How to create a simple but pretty holiday makeup look.
The holidays are here, which means holiday gatherings (small or large) and lots of fun outfits! One of the questions I get a lot around this time is how to do a holiday makeup look, so that’s what i’m sharing today! Heck, even if you don’t have big plans this year, just throw on a black turtleneck with your favorite jeans and a bold lip color, and BAM, it’s a holiday makeup look!
Today I’m sharing a simple tutorial that’s festive but still very feasible for real life (i.e. this won’t take you forever to do and doesn’t require extensive makeup skills or a professional makeup artist!!) Be sure to see some links at the bottom for more tips, including where to see makeup video tutorials.
Let’s dive in!
My Easy Holiday Makeup Tutorial
What makes makeup much easier to apply is having skin that is well balanced and hydrated. My skin has NEVER looked or felt better since switching to Beautycounter (you can see my skincare routine here). So, that’s my actual first step for holiday makeup. I start with clean, hydrated skin!
Next, makeup! My go-to products for creating a holiday look are below. (This is what I do for any special night really, holidays or not!) Start to finish, my make-up takes me less than 10 minutes. I like to still look natural but made-up, and I find if I spend too much time, it just starts to look like too much for my taste. I use mostly Beautycounter but I’ve noted where I use other brands.
- Priming Serum – I LOVE this primer. It makes your skin glow and helps makeup stay on longer and look smoother.
- Skin Twin Featherweight Foundation – This is the best foundation I’ve ever used. It provides coverage but doesn’t feel heavy like every other foundations I’ve tried over the years. I use this blender sponge or this brush. (The brush gives a little more coverage) and I still look like myself when I have it on, which I can’t say for other foundations I’ve tried. Read my review here.
- Ilia Concealer
- Cream Blush in Cider or Paloma (review here)
- Eyeliner Pencil
- Eyebrow Pencil
- Brow Gel
- Beyond Gloss or red lipstick, depending on how bold I’m going! (I really love the colors in the holiday lipgloss set too!)
- Mascara – I use Thrive Mascara and Tarte Eyelash Primer.
Makeup Application Tip: Good brushes are game changers for easier makeup application and blending! I have a mix of brushes from Beautycounter and Sephora. Invest in good ones – they’ll last you forever! And for foundation, I use this blender sponge.
Step 1: Create a smooth base
- I put one pump of Priming Serum on top of my hand and blend it with my hands.
- Repeat with the Skin Twin. I always blend in bouncing motions instead of rubbing or dragging. It gives a more natural look.
Step 2: Apply Eye makeup ( Eyeshadow & Eye Liner)
- Next up, I apply eyeshadow! I have a video tutorial on how I apply eyeshadow here. For a holiday look, I like a palette like this. The same principals apply that I show in that video – base all over color, darker color on eyelid, darker color in crease! Blend blend blend! I don’t do a true smokey eye since it feels like a little too much on me.
- Eyeliner is up next!
Eye liner tips:
- Pull your eyelid taut while you draw, short lines using short strokes on your lash line. Eventually you may find it easier to draw one continuous line but to start, this helps!
- I start from the outside and work in then touch up on the outside for a slightly thicker outer edge.
- PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. I use this eye liner pencil.
Step 3: Blush, Highlight & Bronze!
- I apply blush first (I like the Date color for the holidays) and I easy on it since I’m typically playing up my eyes and/or lips! You don’t want all three to be super intense. Pick 1-2 features to highlight! To apply blush, smile and apply the color to the parts of your face that pop up! Easy as that! You can do taps or a light brush stroke, working from the apples of your cheeks towards your temples.
- Lastly, I apply highlighter on my upper cheekbones (slightly overlapping the blush), the bridge of my nose, above my eyebrows and on my brow bone.
- Nothing too precise! Then use a clean large, fluffy brush to blend!
Step 4: finishing touches – eyelashes, brows, undereye concealer
- EYEBROW TIP: If you have never filled in your brows, it makes a HUGE difference, whether you’re doing a daily, natural look or a full face of makeup for a party. Start with a color slightly lighter than your brow color and try darker colors as you get used to it since it may feel strange to you at first. I feel so much more polished and put together simply by filling in my brows, even if I do nothing else but a little mascara and lipgloss!
Next up, concealer. Before I apply concealer, I dab off any powder that’s fallen under my eyes with a tissue so I’m not rubbing in shadow, which will make dark circles appear worse. I also do a little concealer around the edges of my nose and tip of my nose since I’m prone to redness there.
- Under my eyes, I focus the concealer on my inner eye (near the tip of the bridge of my nose) and the first third under my eye. I don’t go towards my outer eye since I find brightening the inner portion helps open my eyes. And I try to avoid adding too much makeup wherever I have fine lines. I blend by gently tapping with my ring finger, but you can also use a brush or better blender.
Step 5: Lips
TIP: I often hear from people who don’t wear much makeup that they don’t want to get an eyeshadow palette or a set of lipsticks/lip glosses since they won’t use them all. BUT, I actually think that’s the BEST thing they can do. It gives you the option to experiment to see what you like without investing in full sizes of individual colors. It’s more cost effective to learn that way and you’ll try things you may not otherwise buy.
Perfect Red Lip
My favorite finishing touch for the holiday is a bright red lip! I’d say Christmas makeup looks are basically summed up in a bright red lip.
I apply a layer, blot and then apply another layer. It helps it stay longer!
If you’re not a bright red lip kind of gal, try a berry lip or a nude lip for something a little different, but less bold than the red. I’ve never tried a liquid lipstick that dries, but I’ve heard they work well and stay on for a long time!
The finished look!
Now, if you’re heading to holiday parties, throw on a dress in a fun jewel tone and maybe made your winged liner a little bit more of a cat eye in the outer corners. Then you have a perfect look for the holiday season.
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Let me know if you have ANY questions and I’d love to hear what your favorite feature is to highlight with makeup – eyes, lips, something else?
Happy holidays!!! 🙂
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