For how cold the Christmas season is, we always seem to be going out for gift shopping, family gatherings, Christmas parties, more gift shopping, oops–forgot that last gift so we’ve got to run out one more time. Everywhere you go in December has been transformed into this festive red and green wonderland covered in tinsel and evergreens.
It’s only natural that the spirit of the holiday is contagious.If your local department store can get all gussied up for December, why can’t you? Take a break from your ordinary daily makeup routine and have some fun. Get creative, experiment, and be a little playful when you’re out and about this season.
This winter and the coming spring, metallics, iridescents, jewel-tones, heavy eyeliner, and glitter are going to be in. (I would argue that glitter was never out, but maybe I’m just a glitter addict. Okay, there’s no maybe involved.) I’ve put together five holiday looks to get you in the spirit so you can stand out even against the most festive decorating.
1. Classic Pin Up Beauty
The Christmas season is always a perfect time to break out the classic 1950’s Hollywood actress glamour of bold red lips and brows so sharp they could cut glass. Channel your best Hedy Lamarr, Elizabeth Taylor, or Betty Page. Get your brows exactly how you want them with the Anastasia Beverly Hills Beauty Express Brow Kit. It includes four brow stencils to remove all guesswork and keep you even, eyebrow primer wax, brow powder duo, brow highlighting duo, an eyebrow brush, and step-by-step instructions. For a creamy, intensely pigmented red pout to complement your perfect brows, try Oribe’s Lip Lust Crème Lipstick in The Red, a lipstick that is free of petroleum, gluten, parabens, mineral oil, and is cruelty-free. It does contain moisturizing oils, anti-aging myrrh, and has a smooth satin finish.
Pump up your eyes in this look with Stila’s Big Shots, a limited edition holiday set that combines Sila’s Huge Extreme Lash Mascara and Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner. These two combined make for a dark dramatic eye, especially if you’re going for a vintage winged eye. Pull the whole thing together with a coordinating nail using Essie’s Really Red.
2. Fun & Festive
Let’s face it, not all of us are shooting to look like Grace Kelly. That’s not everyone’s idea of fun. Fun to me is cool little pictures on my manicure. Have the merriest nails of them all with this Christmas Nail Stencils Set by Whats Up Nails. Nail stencils are much easier and beginner-friendly than nail stamping or even decals. If you wanted candy cane stripes you’d just paint your nails white, lay the tear-resistant vinyl stencil over your dry nails, paint red over the entire stencil, and pull it up while your red polish is still wet. You can pick up designs separately but this four pack comes with candy cane stripes, snowflakes, holly, and knit Christmas sweater patterns. Christmas String Lights and Christmas Ball Ornaments are also available.
For a fun peacock eye, pair this Venus the Grunge Eyeshadow Palette by Lime Crime with some holographic glitter in the shade Arctic Sky by Glitties. Venus the Grunge has all the colors you’d need for a stunning pink gradient and Arctic Sky provides the eye-catching sparkle to accent it. Arctic Sky is a loose cosmetic glitter so pick up some glitter primer if you don’t already have some to prevent glitter fallout. A soft coral lip like Revlon’s Lovers Coral keeps the attention where you want it without looking unfinished.
3. Gold & Glitz
If you follow me, you know I love glitter probably more than is healthy. I know a lot of people are hesitant to sport some sparkles, but it’s the holiday season. If trees get to wear glitter right now, you do too. Get a Christmas tree worthy look by mixing Stila’s Magnificent Metals Glitter and Glow Liquid Eye Shadow in Rose Gold Retro with Glitter Warehouse’s Seductive, a loose holographic true gold. Control the intensity of the look by highlighting one of the two eyeshadows. For a gorgeous metallic look you can accent the Stila with the holo gold glitter or, for a glitter bombshell effect, feature the holographic Seductive accented with the rose gold Stila.
Bring in the classic Christmas red lip with a twist by using Lime Crime’s Metallic Velvetines Liquid Matte Lipstick in Eclipse. The matte metallic connects with the golden eye but not so much that you look like you’re straight out of a James Bond movie. Eclipse is deeper than a straight red which elevates the gold eye shadow and the light metallic sheen of the lipstick. Brighten your whole face (and shoulders, and collarbones, and arms) with Benefit Cosmetics High Beam Liquid Highlighter. The iridescent pink will enhance your contouring and give your skin a healthy, sun-kissed glow. Really going for the gold? Add in ILNP’s Countdown, a polish from their Winter 2017 Collection that is a honeyed champagne holographic. It’s not as bold as some gold lacquers but it’s a perfect, glamorous pairing for this.
4. Dramatic Entrance
Love that half a beat of silence when you walk in and you know it’s because they’re saying, “Whoa,” in their heads? Me too. Turn some heads and drop some jaws with this dramatic holiday look. Start it off with your favorite smokey eye with the Urban Decay Smoked Eyeshadow Palette. This palette comes with your standard smokey shades along with some jewel-tones in case you’re feeling inspired by all the bright decorations. It zips closed for easy trasnport and also comes with the Urban Decay eyeliner and eyeshadow primer.
Use the the cream side of the Revlon PhotoReady Eye Art Stick in Desert Dazzle as an eyeliner on your bottom lid for a striking accent. I have some of the PhotoReady Eye Art sticks (bought with my own money) and I find they work best if you skip the doe foot applicator and use a brush–you get better control have an easier time throwing in a second layer if it’s not opaque enough for you. Not enough glam? Use the glitter end to add some sparkle to your accent. Finish up your eye look with the Sasha Fluttery Effect False Eyelashes by Huda Beauty. These falsies have natural smokey fullness without going too overboard.
Enhance your Christmas red lip with Maybelline’s Lip Studio Color Contour Lip Palette in Blushed Bombshell. Bring your contouring skills to your lips using the included three lip liner colors, three lip colors, double ended brush, and lip highlighter. Contouring will have your lips looking fuller and sexier. Check out my guide to the best lip plumpers for even more volume.
5. Sweet Shopper
Sometimes you just want to look extra cute during the holidays without looking Christmas-y or festive. Get rosy with this Sweet Shopper set. The Blushed Nudes Eyeshadow Palette by Maybelline provides all the shades of nudes and pinks needed to create a variety of pink looks from bright and flirty to soft and feminine. Pair with the Stila Color Balm Lipstick in Elle for a perfect sweet lip that’s put together enough for the evening but casual enough for day wear. It’s great for these colder months too because it’s more hydrating than most lipsticks and soothes chapped lips with plant-derived moisturizers and peppermint oil.
To enhance the youthful glow of your pink-loving look, try out the Blossoms Hi-Lite Palette from Lime Crime. It will add some shimmery iridescence to your highlights and give you a sugar-plum fairy effect that’s good for all year round. Vegan and cruelty-free, this highlighting palette comes with three pearly shades developed to work with all skin tones. Throw on a contrasting jewel-tone nail polish like I Got a Crush on Blue by KBShimmer to make all the colors pop that much more. This jelly nail lacquer is translucent and builds up best at two to three coats for a glittery gemstone effect.
Price: $9.98 (17 percent off MSRP)