’Tis the season for festive fêtes, office parties, and the mother of all big nights out, New Year’s Eve! There’s no better time to go all-out with your style, so while you’re scouring your wardrobe for the perfect thing to wear, don’t forget to have some fun with your makeup, too!
I asked makeup artist Hillary Clark (who’s helped more than a few celeb clients get red-carpet-ready) to craft three holiday looks that will make you the belle of the ball no matter what the dress code (and, of course, to do it on a budget that leaves you plenty of cash left to play Santa). Take a look.
You’re Invited: Office Holiday Party
Put down the cherry red lipstick and eye glitter—at least until New Year’s. The best office party makeup shouldn’t be drastically different from your professional and polished daily look. But of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t add some shimmer and a strategically placed pop of color to perk up your usual 9-to-5 style.
What to Wear
Apply soft white shimmer shadow from your lash line to your crease and a matte white shadow right under the brow, then blend a subtle, matte grey shadow into the crease. Next, line your inner lower lashline with a white pencil to make your eyes look brighter. I love L’Oreal Double Extend Eye Illuminator ($8.99, ulta.com), which has a white pencil on one side with a color (black, grey, green, or blue) on the other. Finish the look with an indigo-blue liquid liner like B Vain Liquid Eyeliner in Blue ($8.95, beautyneeds.com) applied to the entire top lashline.
Brighten up your lips with a festive jewel-toned shade like fuschia. With all the eating and drinking, you’re better off sticking to a velvet matte finish, so you don’t end up with that dreaded bright lip line and no color on your actual lips. Try Revlon ColorBurst Lipstick in Fuschia ($6.49, target.com). And give your look all-night staying power by priming your lips with nude lipliner (applied all over) and a dusting of powder. After applying one coat of lipstick with a brush, blot with a tissue, then apply a second coat.
You’re Invited: Cocktail Party
There’s no better time to go black tie with your makeup than when you’re hitting the holiday cocktail party circuit. No matter what color you’re wearing, try this sparkling tuxedo stripe—a fresh, elegant take on dark, smoky eyes.
What to Wear
Start by drawing black liquid liner across your entire upper lash line, extending it past the outer corner of your eye and finishing with a winged flourish toward the temple. Use a silver liner to create a “piggyback” line, layering on top of the black and matching the line precisely. NYX Cosmetics Liquid Eyeliners are long-lasting and the perfect thickness, plus they come in both silver and black (and a ton of other colors, too). Plus, at just $4 each (divacloset.com), you’ll be able to splurge on a few! Line the inner part of your top and bottom lashlines with a regular black liner, and finish by applying a strip of long lashes.
Your lips should complement the silvery, shimmery feel, so apply a super shiny gloss with a hint of silver sheen. Try Revlon Super Lustrous Lipgloss in Shine City ($6.99, drugstore.com).
You’re Invited: New Year’s Eve
The biggest party night of the year calls for the most dramatic makeup of the season. So go ahead, try out those ridiculously long faux lashes you’ve been coveting (but didn’t think you had anywhere to wear) and go for the glitter! Just remember that big-night-out makeup looks balanced and best when you play up one feature at a time.
What to Wear
Start by giving your cheeks a subtle golden glow with a soft, warm-toned pink blush like Milani Minerals in Luminous ($5.19, cvs.com). Make your eyes the focus of your face by choosing a deep green or plum shimmer shadow and applying it from your lashline to 1/4 inch below your brow. Try Maybelline EyeStudio Color Explosion Luminizing Eyeshadow in either Amethyst Ablaze or Forest Fury ($10.99, Walgreens.com). Using a glitter liner in the same color as the shadow, such as Sephora Liner Electro Glitter Eye Pencil ($8, sephora.com), draw a line from the inside corner of your eye to the outside and then some, ending with a slight uptick.
For extra drama, apply a full strip of lashes like Ardell Fashion Lashes ($3.99, ulta.com) to the top lash line, and short, soft lashes to the lower lash line and the lower, outer corner. With eyes this bold, finish the look with a sheer, glossy nude lip (no liner necessary) like L’Oreal Paris Colour Riche LeGloss in Nude Illusion ($7.99, Walgreens.com).
Muses, which of these looks do you think you’ll try out this holiday season? What are your favorite seasonal beauty tips?