With holiday makeup the key is a subtle shimmer, not an outright assault on glitter. Sure Adam Lambert thinks caked-on stage makeup is a good look, but most men and women can't pull that off. Quite frankly there are a lot of rock stars that shouldn't even attempt to pull that off. Fortunately for the mass market, there are a plethora of companies that specialize in easy-to-use glam makeup. Nars, M.A.C., Too Faced, Urban Decay, Smashbox... these companies are known for bringing runway looks straight to your bedroom. Even more mainstream companies like Stila, Laura Geller, and Bobbi Brown pump up the glitz for the holidays. There are several easy holiday makeup looks to attempt, but be warned: these looks are not mix and match! You don't want to overdo it, so I'd recommend not combining these looks.
The Smokey Eye: Always a sexy look. No matter what the trends say, who can resist a smokey eye? Especially on a long-haired damsel? It just screams seduction. However, this is not for amateurs. Fortunately Stila has a smokey eye talking pallette that literally talks you through the steps ($40). If you're hesitant to try the full-blown professional smokey eye, they make a range of grey eye shadows that require no contouring, contriving, or concocting. Any grey shadow will give a smokey effect to blue, green, or hazel eyes. Start with a lighter grey if you're scared, and work your way up to a gun-metal grey with shimmer once you start feeling more comfortable with your application skills.
The Red Lip: What looks more sophisticated than flawless skin and a red lip? Sure, you'll need to downplay your eyes and cheeks, but the lips will surely get you noticed. Every beauty company on the planet makes a red lipstick, so take your pick! If you're not scared of drama, Kat Von D has a rich, blood-red lipstick appropriately named "Hell Bent" ($18). It comes in a variety of colors, just please, please, please do what you need to do to keep it on your lips and not on your teeth. Use a lipstick primer or dab a little concealer on your lips to make sure the stick sticks. Slough and moisturizer those puckers the night before so that when the makeup comes off it doesn't feel like kissing a reptile.
The Colorful Eye: Why not try something you've never tried before? A colorful eyeliner? A colorful shadow? Even a colored mascara! Just please try one at a time. Mac is historically known for their highly-pigmented shadows in a multitude of colors. They truly have something for everyone. Try one of their green or purple eyeliners. They are soft and delicious to apply. Top of your lids only...If you dare to rin your entire eye in a dramatic color we are SO over. One of my favorite looks right now is the colored mascara. Don't be frightened. A lot of the high-end companies give you just a subtle hint of pigment in these mascaras so you won't look like a clown. They bring out the natural undertones of your eye color in a way you never imagined. Yves Saint Laurent's Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils ($28.50)has a range of colors from "fascinating violet" (great for green eyes), to "Sublime Grey" (great for anyone).
Shimmer: I hesitate to tell the public that I am indeed a fan of all things shiny and shimmery. Being a dancer, I must confess that sequins and feather boas are also items that I have in my closet. Stop judging me. But since we're talking about going to a holiday party and not a dance recital, I suppose we'll have to tone it down a bit. If it's shimmery skin you seek, try Nars "the multiple" shimmer stick. Slather it on your brow bone, your cheek bones, and your collar bones. If it's eye shimmer you're looking for, Nars also makes a shimmer eyeliner aptly called "Glitter Pencil". Urban Decay also makes a Heavy Metal Glitter Liner. But my favorite shimmer lid look by far is Laura Geller's Baked Eye Bon-Bons Kit. This kit has four divine colors to mix and match. The Topaz color is a gilded paradise that looks good on most skin tones. This kit also comes with her signature Eye Spackle to help color stay put and reduce puffy eyelids, and her signature black mascara. (Kit $50)
Whatever look you're going for this holiday season, don't be afraid to try something new. This is the one time of year (unless you are performing in a dance recital) that you can take a risk. So be your sparkliest. Your most radiant. Your most smoldering. Be happy in your own skin and show off your personal style.