Beauty Terminology Glossary

Beauty Terminology Decoded

Beauty Terminology Glossary

Ever watch a Youtuber or read a blog only to come across a term that you’ve got no clue what it means? I’ve been there. With social media responsible for the comings and goings of slang at a rapid-fire rate these days, it can be hard to keep track! So I’ve compiled a list of sayings that have been used for a significant amount of time (whether you love them or hate them!) with their meanings.

Beauty Community Terminology Glossary


Holy Grail or HG: You can stop looking, you’ve found your personal beauty product holy grail.

Pigmented: Refers to how much colour pigment is in the product.

Chalky: When the texture of a powder product is akin to actual chalk.

Foiled: When a powder product has such a metallic finish it resembles that of actual foil.

Duochrome: When a product shifts between two shades depending on the angle and light.

The Crease: The deepest crease of your eyelid where your orbital bone starts.

Hooded Eyes: This refers to an eye shape where the orbital or brow bone ‘hoods’ over the mobile part of the lid. This can vary in degree from showing partial lid space, to none at all.

Monolid: When there is no visible crease to the eyelid, with the skin from the brow bone to the lashes appearing smooth and crease-free.

Buttery: When a powder product has a smooth, lightweight texture that applies easily.

Pilling: When product ingredients don’t get along with each other causing it to ball or pill on your skin like the pilling you would get on your clothes.

Dewy: A finish that has a natural glisten and moisture to it.

Kickback: When you touch your brush down into a powder product and it kicks back loose powder due to how it has been pressed in the pan.

Holo: Short for Holographic, referring to a product that flashes in a rainbow of colours.

Undertone: The base colour of a product or the natural tone of one’s complexion.

Coverage: The opacity capability of a product. Full coverage meaning the product covers your skin completely so that none shows through.

Oxidize: When a product changes colour one it has been applied, often turning dark as the air hits it, it mixes with the oils in your skin or product dries down.

Baking: A technique of heavily powdering a foundation or concealer and then allowing it to absorb some of the powder to set, then wiping away the excess. Used by makeup artists to heavily matte base or extend longevity.

Hitting Pan: When you’ve used enough of a product that the pan in which it comes in shows through.

Finely Milled: Refers to the texture of a powder product and how much it has been ground up. ‘Finer’ milled products will feel thinner, silkier and potentially be sheerer.

T Zone: The area that spans your forehead across, and then down in a T shape through your nose to your chin. This area can after be the oiliest in oily or combo skin types.

Tightline: The inner rim of your top eyelashes.

Waterline: The inner rim of your bottom lashes.

Muddy: Referring to a shadow that doesn’t hold its colour vibrancy, or dulls down.


Have some beauty terminology you think should be included in this list? Let me know in the comments below and I will add it in!

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