Should You Be Matchy-Matchy? Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works… and sometimes it’s a massive #BeautyFail

Selena Gomez Perez Hilton Blue Ball Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

I may have come down hard on Milla Jovovich last year for going hog wild on the orange (dress, eyeshadow, blush AND lipstick)… but in general, I like when things match. You know, like bras and panties. Shoes and handbags. Bacon and eggs. It helps one make sense of the world.

So that’s why I’m torn on the topic of whether you should match your makeup to your outfit. For every instance where it looks terrifically chic, there’s another where it’s a bit too… considered. Sometimes the surprise of a contrasting colour on the eyes or the lips just elevates the entire outfit, in that “I just threw this on but of course I always look this gorgeous” kind of way.

And so, with helpful visual aids, I’ve compiled some guidelines on the whole matching subject. Obviously Selena Gomez, above, is demonstrating Rule #1: If your lipstick, eyeshadow, eyelashes, hair accessory and faux tatts are ALL the same colour as your dress, the calendar had better say October 31st.

Here are the rest!

A soft wash of colour on the eyelids is usually a safe bet.

Eliza Dushku Perez Hilton Blue Ball Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

This is Eliza Dushku, who also attended Perez Hilton’s “Blue Ball.” (Okay, maybe we can give Selena a pass.) But still—isn’t this a much better way to do the matching thing? The shadow is so close to a grey that it’s almost a neutral, but it still gives that little bit of unexpected pop.

With fuchsia and orange, match your lipstick to your skirt, not your whole outfit.

Jennifer Hudson fuchsia lipstick Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

This strategy kinda gives you the best of both worlds—the stand-out factor of a bright lip against another shade in your top… but the tying-it-all-togetherness of wearing a colour that is elsewhere on your person. Check out the close-up of Jennifer Hudson, above, and the full head-to-toe, below:

Jennifer Hudson at AOL sessions Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

Compare this to the head-to-toe fuchsia worn by Paris Hilton:

Paris Hilton hot pink lipstick dress Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

With the headband and the dress, did she really need the matching lipstick as well? Nein, Paris. As for orange, the best guideline for what NOT to do is this pic of Milla Jovovich:

Mila Jovovich Hollywood Awards Gala 3 Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

Yes, some outfits really DEMAND a nude lipstick.

The exception to red lipstick. Match away!

Selena Gomez 2011 Disney Kids and Family Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

Unlike fuchsia or orange, red lipstick is truly a classic—and so, you can get away with the matchy-matchy thing a lot more here, as Selena Gomez so gamely demonstrates. (MUCH better this time, Selena. Blue is so not your colour.)

And of course, it goes without saying that soft pinks and peaches look great with everything.

Fergie 36th birthday Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

How amazing does Fergie look here?

Sometimes introducing a brand new shade into the mix is exciting! And beautiful!

Cameron Diaz pink lipstick red dress Green Hornet Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

Sometimes red with red is just too predictable. This is probably my favourite look of all—pink lips with a red dress, on our good pal Cameron Diaz. I think it works a bit better than Mandy Moore’s lavender lips with an orange shirt…

Mandy Moore Virgin Mobile Canada event 2011 Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

… although she gets 10 points for trying.

When wearing a multi-coloured print, pick up one (or more) of the colours.

PFW F11 Emma Stone Louis Vuitton Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

Any excuse for me to throw up this pic of my current girl crush, Emma Stone. (She shares that distinction along with Amy Adams and Christina Hendricks, of course.) I’m just crazy about her makeup here, which picks up the colours in the print side of her dress.

Emma Stone dress at Louis Vuitton 2011 Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

Still—doing both eyes AND lips is a look that requires some skill (and confidence) to pull off. Otherwise, it’s probably safer to pull out just one colour for the lips, like Carla Gugino does here with this spectacular orangey red:

Carla Gugino lipstick Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

If your name is Blake Lively, then no, peach eyeshadow does NOT “go with everything.”

Blake Lively Nov 2010 Matching your makeup to your outfit: Sometimes it works... and sometimes its a massive #BeautyFail

But we’ve talked about that before, haven’t we?

So tell me:

Do you always match your makeup to your outfit?
How do you feel about throwing in an unexpected shade just to mix things up a bit?
Which one of these celeb makeup looks do you like the best?

18 Comments

Nicky
Wednesday, March 30/2011 at 5:40 pm

Carla Gugino, all the way! The look is classy, and that’s an understatement!
Personally, my eyes are, by far, my best feature, that’s where I emphasize, and mostly match my eyeshadow with my top. Except for blue, I have green eyes and I feel a warm peach suits me better. I love plum, and wear a plummy pink with it, and with green tops I wear a pale and a dark green, making kind of a smoky which really make my eyes pop! For my lips, I wear a nearly nude brownish plum with almost everything, and a pinky plum with plum and blue outfit, both very subtle since my eyes are so stunning with any makeup I create. I know I lack of humility here, but eh, its true :P

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Friday, April 1/2011 at 10:05 am

Oh wow, you have advanced makeup matching skillz! Very impressive. And I agree about the eyes – even though I’m having a lipstick moment lately, they’re my favourite feature to play up too!

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Sophia
Wednesday, March 30/2011 at 7:28 pm

January Jones (heart heart heart) made a dress similar to Blake’s (Versace I think?) look so much more WOW in red with matching red lip at the Golden Globes. The nude face and nude dress is super weird.

I’m thinking I must wear too much black since I don’t feel like I’ve encountered this dilemma very often. I’m really liking Cameron D’s pink lips and pink cheeks, but I’m wary of red lips and pink cheeks. Am I right for avoiding that or is there a way to make it work?

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Friday, April 1/2011 at 10:08 am

Yes – and remember Emma Stone in peach? That was pretty but so tone on tone…. I love a big lip for red carpet.

Hear you about the black – am trying to break free as well!

I am rather blush-obsessed so I always do a pink cheek with everything, just so that it looks like a natural flush. Depending on how pale you are, I think without it red lipstick can often look too “dead” and Gothic. Maybe you need a more toned-down blush? I like the creams (and no sparkle) for the most natural look. And maybe go for more of a peachy pink…

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Sophia
Saturday, April 2/2011 at 8:28 pm

I just picked up a cream blush from Joe Fresh (!!) and am really liking it. It seems easy to layer it for when I am going pinky all-over, and I’m going to try going with a bit less and doing the red lip to avoid the dead look. They also have a promo on now – buy 1 lip product get 1 free – with a coupon in stores for anyone who’s into their stuff.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Thursday, April 7/2011 at 6:47 pm

Hooray! Glad it’s working for you – Joe has great quality for the price, even makeup artists praise it.

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Kat
Wednesday, March 30/2011 at 9:12 pm

I find Eliza Dushku doesn’t look very good in cooler shades.. Maybe it’s her cooler hair color, plus the cool eyeshadow AND the blue shirt, to me it just washed her out completely. She looks like a corpse. I love her though, and I do think it looks better than Selena.. (good gawd… party pass, but next time, tone it down a notch gurl! You’re giving Katy Perry a run for her money in all that glitter, hahaha.) Mandy Moore looks like she’s trying the Donna Karan, here’s my advice: DON’T.

My favorites are Jennifer Hudson (although I wish she’d smile with her mouth closed once in a while… I dunno if it’s the weight loss, but those dimples should get their own zip code soon..), Emma Stone and Blake Lively (awww, iKnow iKnow, but it would look so pretty with a bright lip, in a coral or bright red, nein?!)

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Friday, April 1/2011 at 10:11 am

Yeah, what is it about J-Hud’s smile now – was it always like that?

Looking at Blake again… honestly, I’d be happy with the makeup as is, if she’d only wipe off that peach on the lids. I don’t know why, but it always drives me crazy.

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Nomadic D
Saturday, April 2/2011 at 3:56 am

I kind of like Mila’s lipstick in that photo. I think with the blush and the eyeshadow it’s a little too matchy-matchy, but I still think the lip with the shirt is kind of fun. And I also kind of disagree on the Cameron shot, I think she looks pretty rough there.

The one that really made me laugh though was Paris. Yes, her lipstick was a bad choice, but seriously, what WASN’T? She is defined by bad choices.

http://nomadic-d.blogspot.com/

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Thursday, April 7/2011 at 6:49 pm

Oh not saying that Cammy doesn’t look rough – she has really aged prematurely, that’s for sure – but I still like the way she wears her makeup. Always have!

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Gimped
Tuesday, April 5/2011 at 12:03 pm

I think Fergie looks amazing in this photo. Glad you cropped off the bottom of the dress though — a bit of a fashion failure from the waist down :)

I have lots of colours in my eyeshadow collection, but I try not to do the matchy matchy thing. I was always told that matching is bad. I try to do neutrals most of the time (browns, greys, pale pinks, etc) and add brights when I’m wearing a colourless wardrobe. I, too, have the addicted-to-black thing going right now, but I’m desperately trying to break that for Spring.

Speaking of Spring … since floral patterns and bright colours are so prominent in fashion, what do you do with your makeup? Example: I bought a gorgeous coral jacket for Spring, but I haven’t got a clue what to do with my makeup when I wear it. I’ve also got some floral cardis (pinks/purples) and printed camis (blues/yellows) that I don’t know what to do with. Neutral, of course, works. But what if I want to mix in the bright lip trend? Can I do that??

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Gimped
Tuesday, April 5/2011 at 12:09 pm

Here are 2 of the things I was talking about above

Cami
http://oldnavy.gapcanada.ca/browse/product.do?cid=55409&vid=1&pid=809999&scid=809999013
… under a navy cardi

Cardi
http://oldnavy.gapcanada.ca/browse/product.do?cid=60783&vid=1&pid=839546&scid=839546013
… over a solid army green cami

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Thursday, April 7/2011 at 6:55 pm

With the cami you could do the blue eyeliner on the lower lashline thing (see Emma stone here: http://beautyeditor.ca/2011/03/28/reader-question-channeling-amy-adams-or-christina-hendricks-makeup-tips-for-natural-and-not-so-natural-redheads/), that might look cool. But I think it would look best with a fun lip like coral or hot pink. (Not red.)

The cardi is pretty feminine and light in colour so I would probably do a lip over an eye. (Eye might be too harsh.) I think any of the pink colours in the cardigan would work… but I don’t think you have to match exactly – hot pink would be fun with it!

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Gimped
Friday, April 8/2011 at 9:28 am

Thanks for the suggestions!! Hoping that UD has a navy liner I can try …

Emma’s face is pretty basic (liner and a pale-ish lip) so I’m assuming I can’t do the liner with a bright lip, right? Too much?

When I wore the floral cardi the other day I had on more eye than lip (not a lot of eye, but noticeable) and I looked … funny. I guess I know why now!!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Thursday, April 7/2011 at 6:51 pm

Oh really? I never look at the clothes, just the neck up! :-)

You’re right – neutrals are the safest bet, but I think with a print you could either pick one of the colours out (for lip or eyeliner, say) or if you are brave, you could even do a contrasting colour on the lip. Eg. hot pink with solid coral. As long as there aren’t any other colours in the rest of your outfit (eg – just denim, metallics, black or white) I think it can work.

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Gimped
Friday, April 8/2011 at 9:40 am

If you’re interested, here’s Fergie from head to toe. Shoes = awesome. Fringe = fail. And where did those ta ta’s come from?!? Lol!!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Saturday, April 16/2011 at 11:58 am

Oh wow – the fringe was really not necessary. And those boobs! Okay, now I maybe understand a bit better why Josh Duhamel is married to her. (Was that mean? Yes it was.)

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NEGAR
Thursday, May 9/2013 at 8:04 am

very Thank you

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