How to Master Your Holiday Makeup Look
It may be a little hard to believe, but the holiday season is almost upon us.
Since we practically had to skip over the holidays last year (at least cocktail parties and family get-togethers), I for one am ready for an extravagant holiday season.
I spent all of last year's festivities at home in my PJs, so not only am I ready to celebrate with family and friends, but I may also be planning on going a little over the top with my outfits and makeup. I can’t be the only one who has barely worn mascara this past year, let alone tried out a new bold lip or fun, creative eye.
What better way to bust out some new makeup looks than the holidays? When it comes to bold colors and all sorts of shimmer, the holidays allow us to pull out all the stops. From full holiday makeup looks to show-stopping eyes and bold lip trends, we are sharing the best looks to try this holiday season.
Our Favorite Holiday Makeup Looks
Shimmer and shine like a glorious Christmas tree with lots of highlights this holiday season. Pair your shimmering cheekbones with golden eyes for an incredible look that is sure to complement an LBD for any holiday cocktail party.
To recreate these lust-worthy cheeks, we love this Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter from Fenty Beauty. The highlighter gives you an amazing glow. The cream and powder hybrid is buildable and easy to apply. Just dust it across your cheekbones a few times for extra shimmer. As for the eyes, give the Eyes to Mesmerise in Star Gold a try from Charlotte Tilbury.
What better time to go all out with red than the holidays? Monochromatic trends are in this year and work so well for a bold holiday look. Compliment a gorgeous crimson lip with a dusting of blush and a dash of colorful shadow. Really feeling the look? Pair it off with a festive red dress.
To get this lip, we recommend the Zoya Perfect Lipstick in Matte Velvet Red. The bright red shade is absolutely amazing and it dries to a nice matte finish. For a dynamic blush, try Glossier’s buildable Cloud Paint in Warm Rose. Top it off with an incredible red eye using this multi-use pomade from KVD Beauty.
We are obsessed with this dark and romantic look for the holiday season. If bright and bold isn’t your style, you are in luck with this subtle-yet-dramatic look. From the perfectly chiseled eyebrows to smokey eyes, this one is going on our must-try list.
To recreate this look, start by creating the perfect smokey eye. To do so, we love this all-in-one palette from Lime Crime. It is packed with every color you need to make your smokey eyes pop every time. After your shadow color is on point, finish them off with voluminous lashes with these fake lashes from the Sephora Collection. If you weren’t born with Lily Collins’s full arches, don’t worry; we weren’t either. You can fake them with this Brilliant Brow Gel from Beautycounter.
Another subtle yet exceptional option: go with neutral nudes. With a light shimmer on your eyelids, a bit of bronzer on your cheeks, and a warm, tan color on your lips, this look is understated glam. Whether heading to the office holiday party or a night out on the town, this look is easy to pull off for every occasion.
Take your pick of shades of nude with this eyeshadow palette, in the color warm + easy, from Vapour. This Bio Bronzer Cream Stick from Well People helps you effortlessly achieve a glamorous glow across your cheeks. And for a neutral lip, we love this matte hazel shade from Kylie Cosmetics.
Love warm, bold, jewel tones? This look is for you. From bold eyes to a statement lip, mix and match your favorite gem colors to create the bejeweled look of your dreams. While it might sound a little out there, we guarantee you’ll love it the second you try it.
For options when it comes to jewel-colored eyes, we love this palette from Imayla, which has a beautiful blue, purple, and maroon, so you can switch it up or combine them into one impactful look. Choose from one of these bold lip colors from NYX, like the Sweet Tooth, which has a deep fuchsia hue.
Sometimes, you just need to go all out with your theme makeup, and this is the way to do it. It is giving us serious Christmas Barbie vibes, and we are obsessed. A bold red lip is a no-brainer, and paired with glitzy eye shadow is sure to make you stand out from the crowd.
To achieve this coveted bold lip, we love this lipstick from Kajer Weis in KW Red. To recreate this dramatic wingtip eyeliner, use a liquid liner. It allows you to have more control and precision. Grab this one from Thrive Causemetics. As for the over-the-top shimmer eyeshadow, we love this liquid glitter one from E.L.F., rightfully called Bling Bling.
Bold, Beautiful Holiday Eye Looks
If you like to keep most of your makeup subtle but are looking to try a little drama, give a head-turning eye look a try. From sultry emerald to candy cane stripes, these holiday eye looks are perfect to bring some fun.
Snow Globe Eyes
What better way to go over the top than these snow globe eyes? Scatter the glitter pigment across your eyes, extending it beyond the corners. Keep the rest of the look more minimal so as not to overdo it while also keeping the focus on the eyes.
Start with a dark eyeliner to draw a clean line for the shiny glitter. Then opt for a bold glitter like the Treasure Pot Glitter Gel from Tarte. Add an additional layer of glitter, once the first round has dried ,to create a more dramatic color.
Alternatively, if the Ice Queen look isn’t your vibe, opt for a Golden Queen look instead. Similar to the Snow Globe look above, this look is created by first drawing a precise outline with your favorite dark eyeliner and then filling with a shimmery gold eyeshadow. We love the color Overdraft, described as yellow gold metallic, from Urban Decay.
Classic Smokey Eye
A smokey eye is good for any time of year and if you are looking to bring the drama, but not too much, this is a great option for your holiday events. This look also goes with any outfit so you can pull it out at any time. Pair it with a soft natural lip and a pop of blush.
To achieve the perfect smokey eye, we recommend starting with the Everyday Smokey Eyeshadow kit from E.L.F. Whether you opt for cooler tones or warmer, this palette has all the colors you need for either. This liquid, waterproof liner from Thrive Causemetics is ideal for a smudge-free look, and we love this collagen-packed mascara from Pacifica to finish the look with big, fluffy eyelashes.
Winter is the perfect time to opt for richer tones, like an emerald. While you can try it with any jewel tone (see our Bejeweled look above for an all-out look), we particularly love this deep green. Keep the rest of your look subtle with bronze tones on the rest of your face to compliment the emerald, and to make sure the color pops.
For a dynamic look with layered green tones, try this Smoke Sessions palette from Melt Cosmetics. Use the dark green just above your eyeliner and blend it to a lighter green towards your eyelid crease. Add a touch of the pale green at your corners to polish off the ombre look.
If you prefer a slightly brighter hue, we love a blue Christmas look. To find the perfect shade of blue for you, we love the Blue Blood Palette from Jeffree Star. With blue tones ranging from powder blue to deep blue, you can use one for an all-over shade or create a beautiful blend.
These exaggerated glitter wings may be a bit intimidating, but we promise they are easier to pull off than they look. We love this statement eye for cocktail parties, or even better, New Year’s Eve. Finish with a glossy lip to pull it all together.
To get a clean and sharp edge, start by using tape to outline where you want the glitter. Then layer on your favorite eye glitter from Lit Cosmetics. We love the Icy Queen color for a, well, icy look, but switch it up with their Merlot or Paint it Black options.
Candy Cane Lane
This may be a little on-the-nose, but how fun is it? To create this ultimate holiday look, start with a white base and outline with a white eyeliner. This Cake Pencil from KVD Beauty is a great option. Once your white base is set, add the red stripes. To do that, we recommend this Chili Matte Liquid Liner from Colourpop. The felt-tip pen is perfect for precise lines. Add a red stripe across your crease to kick the look up another notch.
Go Bold with Statement Holiday Lips
Is a bold lip more your style than an over-the-top eye? Have no fear! These fun holiday lip trends are great for a little cocktail party fun, and are super easy to achieve.
Looking for a break from your classic red lip? Give a deep berry or wine shade a try. This color goes well with a variety of makeup combos from subtle nudes to bronzes. We adore this Leo Matte Lip Kit from Kylie Cosmetics. The kit has everything you need to create the most beautiful bold lip.
Not just for summer anymore. This look is also great for the winter as it offers up a fresh cherry tint with a glossy finish. Try choosing one other area to focus on, like fake lashes or a bushy brow for a beautiful but minimal look all around. We love the Wet Cherry Lip Gloss from Lime Crime in the Pumpkin Pie shade.
Another lip color to try? Cocoa. This look has a fun, just sipped hot chocolate look that is perfect for the holiday season. Pair it with a glimmering eye shadow for the ultimate snow queen combo. The Lip Soufflé Matte Cream Lipstick from Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez in Thrilling is a great shade of brown for all skin tones.
Please note: A product appearing in our blog is not an official Kinder Beauty endorsement. While every product we feature in an article is cruelty-free and vegan, these products do not necessarily meet all of our strict brand standards for curation in a Kinder Beauty box.
Jackie Lutze has been writing about cruelty-free beauty for years and loves finding the best vegan products to help readers build their ultimate beauty routine.