Trend Report: Pastel Makeup

This season, designers are showcasing the modern side of pastels. From the Spring 2012 Prada and 3.1 Philip Lim shows to Louis Vuitton’s dreamy spring ad campaign, everything is coming up candy-colored. Before we indulged our inner 10-year-old, we asked makup artist Kim Do for advice on wearing these grown up pastels. The key, she says, is moderation. “It’s about balance; if you want to play up the lips, then I would keep the eyes and the cheeks on the softer side and vice versa.”


If you’re not comfortable making a big statement with your lip color, start sheer. Do says, “Play with lip gloss. Using pastels—whether it be corals, pinks, or tangerines—is kind of easy and forgiving if you want to start there.” If you do want to go all out with pastel lipstick (we’re fans of Lancome’s Rouge in Love Lipcolor in Miss Coquelicot or OCC’s plum-toned pink, Memento.), Do says, “put the bulk of the application in the middle of the lip and rub your lips together so you can see that it’s a vibrant color but not so precise that it’s really severe. It has a subtle punch about it.”


Pinks and corals are always a safe bet for incorporating pastels into your makeup wardrobe. Both shades are flattering on a range of skin tones, particularly when you go with an option like stila’s custom color in pink or coral. The color magically adjusts to fit your skin tone so you’re never going over-the-top. For the subtlest tint of pastel, use a light pink highlighter like Benefit’s High Beam across your cheekbones. It will catch the light and give your cheeks a girly glow.


Eye shadow is really where you can get creative with your pastels. Do recommends light washes of aquamarine, light violet, or coral. We like stila’s Wisteria, a dusty lavender, and Poppy, a pale blue. Or “stick to a neutral eye palette and add a bright violet liner. Soften it or make it as severe as you want depending how comfortable you are with makeup.” If you’re naturally pale, Do advises loading up on mascara to avoid looking washed out.


Nails are the easiest way to experiment without making a big investment. Try the new Color Club Summer Pastels Collection, which has creamy shades like Clambake Coral and cool blue Factory Girl. They complement both patterns and neutrals.

Image: Benefit High Beam; OCC Makeup Loose Colour in Mimosa; stila custom color blush; Nars Velvet Matte Pencil in Roman Holiday; Zoya Nail Polish in Bevin; OCC Makeup Lip Tar; Jouer Moisturizing Lip Gloss in Tender; Tarte LipSurgence™ Lip Tint in Peaceful; OCC Makeup Loose Colour in Datura

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