Beauty Jargon Busted: The Complicated Terms Made Simple

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If you confuse your chroming with your strobing and you’re not sure if micellar water is a drink or something for your skin, then this beauty jargon buster compiled by the experts at Hairtrade is here to help. “There are so many new trends and phrases to learn in the beauty industry that it can be hard to keep track,” explains Joanne Dodds of Hairtrade. “That’s why we’ve compiled this list of top beauty trends and products that need a bit of explaining as to what they actually do or actually are. Many of them are ones people may have already heard of, yet never understood, and others could be completely new.”

Read on to learn the key terms to boost your beauty knowledge.


Many women hadn’t heard of this technique until the Kardashian klan made it famous. Simply put, the aim is to use lighter or darker foundation to create shadows in order to enhance your facial structure, such as your cheekbones. Click here to watch Huda Kattan’s contouring tutorial.

CC Cream

Many assume a CC cream is a more advanced version of a BB cream, but it’s an entirely different product. CC stands for ‘color correcting’ and comes in a variety of hues to balance out redness.


Whilst it sounds like something you would do when dancing at a party, strobing means adding light-reflecting makeup, or a highlighter, to parts of your face to create a dewy finish. Apply highlighter to the top of cheekbones, under eyebrows, and along the bridge of your nose for the effect. Click here to learn more.

Cut Crease

This skill involves accentuating the line where your eyelid and the fold of skin above it meet. By using eyeshadow to define the line, you can make your eyes look bigger and your eye makeup more dramatic.


Foiling involves applying eyeshadow with a wet brush to create a shinier, and therefore foil-like, effect. Check beforehand that your eyeshadow is compatible, and then simply dip your brush in water before applying.


A dupe, short for duplicate, is a beauty product that is cheaper than a different (usually well-known) brand which achieves the same results.

Tight Lining

Tight lining is the art of applying eyeliner to your upper waterline, just underneath the root of your eyelashes, to give the appearance of both thicker lashes and bigger eyes. It does take practice and is best performed with a waterproof eyeliner.

Lipstick Feathering

Lipstick feathering isn’t so much a tool as something you want to avoid; it’s when your lipstick bleeds into the fine lines and wrinkles surrounding your lips. To avoid, simply blot and reapply throughout the day.

Micellar Water

This product has actually been around for centuries, but has only recently been adopted by beauty fans. Micellar water contains tiny balls – micelles – that attract makeup and dirt with great ease.


Baking involves adding translucent powder to your face and waiting ten minutes to encourage the heat from your face to set your foundation and concealer.

Multi Masking

Multi masking does what it says on the tin. It involves using different forms of face masks on different parts of the skin, at the same time – for example, a hydrating mask for your cheeks, a soothing one for under the eyes, and a clay mask for your T-zone. Click here for five easy-to-make DIY face masks.


If contouring and strobing sound too complicated for your liking, then chroming is the next best option. Use a lipstick with the right hue for your skin tone along with some shimmer as a highlighter on your skin when you’re in a rush.

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