There are certain women we associate with more-is-more makeup—Kim Kardashian, and Jennifer Lopez, to name a couple. While they’re walking examples of killer contouring, faux lashes, and loads of liner, it’s a lot of effort to look like that on a daily basis.
At the opposite end of the spectrum are those who fall squarely into the off-duty beauty camp (including Kim’s own sister, Kendall Jenner), inspiring us all to embrace the effortless look. Though these ladies also look incredible when done-up, they’ve mastered what it means to look flawless with minimal effort—and now you can too.
We studied the ultimate off-duty beauties—Gigi Hadid, Alexa Chung, Kendall Jenner, and Kate Bosworth—for their no-fuss formula, and broke it down so you can look like an off-duty It girl in no time. Keep scrolling for the secrets to their look!
Far from looking heavily made up with layers of foundation, bronzer, and sculpted-out features, off-duty beauties boast glowing skin that can breathe—and there’s something so beautiful about that.
For clearer, instantly brighter skin, we suggest a face mask with exfoliating acids that will resurface and brighten the top layer of skin. The Byrdie team is obsessed with the natural Blueberry Scrub Mask by Protective Nourishment ($70), which exfoliates and visibly revitalizes skin thanks to lactic acid and antioxidant-rich blueberries. Targeted for oily and acne-prone skin, it will polish, tone, and brighten for a Gigi-Hadid-worthy glow.
The day-of secret to a beautiful, barefaced glow is a well-formulated face oil—it will hydrate skin and is absorb easily, leaving behind a healthy, fresh, radiant complexion. Makeup artists can’t get enough of L’Oreal’s new Age Perfect Glow Renewal Facial Oil ($25), which was used to give A-listers like Naomi Watts their red-carpet radiance this awards season.
If you need some coverage for redness, discoloration, and other imperfections, skip foundation and tinted moisturizer—instead, try a sheer, tinted gel cream like Bare Minerals’ Complexion Rescue ($29). The innovative formula delivers a boost of hydration, while evening out skin tone for a light, dewy finish.
Lastly, enhance the lit-from-within look with a little highlighter on cheekbones. Try RMS’s cult version ($38), which complements all skin tones for a luminous—not sparkly—look.
Keep scrolling to shop all the products mentioned here for glowing, naked skin.
The off-duty girl almost always has a rosy pink pout with just a hint of sheen. Get the look with a moisturizing chubby stick or sheer lipstick that finishes smooth with a subtle shine. We’re huge fans of Neutrogena’s Moisture Smooth Color Sticks ($8) and L’Oreal’s Glossy Balm ($8), both of which deliver a sheer wash of conditioning color. Another favorite? Chanel’s new Rouge Coco Lipstick formula ($36), which is ultra-hydrating with super-sheer color for a stunning tinted glossy-balm effect befitting of Alexa Chung and Kate Bosworth.
Keep scrolling to shop the products mentioned here for getting the perfect rosy pink pout!
Never too filled-in, defined, or severe-looking, natural-looking brows (à la Gigi Hadid’s and Alexa Chung’s) are a must for an “I woke up like this” look. All it takes to mimic their arches is a few upstroke brushes with a brow gel.
Keep scrolling to shop our favorite brow gels for creating a gorgeous groomed brow!
The on-the-go model-off-duty gives off the vibe that she isn’t trying too hard, because she isn’t. Rather than strands that look fussed-with and styled to perfection, Jenner, Chung, Hadid, and Bosworth favor the lived-in look—hair that’s flipped to one side, and relaxed, with a bit of volume, never over-styled. Create the look by sleeping on clean, blown-out hair for a day-old, bed-head vibe, and muss it up the morning-of with dry shampoo for a little lift.
Keep scrolling for three stellar dry shampoos that will give limp hair a lift.
The other go-to hairstyle of laidback beauties, per Bosworth and Jenner, is a simple ponytail paired with the ultimate beauty accessory: sunglasses. On days when hair just isn’t cooperating to give you the aforementioned bed-head, or is a bit too dirty to look effortlessly sexy, pull it back into a classic ponytail—mid-level being the off-duty girl’s positioning of choice. Higher, and you’re in girly J.Lo and Ariana Grande territory (read: the opposite of off-duty beauty), lower, and you’re in Gwyneth red-carpet territory (chic in its own right, but too polished and perfect to translate to laissez-faire hair status). Just use a swipe of smoothing cream to tame flyaways and you’re good to go.
Keep scrolling for three ponytail smoothers we love!