The art of makeup, and let’s not get it twisted, it is an artistry, is a skill that can take a very long time to develop. It’s important to identify your preferences when it comes to applying makeup. Of course, it’s a lady’s prerogative to switch things up as she feels like, but they say knowledge is power.

As a makeup artist, I often get asked to create a simple, natural look before being presented with an image of Kim Kardashian with a full coverage make up look! Granted, the colours she used are nudes, which has given my client the impression that it is a simple, easy look to achieve, but what you are probably seeing on Kim K is no light-coverage, natural look. A makeup look can be full coverage and still look natural, based on the nude makeup colours; and therefore, often requiring the same length of time to achieve bolder and more obviously made up beats.

Here’s my definition of the different coverage looks that you can go for.


Light, medium or full coverage? Beat that face like a prof!
Rosario Dawson

A light makeup look simply means that the products used will be very minimal and only to enhance your natural features; perhaps add a bit of colour to your skin tone. When you think about a light makeup application, imagine a very natural finish that will almost appear as if you are not wearing any makeup. Often a light makeup look will give you a natural dewy finish leaving the skin looking radiant and hydrated. This coverage is often used as an everyday look. A light coverage is also very wearable for men. Rosario Dawson is a great example of a celebrity that rocks the light-natural coverage look effortlessly.



Light, medium or full coverage? Beat that face like a prof!
Megham Markle

In between light and full coverage, this look should give you a subtle and polished image. Areas to focus on can be the stubborn dark circles under eyes using concealer. It’s common to apply a slight highlight and contour to enhance your features. This coverage is great for that person who doesn’t often wear heavy makeup but wants to make the effort for a formal occasion. Meghan Markle is an example of a celebrity that looks great in medium coverage makeup.



Light, medium or full coverage? Beat that face like a prof!

When you are going for a full coverage look, think about looking sophisticated and glamorous; be ready to have all your facial features enhanced with makeup i.e. skin, eyes and lips will be accentuated. Expect your features to be exaggerated, for example, a cut crease eyeshadow look, highlight and contour on the skin, ombre lip and false lashes. The skin and the eyes are usually the focus and bold colours are the norm with this coverage.

Light, medium or full coverage? Beat that face like a prof!
Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj is a great example of a celebrity who wears this look flawlessly. Nicki’s look in this image is also a great example of the confusion between the ‘nude finish’ full coverage look. Although they are both full coverage, however, one has a nude finish (i.e NOT a natural or light makeup look) and the other has more colour coverage.

Finally, do not let the term ‘full coverage’ frighten you from going for this look as it shouldn’t feel heavy on your face if applied moderately. You should consider buying a buildable foundation that will give you the option of a medium coverage or full coverage finish.

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