Diary / Beauty / Feb 5, 2024

6 Professional, Elegant Makeup Looks for Work

Written by: Jones Road Beauty

Photography by: Ben Ritter

Jones Road Beauty Model

Achieving the right makeup look that's both professional and an authentic representation of you can be a delicate operation. While we don’t need to tell you that the nature of work and going into the office has changed a good bit over the past few years, but your aim, we bet, has stayed the same: achieving polished elegance. A perfect approach, even if you’re working in pajamas waist-down.

So how does one strike that balance between too much and too little makeup so that you can feel confident in yourself and your look? Overly minimal makeup might leave you feeling underdressed, while something more playful and colorful may come off as distracting in a corporate environment. And then there’s the question of video calls, coupled with the often-unflattering glare of a home office—you want to look like you but you may need to dial up your usual approach a bit so you aren’t blotted out or sallow on screen. 

We’ll go through a variety of options that follow the expectations of a professional setting yet still allow room for a little personality and flair.

Above, Nancy is wearing: 

Jones Road Beauty model

1. Rosy Glow

A flushed cheek is linked with youthful vitality and natural beauty. In the professional realm, it can be the finishing touch that elevates your look from bare to polished. Utterly classic. The key is to keep your eye makeup light and focus on the cheeks for maximum effect.

Done correctly (meaning: not too much to look garish, not so minimal as to not make an impact), warmth on the cheeks can make you look more awake and energetic. To add that perfect flush of color, there are a few options: The Best Blush, Miracle Balm, The Bronzer, and Lip and Cheek Stick. (If you’re wondering, why use a blush versus a bronzer and vice versa? Read up on that here.)

Smile to bring out the apples of your cheeks and apply your powder blush or bronzer with The Blush Brush, sweeping the brush upwards toward your hairline. 

 If you’re not using a powder, instead opting for the denser but smooth, blendable formulas of Miracle Balm or Lip and Cheek Stick, still start at the apples of your cheeks and build, slowly and gently. Both products only require the light touch of your fingertips to blend but the compact bristles of The Everything Brush will lend controlled, even coverage as well.

Gearing up for a long day of video calls? Then you may want to do a quick trial in front of your computer camera to see if the color you’ve added is registering how you want. Do you look washed out, or did you apply enough color to appear alert and invigorated? 

In this shot, Anna is wearing Lip and Cheek Stick in Tawny Nude and Miracle Balm in Magic Hour to achieve warmth and luminosity. If you’d like to follow the same technique, apply Lip and Cheek Stick first for color, and then Miracle Balm for a bit of glow that builds on the previously applied hues.

For a primer on all things Miracle Balm and how to use, and apply, just the right amount, we’ve got you covered right here. Find the shade of Miracle Balm that’s perfect for you and your skin tone by taking this quick quiz.

Anna is wearing: 

Jones Road Beauty model

2. A Defined Brow

Eyebrows add structure and balance to your facial features, so it’s important to keep them groomed and maintained. We’re not talking about a rigorous plucking routine here, don’t worry—just simple tips that go deceptively far in contributing to a polished, professional appearance.

A neglected brow is the opposite of looking put-together, which is what anyone who’s delivering a presentation or leading a client meeting is after. It’s really no overstatement to say the state of your eyebrows can affect how others interpret your focus, engagement, and even your mood. 

Tweezing and trimming (or having someone else do that by waxing or threading) should be part of your routines, and to make this maintenance more worthwhile, consider The Brow Pencil and The Brow Gel. They go hand in hand to subtly amplify your brows’ natural tint and define your arch, without overpowering your natural appearance. 

As you can see here, the brows stay front and center among otherwise super-minimal makeup—gently corrected, warmed up skin plus a bare lip. The product may be light but the impact is profound.

Constanze is wearing: 

Jones Road Beauty holding What the Foundation

3. A Classic Neutral Look

In other words? This is no-makeup makeup. It’s the ultimate in subtlety, a perfect approach for minimalists or those whose professional endeavors leave little to no time (or energy) for a more elaborate look. The aim is to look like you’re not wearing makeup and embrace a healthy, even complexion.

A routinely moisturized face is the basis of this look so it’s smooth and as natural-looking as possible. Just as essential is choosing the right colors of concealer and foundation; you can find those right here by answering a few questions.

Our What The Foundation provides a canvas that looks and feels like your best skin day ever. It provides the level of coverage that is just right: enough to even out your complexion but not so much that it appears mask-like. 

From there, build your look by adding a bit more warmth back in (if you want) with a dusting of bronzer and shaping and filling in your brows with The Brow Gel. Keep your lips ultra-natural with a topping of Cool Gloss in Original, no color necessary, just a bit of shine for dimension.

Gillean is wearing: 

Jones Road Beauty model

4. Add Color to the Lips 

A colorful lip signifies self-assurance—a must-have quality to captivate a room or lead a meeting with ease. 

For professional circumstances, you want to make sure you’re wearing the color, and the color doesn’t wear you. Anything too bold—especially if you don’t typically wear anything on your lips—could prove distracting to yourself and others.

Balancing your lip color with the remaining makeup is important, and not just in a professional setting. When you make your lips the focus of your makeup look, make sure your eyes aren’t too elaborate. They’ll compete with one another. 

Jones Road has a few options for you when you want your lips to be the focal point. 

As seen above, our Lip and Cheek Stick does double-duty, keeping your overall look harmonious and hued. Formulated with castor seed oil, it’s the picture of effortless elegance, keeping you moisturized and comfortable.

Our most potent and pigmented option (and also made with castor seed oil), The Lip Tint is our take on traditional lipstick. It glides on with ease—so effortless to apply (and reapply) that you don’t need a mirror to put it on. 

You can wear both of these on their own or for extra impact and sheen, top them with Cool Gloss, a light, never-sticky gloss that actually feels good to wear. (It contains shea butter so your lips are nourished and supple.)

Olivia is wearing: 

Jones Road Beauty Model

5. Bronzed and Glowy

Warmed-up skin is innately youthful and healthy. For this look, bronzer is the answer and the essence of vitality.

The idea isn’t to appear overly glowy—you can ramp it up for that “freshly back from vacation” appearance, but that may not be the tone (no pun intended) to strike when you’re leading a performance review. Here, the idea is refined, natural, and sophisticated.    

Radiance like this is easy to achieve with a combination, like Haejin here wears, of What The Foundation, topped with The Gel Bronzer (primarily on the cheeks). This provides potent coverage but never veers into overly shiny territory.

Of course, this won’t succeed if you aren’t already working with nourished skin. We know we’re repeating ourselves, but it’s that important—moisturize, and with the right moisturizer formulated for your skin type.

Equally important? A strong, dark lash. We’re big proponents of an inky mascara. Black eyelashes make you look awake and sophisticated.

Haejin is wearing: 

Jones Road Beauty Model

6. A Soft Smokey Eye

While a traditional smokey eye might be a bit too intense for your 9-to-5, a softer rendition is totally appropriate for day-to-day wear in the office. 

The key lies in the nuances—choosing lighter shades for your eyeshadow, meticulously blending, and keeping the eyeliner understated. This style allows you to incorporate a touch of glamor within the confines of corporate-appropriate self-presentation. 

When it comes to achieving this perfectly balanced look, The Best Eyeshadow is your go-to. Start by laying down a neutral base on your eyelids; this will make the subsequent colors pop without overwhelming your features. Next, choose a darker shade, preferably in a shimmer for additional dimension.

Once the eyeshadow is in place, opt for a color of The Best Pencil to suitably line the eyes but isn't overly bold. The idea is to enhance your eyes subtly, not to create a stark contrast. As a finishing touch, don't forget a coat of The Mascara to open up your eyes and complete this soft, smokey masterpiece.

Sunjana is wearing: 

The Final Touch

Navigating the world of professional makeup can be intricate, but it doesn't have to be daunting. The key is to select quality products that work in harmony with your natural beauty. 

These sophisticated yet understated makeup looks serve as a starting point for anyone looking to elevate their professional appearance. All of them embrace the elegance of simplicity. After all, in the professional world, less often is more.

Shop the article:


What The Foundation

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The Neutralizer Pencil

View more information about The Neutralizer Pencil

The Mascara

View more information about The Mascara

Diary / Beauty / Feb 5, 2024

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