What Makes HD Makeup Different? We Investigate

Lindsey Metrus

Ever since the trend of high-definition makeup came about, we've been intrigued. If we can look as in-focus and defined as the people on our television screens, we're on board (as long as the breakouts on our face aren't also HD, of course). However, it leaves us wondering how HD makeup is constructed and what makes it so different than your average bottle of foundation, powder, or blush. To get the lowdown on this seemingly magical technology, we turned to some experts for clarification.

To hear their take on high-definition makeup, keep scrolling!

"Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation ($43) takes the original beloved HD formula to the next level to meet the demands of 4K technology that's on the rise. With 4K technology, digital devices display images with unbelievable detail, stunning clarity, and heightened color than existing HD technology," says Sarah Barr Battle, senior manager of trade and product marketing for Make Up For Ever. "The product is meant to mimic a 'second-skin effect' both on camera and in person, looking natural and nearly invisible both on advanced 4K cameras and to the naked eye."

So why does Make Up For Ever's infamous HD foundation look so amazing, anyway? According to Battle, it's all in the formula: "The Ultra HD formula is a little lighter in texture, goes on smoother, and has a more skin-like finish. It's neither matte nor dewy, but it truly mimics the skin texture and, therefore, is invisible to the eyes. Ultra HD was formulated to give the ideal coverage, comfort, and finish while maintaining the natural look of the skin." Ah, we get it now.

To learn a little bit more about how this whole HD technology works across the board, we turned to cosmetic chemist Don Frey: "The pigments are coated with light-diffusing coatings which help blur the light when it reflects back. There has been a lot of work on coating pigments in the last few years to provide different visual effects and these foundations and powders make use of that. By softening the way the light bounces back, it helps soften the focus at an imperceptible level so that your eye (and the camera) get a to see some of what is underneath, but mixed in with the pigment to present a more even yet translucent look," says Frey. 

Lastly, Frey says that the way that you apply your HD makeup is key to how well it'll work:  "You will notice almost all talk about how to apply [HD makeup] focuses on a brush or even how to use a makeup sponge to get the proper effect. If you pile on HD makeup and apply incorrectly, you are still not going to have a transparent look," explains Frey. Noted, which is why we love following pro tips for flawless makeup application.

To see some of our favorite HD products, keep reading! 

Ed. note: Quotes have been edited and shortened for content.

Do you prefer HD makeup over "regular" makeup? Tell us why below!

Explore: Make Up For Ever

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