Two decades on from its 90s heyday, brown makeup is having a resurgence. Much like in fashion (where we’ve seen the return of the chunky trainer, vintage sportswear as daywear and the revival of the scrunchie) makeup has come full circle with a smattering of sultry browns spotted on the AW18 catwalks and adorning the faces of our favourite celebrities. While the thought of a cinnamon lip or brick toned blush may seem intimidating at first, there’s a reason this multi-tonal shade has been reincarnated. Its ability to flatter every skin tone means you’ll be able to find a piece of chocolatey, fudgy deliciousness (in beauty form) to suit you. From lips and eyes to cheeks, discover how to mix up your makeup look with the season’s hottest shade. Plus, check out our favourite products to try the look at home…
How To Wear Brown Eyeshadow
Softer and more flattering for almost every skin tone than a traditional smoky black, it’s likely you already make the most of the bronze and hazelnut hues in your eyeshadow palette to complement other tones. But have you ever tried a full-on brown shadow look? One of its best features is that you can build the intensity gradually, taking a light caramel tone to a deep cocoa with a quick sweep. ‘Brown shadow is a subtle, wearable way to bring out your features and add definition,’ says Rodial founder Maria Hatzistefanis, for an office-appropriate shadow opt for a mushroom or taupe shade like Rodial Eye Sculpt in Brown.
When it comes to adding intensity Laura Mercier’s Matte Eye Colour in Coffee Ground makes it easy thanks to the long-lasting powder that washes on like a cream and won’t leave you with fall-out come 4pm. When evening arrives and you’re after something a little sultrier, layer a deeper tone like Delilah Colour Intense Shadow in Mahogany along the crease and at the outer corners. If you’re a palette fanatic, Hourglass Graphik Eyeshadow Palette in Ravine ticks all the boxes. Containing five highly-pigmented powders in wearable tones ranging from a milky latte to russet brown, it’s our go-to for fuss free application.
How To Wear A Brown Lip
Now’s the time to park your nudes because we’re here to dispel every myth you’ve heard about wearing a brown lip. The first one being that it’s only for winter. There are so many variations from light beige right down to the deepest mahogany, its versatility as a shade is one of its major plus points and means you can tailor your look to suit the seasons. The same goes for texture. Those observing the recent rise of the brown lip would be forgiven for thinking it only looks good as a matte, with Gigi and Kylie Jenner showing how to rock a stamped on ultra-matte version. But, in its original 90s form gloss and shimmer ruled the day. Think a subtle burgundy sheen a la J Lo or the frosty cinnamon hybrid that became Jennifer Aniston’s (or should we say Rachel’s) iconic style.
The key thing to remember is not to go any more than about four shades darker than your natural skin tone or it can drain your complexion. For brown lip novices Tom Ford Beauty’s Education Director Lori Woodhouse advises choosing a shade with some pink in it, to help pick up the natural tone of the lip and avoid it looking flat. ‘When trying a new shade for the first time, sheerer textures are great place to start as they’re more mistake-proof,’ says Lori. For a modern take on a gloss, try By Terry’s Hyaluronic Sheer Nude in Flush Contour, which contains hyaluronic acid to plump and smooth and has a biscuity sheen. If it’s matte you’re lusting after, Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Walk Of Shame is a dark, vampy option with a hydrating formula that lasts all day.
How To Wear Brown Blusher
Saccharine sweet blushers in peaches, pinks and rosey reds have long dominated the beauty landscape but lately, a swathe of edgier, sepia-toned variations have overtaken to become our makeup bag staples. We all know the power of a good blush to sculpt cheeks but using one with a brown tone takes things up a notch. ‘Brown blush acts like a natural contour by using shadow to help shape the face,’ explains Maria. Clever placement can help accentuate the angles in your face to flattering effect, ‘try stretching it across your cheekbones and playing with light to add definition,’ she suggests.
When it comes to choosing a shade, consider your skin tone to avoid looking washed-out. For fair skin, a rosy-brown with a cool undertone like RMS Lip2Cheek in Promise gives a healthy, everyday flush. Those with medium skin tones should go for a brick-like, terracotta shade to illuminate the complexion. Try Nars Blush in Oasis which has transparent copper pigments for a beautifully sheer finish. Olive skin has a green undertone that you can invigorate with the help of a burnt-orange like Surratt’s Artistique Blush in Cantaloup and for deeper tones look for a reddish hue to warm-up the complexion; we love Becca Luminous Blush in Dahlia, which combines radiant shimmer particles with a burgundy red.