How To Wear Pink Make-Up In A Grown-Up Way
How To Wear Pink Make-Up In A Grown-Up Way

How To Wear Pink Make-Up In A Grown-Up Way

Fresh, youthful and not too theatrical, the pink make-up trend is one we’re happy to endorse. From application tips to standout products, we asked make-up artist Cat Parnell to explain why everyone’s wearing pink and how to get it right.
By Rebecca Hull

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It’s A Fast Track To Looking Fresh

“Pink make-up may be trending right now, but it’s actually been a thing for a while. It’s easy to see why – the shade is so versatile and fresh. It’s a colour that instantly breathes life into your skin and it can be used everywhere – like your lips, cheeks and eyelids. You can really go for it and create an 80s colourful vibe, or mute it down with more subtle tones to give you that ‘wind-bitten’ effect. The options are endless.” 

You Can Wear It Across Your Entire Face

“Wearing pink make-up can be really flattering. That said, it’s all about balancing the shades out. For example, if you’re rocking a bright fuchsia lip, go for a soft, sheer pink on your eyes and cheeks to tie everything together. Use just a small amount, so the lip takes centre stage and there aren’t too many distractions. Likewise, if you’re doing a pink eye or more of an intense cheek, the same rules apply. You can absolutely wear it everywhere – just think about where you want the main focus to be.” 

Some Areas Are Better Than Others

“With pink make-up, think about the area you wouldn’t want to look too ‘flourished’. For instance, around the bottom of your nose – this can enhance its shape – and by the lash line, as this can make you look a bit poorly. It all comes down to instincts, so only apply pink tones to the areas you want to enhance. Often that’s where the sun would naturally hit your skin – think the brow bone, cheekbones and a little on the top of your forehead and bridge of your nose. If in doubt, use Bridgerton as a guide. The make-up on that show is so romantic and ethereal – which is exactly what the pink make-up trend is all about.” 

Certain Products Stand Out

“I love the Hourglass Vanish Blush Sticks in the shades ‘Devoted’ and ‘Sacred’ – both of which can be scribbled on all over your face. For the cheeks, I really rate the Tom Ford Shade & Illuminate palettes. My favourites are ‘Aflame’ and ‘Brazen Rose’ – both are so wearable and suit all skin tones. If you prefer to work with liquids, the Chantecaille Cheek Gelée is brilliant – especially in the shade ‘Happy.’ It’s so easy to blend and layer up – a little on the lips, eyes and cheeks works so well.” 


Powders & Creams Work Best

“For the eyes and cheeks, I recommend using a cream texture first, then setting it with a sheer powder to enhance the vibrancy of the pink. If you have oilier skin, stick to powder textures but apply an eyeshadow primer first for maximum colour payoff and longevity – you want it to stand out, even if it’s a subtler shade. On the lips, it’s best to wear a velvety texture that looks softly diffused. The pink trend is almost blurred in terms of the finish."

A Colour Clash Can Work

“Pink is also good if you want a little colour clash. Worn with orange, it can look so beautiful. It sounds intense but trust me, you can wear a very soft, muted orange on your eyes and cheeks, then pair it with a flush of pink on the lips. You’ll be surprised how energised you look. If you want to pare it back further, use some cream and white tones. I often use these four shades on rotation for modern bridal looks.” 

The Right Mascara Matters

“If you’re wearing a wash of pink on your eye, use a brown mascara instead of black. Brown and pink work beautifully together and create a much softer finish – especially for daytime. Black can be harsh and too contrasting. This look is all about softness and simplicity, so you want to keep it sweet and warm.” 

A Bold Cheek Is Easiest

“If pink all over your face feels like too much, use it just on your cheeks. On the runway, vivid rouge has been big – dark pink and reddish tones can look surprisingly natural, but the trick is to build them up in sheer layers to avoid looking too theatrical. To get it right, position your blush higher on your cheekbone in line with your eye iris, then blend it out along the cheekbone stopping shy of your temple. Finally, work a little of the excess into your hairline at the temple for extra glow and dimension.” 

Follow @CatParnell for more beauty tips & product recommendations.


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