Airbrush vs Traditional Makeup Application

We offer both airbrush and traditional applications and the question we get asked the most is - “what’s the difference?”.  We thought we would take a moment to help explain what they both are and how they are different!

What Does Traditional and Airbrush Even Mean?

Traditional applications are what people normally think of or have already experienced.  It refers to when foundation (liquid, cream or powdered) is applied with a wedge sponge/brush/beauty blender etc.  

Brushes Used In Traditional Application   (courtsey of

Brushes Used In Traditional Application (courtsey of

Airbrush makeup uses specially formulated makeup that is meant to be applied with an airbrush gun and air compressor specifically designed for makeup.  Think of what they use to paint cars just smaller and made to be safe for the facial area! Instead of a heavy product being “painted” on your face, it is applied almost like spray paint in a fine mist.

Airbrush and Airbrush Makeup   (Courtesy of

Airbrush and Airbrush Makeup (Courtesy of

Which Lasts Longer?

Many people (including some professional makeup artists) believe that airbrush makeup lasts longer.  However, we believe this to be a little bit of a myth. You can have great longevity with traditional makeup when your skin is properly prepped and the makeup is applied and set correctly!

Doesn’t Airbrush Make You Flawless?

If only!  Airbrush has gotten this myth because it often gets confused with photoshop “airbrushing” - which is the act of retouching, smoothing, and correcting a photograph.  Airbrush can be amazing and make some people look flawless, but it also has its cons!

What About Tears and Sweat?

Regardless of what application you choose, catching tears before they fall in the corner of your eye with a tissue or finger is always best practice!  Small patting or dabbing motions should always be used for sweat, tears or an itch vs scratching or rubbing. Airbrush tends to be harder to re-blend if it gets streaks.

Who Is Airbrush Good For?

Airbrush is a very light application - both in terms of coverage and feeling.  Airbrush doesn’t feel “heavy” on the skin but also isn’t great for covering up imperfections.  Airbrush is also very matte and a little drying. Therefore, it is not ideal for dry skin, imperfections (ie: acne, intense rosacea) or any textured skin (ie: wrinkles, fine lines, scars).  If you are used to wearing little to light foundation, like a BB/CC cream or a tinted moisturizer, then airbrush would be great for you! If you have moisturized and hydrated skin with little imperfections or texture, it will be the perfect choice!    

Who is Traditional Good For?

Traditional is very versatile - both in terms of colors and coverage.  It is not as light and airy as airbrush, but it is possible to achieve a lighter coverage by sheering it down.  It is also possible to build up to a full coverage. However, for some people who wear little to no foundation, even the lightest application can feel like a lot.  Most traditional foundations range from a dewy to satin skin finish that can be powdered down to a matte. Traditional may not be ideal for more oily skin or those who are not used to foundation.  If you tend to have drier skin or imperfections or texture that you are worried about, this would be a great choice!

What If I Still Don’t Know?

That’s totally fine!  Ask us (or your artist) at your trial or before the application on what they recommend.  They will be able to take into account all the factors and recommend which option would be best for you!

We are looking forward to continuing this blog and sharing with you our new projects, behind the scenes looks, beauty insights and more! If you have any questions, or requests for future blog posts, we would love to hear from you! 
- Dayna

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