From Runway to Real Look: How to Wear Bright Makeup

Bright colored makeup is back in style for spring and summer 2012.  Aqua blues, bright purples, neon pinks, it’s all fair game this season.  For those of you thinking the 80s have come back, rest assured the colors are a little more subtle and have a hint of shimmer to keep you fresh and current – not stuck in a time machine.  Why should you embrace the bright makeup?  “Brights are fun!” says Dick Page, Artistic Director of Shiseido Makeup, who’s worked with celebs like Julianne Moore and Catherine Zeta-Jones. “They complement lighter, brighter summer clothes particularly well.”  But they can be intimidating, so how do you wear all these bright colors?

Start Small
If you’re new to neon, start small.  Don’t try a crazy bright color at first.  Ease in with a pop of color to your normal makeup routine.   Try using colored eyeliner like plum or navy instead of black or brown or slick on a layer of poppy pink gloss on top of your normal daily color.

Pick a Focus
When wearing bright colors, it’s important to pick a feature to stand out.  Don’t wear bright eye shadow, blush, and lips all at the same time – focus on one look.

Lips:  If you want your lips to stand out, opt for a neutral eye and subtle cheeks.  Need help picking a bright lip color?  Follow Oprah Magazine’s advice: “If you have fair skin with pink undertones, pick warm orange-based pinks, or brick reds. Medium and olive complexions can carry true, blue-based reds. Dark skin is stunning against rich plums. Almost any skin tone is flattered by fuchsias, perfect pink-red hybrids.”

Eyes:  When adding poppy color to your eyes, make sure to apply concealer with a soft concealer brush.  If you don’t hide any dark colors or circles under your eyes, a bold color will just accentuate them.  If you color isn’t looking as bold as you’d like, try adding a drop of eye drops to the shadow compact or dipping some Cosmetic Applicators in water before the color.  This will give you a liner like quality.  Finish your bright eyes with subtle beige or lip colored gloss and just enough blush to transition gracefully from lips to eyes.

Think Outside the Box

Eye shadows and lipsticks aren’t the only place to wear bright colors.  Try wearing a bright pink blush on a day you want to feel extra flush.  Apply a little colored mascara to the ends of your outer eyelashes or wear neon on your nails!  You can even go for a bold look by matching your colored eyeliner to your nails.  Experiment until you find your favorite look.  You can always wipe off your mistakes.

Don’t forget: “Color is fun! Don’t be so serious,” says founder of Nars cosmetics Francois Nars.  “After all, it’s only makeup.”


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