As someone who possesses very little skill when it comes to makeup application, I must admit that I have a somewhat unhealthy obsession with the art. I could watch people applying their makeup for hours on end and frantically save every beautiful makeup look that comes my way on Instagram. And this is never truer than when it comes to winter.
Winter makeup trends make me go weak at the knees. Despite the fact that my makeup skills are basic at best and that my day-to-day look involves bare skin and maybe a lashing of mascara if I’m feeling someway special, I couldn’t be more in awe of the super-pretty makeup looks that flood social media over winter. With parties in abundance and our social lives fluttering, winter is when makeup trends really get the chance to come into their own. I’m talking about heavy eyes, bitten lips, dewy glow and high-impact blush.
And while I typically have to rule out being able to re-create any sort of glam winter makeup look on my own face (I don’t work well with glitter, high pigment or, well, anything that requires an iota of skill to apply), rumour has it that this winter’s makeup trends are surprisingly easy to mimic. And that gets me excited. To lift the lid on what makeup trends are set to rule this winter, I reached out to some of the biggest makeup artists out there. Keep scrolling to discover the eight winter makeup trends they predict will be big news this season.
Yes, berry lips might be considered a classic when it comes to winter makeup trends, but it’s a fail-safe trend. “A bold berry lip is my go-to for winter. I love pairing a matte colour with luminous, fresh and dewy skin,” reveals Patrick Ta, makeup artist to Gigi Hadid.
And this year, opting for a berry lip doesn’t have to be high-maintenance or bold. “Paired with a cosy jumper and natural eyes, berry lips can look effortless and chic. This winter, a soft-focus approach gives the classic look a modern twist,” says Nars lead artist Rachel Hardie. To get a long-lasting, low-maintenance look, apply a matte or liquid formula to the centre of the lips and blur out by patting it with your finger.
This deep-berry shade can be patted onto lips directly from the bullet and blended out with a brush or your finger.
This pinky red looks great when it’s paired with matte skin and subtle blush.
Every expert I spoke to about winter 2021 makeup trends had something to say about unexpected pops of colour. Whether you want to keep your face muted and add a bright, poppy shade to your lips, amp up your usual eye look with something colourful or reach for a bright statement blush, now is the time to dip your toe into colour.
“Swap out a classic black eyeliner for a fun, bold colour to accent your winter look. Try a jewel tone for a statement look,” says Anthony H. Nguyen, KVD Beauty Global Veritas Artistry ambassador and makeup artist to Adele.
Use a liner brush to dot this purple pigment along your lash line and drag it out into a wing.
This bright-pink blusher might look full on at first, but once it’s blended out with fingers, it makes for the perfect pop of colour on the cheeks.
There’s no doubt that cream products have reigned supreme this year, and the winter is when they work their hardest because they help boost radiance and glow. “Cream products are a staple in my kit. Whether it’s a cream blush, eye shadow or contour, they’re my favourite to use on clients to create natural and luminous looks,” says Ta.
And the best bit is cream products couldn’t be easier to use. “Creamy textures have been all the rage because they are so easy to blend and look effortless, too,” says Nguyen.
This blush stick from Westman Atelier can be dotted onto the apples of the cheeks and smudged out with fingers for the most convincing winter glow.
Cream eye shadow couldn’t be easier to use—just swipe and go. This metallic shade is the ultimate low-maintenance party-season product.
For many seasons now, we have been championing a minimal approach to lashes. Falsies and mascara are out, and bare, natural-looking lashes have led the way. However, now that winter is here, it’s time to dig out that mascara once more. “Bottom lashes are set to be big, too. We always love a Twiggy lash moment. You can try false lashes or use mascara to comb lashes together in a small cluster,” advises Nguyen.
This mascara delivers serious volume in just a couple of coats.
Say goodbye to under-eye smudging with this clever product. The tiny wand makes it perfect for gripping onto lower lashes.
While we’re all busy spending a bit of extra time on our eyes and lips, the good news is that bare skin is totally on-trend this winter. “Natural skin has made a comeback. Freckles and natural skin texture are finally being celebrated. We want skin that looks like skin. The key is to create radiance that looks like it comes from within,” says Hardie.
And Ta agrees. “I’m all about natural, luminous and radiant skin lately. It’s about enhancing my client’s skin—not covering it up,” he says. Swap out your full-coverage foundation for a glow-boosting tinted moisturiser, and finish off with a dusting of subtle highlight along the tops of the cheekbones and on the Cupid’s bow for a natural-looking finish.
Choose a tinted moisturiser like this one that contains hydrating properties to plump skin and counteract dryness while it works. “I use my fingers to blend a 10p-sized amount from the centre of the skin. To build coverage, I roll and press my fingers in a stippling motion,” says Hardie.
This high-impact highlighter is luxury makeup at its finest, and it looks just as great on skin as it does in the compact.
Okay, graphic eyes are a little more high-maintenance than some of the other makeup trends around this winter, but if you’ve got the skills to do it, now is the time. “Although sometimes intimidating to execute, a graphic eye is always one of my go-tos when a client want a super-glam or smoky-eye look,” says Ta.
And yes, while a graphic eye can look great when created artistically with shadows (particularly winter-appropriate shimmers and jewel tones), it can be as simple as adding some liner in a new way. “Graphic eyes don’t have to be complicated. You can add simple strokes with a liner to create fine lines,” says Nguyen.
This shimmery green shadow can be applied in a cat-eye shape for a festive, glam look.
This liquid liner pen is, without a doubt, the best around. On one end, you have a nib to create your classic wing, and on the other is a tiny, firm nib that is perfect for being a little more creative and creating finer lines for a graphic look.
The thing I love the most about makeup trends this winter is that less is more. Rather than agonising over which lipstick shade to pair with your eye shadow, the key trend is to keep your statement selective.
“It is all about a single focus. If you are amping up the eyes, play down the lip or leave it bare. When lips are the emphasis, pare back on the eyes. It is a modern approach to makeup that keeps things looking clean and fresh, even with a bold statement,” says Hardie.
This classic red can be teamed with just a coating of mascara on the lashes for the perfect fail-safe party look.
I recommend always keeping one party-appropriate eye shadow palette in your collection to either mix and match or swipe one statement shade over lids.
We have already established that natural-looking makeup is leading the way this winter, and the art of hidden liner is a trick that makeup artists have used for years to help achieve such a look. “To enhance your natural features, there are a few techniques to help you feel your most confident self. Tightlining is a great way to wear minimal makeup and enhance your eyes,” says Hardie.
The technique involves using a liner to intensify your lash line by running the pencil underneath and between lashes. It makes lashes look so full and thick that mascara isn’t necessary if you don’t fancy it.
Delivering a deep-black pigment, this liner is super pigmented, making it perfect for tightlining.
For a more natural-looking finish, swap out a black liner for a brown to soften the look.