How to master the Duchess of Cambridge's flattering everyday make-up look

The Duchess of Cambridge
The Duchess of Cambridge  Credit: Eddie Mulholland For The Telegraph/[email protected]

The Duchess of Cambridge is renowned for changing her hairstyle, occasion dependent, but when it comes to her make-up she seems to be less daring and sticks to what suits her best- soft smokey brown eyeshadow, a groomed complexion and rosy, nude lipstick. Last night The Duchess and HRH The Countess of Wessex hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace on behalf of The Queen during London Fashion Week to celebrate and showcase a new creative initiative - the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange. For the occasion she opted for a white guipure lace dress by Erdem, and to match her elegant choice of dress, she amped up her everyday brown, smokey eye with a more defined and pigmented night time version.  

The Duchess' make-up style is a versatile, suits-all choice and a good go-to for everyday whatever the occasion. It is neither too over-done or barely-there - which is actually quite a difficult balance to strike. Here are our tips on how to master your own everyday make-up...

Prime time 

It may seem like a pointless extra step, but applying primer before any base is key to making sure your foundation looks fresh all day. Most primers have a slight tacky texture, which means, in very simple terms, it helps your base to stick. The Pro Filt'r Instant Retouch Primer, £24 by Rihanna's brand Fenty Beauty is one of the best around. It has a light, creamy texture that doesn't feel heavy on the skin, but makes your skin look poreless. Is it magic? No - it's probably silicone - but it really is very good.  

A new way to apply foundation

Applying foundation will instantly make the skin look more even and fresh, but you don't need to apply it all over: just work from the nose outwards with a creamy liquid formula. You often need far less than you think. If you want a lighter coverage than your normal foundation for everyday wear, try mixing a blob of your base with a hydrating serum. This cocktail beats a tinted moisturiser hands down - you get the flawless coverage of a foundation mixed with an extra boost of hydration from the serum. The All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation, £28 by Nars is a winner for most skin types, and comes in an excellent range of shades. Try mixing it with a pump of the Hydrance Intense Serum, £18, by Avene. Follow with a brightening concealer under the eyes, such as the Mini Miracle Eye Wand by Charlotte Tilbury, £29.  Take the concealer out just past the eye area and above for a lifting effect - but apply sparingly. 

A two-in-one blusher

Adding colour to your cheeks and highlighting can be achieved with just one product. Use a powder blush that has subtle shimmer particles in in a peachy, golden hue. The tone looks more modern and gives the illusion of warmth to the skin, so you can skip using a bronzer. It's also the shade that flatters every skin tone. The beauty brand Becca does excellent shimmery blushers as part of its Shimmering Skin Perfector Luminous Blush range, £27 each - try the shade Snapdragon. The classic best-seller Orgasm by Nars, £23 is also excellent: its pinky-peachy shade with golden undertone make your skin look brighter and more vibrant.

Make light work of smokey eyes 

For her relaxed make-up look last night, the Duchess chose a soft smokey brown eyeshadow paired with mascara, which is the easiest eye make-up to do for the most flattering effect. Simply line the top eyeliner with a brown pencil eyeliner such as the Eye Primatif Pencil, £21 by Kevyn Aucoin. It has a smudger on the other end of the pencil, so once you've drawn your line, lightly soften the line with the smudger until it give just the right amount of definition. If you want something more special, use an eyeshadow stick. The best one around at the moment that seems to suit all eye colours is the Phyto Eye Twist in Copper by Sisley, £29. Simply scribble the chunky nib across your eye lid and blend with your ring finger. Follow with two coats of black mascara, such as the lash-seperating Smokey Eyes Mascara by Bobbi Brown, £23. And finally, don't forget brows: run the classic Gimme Brows lash mascara by Benefit, £18.50, through your eyebrows to groom and define them in around 30 seconds. 

The finishing touch  

Kate has very little lipstick on in this look, which is what helps to make it look so modern and flattering. Either apply a glossy, natural shade on the lips such as the Lip Perfector Conditioning Balm, £27 by Trish McEvoy, which just enhances your natural lip colour for a soft, rosebud look, or if you fancy something with a little more bite, the Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Bond Girl, £23, is a popular choice. It is a warm nude-brick shade that seems to suit everyone.