How-to: Not be afraid of bright makeup (part 1)

bright makeup

One of my favourite commenters (and fellow magazine writer/blogger) made a point the other day that all of this bright makeup we’ve been seeing on various designers’ runways can only be worn by those possessing flawless, dewy, 19-year-old Eastern European model-type skin.

And yes, I think that’s partially true—I certainly don’t dare bust out a red lip if I have a huge, flaming zit competing for attention on my face. (It’s like the beauty equivalent of not wearing too many accessories, like picking a necklace OR earrings—not both.)

chaseaston How to: Not be afraid of bright makeup (part 1)However, I still think there’s a way to incorporate a teensy bit of bright makeup in a non-scary way, EVEN IF your parents didn’t pass along the good skin genes. And the perfect person to show you? Why, The Body Shop‘s resident makeup artist Chase Aston, of course!

I always love meeting with Chase because he uses brights like nobody else. You think the colours are completely unwearable when you see them in the packages, but then he works some magic on the models’ faces and they look sheer and pretty and amazing. The other cool thing is that he does most of this using not brushes but his fingers. He makes it all look so EASY.

Chase was in town the other week and I took some pics of three different looks that I’m going to show you.

Today’s look is 80s-inspired, and you could take just elements of this (i.e. eyes or lips) OR do the entire face. Here’s the before:

bodyshop look1before How to: Not be afraid of bright makeup (part 1)

And the after:

bodyshop look1after How to: Not be afraid of bright makeup (part 1)

Now, in the words of Chase himself, here’s what to do:

bodyshop eyetrio moonlightlustre How to: Not be afraid of bright makeup (part 1)EYES: Use your fingers to blend lilac and grey shadow from the lash line up to the brow. (Find them both in The Body Shop‘s Eye Trio in Moonlight Lustre.) To intensify the colour under the eyes, dampen an eyeliner brush before applying. Use an eyeliner pencil (like the Metallic Eye Definer in Brilliant Blue) to line under the lower lashes. Soften the line—for a more modern effect—by smudging some green shadow over top. Cobalt mascara will make eyes pop.

bodyshop blushtrio How to: Not be afraid of bright makeup (part 1)CHEEKS: Using a big, fluffy brush, apply your blush in a “double-C” pattern on each side of your face. Start from your hairline, move out to your temples, back in over the cheeks, and then out again, blending around the jawline. The product used here was the Blush Trio in Cool Dusk (you can also use it on your eyes as shadow).

BROWS: Use a slanted brush to apply brow powder. (This will help the overall effect look more polished.) The Body Shop makes a neat Eyebrow Kit.

LIPS: Prep them first with a lip balm, and then apply your lip colour with an eyeshadow brush (it produces a softer effect than a lip brush). Keep layering until you get the colour you want. Here, Chase used ColourGlide Lip Color in Neon Pink.

See? Pretty, not scary. And I think almost all of us could get away with elements of this look. Stay tuned for Part Two next week!


Jessica Teas
Monday, October 12/2009 at 2:50 pm

Bright makeup is so much fun to wear and totally makes you stand out from the crowd… but I laughed out loud when I read the bit about not wearing it when you have a honking spot as it’s the facial equivalent of wearing too many accessories. So true! I only bust out the super red lippy if I’m spot-free. How is it that it’s so difficult to look good with a spot? Damned hormones…


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, October 13/2009 at 12:53 pm

Oh I know. This is why I’ve only been WRITING about bright makeup lately. I never said I practice what I preach… :-)


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