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The Best Way to Apply Matte Makeup

y to Apply Matte Makeup | Beauty Expert

The Classic Makeup Look Loved by Makeup Artists

Matte makeup is a beauty trend that can be found everywhere, from social media to editorial content. With the popularity of recreating red carpet makeup looks as well as the growing preference towards long-wear formulations, matte makeup has become more relevant than ever before.

What is matte makeup?

When makeup is described as ‘matte’, it means that the finish does not contain any shimmer, glitter or shine. Although most commonly associated with powder and eyeshadow, any beauty product can be matte. Pairing them together can create a flawless, poreless final look that won’t budge all day.

Why use matte makeup?

Matte makeup is a blessing for makeup artists creating red carpet, holiday or wedding looks for several reasons. To name a few, matte makeup is incredibly long-lasting, it can make facial features appear more defined and it looks great in photographs. Women with oilier complexions also tend to favour mattifying complexion products because the formulas help to absorb and reduce excess oil and shine. Matte foundation is one of the star products in this category because it smooths out the complexion effortlessly and can be customised to achieve various levels of coverage. It’s an all-rounder.

A matte red carpet makeup look on Leslie Mann at the Oscars 2018 using Chantecaille

How can you get a flawless matte finish?


To achieve a flawless matte base, a great starting point is a mattifying primer. There can be an assumption that matte makeup is drying but one way to avoid this scenario is to invest in a high-quality primer. The Illamasqua Matte Veil Primer is a lightweight cream-gel formula that glides onto the skin beautifully and maintains hydration levels throughout the day without adding shine.

Here are a few of our matte primer favourites:


The main event – matte foundation. Usually oil-free formulas, these foundations help to create a smooth canvas for makeup that won’t need topping up throughout the day. The undetectable finish gives that desirable ‘second skin’ effect that appears naturally perfect and healthy. We love the Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish Perfectly Satin 24 Hour Foundation because it is infused with vitamins and antioxidants to protect the skin throughout the day.

Our Expert Tip: If you want a lighter coverage base, mix your foundation with a small amount of day cream and make your own tinted moisturiser. For more tips on how to achieve this, check out our blog post on how to achieve flawless coverage.


To ensure that the foundation lasts all day, use a finely milled matte face powder to set. If you apply with a large powder brush, it gives a beautiful airbrushed effect. Ellis Faas has recently launched at Beauty Expert and we love using the mattifying powder to achieve a smooth photo-ready finish. Alternatively, you can use a mineral powder foundation powder that combines it all in one compact.

The matte powders you need:


In comparison to shimmer eyeshadows, matte eyeshadows give a more natural effect so they are ideal to wear every day. Earthy matte tones suit all eye colours and look good all year round. We recommend finding a palette that houses a variety of complementary light and deep shades such as our new season favourite the Pixi Mesmerizing Mineral Palette in Sunset Mattes.

To create a matte eye look for the daytime, firstly apply an eyeshadow primer to increase longevity. Follow with the lightest colour on the eyelid, inner corner and up to the brow bone as a highlight. The medium shade should be placed in on the whole eye, and then the darkest shade can be blended to the outer third of the eye and in the crease to add definition. Choose a jet-black volumizing mascara to make the matte shadows stand out. For an evening look, add false lashes – the Ardell Wispies are easy to use and will last all night.

Here are a few matte eyeshadow palettes suitable for both beginners and experts:

Liquid Lipstick

Matte liquid lipstick doesn’t have to be drying, opt for long-lasting formulas that hydrate and condition the lips. The best method is to begin with a lip scrub and then use a natural shade of lip liner to draw your desired lip shape. Following this, apply a thin layer of your chosen liquid lipstick and allow to dry to matte finish. The Chantecaille Matte Chic Liquid Lipstick is one of our top picks because it is a deeply moisturising formula and delivers a visible plumping effect.

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