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How to Achieve Wet Look Skin

By Rebecca Jenkinson - 3 years ago | Updated
three photographs side by side of women with glossy skin

The weather might be a bit hit and miss at the moment, but that doesn’t mean your skin has to be. Take your summer glow into autumn with the trend that just won't die - the wet look makeup trend. Yes, we admit this is rather similar to glossy, dewy makeup, but wet look skin requires you taking that inner glow to the next level.

Think cream, liquid and gloss formulas, which help banish dullness and improve luminosity. You want to create radiant results which make your skin look like you're teetering on the edge of that just-stepped-out-of-the-pool look. Not quite as shimmery as the dewy skin trend but definitely more intense, this makeup trend swears off the heavy, full-coverage styles of past years and makes you feel fresh-faced no matter the season.

So, keep reading to find out how to achieve wet-look skin at home.


Of course, we all know skincare is the key to any glossy makeup look. The prep starts way before you pick up your beauty sponge if you want to give your makeup the best possible base to build on.

A large part of the wet look trend is making sure you look and feel refreshed rather than weighed down, and nothing makes you feel more refreshed than a sheet mask. This face mask from Joanna Vargas is the answer to all your dry skin woes. It not only boosts hydration; it also helps brighten the skin and fight fatigue. Apply to clean skin and leave for 20 minutes for the formula to truly work its magic.

Joanna Vargas Glow To Go Mask Set

£39.00 £56.00 (31% off)

Face masks are a special treat, but of course, you should also be hydrating your skin on the daily with a great moisturiser to prep your skin for a wet makeup look. We love this one from Elemis, which is a rich and youth-enhancing solution. This formula feels lightweight on the skin but packs a punch with its hydration and glow-boosting ingredients.

ELEMIS Pro-Collagen Ultra Rich Marine Cream

£83.99 £95.00 (12% off)

Makeup primer

Next up, we recommend using a primer to smooth and prep the skin for an ultra-dewy finish. Anything you apply over your primer will glide right on - exactly what you want for a wet-skin look! This primer from PIXI contains pH-balancing rosewater, barrier-strengthening ceramides and hyaluronic acid to blur your skin for a natural-looking, pearlescent radiance.

PIXI Rose Radiance Perfector Primer



A lightweight foundation will be key to getting glowing skin. You want to look for light-coverage or serum foundations that allow your natural skin to shine through without being too cakey, like this super affordable serum foundation from The Ordinary. Apply with a damp beauty sponge to get a gorgeous, glowy finish. The SPF 15 serum foundation comes in wide array of shades to suit every skin tone, so you can easily conceal any pesky blemishes or redness for that even, wet look.

L.A. Girl PRO.Sponge Blending Sponge Twin Pack


The Ordinary Serum Foundation



A great concealer is going to be key for hiding dark circles, redness and any other impurities like it would for any makeup look. For a wet skin makeup look, however, this step is very important for making sure you don't end up looking too oily or undone. Like with all your other products, opt for a creamy formula, like this Cakeless Concealer from Benefit. While it's full-coverage, it's also lightweight, making it super comfortable to wear in all seasons.

Benefit Boi Ing Cakeless Concealer



Now here’s the fun part – highlighter! To achieve the wet skin look, you need to steer clear of powders and instead opt for gel, cream or liquid formulas. The Illamasqua Beyond Liquid Highlighter is a fantastic option as it doesn’t contain harsh, fake-looking glitter. Instead, it’s a universally flattering tone which creates a fresh-faced, dewy glow. Just swipe and away you go.

Illamasqua Beyond Liquid Highlighter

£18.00 £25.62 (30% off)

Another great highlighter for the wet look makeup is the ICONIC London Illuminator Drops. Wear this formula directly on the high points of the face or mix in with your foundation for an extra luminous finish. It not only gives a dewy look but keeps your skin hydrated all day long.

ICONIC London Illuminator Drops

£28.00 £32.00 (13% off)

Makeup setting spray

You'll want to finish things off with a glow-enhancing face mist. Very wet, glowy looks can quickly teeter over into oiliness if you aren't careful. Choose a product with a nice, strong hold that also has a dewy finish to match your whole look. We love the Hydra Setting Spray Dewy from Illamasqua, a lightweight, non-sticky formula that will hold your makeup all day while also giving your skin a soft, healthy sheen with its pea peptides, which are rich in amino acids.

Illamasqua Hydra Setting Spray


Still not sure if you should take the plunge with the wet look skin makeup trend? Here's some inspo for you to drool over...

To stay ahead of all the latest trends, head on over to our Beauty Hub where we give up all the best tips and tricks, including Makeup Setting Sprays That Will Keep Your Look in Place and The 12 Best Hydrating Face Mists of 2020.

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Rebecca Jenkinson

Written by Rebecca Jenkinson

Rebecca is a content writer with over three years’ experience and a keen interest in cosmetics. Cosmetify allows her to combine her blogging skills with her passion for beauty.

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