How to Make Makeup Look Airbrushed: 9 Steps

Flawless foundation application by a young woman using foundation brush
Sonia Roselli Beauty

Have you ever looked at professional makeup artists’ makeup styles and wondered how they’re able to pull off an airbrushed finished glam look?

Well, one, they might have used an actual airbrush tool, or two, their models just have a great skin prep routine that makes their skin look like a flawless canvas, perfect for makeup.

As a makeup artist myself, I love working with makeup products. But I’ve always advocated for having good skin, as I still believe that there is no better primer than healthy skin. So, I’m here to help you achieve that airbrushed finish at home with my tried-and-true steps.

Get excited and be prepared to make your makeup look flawless with me!

Advice from a Makeup Artist: Why does my makeup not look flawless?

Before I was able to achieve the perfect steps to have a flawless, glam look, I also had my fair share of cake-y moments. And that is the reason why I studied makeup and skincare. It turns out that there are legit reasons why your makeup doesn’t look as smooth as you want it to be.

First, you might be using the wrong products for your skin type. Second, you’re doing your skin prep the wrong way. Or third, you might just need some practice with the application techniques.

Let's not forget about your skin care routine. Again, nothing beats having radiant and smooth skin when it comes to a flawless makeup application.

9 Steps to Follow on How to Make Makeup Look Airbrushed

I’m excited to share with you the nine (9) steps I’ve developed to make your makeup look like perfection! Get ready to attract all the attention with this helpful makeup guide.

Woman applying makeup in bathroom mirror after skincare routine

Did you know that the key to a flawless makeup look starts with proper skin prep? Yeah, that's right!

Properly prepping your skin before you start your makeup routine can make a huge difference. Not only will it help your makeup blend seamlessly, but it'll also keep your skin hydrated throughout the day. And the best part? You don't need your traditional primer because skin prep does the job for you!

Step 1: Perfect Canvas Starts with the Proper Skin Prep

  • Exfoliating First is a Must!

If you want a flawless look, then you have to invest in good exfoliation. By doing this, you’re helping your skin to regenerate healthier skin cells by getting rid of your dull, dead skin cells. Bonus: it can also lighten dark spots!

Woman exfoliating her face to remove dead skin before applying makeup

Exfoliating 1-2 times a week will give you a glowing and smoother surface, resulting in your foundation’s flawless coverage.

The best exfoliator I can recommend to you would be Sonia Roselli Sexapeel Instant Exfoliation Spray. This exfoliator is appropriate for use in a wide range of skin types. I’m most confident to recommend this for people with sensitive skin conditions (as well as extremely dry skin or oily skin), because I have sensitive skin, too!

  • Use Serum and Essence for Radiant Skin

After exfoliation, it’s important to apply serum or essence next to help the rest of your skin prep products to penetrate the skin better. Better penetration means better makeup results.

Use Sonia Roselli Water Elixir Skin Prep for the best results. It's a ceramide serum and moisturizer in one, and it also helps reduce redness, plumps up the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and even helps rebuild your skin barrier while you wear makeup.

  • Achieve a Youthful and Dewy Glow with Facial Oils

Facial oils are an essential part of any makeup routine. They provide a soft, radiant glow to the skin, keeping it smooth and supple. But I will remind you to be a bit careful in the T-zone, as this area tends to get oilier than other parts of your face.

Woman applying facial oil for smooth and flawless makeup application

To ensure that you look dewy, use Sonia Roselli Water Oil Skin Prep. It’s a facial oil that prevents flaky skin from getting all cake-y after putting on a full-coverage foundation. As you know, the more coverage, the more chance it is for a product to sink into any fine lines or dry patches.

This facial oil has a lightweight formula and quick dry time. Simply apply 1-3 pumps of Water Oil to your hands and press into your entire face for a natural-looking glow. With its blend of nine skin-loving oils, Japanese Spring Water, and peptides, Water Oil is an excellent way to soothe and restore your skin's natural radiance, leaving it feeling soft and glowing.

  • Make sure your face is moisturized

Moisturizer helps to lock in all the good stuff that you just applied to your skin and keeps it hydrated and plump throughout the day. Plus, who doesn't want to have a dewy, glowing complexion?

Woman applying a little moisturizer before applying makeup products

The Sonia Roselli Water Balm Skin Prep is a versatile gel crème and is a one-stop-shop for all your skin needs. It moisturizes, plumps up the skin, evens out texture, brightens skin, and even blurs imperfections and improves the appearance of dark circles under your eyes.

  • Apply Sunscreen to Protect Your Skin Before Makeup

Applying sunscreen will leave you looking fabulous and protected. Make sure to choose an SPF of at least 30 and wait 15 minutes for the skin to absorb it before applying your makeup. It’s good to opt for a sunscreen with hydrating properties–it’s like you’re adding a little extra moisture but it’s actually sun protection.

Sunscreen—the last step in skincare routine before makeup

However, if you're headed to a nighttime event, you can skip the sunscreen and enjoy your night without worrying about protecting your skin from the sun.

When it comes to the perfect complexion, the proper makeup order can make a huge difference

Do you know what most makeup artists say? "Makeup is an art." And just like any other art, there is a proper order to follow.

By layering your products in the correct order, you can achieve a smooth, even canvas that will make your makeup look its best all day long. So, let's get started and make sure your makeup is in the right order to help you rock your look all day!


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Step 2: Play up your eyes

Woman applying eye makeup, starting with eyebrows using an eyebrow pencil
WWoman applying eyeshadows while holding a mirror

Starting with your eyebrows using your favorite brow pencil, then moving on to your eye shadow is the best way to start your makeup routine.

Doing your eyes before applying foundation can save you from a makeup disaster! That way, you can easily clean up any fallout before moving on to your foundation.

Step 3: Choose the shade of foundation for your skin tone

Next on the list would be the foundation application. Before putting anything on your face, make sure to choose the right shade of foundation for your skin.

Close-up image of a woman
Woman applying foundation with a foundation brush

You can do this by doing a quick swatch test to know your foundation shade. But when choosing a shade, it’s vital that you know your skin undertone as a foundation has to be a good color match to your skin. Not darker, not lighter, your exact match. Trust me on this one.

Step 4: Apply Foundation

Apply your foundation using a makeup brush or a makeup sponge. Blend the foundation evenly to your face by lightly dabbing the blending sponge onto your face, or by doing a small circular motion if you’re using a buffing brush.

remember the golden rule


When it comes to applying foundation, less is more! Instead of slathering on a thick layer, apply it in thin, even layers to achieve a flawless, natural-looking finish that won't make you look like a cake!

But sometimes, if the skin really needs multiple layers, I personally like to do the foundation from the center and then move away and up to the outer areas of the face to create the illusion of fading, making it seem like the foundation is your actual skin.

I suggest refraining from putting on multiple layers of foundation, and if necessary, opt to use concealer to even-out dark spots.

Step 5: Cover up with concealer

When your foundation can no longer cover the dark circles and blemishes on your face, adding extra coverage using a concealer will help you hide those uneven spots.

Just like with your foundation, you have to use a concealer that is not way too light for your skin tone and vice versa. It has to match your skin tone for it to look seamless with your foundation.

Woman applying concealer to under eye area to conceal dark circles

One way to ensure you have the correct shade for your skin is to do a swatch test. Apply a small amount of concealer to your jawline to see whether the concealer matches your skin color.

After finding the right shade for your skin, apply concealer and gently blend it using a concealer brush for a flawless finish. And remember to use a highlighter to add dimension to your face.

Step 6: Add a Pop of Color with Blush

Add blush to your makeup routine! I mean, who doesn’t want to add color and life to their faces, right?

Woman adding blush to her makeup application

With so many shades to choose from, it might be a little challenging to determine which shade works best for your skin. But knowing and understanding your skin undertone will help you in finding out the perfect blush for your skin.

Using a large fluffy brush will make a powder blush product glide onto your skin better. Cream blush looks great on mature skin. Either way, applying it with a light hand ensures a subtle and natural-looking flush.

Step 7: Add Mascara

Woman applying mascara to enhance her eye makeup

Curling your lashes is like giving them a little lift and making your eyes look much bigger and brighter!

Don't forget to apply mascara, as it's the cherry on top of your eye makeup look.

Step 8: Finish with Lip Product

Before putting any lip makeup on your lips, prep them by using a lip balm for a smoother finish.

When applying a lip color, a good understanding of your tone, undertone, and overall makeup “look” dramatically affects the criteria when choosing a lip shade.

Woman applying lip makeup with red lip color

If you’re planning to go with a more natural look, of course, a hot red lip won’t go with it. So, always take a moment to consider these factors.

Whether you go for a bold red or a subtle nude, make sure it's the perfect finishing touch for your look.

Step 9: Set Your Makeup

Using a setting powder can really make a difference in the longevity and overall look of your makeup. A translucent powder can help in sealing the foundation and holding the makeup products together.

Woman applying setting powder to complete her flawless makeup look

And if you really want to go the extra mile, a setting spray can help lock in your makeup for even longer wear.

Never Sleep in Your Makeup: A Beauty Reminder

Let me remind you of something super important that most tend to forget—never sleep in your makeup! Trust me, some people make this mistake, and it's not pretty.

Woman cleansing her face to remove makeup before bed

I highly recommend using Japanese Cleansing Oil to remove your makeup and sunscreen. Not only does it melt away even the toughest waterproof makeup, but it also leaves your skin feeling silky smooth. You don’t want clogged pores, right? It’s time that you invest in a product that can genuinely remove any trace of dirt without damaging your skin.

Anyway, that's it for today's makeup tutorial! I hope you found these tips helpful in achieving that flawless airbrushed look. And remember, practice makes perfect. So, don't worry if you don't get it right on the first try. Keep trying, and you'll be a makeup pro in no time.

And who knows, maybe one day, you'll be the one giving makeup tips to others. Until then, happy makeup-ing! And remember to visit and check out our other amazing skin prep products.

Stay glamorous!

Get ready on how to make makeup look airbrushed

1 comment

  • Jillian

    Do you have a sunscreen recommendation for sensitive skin w/rosacea for your daily routine?

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