Mastering office makeup in the age of face masks and Zoom

  • Style
  • Thursday, 14 Jan 2021

Makeup routines are changing as people adapt to more meetings held online and mask-wearing. Photo: Franziska Gabbert/dpa

Many of us have a morning routine that’s pretty much the same every day: bathroom, breakfast, stare at our phones. For many women, cosmetics play some kind of role in that first part.

For those of us that do start the day at a mirror, daytime makeup generally follows a different playbook than evening makeup. At the same time makeup artist Horst Kirchberger explains that every industry also has its own unwritten makeup rules.

For example, a beautician or a waitress in a cafe will traditionally wear makeup that signals empathy, he says. The look should be reserved, but still fresh and bold. A lawyer, on the other hand, will often choose makeup that is more subtle.

”However, things have changed, ” says makeup artist Peter Arnheim, pointing to shifting cultural trends and the impact of the pandemic.

If you're using red lipstick at work, make-up experts suggest you don't also emphasise the eyes or cheeks. Photo: Andrea Warnecke/dpaIf you're using red lipstick at work, make-up experts suggest you don't also emphasise the eyes or cheeks. Photo: Andrea Warnecke/dpa

”So don’t just look at the industry, also take into account the direction of each individual company.” Accordingly, the makeup should always be chosen on an individual basis.

A glimmer of light in office life

But what is actually on trend when it comes to makeup for a work environment and what should you avoid?

”With a healthy and natural makeup look, we can bring lightness back into everyday office life, ” says Nathalie Fischer from Germany’S VKE Cosmetics Association explains. Her advice is not to exaggerate and cover everything up, but perfect the details in a flattering way.

In her opinion, shimmer powder creates the perfect complexion.

Depending on your skin colour, you might mix rose and peach tones or accentuate the cheeks or cheekbones individually with one tone each.

In addition to the complexion, the eyes in particular play a major role in day makeup.

“Emphasise them with neutral earth tones if you work in a more conservative company, ” says beauty editor Melanie Paukner from Glamour magazine. Things are different if you work in a younger, edgier office; a little more colour is OK.

“Either emphasise the eyes or the mouth, for example with a bright red lipstick.”

However, both together are too much for office makeup, says Paukner. The same goes for glitter – it should be reserved for evening looks.

In a time of face masks, it’s all about the eyes

Right now, with many people wearing face masks in professional situations, eye make-up is very important, says Fischer.

She has a specific makeup tip: apply a contour with eye shadow in light beige or burgundy around the eye or on the eyelid.

“The slight shimmer gives the eyes a radiant expression.”

Alongside eye shadow and mascara, defined eyebrows give the face more expression. An eyebrow mascara allows you to fill in any gaps and style the brows, says Arnheim.

The make-up pro also points out that people who wear glasses should apply more colour to their eye make-up as it gets swallowed up by the glasses.

Defined eyebrows give the face more expression - something that's all the more important if you're meeting other people while wearing a face mask. Photo: Christin Klose/dpaDefined eyebrows give the face more expression - something that's all the more important if you're meeting other people while wearing a face mask. Photo: Christin Klose/dpa

”This also applies to online meetings, ” adds Fischer, with the camera also swallowing colour. It’s best to use warm, fresh tones. Camera lighting can make the complexion look very cold and pale.

Makeup artist Kirchberger has an extra tip regarding eye makeup. He recommends applying a lot of mascara to the upper row of lashes, but then to either leave the lashes on the lower row or apply only a little mascara. Use white or beige kohl instead, which makes the eyes look “fresh and alert”.

Blusher always works

Makeup experts generally agree on the subject of blusher: it’s a nice touch in everyday office life. A splash of red on the cheeks makes the complexion fresher – even if you haven’t had enough sleep or are stressed.

Another expert tip: apply your makeup in such a way that you can take your look from daytime to evening in a few steps.

“If you want things a touch fresher for the evening, simply apply a small amount of cream blush and blend with a soft applicator or a blusher brush, ” Fischer recommends.

”In no time at all the cheeks, nose and chin look more natural.”

A bright lipstick rounds off the evening make-up. – dpa

Splurge on the best cosmetic products at low cost using Lazada Voucher Code

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

beauty , makeup , zoom , pandemic , Covid-19 , WFH


Next In Style

Why you should include castor oil as part of your beauty arsenal
Young Black designer dresses Colombian vice-president in 'resistance' fashion
Believe it or not, you can curl your hair by just using a soda can
Kim Kardashian culls Dolce & Gabbana archives for Milan Fashion Week show
Vanity Fare: Fresh, radiant and bold fragrances to lift your mood
Designer handbags made from stale bread? This fashion brand wants your dough
What is a Brazilian manicure and why is it now a beauty fad?
Turning sushi into sneakers? This is not just a mere 'fish story'
Milan Fashion Week hears calls for designer diversity, but has it done enough?
Harry Styles stylist Harris Reed takes over at Nina Ricci, he is just 26

Others Also Read