My opinion of Meghan Markle’s makeup

Sept 2018

Hello there my lovelies!

I’ve had another super busy month and I’d like to start off by thanking Feedspot for selecting my blog as one of the Top 60 Melbourne Blogs on the web.  You can read about here.  I am very grateful for this ‘shout out’!  Thanks guys!

Now for this months blog post….

Earlier this year, we had a royal wedding (ooooohhh how I LOVE a royal wedding) and no sooner was Meghan Markle crowned as the Duchess of Sussex, the internet literally “lit up” with posts, forums, blogs and articles with many (often divided) opinions on her wedding makeup look.  I would have thought more focus would have been on her (gorgeous) gown, tiara and other jewellery but the makeup world had gone into overload discussing every brushstroke of makeup on her face.

And with good reason, which we will explore below.

Events such as a royal wedding, are hugely popular, have massive media attention and are (more or less) watched by everyone.  They represent important moments in makeup culture, which will be referenced in the future so assessing Meghan Markle’s look is sort of ‘homework’ for us makeup artists.

Typical comments across the internet included:

  • Refreshing
  • So natural and glowing
  • What makeup? Was she wearing makeup?
  • Unpolished

And the list goes on…..

Onlookers got a first glimpse of Meghan on the way to Windsor Castle.  Moments later when she was at the altar, and Prince Harry put back her veil, and we all got a proper look at her.  She was rumoured to have done her own makeup but in the end she enlisted the help of her friend, makeup artist Daniel Martin (who’s associated with Dior).   Now I’m not going to provide a breakdown of the aesthetic (a Google search will reveal all that she wore) other than to say that Meghan emerged with glowing skin, smokey brown eye makeup, and a nude pink lip.

When I first saw it, I thought wow, it’s so…..natural.  I can see her freckles.  I loved it!

These days social media has really influenced how we wear and buy makeup.  There is the heavy contoured skin with dark stripes on the cheeks, plump dark lips (often with matte lipstick), highly pencilled, manicured big brows, incredible eyelashes thick and full, and cheekbones glowing with highlight.  Every flaw is meticulously covered up. Everyone looks so ‘airbrushed’ so flawless – you only have to look at the Kardashian ladies as examples.  When images (often selfies, which have become the new world of celebrity hair and makeup) are posted to Instagram they are often filtered to make them look even more flawless.  And all these posts, make me think that that they all (in one way or another)…….kinda look the same.

Social media has also altered the way we shop.  Years ago, contour and highlight palletes were rare.  Now, every brand has one including high end and drugstore (eg Priceline, Chemist Warehouse etc) labels.  Same goes for eye shadow palletes and matte lipstick.  Clearly a lot of us are buying all this stuff cos it’s selling like hot cakes.  In some ways, I reckon we have a bit of FOMO (fear of missing out) going on such that if we don’t have it – we will miss out and somehow be ‘less’ than otherwise.  I struggle a bit with this – I’ve often bought stuff cos, you know, you got to have it, right? Only to have it sit in my bathroom draw, weeks/months later.

Social media is also impacting how brides wear their makeup.  Many brides reference these Instagram images when they discuss their ideal wedding day look.  How many times have I heard, “I just want something natural, nothing too over the top” only to be shown something that is anything but and resembles a typical Instagram makeup look with a ton of work involved.  Hmmm.

Which is why I’m so refreshed with Meghan Markle’s makeup.  Nothing but flawless natural makeup.  No Insta brows, no garish contouring, no strobe highlight, no matte lips, no spider eyes in sight.  Her coverage was dewy and glowed and the fact that you could see her freckles was an absolute bonus.  As a makeup artist, there are some things I would do differently just to make her look slightly more polished but overall I just loved the fact that she defied commonly held beauty ideals (and ‘trends’) and looked like herself… only better.  This is what I wish for ALL brides.  Of course, many brides do want heavier more glamorous looks (which a good makeup artist should be able to achieve minus all the “Instagramming”) and all power to them if that’s what’s going to make them feel beautiful/confident on their big day, but in my experience, many brides want to be able to look back in years to come and be totally happy with the way they looked and that doesn’t always happen when following ‘Instagram trends’.

I’m certainly NOT having a go at the YouTubers or Instagramers, these are people who are making a living and often being sponsored to promote products and their videos/blogs/images are obviously striking a cord with viewers so there is definitely a ‘market’ for it.  But understand that these images are filtered/edited. Almost always.  And a lot.  And these high-maintenance routines, where every part of your face requires a product are not the ideal – whether it be for everyday makeup much less for a bride.  Your wallet will thank you for it and you’ll look better!

Meghan Markle is a perfect example of how understated, refined beauty is significantly more powerful! She didn’t alter her features with makeup, she and her makeup artist enhanced and embraced her already natural beauty.   I hope this inspires many more brides to be.

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Till next time

Peggy xo