As the veil was lifted from the face of a beaming Meghan Markle on her wedding day in May, the first thing that everyone noticed was that unabashed, happy smile. The second? Those freckles. Markle’s make-up artist Daniel Martin did a stellar job of perfecting and enhancing her skin, whilst still letting that smattering of freckles shine through. (Put it this way, Google searches for “Meghan Markle freckles” have risen by 100 per cent in the past month).

And it’s not only our new Duchess of Sussex making the most of her freckles. Kylie Jenner shared a picture of herself on Instagram sporting an uncharacteristically low-key make-up look, showing off a sprinkling of freckles from her forehead right down to her chin. So far it has over 7 million likes.

“Revealing and emphasising freckles is another example of women’s desire for skin which is more real, healthy, fresh and a bit outdoorsy – probably as a reaction to the faked perfection of social media beauty,” Terry Barber, MAC’s director of make-up artistry, told to Vogue. “There is a definite movement back to the idea of effortless, well-conditioned skin, even if you’re wearing make-up. It’s adding that bit of sunniness back.”

Ariana Grande’s look on Vogue’s July 2018 cover, with just a handful of freckles speckling the bridge of her nose, or Christina Aguilera’s headline-grabbing make-under for Paper magazine earlier this year and Adwoa Aboah on Edward Enninful’s debut British Vogue cover. There’s a youthfulness and a summeriness to freckles that only adds to natural beauty. After all, that’s why all of the best Snapchat filters bestow a smattering of freckles across the user’s cheeks and nose.

 

“Revealing freckles is all about easing up on the all-over foundation coverage,” Barber says. “Opt for a sheer tint and just conceal in the areas you need or alternatively put your foundation on and then remove it from the bridge of the nose and centre of your cheeks where you want that smattering of freckles to come through.”

And if you don’t have freckles, but wish you did? Well, fake it.

Of course, stencils, stamps, tattoos, and other forms of makeup have been responsible for faux freckles in the past, but it wasn’t until recently that models all over social media have turned the fad into a beauty mainstay. Some are more dramatic and colorful, while others remain a natural-looking brown that could fool even the biggest skeptic.
What’s more, people are searching for freckles on Pinterest now more than ever. The brand tells us that glitter freckles have been pinned 90% more times within the last year alone, and you’d be surprised at just how many boards of “faux, fresh freckles” exist (hint: too many to count). People are no longer interested in covering them up — they want to recreate them.

 

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