It is well-known that orange makeup is surprisingly versatile and incredibly flattering on every skin tone. When worn at full strength, it creates a vibrant pop of color. When worn subtly—think a sheer wash of orange applied to the lips or cheeks—it wakes up your whole face, giving you a fresh look. It can even minimize skin imperfections by warming your complexion—when your skin tone is warmer, blemishes and dark circles are less noticeable. Here are some tips for orange makeup.
How to pick your oranges
Choose two: Pairing orange lips with orange cheeks or lids gives you a pretty, monochromatic look. Orange lipstick, for example, goes especially well with orange or coral blush, but don’t go for orange lips and cheeks and lids as that can start to look a little clownish.
Mix wisely: When pairing orange with other shades, stick to warm colors like bronze, gold, brown, copper, green, and nude, which compliment—instead of clash with—traditional orange hues. The exception: If you happen to be wearing an orange lipstick that has a lot of blue in it (referred to as a “cool” shade of orange), you can pair it with cool colors like blue and purple, in addition to any of the neutrals mentioned above.
Find one that flatters: Since orange looks good on everyone and is more forgiving then red, you don’t have to worry too much about choosing the right one. But to find an especially flattering orange, follow the same guidelines for choosing a red. In other words, fair skin tones should stick to a blue-orange; medium tones should use a true orange; and darker skin tones should go for a red-orange. If you have trouble identifying these orange undertones, simply stick to a lighter orange for fair skin; a medium orange for medium skin; and a deep orange for dark skin.
Go bright or sheer on your lips—but not in between: Like with any vibrant shade, you either want to use a hint of color, which will mix with your natural lip color and add a bit of warmth, or go full on with the color so your mouth really pops. A middle ground approach can fall flat.
Add highlight: Here is the secret to making orange lips look ripe and full: After you apply your lipstick, either dab a lighter shade of orange lipstick on the center of your bottom lip, or dust a little white eyeshadow or a shimmery powder along your cupid’s bow. Both change the way light bounces off the lips, creating a more dimensional appearance.
Be strategic with placement: Since no one blushes orange, you need to be strategic when applying a citrus shade on your cheeks. One method is to dust a blush that matches your skin color along your cheekbones and then layer a pop of orange right on the apples of your cheeks for a natural, fresh-faced look.