19 beauty slang words you need to know
In case you haven’t noticed, the rise of the beauty blogger has seen a serious increase in the amount of beauty slang being bandied about.
Inspired by new techniques and technology, the cut crease and contour have taken over our social media feeds - and don’t even get me started on ‘beat face’.
Are you finding it hard to keep up? We hear you! Read on for tongue-in-cheek translations of the latest beauty lingo, so you never get caught out again...
Giving life (verb):
The feeling that comes from gazing in awe at an amazing make-up look. In other words, the make-up is so good that it’s giving your life new meaning. For example, you might hear someone (probably at bh HQ!) say: “Zendaya’s make-up gives me life.”
Beatdown or beat face (noun):
Make-up applied so well, it looks perfect from every angle. This tends to go hand in hand with ‘giving life’.
A fancy way of saying ‘using highlighter’. You can read more about strobing here.
A make-up technique that involves layering translucent powder (try Face of Australia Translucent Loose Powder or Covergirl Professional Loose Powder) over your make-up base and allowing the heat from your skin to set it, before dusting off the excess for a #flawless complexion.
On fleek (adjective):
Frequently heard in praise of expertly styled eyebrows, this term can also be used to describe any part of your make-up that is well done.
Cut crease (noun):
A sharp line of eyeshadow or glitter drawn across a bare eyelid. An alternative to covering the entire lid, this helps to define and accentuate the eye area and make it look lifted.
This describes a nail shape that is long (like stiletto nails) but squared off at the tip. Since they’re less sharp, these nails are safer for the wearer.
The act of not contouring the bejeezus out of your face. Natural beauties are likely to be on board with this - and so are we!
Hit pan (verb):
When you use enough of your eye-shadow, blush or bronzer that you can see the bottom of the palette or compact. Usually accompanied by a feeling of profound sadness, and a trip to Sephora.
Killed it. Smashed it. Your beauty look is on point and you’re winning at life! (And rolling in compliments)
Sleeping pack (noun):
Not to be confused with a sleeping bag, sleeping pack refers to an overnight facial mask such as Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Overnight Firming Mask or Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask. The term originated in Korea, where masks are commonly known as packs.
Ring light (noun):
This kind of resembles a magnifying mirror, but with lights around the rim and nothing in the centre to create an especially flattering glow. The bh team may or may not use this sort of light to our advantage in videos…
The dumping of new beauty products out of a beauty bag, accompanied by a show-and-tell. Some beauty vloggers will film this for their audiences, and our members have also been known to share them in the beautyheaven forum for fun.
To remove pans of make-up from pots or compacts with the aim of corralling them into a personalised, pretty make-up palette.
To cleanse your face twice, first using an oil-based cleanser to dissolve tough make-up (like mascara), followed by a foaming cleanser for a thorough and effective overall cleanse. We like Rubifresh Cleansing Oil 1 and Rubifresh Cleansing Gel 2.
Using multiple facial masks at once on different areas of the face, in an effort to treat a range of skin care concerns. For example, you might apply a clay mask (try Shanga Purifying Clay Mask) on an oily T-zone, paired with a hydration mask such as Jurlique Moisture Replenishing Mask on your cheeks.
The art of using self-tanner to contour the face and/body. It’s longer-lasting and, when done right, can look natural - but it also carries the risk of looking streaky for days on end. This technique is for experienced self-tanners only.
When highlighter is applied expertly to the point where your face almost looks lit up. Beauties with this level of ability can get by just fine without the help of a ring light.
An acronym for ‘Holy Grail’ that long-time bh readers will be all too familiar with. It’s used to describe a product that is so deeply essential to your beauty routine, you can’t imagine life without it.
What’s your favourite beauty slang word? Do you have any others to add to the list?