It's official: After a lot of time spent indoors over the last year and a half with no real reason to put on makeup, beautiful eyeshadows and vibrant lipsticks are making a comeback. Yes, summer 2021 is uniting both beauty aficionados and curious novices in a quest to dust off our makeup bags and have fun experimenting. Of course, a return to makeup doesn't need to be about adhering to society's old beauty standards either; rather, it's a time to explore our makeup routines on our own terms in an effort to find the things that bring us joy. After all, who wouldn’t want to learn some new application tips from Alexa Chung's makeup artist or try new cult products? In truth, finding fun yet easy makeup looks during this time can be a simple way to cultivate a little delight in your day. So ahead, we’ve spoken to 15 women about the easy makeup looks that are currently making them smile. And don’t fret—we promise they’ll be as enjoyable to try on yourself.
Doin' the Bare Minimum
Doing your makeup doesn’t necessarily mean you have to have a full face. As Sarah Kretzu told us, “Glowing skin makes me feel good no matter what!” Investing in a product that leaves your skin dewy is the easiest way to make you look like you’re wearing a full face of makeup without actually doing so."
Kretzu confessed that her secret to creating this dewy look is “to mix a skin tint with Drunk Elephant’s D-Bronzi. It gives you a healthy dose of colour and glow without leaving the house!”
So what product does Allison swear by to create this look? She confessed, “The product that makes this look so easy and simple is the Hollywood Flawless Filter by Charlotte Tilbury. It’s my favourite product ever—it gives your skin a natural glow with just the right amount of coverage so you don’t feel weighed down, but your skin looks amazing!”
Niller continued, “I then highlight the cheekbones and brow bone, add a little mascara, brush up my brows, and add a bit of blush and bronzer on the hollows of the cheeks and dab some on my eyelids as well. It instantly makes me feel good and ready for the day!”
For her effortless makeup look, Malana used Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser (£54), followed by Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer (£25). To highlight her eyes, she swears by Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz (£23) in the shade Medium Brown, L’Oréal Paris Telescopic Mascara (£11), and Milk Makeup Highlighter (£23) in the shade Lit on her cheekbones. Malana finished off this look with Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder (£32) and Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer (£14) in the shade Deep.
Read My Lips
If you’re looking for an easy makeup look that’s a little bit bolder, look to our very own editor Anna LaPlaca. As she told us, “My makeup here is inspired by that quintessential French-girl look, which is effortless and romantic, and surprisingly easy to re-create. It's anchored by bold, fluffy brows, a classic red lip, and a subtle flick of winged eyeliner.”
LaPlaca continued, “I like to start with an even, glowy canvas for the skin (Kosas Tinted Face Oil, £40, is a favourite for this), then go in with a brow pen (I've been loving Glossier Brow Flick, £15) and brow brush to amp them up. If I have extra time, I'll add in the eyeliner, but honestly, it's optional. Finally, a swipe of my go-to Chanel lipstick, et voilà!”
You can wear just a lip for this look, or you can put on a layer of your go-to foundation.
You don’t have to opt for a red lip though to pull off this easy makeup look. Look to Tyla-Lauren’s cute nude lip for inspiration. As she told us, “Nude lips are my automatic go-to because they always enhance a natural makeup look.”
Crafty Cat Eyes
Cung continued, “I always use a felt-tip liner to do my cat eye and do the wing part with a pen-style liquid liner.”
Once you’ve mastered your cat eye and want to have a little fun, we suggest trying Erin Kean’s neon pink cat eye. As she told us, “I find bright colours always elevate my mood, whether it be a neon pink eyeliner or a bold red lip. Something about colour does wonders for your confidence.”
Kean suggests that “any pink eyeliner would be perfect for re-creating this look.” And rather than applying the eyeliner to the inner lash line, apply it to your crease, and wing it out for a cute, creative take on your cat-eye look.
Whether you opt for a deep indigo or a bright pink, this cute cat-eye variation is an easy makeup look to try. All you’ll need is a good eyeliner.
This makeup look is easier to re-create than it looks; rather than just outlining your lid or your eyeliner, outline the under-eye, top eye, and outer edges. Then, fill in your full lid with an eye shadow of your choice. Anoushka recommends using Fenty Beauty’s Precision Blending Eyeshadow Brush (£20) to blend your shadow.
Finally, to ensure the perfect electrifying eye look, Anoushka swears by putting on Glossier’s Lash Slick mascara to finish it off.
If you’re still not sold on this makeup look, let Fatima inspire you. As she told us, “If you’re looking to elevate your look, it’s always great to start with the eyes! I’ve been using my downtime to challenge myself creatively with what’s in my makeup bag and have been swooning over statement eyes; specifically colour liners.”
Fatima recommends creating this look to find your perfect base foundation (hers is Estée Lauder Double Wear Makeup in Toasty Toffee, £35) followed by the colour liner of your choice. Ultimately, when it comes to creating cute makeup looks, in the words of Fatima, it’s all about “finding what accentuates your own features.” Be it a cat eye or something else, now’s the time to get creative and find the makeup routine that’s easiest for you.
A Lil' Lid Action
Li continued, “To create this look, I used E.l.f.’s eye primer and just applied some eye shadow with my fingers.”
“To finish off the look, I added color to my lids then accentuated it with another color in the corner of my eyes!” Li explained. Who said makeup had to be hard?
You can opt for a fun yellow like Elif did or pick your own statement colour to inject a little delight into your life.
You don’t have to opt for a bold, bright colour to add some pizzazz to your eyelids. In fact, you can create the same bold makeup look that’s more versatile with a metallic eye shadow, like Tash Baker. In Baker’s words, “a pop of a metallic colour all over the eyelids is versatile as ever—it can be paired with a monochromatic look or to add a statement to a more neutral look.”
Easy makeup inspiration can come from anywhere, and Jess Cheng is proof of that. As she confessed, “This green eye shadow look brings me joy because it is inspired by my favourite meme of Kermit the Frog falling off a building.” Memes inspiring makeup? Here for it. At the end of the day, where you choose to pull inspiration from is part of the fun.
Falling for Cheng’s look? The eye shadow palette she used is the Revolution x Patricia Bright Rich in Colour Shadow Palette (£20), or you can get the same effect by sweeping this Glossier shade on your eyelid.