Demi make-up is trending – but is it just a fleeting craze?

An alternative approach to make-up application has gone viral on TikTok, but is there merit to the technique, or is demi make-up just another fad?

Beauty minimalism has reached a fever pitch of enthusiasm thanks to the latest make-up craze sweeping TikTok – demi make-up.

The trending “demi make-up method” uses strategically placed colour correction to counteract unwanted tones in the skin without adding excessive layers of make-up.

According to Sydney make-up artist Katie Angus, demi make-up is the latest iteration of the eternal quest to perfect the “no make-up” make-up look.

Katie says this method is just the age-old process of creating natural-looking make-up, but in its most genuine form.

“The technique involves using colour correction to ‘filter’ the face by removing any blemishes, under-eye bags, discolouration, and bringing the face into balance,” she says.

What makes the demi make-up method unique?

Much like other make-up processes such as underpainting, spot concealing and traditional colour correction, demi make-up is all about achieving a seamless yet natural-looking finish.

Demi make-up practises colour theory by using colour-corrective make-up, typically in the form of a cream colour palette, which evens out unwanted tones in the face.

The process can be quite laborious, as people tend to use small detail brushes to apply the corrective product with precision, in order to keep the finish as skin-like and subtle as possible.

What makes demi make-up different to traditional colour correction, however, is that there’s no sweep of foundation or base product after the corrective work is done because the colour correction itself serves as your make-up base.


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Is demi make-up linked to pyramid schemes?

It’s normal to assume that make-up application techniques have no link to multi-level marketing (MLM) and yet, thanks to the power of TikTok, there’s an increasingly common crossover.

Among the sea of online material on the demi make-up method are content creators pushing a specific, MLM-aligned make-up palette, which has led to some labelling the trend as a thinly veiled sales vehicle.

Even if there’s truth to this, there’s nothing stopping people from adopting the concept of demi make-up while using their own preferred colour-correcting products.


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Does demi make-up work for everyone?

While Melbourne make-up artist Paige Craig has welcomed the return to more natural beauty, she says the demi make-up method isn’t for her.

“Social media gives everyday Australians access to the latest make-up trends and techniques, but don’t feel the need to incorporate looks that don’t work for you or aren’t flattering,” Paige says.

“I do believe it’s possible to create a flawless base with colour correction alone, but it has to be done correctly and that can take patience and precision work.”

Technically, nothing prevents demi make-up from being a universal technique but, according to Katie, it’s better to assess faces individually when it comes to complexion products.

“If you want to create a truly flawless base, demi make-up is my go-to on skin that allows it; however, many skin types and skin concerns are better suited to techniques that provide a little more coverage,” Katie says.

For those who like a little more coverage, Katie says you can still achieve a skin-like finish by applying a skin tint or CC cream on top of the colour correction.

“This will give a freshness to the skin whilst still providing some coverage – just be sure to stipple the product in to avoid moving the existing make-up underneath,” Katie says.

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Written by Charlotte Brundrett.