true no makeup makeup look, a few dots blended under the eyes (mostly on the innermost part that is blue/purple) and on any spots or patches with a sponge or your finger will mask any concerns, while keeping the rest of your skin looking as fresh and natural as it can be after months in isolation.

These are the concealers I reach for again and again:

I'm wearing this Becca colour corrector in today's no makeup makeup look. Image: Supplied/Amy Clark.
YSL Touche Eclat is expensive, but it's a cult product for a reason. Image: Supplied/Amy Clark.

If you're after a trusted concealer, you can find my cult concealer road test story here.

3: Tinted lip balm.

Tinted lip balm is one of the most underrated beauty products out. Why? Because it can be used for So. Many. Things.

One single tube can bring colour and hydration to your lips, add a flush to your face as a cream blush, and moonlight as a cream eyeshadow. I literally apply a few generous swipes on my lips and dab off excess product with my finger before pressing it into the apples of my cheeks and up along my cheekbone. A quick swipe over your eyelid and you've got a chic, tonal makeup look without even trying.

Just a few of the tinted lip balms in my bag that double as cream blushes. Image: Supplied/Amy Clark.

Here are my (current) favourite tinted lip balms that make excellent on-the-go cream blushes, too:

4: Tinted brow gel.

The last step is to do your brows.

Everyone has their own, specific eyebrow routine, but a tinted eyebrow gel is great if you don't need to draw on or fill in your brows, but want to add natural-looking colour and hold them into place in one hit.

Pro tip: I apply my tinted brow gel by combing the product over the top of my natural brow shape before combing it through using a spoolie (a naked mascara wand). This tidies up your application and brushes the colour through the brows to coat every hair.

The one tinted brow I always return to is the Benefit Gimme Brow+ Brow-Volumizing Gel, $45. This is because the tinted formula contains tiny microfibres that add volume to your brows and make them look infinitely more lush.

tinted brow gel
Somebody give this tinted brow gel a medal, would you? Image: Supplied/Amy Clark.

Want more at-home brow tips? We asked a brow artist how to shape your brows at home, read it here.

Bonus: Mascara.

My no makeup makeup look doesn't include mascara because I'm an eye-rubber from way back. But if mascara makes you feel great, or if you've finished the other four steps early, a lick of mascara will make your eyes stand out on video calls.

I trialled three new chemist brand mascaras, you can read my road test story here.

And that, my friends, is my isolation take on no makeup makeup. But if you prefer, no makeup at all works too.

Feature image: Supplied/@theamyclark.

How has your relationship with makeup changed since being in isolation? Tell us about it in the comments below.