Put on your party face!
It’s time to frock up and feel merry and bright, so set the mood with party looks that feel fittingly festive without leaving you resembling a tree bauble. A post-work soirée may just need a lipstick colour upgrade, says Megan Bedford, but if you’re headi
If you can’t try a little glimmer and gold at Christmas, when can you? The beauty of this look is in the pairing of a finely pigmented gold shadow with a reflective red lip.
A bold red lipstick will always turn heads, regardless of the level of precision you feel confident with when it comes to application. The good news is, the range of reds available right now, from buildable lip stains to punchy matte lipsticks, means there’s an option for everyone.
For the glamorous golden touch, you can go all out with a soft halo of gold shadow around the eye or use it as an accent on the lid and inner corners.
Choose a radiant liquid foundation with good coverage or use a luminising primer underneath and apply with a dense brush, using circular motions to create a flawless finish. Add a touch of translucent setting powder to the cheeks, nose and chin.
Apply an eye primer prior to the gold shadow to ensure it adheres and retains vibrancy. Alternatively, smudge a gold crème shadow over eyelids with your fingers.
Groom brows and fill any gaps with a powder brow colour. Apply lashings of a defining and lengthening mascara.
Use a lip brush to carefully define and fill lips and add a touch of gloss to achieve a reflective or metallic look. If you have trouble with colour moving and feathering into fine lines around the mouth, stick with drier formulas. Choose a matte or cream lipstick and line lips beforehand with an invisible lip liner.
Red not your thing? A rich magenta lipstick makes a great option for an evening look. It’s a little more playful and fashion-forward than classic crimson, but still makes your lips the centre of attention. It also looks lovely with a tan and a sundress, so will carry you through the season if black-tie events are few and far between.
Your best option in this shade is a matte liquid lipstick or chunky pencil – both of which can be very drying, so try to remember to apply a treatment lip balm an hour or two before you get ready. If lips start to pucker as the evening goes on, try a tiny dab of balm on top of lipstick to soften them.
Dramatic eyes run the risk of making this look OTT, so they should still have a softness about them. Choosing a tapered brush to apply and blend eyeshadow, particularly around the crease of the eyelid, is key.
Start with a long-wearing foundation with a matte finish that controls oil and won’t require touch-ups. A little powder will ensure your base has staying power.
Dab a touch of radiant concealer just where needed under eyes to brighten.
Sweep bronzer along cheekbones as well as a touch to temples and under the jaw.
Shade eyes with matte taupe shadows, deepening through the outer corners and crease. Use a dense pencil brush to run a tiny bit of shadow along the lower lash line.
A soft kohl eyeliner will add depth along the top lash lines before finishing the eyes with volumising mascara.
For stunning drama, adding a set of false lashes is a great party option. Trim them to fit within the width of your natural lashes, apply eyelash glue and gently press on as close to your lash line as possible
Apply lipstick, blot with a tissue then apply a touch more.
Good to glow
Subtle but chic, soft rose-gold and mauvey-pinks are flattering shades for eyes, cheeks and lips and work well on most skin tones. They can be deepened with plums or bronze on the creases of the eyes. This is a modern, fresh look that works in a variety of different settings.
A highlighting product can add luminosity and provide definition. Don’t overthink it though. It doesn’t need to be as precisely placed as any advanced contouring techniques. The easiest application is to swirl a fluffy blush brush over a powder highlighter and then lightly sweep over cheekbones. You can also add a touch to brow bones, the bridge of the nose and the Cupid’s bow, but start with a small amount – you can always build, but you don’t want to end up looking shiny.
Ensure you moisturise well and let it settle into the skin for 10 minutes before starting make-up with a sheer to medium coverage foundation.
Use your ring finger to apply a liquid concealer to any blemishes and dark circles.
Choose a cream eyeshadow in a nude beige colour as a base. Apply rose gold or muted mauve eyeshadow and deepen with a corresponding shade. It often helps to choose a quad or palette so you have complementary colours to work with.
Curl lashes, line lids with a pencil and finish eyes with a volumising mascara.
Define brows by using a fine-tip brow pencil and feathering colour through.
Either dot a liquid highlighter lightly along brow bones and cheekbones and blend with fingers, or use a powder product with a brush.
Buff a touch of blush in rose pink on the apples of cheeks for a lit-from-within flush.
Define lips with a mauve-pink pencil and finish with a reflective, shimmering gloss.
Powerfully pigmented coral lipsticks continue to be top-sellers at make-up counters across the country, and with good reason. Can you think of a more uplifting, perennially positive shade than bright orange? The good news is that it suits many skin tones and looks particularly fabulous through the summer months, although it’s also stunning for after-five events.
It can be tricky to find a matching lip pencil – you can always use a clear or “universal” shade, but we particularly like Karen Murrell’s lip pencil in Coral Dawn.
Use a brush to create an even base of lightweight, matte-finish foundation.
Blend shimmering shades of pearl and soft brown over eyelids.
This style looks fresh with liquid liner extending slightly into a cat’s-eye flick, so that’s an option if you don’t get too tonal with your eyeshadow colours.
Keep brows natural and only slightly defined, grooming them into place with a spoolie brush.
Try a soft peach blush or light golden bronzer to define cheekbones.
Use lip pencil to trace the shape of lips before filling in, and a base to anchor lipstick. For a perfectly precise pout, apply lipstick with a lip brush rather than directly from the bullet – you’ll be surprised what a difference it makes!
Warm to the season
Peach tones on cheeks and lips brighten the skin in a soft, subtle way. They’re also a good option paired with a more dramatic eye – particularly an espresso or bronze smoky eyeshadow.
A peach blush with an almost-imperceptible amount of shimmer is a great one to have in the arsenal. You’ll be surprised how often you reach for it – it’s clever at making you look healthy and relaxed and it works well for more low-key occasions with just some mascara and lip balm.
Use a velvet-finish compact foundation and apply with a sponge, building coverage as you go.
A matte or shimmer eyeshadow in an espresso-brown shade is a good partner for this colour lipstick, shading lids and extending below the eyes in the outer corners.
Line inner rims of eyes with a matching brown pencil liner and apply a lenghtening mascara.
A stiff-bristle angled brow brush and powder brow colour or a fine tip pencil will help you define eyebrows. Use a clear brow-set or try a touch of hairspray on an old toothbrush to comb them into place.
Using a fluffy blush brush, add peach blush to the apples of cheeks and slightly upwards towards cheekbones.
Apply a creamy peach or apricot lipstick and press lips together to set colour. A touch of matching gloss will up the glamour factor. AWW
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