Vibrant Thing: How to Pull Off Bright Makeup

With summer just around the corner, I’m becoming more and more open to the idea of wearing brighter makeup. Lately, I’ve been experimenting with bright lipstick. I know, such a rebel, right? All jokes aside, I didn’t think I could pull it off for a long time. And I know I’m not alone.

There’s more than just mascara when it comes to vivid, summer makeup. I’m here to tell you that I can wear bright makeup. And so can you. (Without looking like you’re headlining a Las Vegas burlesque show.)

Mark’s Lash All You Want High-Volume Mascara, $10,
Mark’s Lash All You Want High-Volume Mascara, $10,

The key here is to focus on one part of your face. If you’re playing up your eyes, you’ll only need a lip balm or gloss on your lips. Likewise, if you’re going for a rich lip color, the makeup on the rest of your face should be subdued.


If you’re fairly committed to the colored mascara trend, try Chanel’s limited-edition Inimitable Waterproof mascara, which retails for $30 and comes in pretty cobalt, aqua and mustard shades. CK One offers a violet shade for $18. For an even more wallet-friendly option, look to Mark’s Lash All You Want High-Volume Mascara in wine.

In a recent post, I mentioned wanting to try The Beauty Department’s trick for colored lashes. Using liquid liner on your bottom lashes is a great way to try using color on your lashes if you’re not ready to go full throttle. Try Sephora + Pantone Universe Graphic Lift Liquid Eyeliner in Emerald ($17). If you’re feeling even more festive, go for NYX Cosmetics’s Liquid Crystal Liner. It’s a steal at just $4 a pop.


I don’t always wear blush, but I reach for it in the summer — it’s a great way to put some vibrant color into my look. If all else fails, remember the virtues of cream blush in hot weather. For a great summer flush, try Tarte Cheek Stain in Tipsy (a sheer-coral pink). Trust me, it’s worth the $30. Blissful (a warm peach-toned pink) is another option.

Clinique’s Chubby Stick Intense Lip Balm, $16,
Clinique’s Chubby Stick Intense Lip Balm, $16,

My go-to summer blush is a rich coral shade by Cargo.It’s a powder, but I make it creamy in the summer by mixing it with my makeup-bag favorite Josie Maran Argan Infinity Oil.


My summer lip color was an impulse buy, but I’m so happy I took the plunge. If you haven’t yet tried Clinique’s Chubby Stick Intense lip balm, get thee to a makeup counter, stat. I have it in Heftiest Hibiscus, but I can’t promise I won’t buy other shades. It’s rich enough to give me a gorgeous coral pout, but not, like, man-repeller intense. Revlon’s Color Stay Just Bitten line has some great summery shades and they’re just $8.99.

Corals, orange-tinged reds and berry colors are all great for summer. Ready to be bold, ladies?

Stay beautiful,

Bethonie, S&P Beauty Contributor

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