Pastel Eye Makeup: It Looks Great on Everyone

You shouldn’t be afraid to experiment with pastel eye makeup. Here are a few foolproof ways to start.

If there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s that beauty trends are cyclical. Think about it. Contoured cheeks first reigned in the 1920s, when only movie stars on the silver screen wore makeup. Since then, the trend has resurfaced twice: during the 1990s and again now. And what about 1998’s obsession with all-over bronzer? The use of bronzer has been refined and repeated so many times that it’s now considered a staple product and look. But the cosmetics fad we’re possibly the most excited to see return to the catwalks is the 1930s-inspired pretty pop of pastel eye makeup on models’ eyes. From lavender, baby blue and pink to yellow, icy mint and more, there’s a sweet soft shade for every warm, cool, light or dark complexion. Here’s how to make this versatile and trend-worthy pastel makeup palette work for you.

Step 1. Identify the pastel eye makeup colours you like.

Are you a baby-girl-pink or baby-boy-blue kind of gal, or do you lean more toward canary yellow or icy mint? You can like one or covet them all, but it’s a good idea to choose one or two shades to give yourself a place to start.

Step 2. Know which pastel eye makeup hues work best with your complexion.

While these colour options are not set in stone and you can—and should—wear whichever ones your heart desires, you can also tap into our pastel-eyeshadow guide.

  • If you have a fair complexion, try the baby-powder-blue shades on for size. They will complement and brighten your pale skin.
  • Medium complexions look best with a pop of canary yellow or juicy peach on the eyelids. These hues have warm undertones and can heighten your natural golden undertones.
  • If your complexion is dark, you can wear virtually any colour in the pastel makeup palette and make it come alive. Lavender, lilac, baby pink and cantaloupe are some of your best shades.

Step 3. Build your pastel eye makeup.
For pastel newbs, keep your pretty shades and their application simple: Sweep a sheer layer of your favourite colour across your eyelids with a pastel makeup brush and then add a coat of mascara to finish the look. Once you’ve got your look down, you can play with the different hues by building their intensity. To do this, apply a light layer of eyeshadow, powder or foundation that is the same colour as your skin to your bare eyelids. Next, lightly sweep on your pastel hue. Once the base colour is in place, you can increase its intensity by adding more of the eyeshadow. Stop applying once you’ve achieved the desired intensity.

Step four. Add a pastel cheek or lip to your look.
Adding new pastel colours to your look is fun, so think about the other shades you’re drawn to in a blush or a lipstick and try them on after you’ve applied your pastel eye makeup. These Easter egg-like shades are as easy to wear on your cheeks and lips as they are on your eyes. The light pink or coral hues in the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Shine Lipstick line, like Luminous Coral, look great on all skin tones and can be layered to achieve the look you want. Plus, a soft-pink blush can worn higher on the cheekbones and swept up toward the outer corner of the eye for added drama. You can also play up your softer pastel eye makeup by pairing it with a more brilliant colour, like an eyeliner in cobalt blue or teal green or even fuchsia or violet lips. When it comes to the pastel makeup palette, your options are endless.

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