HD makeup vs MAC makeup vs Airbrush makeup – Which to choose from?

When it comes to planning your look for any important event in your life, all ladies go the extra mile to get the best option available. Once the Dress & Jewellery are finalized comes the Makeup & Hairstyle with hundreds of options available. HD makeup, Airbrush makeup or regular makeup and so on.

It can become intimating to choose from such a vast list of makeup options, given their importance to complete that perfect look. Every woman is different, and it becomes doubly important to choose the perfect type of makeup for each unique look.

For this, we need to know the most popular types of makeup & understand the differences between them. Since, the occasion and budget constraints heavily dictate the choice of makeup, it becomes important to understand which makeup gives you the most bang for your buck.

Types of Makeup:

Based on the makeup application technique-

Based on the makeup application technique, we can broadly divide the makeups in two types.

  1. Traditional makeup
  2. Airbrush makeup

Based on the makeup products-

Based on the products used in the makeup, we can divide makeup in 4 different types

  • Regular makeup
  • High Definition makeup
  • Airbrush makeup
  • MAC makeup

All these makeups have either different application techniques or quality difference due to variety of makeup products in each. They come with their own pros & cons such as cost, suitability, longevity & final look.

It is all comes down to each individual to choose which makeup is best based on their skin type, requirement, budget & other factors. So to take this informed decision, you need to know the difference between Regular makeup, HD makeup, MAC makeup & Airbrush makeup, the four most popular makeups in India.

Traditional makeup-

Makeup application brushes
Makeup brushes and applicators are used for makeup application in traditional makeup

Traditional makeup is a Cream, liquid or powder-based makeup, applied with the help of hand, sponge or brush.

Traditional makeup can be further divided into two, depending on the makeup products used.

Regular (Standard makeup)

It is the good-old styled makeup which everybody is aware right from their childhood. There are so many different makeup brands available in the market for traditional makeup which you can choose, depending on your requirement, budget or preference. You can use one brand for complete makeup, or you can mix and match getting the most out of available options.

Budget options, good coverage, wide range of products are some of the pros of Regular makeup. However, it comes with its own disadvantages such as the look is cakey, unnatural or uneven and may not be super long lasting & waterproof.

High Definition (HD makeup)

To tackle the limitations of Regular makeup and address new trends such as the natural look, a new range of makeup products emerged which we know as ‘HD makeup’ or High definition makeup. Regular makeup & HD makeup have similar application techniques. The only difference is in the products. HD makeup gives a more natural look by eliminating skin imperfections that make the face look blur or less visible than standard makeup.

HD makeup products are lighter in texture, yet they give better coverage.  These products are neither too dewy in finish nor too matt, which help you get the perfect skin like complexion with just the right amount of application.  It consists of light diffusing ingredients such as Mica, Silicone, Crystals or Quartz which soften the light reflected from skin, helping the tackle the skin imperfections look and give a flawless, natural look great both camera & in real life.

Advantages of High Definition makeup over Regular makeup
  • Lighter makeup giving a much natural look.
  • Ideal coverage making skin imperfections less visible.
  • Smooth finish which is neither too oily nor too dry.
This means HD makeup is good:
  • If you like natural looking makeup.
  • For the Important events like Engagement, wedding etc. where hundreds of photos from different angles are the norm.
  • If you have some skin imperfections such as blemishes, breakouts, dry patch or others.
  • If you like to have a lot of makeup options.
  • And you are ready to spend a bit more than regular makeup.

If your answer for any or most of the above points is yes, then High Definition (HD) makeup is the way to go.

Airbrush makeup

Brush set
Airbrush makeup

The latest, most talked about and requested makeup technique is the ‘Airbrush makeup’. This makeup type not only differs when it comes to use of makeup products, but also differs in the application technique. While Traditional makeup technique use sponge, brush or hand to apply makeup, Airbrush makeup is sprayed on the skin using airbrush (obvious…isn’t it??? 😉 ). With the advent of Ultra HD or 4K cameras, Airbrush makeup has risen in popularity due to its unique quality of hiding the skin imperfections which would otherwise be visible with the traditional makeup techniques.

The application technique is truly unique. Thousands of fine mist like particles are sprayed through the air nozzle, creating a fine film on your skin, making the skin look flawless yet natural for HD cameras & in real world. As it is still a fairly new technique, there are lot of questions about its benefits, usability, suitability, application & cost. Lets try to declutter this to make your decision easier.

Advantages of Airbrush makeup over traditional makeup:
  • Its fine application gives a flawless, even natural looking makeup compared to traditional makeup.
  • Though its application is fine, it has excellent coverage compared to the amount of makeup applied.
  • It is super buildable. You can add multiple layers to build the coverage quickly & effectively because of its ability to dry quickly.
  • Its quick drying quality also makes it fast in application.
  • Longer life than traditional makeup usually up to 18-20 hrs.
  • Most sanitary way of makeup application. (if you dread those foreign hands or are susceptible to infections)
  • Waterproof makeup (You can choose between waterproof or water soluble).
Disadvantages of Airbrush makeup
  • The main drawback of airbrush makeup is its cost. Its considerably expensive than traditional makeup. Expensive equipment and skilled artists are required for application that make it expensive.
  • It can be flaky for people with dry skin as airbrush is less creamy than traditional makeup.
  • Re blending is difficult, hence if you need touch ups or multiple makeup changes, you are best advised sticking to traditional makeup.
  • Does not give great coverage as compared to traditional makeup when it comes to active acne breakouts.
  • Less range of makeup products.
This means, Airbrush makeup is good:
  • For people with Oily skin & no active breakouts.
  • If you need long lasting makeup.
  • If you want waterproof makeup.
  • For High, ultra-high & 4k definition cameras & displays.
  • For those who love the finest natural looking makeups.
  • If you have the appetite for high spending.

Important thing to remember- There are variety of airbrushes available in the market with different formulas, power, size & use. Do not forget to mention what you want to achieve from Airbrush makeup when you talk to a Airbrush makeup artist. Things such as whether you want a waterproof or water-soluble makeup or whether you are looking that gorgeous mat effect or dewy look or if you need regular touch up, or amount of coverage, to get maximum out of your makeup.

MAC makeup-

MAC cosmetics products
MAC makeup

Lastly there is a MAC makeup which is the most common request by many. It is not a different type of makeup. In short, it is HD makeup achieved with only one makeup brand: MAC cosmetics.

Co-founder of MAC Frank Toskan (Photographer & Makeup artist during his time) realized the lack of options in colour and textures needed to get most out of makeup in Makeup & Photography industry. So he created MAC ‘by makeup artist for makeup artist’ makeup brand in 1984. It is currently one of the top 3 makeup brands in the world.

Advantages of MAC makeup:

MAC or Makeup Art Cosmetics is the most requested brand in HD makeup because of its:

  • Great quality products.
  • Vast variety of colours in makeup base or eyeshadow and Lipsticks.
  • Makeup longevity.
  • Suitability for all skin types (oily, combination, normal, dry) & undertones (cool, warm or neutral).
  • Smooth texture.
  • Variety in coverage from Full- medium- light.
  • Typically, as compared to other brands in the market, MAC products tend to be priced on the higher side. If you are ready to shelve out more, MAC is the way to go.

Thing to remember- There are variety of HD makeup available in market. Some are really cost effective & some are more expensive. To balance the budget & look, sometimes combination of different HD makeup products work best for some people. Do keep your options open and get help from your makeup artist in deciding which is the best option for you. 

To summarise,

Before you take the decision about which makeup to invest in, you need to first ask yourself 3 simple questions:

  • What is your exact expectation from your makeup? Coverage, Longevity, look etc.?
  • What is your skin type? What are the main problems with it and what is the skin tone?
  • And most importantly, how much are you willing to spend?

Remember: Costly and branded makeup may not guarantee you that perfect look. Even a simple traditional makeup with honest products will do the trick. What matters is not the name, but what suits you. So choose wisely. And if you need additional information, do get in touch .

Do comment below which is your favourite makeup & what you like most about that makeup.

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