Everything You Need to Know About Baking your Makeup 

A tutorial about two methods you can use to apply makeup using the technique known as “Baking”.

Do you bake? I’m not taking about cakes either. I’m talking about when makeup artists heap powder under peoples eyes to make them look all perfect, like celebrities!

I’ve had a couple of cracks at this in the house, just for a laugh really. After I had finished, my bloke wasn’t impressed. I looked powdery and weird. I had, after all, dumped a bunch of powder onto my face. Essentially baking (also known as cooking or sandbagging) is putting base makeup onto your face and letting sit there for about 20 minutes before blending it. That way it melts into the skin and becomes the pigment becomes more dense.
If you’ve seen Ru Paul’s Drag Race then you’ll have seen the drag queens having bitch fights with thick layers of different coloured makeup sat baking on their faces. It really is the best programme ever.

Before I explain how baking works,  I just want to say that I think lots of powder under the eye is a bad idea. A bad idea for anyone with aging skin, dry skin or oily skin, for anyone who isn’t young and flawless therefore. And those with flawless skin have no need to resort to these lengths.
So don’t misconstrue this post as my recommendation to do any of the things I’m telling you to do. I’m about to tell you to put way too much makeup on, but you don’t have to.

Baking With Powder (aka Sandbagging)

Baking just means letting your makeup sit on your face for a while before blending, you can do it with powder or liquid makeup. Baking with powder gives a soft, completely matte, flawless appearance to skin, it’s ideal if you’re going to appear in public or be photographed a lot, like on a red carpet. There have been several incidents when, shock horror, the finishing powder wasn’t blended properly leaving the poor famous looking strange and silly.

drew barrymore looking funny with unblended powder after bakingPoor Drew.

If you are curious enough to try baking at home, this is how it’s done-

You’ll need a makeup sponge, a powder brush, a concealer and some loose powder. Check my Powder post for product recommendations.

tools for makeup baking with powder . powder brush and sponge

  1. Put a layer of concealer under the eyes in a triangle
  2. Blend the concealer well with a damp makeup sponge
  3. Then apply a generous amount of loose powder over the top using the sponge. (You can put powder wherever you’d like to highlight, I also put some on my jawline). Pile it on. Put loads on! Then put a bit more on. Good, now you look mental, go about your business for as long as you can- the recommendation is 20 minutesmakeup baking with powder . before with unblended powder under eyeYour boyf is going to laugh at you and call you a loonie.
  4. Take your powder brush and dust off the excess powder, you’ll be gagging to get it off.
  5. You should be left with powder soft airbrushed skin.
    baking powder makeup technique tutorial after photo
    Note how cheesed off I look with all that makeup on!

Baking with powder certainly left me looking matte and flawless, but also flat and cakey. After an hour the product was creasing, it was unpleasant to be honest.

Baking with Liquid Makeup

You can do the same with liquid makeup- leave concealer on for several minutes to allow it to melt into the skin, this way you get a denser layer of pigment and more coverage. If you have an area of discolouration that you have trouble hiding, this is a good trick. You apply a layer of concealer and let it sit for about 10 minutes before blending (any longer and it’s difficult to blend it at all)

Here I used a darker concealer to cover my under eye circles and a lighter one over my cheekbones and up to my temples to highlight.

baking with liquid  makeup tutorial. products- loreal lumi and kiko  natural concealer

  1. It’s pretty simple really, just apply the dark concealer under the eye and the highlighter in a wing shape extending from the top of your cheek to your temple
  2. Let it rest there for 10 minutes while you get on with something else.
  3. Dampen a blending sponge (with setting spray or water) and pad it over the concealer and highlighter to blend it. It is harder to blend after baking so you’ll need to spend a bit more time on it.I was left with a perfectly concealed and highlighted under eye, close up it looked heavy though.

Baking is like a lot of these other makeup techniques doing the rounds- it looks better in photos than it does in real life. After taking these photos I took the makeup off, it looked way too heavy. I much prefer the technique I described in my Post on under eye creasing where the aim of the game was to get as thin a layer as possible, so it looked a lot more natural and less alarming.

Baking makes for such a heavy face of makeup, I’m really not sold on it. I’ve shown you how to do it, by all means try it for fun, but then leave baking to drag queens and bakers.



4 Comments Add yours

  1. Double the Monkey Business says:

    I have never heard of baking, every day is a school day! Will have to try it out for fun to see but I am not sold on the heavy makeup look on me either xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah baking is a thing. Not a good thing either in my opinion. Fun to try though x


  2. I really like the way you write- it’s informative but not too wordy and you’re very engaging! Side note- the word sandbagging is the most hilarious thing I’ve read all day. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Karen, that’s a great comment. I know though, sandbagging! Doesn’t sound like something you want to do to your face xx

      Liked by 1 person

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