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Face makeup using Photoshop tutorial

I use Photoshop for more than 7 years, I am self-taught -thank you world wide web- . The Internet offers too much knowledge about everything nowadays, and a lot of us have this powerful weapon in our hands. There are mobile applications where someone can edit images and have great results, although Adobe Photoshop offers a lot more since it is a very very powerful tool. Photo editing tools have a lot of math behind them and some mobile applications mimic Photoshop’s behavior, but they do not have the same capabilities  since they offer limited editing based on certain patterns (you may have noticed that you need to specify the shape of eyes, mouth, face and still sometimes the blush goes on the hair! ). In this tutorial, I am using Adobe Photoshop CS6 but someone can edit images using older releases of the application.

In this tutorial you will see how to: 

  • Smooth skin texture
  • Fill eyebrows and improve their shape
  • Add eyeliner and eyeshadow
  • Enhance nose shape
  • Add lip color


Note: The image used for this tutorial is from  and it is free to use.  Images on Pixabay are released free of copyrights. I improve my photos using the same techniques.

Smooth skin (foundation effect)

Start by opening the desired image on PS. To avoid losing your progress ,  “duplicate layer” of the image. This is located on the side bar of the application.

  1. Right click on the small image that appears on the “layers” box, and click Duplicate Layer. Then create an empty layer from the bar below in the Layer’s box as you can see on the second image below.

makeup photoshop tutorial

makeup photoshop

1.   To create the “foundation effect”  we must first select the area we want to make smoother. There are many options to do that in Photoshop, but the way that works best for me is to use the “Quick Mask Mode”. Before selecting this mode, make sure you have selected the new empty layer in the Layer’s box on the right side of the application.

       2. Then navigate to the toolbox on the left side of PS.

     3. Select “Quick Mask Mode” . Make sure that the foreground color is black, and the  background  white. Note : When you use the Mask mode you “paint” in red color.

           make up with Photoshop 4            make up with Photoshop


        4.  To use the Quick Mask Mode you must select the brush on the toolbox (left side of PS). Once the    brush is selected re-size the size of the brush so it is convenient for you when you paint. Do not forget that the area we are going to paint now will become red, and the red part of the image will be selected in order to make the skin smoother and clearer.

Choose the first brush shape from the left as you can see below. Do not use the very bold ones because the result might be very harsh.

Do not forget that the area we are going to paint now will become red, and the red part of the image will be selected in order to make the skin smoother and clearer.

make up with Photoshop

I chose this part of the face but you can carefully select all the face (by painting all the face red (except the eyes and lips). For a more natural result, I selected the area which had the most imperfections.

5.   Press again the “Quick Mask Mode” button and you will see two selected areas on the photo. The outer image, and the painted part. In this case, we want to modify only the skin, so press the button “Quick Selection Tool” (Shortcut: W) > add your mouse on the image > right click> Select Inverse.

make up with Photoshop

Now the skin area is selected, make sure that you have chosen the Duplicated layer (not the new layer) on the Layers Box (right side of PS).

6.  Navigate to the Top Menu Bar, choose Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Adjust the bar until you are happy with the result.

Gaussian Blur

7.   Right-click on the image > Deselect.

Eyebrows filling

 1.  Firstly, make sure that your New Layer is selected on the layers box on the right side of the application.

make up with Photoshop 4

2.   Select the brush tool, from the Toolbox on the left side of PS application.

3.   Change Opacity to 20% or 18% or play with the opacity until you get the desired color. I usually use Opacity from 15% to 25% when I apply “makeup” on PS images.

       4.  Choose the color of the eyebrow that you want to create. You can find Eyedropper  useful on this   step. Drop the Eyedropper on the color you want (in our case the existing eyebrow hairs) and it gets the RBG color of the existing element we want to copy.

       5.  Make your brush size very small, to draw thin lines. Those lines will mimic the actual hair of the eyebrows in order to achieve a realistic result. You are actually drawing in this step.

Smooth skin and make up with Photoshop 15 Smooth skin and make up with Photoshop 16

Correct any mistakes using the Eraser Tool (E). Modify the Opacity of the Eraser if needed.

Eyeliners – Eyeshadows

Again make sure you are working on the New Layer.

Eyeliners can be added using the same way we filled the eyebrow : Brush> Adjust brush size>Opacity around 20-25% and you are just painting the eyes.

Lip Color

Do you remember the Quick Mask Mode, we used for the foundation effect? We will use this again now. Follow the Quick Mask tutorial above on the first section of this post.

1.  Once you are in the Quick Mask Mode draw the outline of the lips, and fill them in.

make up with Photoshop 17

2.  Once the lips are red using the Quick Mask Mode, exit the Mask Mode, and Select Inverse in order to have  selected only the lips area.

Coloring step

3.  Layer (Menu bar)> New Fill Layer > Solid Color.

4.  A new window will popup, where you select Soft Overlay.

5.  Again a new window will pop up, play with the colors until you get the color you like.

You can always correct mistakes with Eraser Tool(E).

Smooth skin and make up with Photoshop 20

Nose enhancement

1. Before you move on to this step, select ALL layers > Right click> Merge Layers

2. Make sure you duplicate your layer after the merge.

3. Select the duplicated layer of your image>Filter (on the top menu bar)Liquify.

4. A new window will open where you select brush size

5. “Push” the edges of the nose  until you get the desired shape. This is a bit tricky because you can “destroy” the face on the photo. If that happens choose “Reconstruct” and try again !

Smooth skin and make up with Photoshop 22 Smooth skin and make up with Photoshop 23

Finished result

I wanted to keep the makeup natural in this image. The reason is that, if you add thick bold lines, extreme colors, it can result looking fake and photoshopped.

I hope that this tutorial helped you, feel free to ask me questions!!!

Smooth skin and make up with Photoshop 24


Thank you for passing by my site,


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