Makeup Tips for Gray Hair

April 16, 2021

Over the years, my makeup routine has been pretty simple. I’m talking mascara and lip balm for the most part…maybe some eyeshadow and eyeliner on a Saturday night if I’m going out. I mean, I never even tried brow makeup until I was 37—and that’s some truth right there. 

lisa holding makeup for gray hair: brow pomade and multistick blush

All of this to say…I am not a professional makeup artist. That’s why you don’t see “how to” makeup tutorials here on TOG…I mean, I literally have, “Learn how to apply a dope-ace winged eyeliner” on my bucket list. I really do. Gad dang my hooded eye-lids. Hooded eyelids are special in their own way. So if you are someone who is like, I don’t wear makeup and I don’t know how—I am here for you! 

And if you are someone who loves makeup and knows all the tips and tricks but now your look is changing and you need help figuring out your new makeup strategy…this is for you too.  

This post is all about how to create the BIGGEST IMPACT with the least amount of products (and effort). I’m talking about the best makeup tips for people with gray hair.


Gray hair makeup basics 

I’m going to define the basics here and then let you build off of that. I really want to make this look approachable for all of us—even if you are a no-makeup kinda girl. It’s amazing how just two products can really lift a look and breathe life into your face. 

Professional makeup artist and founder of Sacred Beauty Collective, Rebecca Casciano explains, “Adding some color to the face and making sure that brows are defined are great ways to enhance features and create contrast, especially when the hair is gray or white.”

Here are my top two makeup product picks for gray hair.  

1. Brow filler 

To be honest, I’m so mad that I didn’t start filling my brows until my late 30s. I mean, I missed out on all those good years of having really great-looking brows. 

Says Rebecca, “Filling in the eyebrows helps to frame your eyes and facial features. It can bring definition, balance and symmetry to the face.”

Maybe one of the reasons I waited so long is because applying brow product seems so intimidating…like how do you do it? Or maybe it was because I didn’t have any brows? Thanks to my 7th grade finishing school experience and that over-pluck-technique they taught us. (Yeah, I just said “finishing school.”) 

But that’s neither here nor there because now I have brows and now I do them.

Best brow products for gray hair

I have two brow product faves. Both are really easy to apply. Both deliver big impact. 

Sappho Brow Pomade in Taupe Gray – Apply this with a brow brush to create an overall shadow that fills in brows, in the most unassuming way. You can see it applied in this vid 👇.

Kimiko Brow Pencil in Black Tea – This ultra-thin, twist-up pencil can be applied in hair-like strokes for a natural look. Love that it comes with a spoolie on the opposite side to buff and blend. You can see it applied here in these step-by-step pics 👇.

lisa brushing up brows with attached spoolie so they are combed out
Step 1: Brush your eyebrows up
Woman with gray hair applying kimiko brow pencil in hair like strokes
Step 2: Fill in your eyebrows using the pencil
lisa showing how her brows looked filled in
Step 3: It will look something similar to this all filled in
lisa buffing out brow filler with spoolie for a natural look
Step 4: Blend the color using the attached spoolie for a more natural look
lisa showing how her brows filled in with brow pencil
Step 5: You’re all set!

For a full review of both of these products, hit up Best Eyebrow Makeup for Gray Hair

I also like recommending both of these products because they come in shades that compliment my salt and pepper grays—not all brands do that.

And if you’re trying to nail a good color match, take Rebecca’s advice: “Generally speaking, you’ll want to choose a product 2 shades lighter than your brow hair and the hair on your head. If your brows are very thin or mostly silver, go for a shade closer to your original hair color.”

2. A multi-stick for cheeks and lips 

lisa applying coral vapour multi-stick to light-skinned cheek
Vapour Multi-Stick in Intrigue

The other product that can drive big impact is blush. 

Makeup artist and beauty mogul Bobbi Brown says, “Blush adds a healthy look to your skin, so don’t skip it. A cream formula is always better for dry skin since it doesn’t settle in lines, but pass on anything with sparkles.”  

And I agree, it’s cream blush all the way—especially as a mid-forty-something. 

I have a couple of cream blush faves, which you can check out here, but for the sake of driving big impact with as few products as possible, I’m going to recommend a multi-stick. 

Multi-sticks are great because you can use it….you guessed it, in multiple ways. I love multi-sticks for cheeks and lips but you can also use them on eyes as a shadow too. 

Best blush for gray hair

I love the Vapour Multi-Sticks. These were recently reformulated and are back and better than ever. Creamy, dewy…great color payoff. With the reformulation, shea butter was removed so these won’t bead up or present inconsistencies in texture like the old formulas did. 

Fantastic on lips and cheeks. The Vapour Multi-Sticks bring color to the skin in the most subtle and natural way. 

Check it out applied + a quick application tip in this vid👇

And if you are looking for additional options for cream blushes…these are also some of my go-tos

What makeup is your go-to for gray hair?

TOG Team Note: This article contains affiliate links. TOG uses affiliate links as a source for revenue to fund operations of the business and to be less dependent on branded content. TOG stands behind all product recommendations. Still have questions about these links or our process? Feel free to email us.

By Lisa

Lisa is the founder of This Organic Girl. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!

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