As much as I love the berry lips and plum blushers of winter make up, I think I love summer even more. It’s the perfect excuse to wear something a bit lighter: dewy skin is always in fashion when it’s warmer so you can skip the layers or primer and powder if it takes your fancy. Whereas skipping steps in winter can leave you looking tired (the cold air makes my skin so dull so I always overcompensate with highlighter and blusher), you can get away with so much more when your skin has a bit of colour and the sun is shining. I’ve pulled together a few of my favourite summer beauty looks, and it’s inspiring me to get out of my make up rut and try something new!
1) Minimal make up with bright eyes.
I love this, it looks so simple and healthy and imagine the look on your colleagues’ faces if you walked into work looking this fresh faced the day after a heavy Thursday drinking session. ‘Smug, me?’, amiright? You’d need a good dewy base which allows your real skin to show through – I’ve heard great things about BareMinerals’ new Complexion Rescue – and then a brightening concealer on any problem areas and under the eyes. A light dusting of light reflecting powder where needed, tinted brow gel, a light Champagne coloured eyeshadow on the lids and extended into the inner corners of the eye and lashings of mascara. Finish with a lip balm (at the minute I’m really liking nude lip glosses blotted – looks slightly more polished) and you’re set.
2) All bare errythang with fuchsia lips.
I LOVE this. I’m not brave enough to go out without mascara on because a) I look like a little mole with no eyes and b) hello, I don’t look like Doutzen Kroes. But this look with a bit of mascara = hello. It’s not going to be high maintenance – you just need your usual foundation but skip the blusher (a bold step if you’re addicted like me). Add a tiny, tiny bit of highlighter and bronzer in the peaks and contours of your face if you feel like you need a little definition, but the real key to this look is keeping everything a blank canvas so the focus is on your lips. I love love love this fuchsia colour, but I think it would work great with an orange like Mac Morange too – blot it on with your fingers in thin layers for a stained effect which will last all day.
3) Glowy, bronzed skin.
A look with a hefty helping of bronzer was always going to make its way into here, wasn’t it? I feel like contouring is everywhere and I can’t get away at the minute (Sephora posted an Instagram on how to contour your lips. I mean really, is that necessary?). However, I’m not a big fan – mainly because I can’t do it so I’m bitter – and I prefer a more traditional application of bronzer. This look is so pretty – there’s a focus on the eyes with a slightly shimmery eyeshadow in the crease and a lot of fluttery eyelashes – but the skin is where is really shines. It’s reasonably matte but still glows: get yourself a matte bronzer such one of the Too Faced Chocolate offerings and a big (big) fluffy brush, and dust away. Give your whole face a very, very light dusting, but not enough to make your face look a completely different colour to your neck. We just want glow! Then go back and concentrate on your cheekbones (not the hollow below them, we’re not contouring remember), the bridge of your nose, middle of your forehead and chin. You don’t need much and do not overdo it – review after each step and decide if you really need more. Finish with a dab of highlighter here and there and a coral lip balm.
4) Neon flashes.
When it comes to clothing neon should be banned, but make up wise? I think we need to use more bright colours. Every so often you see someone in purple or orange lipstick (I love seeing that!) but it seems rare that people push the boundaries when it comes to colour – it’s all about who has the fullest false eyelashes or the most sharply contoured cheekbones. As Cara demonstrates perfectly below, it’s actually really wearable – here she’s modelling some turquoise eyeliner and a coral lip and I LOVE it. Everything else is kept simple – subtle cheeks, neutral eyeshadow – and I think that’s the trick; you don’t want to be teaming this with bright pink blusher too because you’ll look like you applied your make up in the dark. Two contrasting colours is perfect – I love this particular combo but I think a flash of cobalt eyeshadow in the corner would look great with a purple-toned pink lip. Or a big dusting of lilac eyeshadow with a bold red lipstick! Oh the options.
5) The summer smokey eye.
Smoky eyes are a failsafe and definitely not to be dismissed when it gets hot. It might take a little more prep or maybe a couple of alterations, but it’s still a great look and works even better with a bit of holiday glow. Use a heavy duty eyeshadow primer (nothing beats Urban Decay’s), switch to waterproof mascara and embrace the fact that lived in, smudgy smokey eyes look way better. Rather than cool taupes and greys, try a couple of warm brown and gold tones instead and blend them right out. Finish with a bit of bronzer, a lot of eyeliner and even more mascara and you have yourself a summery smokey eye.
As I mentioned, I’m in a bit of a make up rut. I’m going to make myself try each and every one of these over the next couple of weeks and I challenge anyone reading this to try at least one, too! Let me know which is your favourite (I’m leaning towards number 3) or if there are any other looks you really love for when the sun comes out.