The ‘Non’ Beauty Trend

  • Copy by: Maritza Buelvas

We love scouting and trying the latest beauty trends, and although we relish a good pop of color here and an extra dose of volume there—nothing beats staying on trend and ‘of the moment’ without really trying. Minimal nails, relaxed hair, and non-color makeup is truly the beauty language we speak daily. With beauty trends coming and going, not enough can be said about a natural but polished and simply groomed look for the day-to-day.

Enter the ‘non’ beauty trend, which really came to the forefront with Beyonce’s barely made-up face and JLo’s pushed-back pony at this year’s Oscars. As of late, the trifecta of nails, makeup, and hair is reminiscent of fashion mainstays like Alexa Chung—definitely siding on the beauty spectrum of less is more.

With many style insiders flaunting soft beauty looks on and off the red carpet, the ‘non’ trend has really caught on with the busy working girl. We’ve both fallen in love with this relaxed movement and inadvertently landed on trend with our editor-trusted tousled locks, flush of pink on the lips, and breath of sheen on the nails.

Here’s a quick guide to achieving more with this minimal beauty trend.



Recently seen on Leslie Mann (love her!), sheer gloss or nude-colored nails make hectic life…well less hectic. The non-nail frees us from the ever-looming chip or makes any snags in our color less noticeable. Try quickly swiping a clear gloss like Essie’s No Chips Ahead for a little shine, or for more subtle interest try Butter London’s Doily Overcoat on its own, or Pink Ribbon for the perfect sheer pink. The key here is fresh, soft color or subtle interest where you can see the entire nail bed or have it almost poke through your color. For a cool take on this trend, try Alex Chungs’s Nails Inc in Alexa Camo for an easy way to add dimension and light color burst, while still rocking a natural base color. (Tip: Color distribution should mainly rest at your tips, while leaving the rest of your nail pretty bare—as seen on Alexa below). Alexa’s dimensional look is achieved in one to two quick swipes. We like to stick to one swipe for easy color pay-off and limited drying time. Bonus: This look doesn’t easily chip and is still quite nude—especially at the base.

For a chic, weekly office look, eliminate chipped nails by using one coat of Jin Soon Matte Maker and white wash the underneath tips of your nails to make them appear whiter and cleaner with Sally Hansen’s 2-in-1 Nail Corrector Pencil. This water-activated pencil provides clean, white rimmed nails that last and last.

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Non-hair is marked by limited product usage (this is key!) and has a late 60’s, early 70’s boho appeal. Styling is natural, not stiff, with loads of movement. Picture hair that’s been air-dried—also great for eliminating dry scalp and static. Try creating (or maintaining) texture with a little bit of lift using Redken’s Wind Blown 05 Dry Finishing Spray or Bumble and Bumble’s Sea Salt Surf Spray keeping hair soft and feminine—without much effort. If you want to add more twists and natural looking volume, use a large-barrel curling wand (keep the ends straight) and tease with fingers. Either approach will deliver the ultimate ‘I woke up like this’ hair. Here’s a great video technique for creating subtle boho waves, so you can rock this non-hair esthetic.

The key to non-hair is effortlessness; it should take you all of five minutes and reads ‘cool girl’ with minimal effort. Try a stretchy headband like this one by Free People or a messy, mid-rise bun with loads of texture.

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Whether it’s all-over bare makeup or focusing on one feature and keeping the rest of the face minimal—non-makeup is defined by non-color or flesh color makeup.

The ‘non’ trend is all about soft washes of color and skin that looks and feels breathable. Keep foundation sheer and to a minimum (keep those freckles showing!). Consider using Clinique’s Airbrush Concealer on a bare face or over foundation to softly diminish imperfections. Finger pat into place for an effortless, lived-in feel; build coverage where needed and keep the rest bare. For a touch of color try Stila’s Convertible Color in Peony on the cheeks and on the lips (apply with fingers).

If you focus on your eyes, try a one tonal color burst on the lid or crease and complete the look with a natural lip. Or try a sleek cat eye with flesh tone accent colors on the eyes and cheeks and a fleshy lip shade like L’Oreal Paris’ Extraordinaire by Colour Riche in Nude Ballet 601.

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So tell us, which ‘non’ beauty trend will you try or do you already rock on the daily?


Featured image source: Studded-Hearts

  • Alexis G.

    Im all for the ‘non hair’ and ‘non makeup’. I recently chopped off about 4 inches of hair into a cute bob and I love being able to wake up, ruffle my hair a bit and go. And for the make up, as long as my brows are done and I have a little bit of concealer under my eyes, I’m good to go!

    • I chopped my hair off too and I love being able to let it air dry, add a touch of product and go!

      • Alexis G.

        Its a great feeling! 🙂

  • Caitlin

    I’ve been rocking this look forever 🙂

  • Now this is beauty I can get behind 😉 I wear minimal makeup most days (foundation, a bit of powder and mascara) but my skin doesn’t allow for anything less. The foundation I have is thick, meant to cover all the bad spots! Any tips or products you love that helps to even skin tone?

    • maritza buelvas

      I would try BB cream that provides soft, glowy (natural) coverage or Tinted Moisturizer! Another option is Bare Minerals. Their new liquid foundation is great or their illuminating foundation powders.

      • I think a trip to the beauty counter is in order 🙂 Thanks, Maritza!

    • maritza buelvas

      Thank you for your question/comments sweet Jessica 🙂

  • I actually do all of them and have been forever! I always use minimal to no makeup, I barely do anything to my hair and recently cut it too 😉 I love clear or neutral colors on the nails! Great article. For once I feel like I am trendy! 🙂

  • lwh13

    Love this! I can definitely get used to it 😉

    Warm Regards,

  • Samantha James

    My favorite “non nail” is OPI’s Nail Envy! It helped me break my nail biting habit and makes my nails feel strong and look healthy!

  • Emma

    As a somewhat untalented and lazy girl when it comes to make-up, I’m a huge fan of this trend! But, I sometimes find it difficult to cover impurities while still looking natural – do you have any tips on how to do that? Thanks 🙂

  • I love seeing this trend because it’s my approach everyday. Minimal makeup and hairstyling. Just me. These girls are stunning though and don’t need anything.

  • Emily E

    I love everything about this trend. Finally no more contouring. That trend drove me crazy!

    • Vicki

      I realize I’m a year late to this party but I totally agree with you! I’m so over all the heavy foundation and crazy contouring and super-light highlighting, ick!

  • I am all about this trend! I had the keratin treatment done so I don’t have to do anything to my hair other than wash it. I barely wear makeup and I usually only put on mascara and do my brows since mine are blonde.

  • Gina

    This is me 100%. Always has been, always will be. I am too lazy to do other elaborate fashion things. I finally feel “non boring” lol.

  • Ali

    I think for a natural non-beauty look, these tips are important but a real natural look goes even beyond this. To be really naturally beautiful, you must be confident in your own skin.

  • nikki

    I’ve always been a minimal hair, makeup and clothes girl. glad the world is finally catching up with us!

  • MisS Jean

    MOST interesting article! Thanks for the suggestions, ha ha… now I’m going to feel “hip” and younger by doing similar things.

    BTW I’ve been doing this most of my life (I am 65) and there are a few new things I’m trying and a few I’d like to share with you all.

    Nails – try using a “buffer” – it’s a piece of chamois on a base, you rub your nails back and forth and it produces a shine. No chemicals and is supposed to be very healthy for the nail bed. Looks nice too.

    Face – I NEVER have worn any “foundation” in my life except for 2-3 times I foolishly tried to use it but it always made me feel like I was clogging my pores. I also no longer use any kind of soap, cleanser, lotion or cream on my skin – just medium hot water and 1 X week those pore strips to pull out blackheads. I’ve done this for about a year now and look no less worse for wear. I started this because I had such extremely dry skin lately (hormone changes with age)… but that regime (or non-regime) seems to help keep my face from drying out further. With pore strips keep blackheads down and I think I have fewer of the occasional zit than before. I think the hot water (not too hot, just comfortable) helps keep the natural oils moving. My eye doctor suggested a hot compress on my eyes for the same reason once a day. Yes, I have wrinkles… SO WHAT? I have earned each and every one!

    Make-up – if I feel like it I will put on lipstick, prefer the kind that lasts for hours. Occasional blush… but to heck with nasty mascara.

    Other skin – I “sponge bath” every few days the rest of my skin with a bit of soap and hot/warm water… and I have to use lotion (usually something like Lubriderm or Miracle Foot) on my legs and feet because of a medical condition. I only use lotion on the legs, because if I don’t it can get so dry I risk skin infections. If my hands, elbows or other parts feel dry or itch I do those too.

    Private parts & underarms – these are the only places I use soap and water (daily) and if needed (smelly) I will use rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball under my arms to kill germs. Works.

    Hair – I love the idea of not using shampoo or conditioner and since I am disabled and can no longer take a bath and climbing over the side of the tub to sit in a shower chair is painful. I’m trying to cut it down to no more than one shower a week. I’m doing to experiment now with some of the DIY dry shampoo formulas I’m seeing and see how long I can go without a shower, only simple sponge bath.

    OK maybe you guys will think I’m crazy but there it is.

  • I love this trend!!!