What is 'Cloud Skin'? The soft-focus beauty trend set to rock 2023

Want to achieve the velvety 'Cloud Skin' trend? Here's the DL on recreating the look yourself—from products to skin prep...

A purple and pink sunset background with products from Dior and Laura Mercier—that help create the Cloud Skin look—displayed in circles
(Image credit: Products from Sephora: Dior and Laura Mercier)

While we're all still fairly besotted with super dewy, glass-like skin, a new makeup trend for 2023 is entering the beauty chat—meet the 'Cloud Skin' trend, the answer to all your natural but full-coverage makeup dreams. Here's a full breakdown of the soft-focus look...

Though our love for the 'glazed' foundation look will never really die, a new more full-coverage no-makeup-makeup trend is gaining traction and could be the new go-to look for clean girls everywhere.

'Cloud Skin' takes all the elements of glowy makeup routines that TikTok is so obsessed with, from non-comedogenic foundations to glow givers like e.l.f's Halo Glow, but makes them more attainable for all skin textures—especially for those of us who don't have impossibly clear Hailey Bieber-esque skin and want a little more coverage. It's basically a trend centered around having a more subtle, lit-from-within glow, like a spring sunrise—where the sunbeams are softly gleaming down.

So, while that all sounds utterly dreamy—how do we achieve the Cloud Skin trend ourselves?

What is the 'Cloud Skin' trend?

To really break down the meaning of this trend, we enlisted the expertise of Saffron Hughes, FalseEyelashes' resident makeup artist.

Saffron told My Imperfect Life that the new trend turns the likes of glass-skin or dolphin-skin 'completely on its head.' She explains: "It’s the perfect marriage between the full coverage, beauty-guru-inspired matt glam that was popular in 2015 and the natural and dewy approach to skin that we’ve seen most recently."

"The trend uses various textures across the skin to create a lightweight, soft focus canvas," Saffron adds.

So basically, Cloud Skin is a more matte natural makeup look, that focuses more on skincare for that glow—rather than products like the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless filter. It's also all about layering more mattifying products like powder blushes, before adding the gleam back in with liquid highlighters—which is ideal for those with more oily skin, who find the more glossy all-over makeup trend difficult to maintain. 

It's also a more attainable makeup for all skin types as it's leaned more towards full coverage but can also be adapted for less also.

How to achieve 'Cloud Skin'

Saffron says: "The key to nailing the cloud skin trend is starting with hydrating products first and mattifying as you go. Prep the skin with your favorite skincare products that give you a hydrated glow." So make sure you are in the know with the correct skincare product order. Plus if you need any product recommendations, give Hailey Bieber's skincare routine a look-see.

After applying your best face moisturizer and hydrating serum—like hyaluronic acid—comes the makeup part!

Sharing her tip for the 'perfect demi-matte finish,' Saffron says to "Mix a mattifying primer with a dewy foundation and apply to the skin evenly. Apply concealer under the eye sparingly, then use a sponge or powder puff to apply loose powder underneath the eye."

Then for that all-over soft-focus appearance while still maintaining dimension, "Use a powder contour product and finish with bronzer," Saffron says before adding, "Lastly, finish with a subtle cream blush or understated cream highlighter to add a natural glow back into the face without it looking flat.”

What products to use for 'Cloud Skin'?

Now onto the really fun bit—the products! Saffron reassures us that no—we don't have to chuck away our Charlotte Tilbury Flawless filter.

"The key must-have products to recreating ‘cloud skin’ are a mattifying foundation or alternatively, a mattifying primer that you can mix in with your foundation and a loose, finely milled setting powder," Saffron advises, adding that "powder products are back after being pushed to the bottom of our makeup bags while dewy skin had its moment, so powder blushes and bronzers are key. 

Though, if you're really attached to your cream products, you can still use them to subtly add glow, especially your liquid highlight—which Saffron says makes for "the perfect finishing touch for cloud skin.”


Laura Mercier Pure Canvas Blurring Primer 

RRP: $47/£35.50

The primer is also a fave on TikTok for its airbrushing effect. Infused with Microalgae and Blurring Powders, it works to improve the look and texture of your skin, while absorbing excess oil and providing a mattifying effect.


Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder 

RRP: $43/£34

This loose, translucent setting powder is enriched with vitamins C and E and works to set makeup for up to 16 hours, while its pearly pigments give your skin a natural-looking radiance. Ideal for a seamless-looking, matte finish


Dior Backstage Rosy Glow Blush

RRP: $39/£31

This blush is infused with color reviver technology which reacts to your skin's natural moisture level to deliver a customized rosy effect. It works to instantly give your skin a healthy, soft-focus glow—which is the ultimate goal of 'Cloud Skin'!

Right now, it's a cult favorite on TikTok for the pretty, cool-toned baby pink flush it gives the skin. It's also one of Hailey Bieber's makeup favorites!


Rare Beauty Positive Light Liquid Luminizer Highlight

RRP: $25/£26

This dreamy liquid highlighter went viral on TikTok for its dewy glow. It's available in eight dreamy shades from golden champaign tones to shimmering coppers.

It's the perfect product to add a deliberate, glossy glow to your 'Cloud Skin.'

Naomi Jamieson
Lifestyle News Writer

Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Women's Lifestyle team, where she covers everything from entertainment to fashion and beauty, as well as TikTok trends for Woman&Home, after previously writing for My Imperfect Life and GoodTo. Interestingly though, Naomi actually has a background in design, having studied illustration at Plymouth University but lept into the media world in 2020, after always having a passion for writing and earned her Gold Standard diploma in Journalism with the NCTJ.

Before working for Future Publishing’s Lifestyle News team, she worked in the Ad production team. Here she wrote and designed adverts on all sorts of things, which then went into print magazines across all genres. Now, when she isn’t writing articles on celebs, fashion trends, or the newest shows on Netflix, you can find her drinking copious cups of coffee, drawing and probably online shopping.