Spring is officially here, which means two things: You can finally shift your winter clothes to the back of your closet and, more importantly, prom is just around the corner. Once dress shopping is behind you, it’s time to start thinking about prom beauty.
Of course your prom hairstyle is super important, but your prom makeup may be one of the most important elements to creating a standout look that you can be proud of for decades to come. With so many makeup trends to choose from — including several takes on graphic eyeliner and even monochromatic makeup to match your dress — you won’t be at a loss for options. But you certainly can’t just wing it on the night of.
So we’re sharing 20 prom makeup ideas to help get you inspired for your big night out and to help you choose a look that you love.
1. Glowing Skin
You can’t go wrong with skin that glows — and that all starts with the right skin care routine. Prep for prom by using a face scrub, like the L’Oréal Paris Pure-Sugar Resurface & Energize Koba Coffee Scrub, then apply a hyaluronic acid serum, like the L’Oréal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 1.5% Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum for a boost of hydration.
If skinimalism is a trend that you’re opting for, you can forgo foundation altogether and reach for a skin tint. The L’Oréal Paris True Match Hyaluronic Tinted Serum makes skin feel hydrated, and look brighter with a radiant, luminous finish. Finish off your lit-from-within look with a few drops of the L’Oréal Paris True Match Lumi Glow Amour Glow Boosting Drops on the tops of your cheekbones. After that, you’re ready to glow all night!
2. Reverse Cut Crease
Want to add a professional makeup artist touch to your prom makeup? Look no further than the cut crease — but with a spin. This reverse cut crease trend we’ve been seeing on models, influencers and celebs is a standout for spring 2022. To get the look you’ll need a creamy eyeliner, like the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Pro-Last Waterproof Up to 24HR Pencil Eyeliner, a few eyeshadows in the colors of your choice and an almost-white shadow to use as a highlight.
3. Monochromatic Red
Red is a power color for a reason and it looks good on any skin tone. That being said, a red monochromatic makeup look could be gorgeous for prom if you know how to customize the shade to complement your complexion. If you need a shortcut, you could get the look using one product on lids, lips and cheeks. The L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Reds of Worth Satin Lipstick with Saturated Color comes in six highly pigmented shades so you can do red lipstick, and pretty much whatever you want with this vivid hue.
4. Jewel-Embellished Eyes
You’d have to be completely devoid of social media not to notice that crystals and other jewel-embellishments are having a makeup moment. Whether added to a floating eyeliner look or at the outer corners or the eyes, just a few can enhance any makeup look. If you’re DIYing the look, just be sure to invest in quality jewels that will stay put all night and adhesive that’s safe for your face.
5. Sunset Eye Makeup
If your friends all say you have a bold personality, perhaps a really bold eye makeup look will be what you want for this year’s prom. We say, go for it! One of the most eye-catching makeup looks that gives off spring vibes is the sunset eyeshadow trend, and with just a few tips it’s easy to recreate yourself.
6. Pastel Eye Makeup
Another look that screams spring and is beautiful for prom is pretty pastel eyes. For this look, choose a pastel eyeshadow in a shade that complements or matches your prom dress. For example, if your dress is a shade of pink, pair it with a pastel pink shadow, like the L'Oréal Paris Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow in Always Pearly Pink. Or, if you’re wearing a shade of blue, pair it with a pastel blue eyeshadow, such as the L'Oréal Paris Infallible 24 HR Eye Shadow in Timeless Blue Spark. With this look, the options are endless, so go ahead and customize it to match your outfit.
Editor’s tip: If you want to keep it more subtle and simple, opt for a pastel eyeliner instead and add it to both your top and bottom line.
7. Metallic Makeup
We love metallics and are eager to find any occasion to break out our metallic makeup. Try a metallic lip with neutral makeup everywhere else, or get in on the metallic eyeshadow trend with the L'Oréal Paris Infallible Metallics Eye Shadow. It comes in five sultry, shimmery shades so you can add a bit of metallic sparkle to your lids.
8. Graphic Eyeliner
There’s no way we could create a list of fabulous prom makeup ideas and not include one of our favorites — graphic eyeliner. With so many ways to pull off the trend — including graphic inner eye accents, negative space eyeliner and more — the options are seemingly endless. You’re more likely to be wearing the same dress as someone else before you’re seen with the same graphic eyeliner look.
9. Pearl Embellishments
If the pearlcore fashion trend has pulled on your heartstrings we understand, and if pearls in your makeup look is your forte, then you’re part of our tribe. You can add pearls of different sizes to your eye makeup look, your cheekbones or even your brows for a breathtaking look that’s ultra-feminine.
10. Reverse cat eye
A black cat eye is a classic that we love because it’s timeless and will go well with whatever you’re wearing — but why not spice it up for prom and try the reverse cat eye this time around? Of course, mastering a cat eye isn’t the easiest thing ever and neither is its modern counterpart, so have a pro complete the look for you so you can focus on having fun and making it a night to remember.
11. Classic Smokey Eye
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a classic makeup look, consider our favorite go-to for eyes: the smokey eye. What’s great about the smoky eye is that in addition to pairing well with every outfit and also being timeless, you can customize it to be as dramatic or as subtle as you wish.
12. Inner Eye Accents
Not every look has to be dramatic and over the top — your prom makeup can be whatever you want it to be. And something as simple as an inner eye accent can have a major impact on your overall beauty look. Do it with simple face jewels, your favorite metallic eyeliner, or a bright eyeshadow. It’s a look you can do on your own and make it look like a professional job.
13. Monochromatic Pale Pink
For another soft, more subtle makeup look, you can’t beat pale pinks. We particularly love a monochromatic pink makeup look that also has a bit of shimmer. For eyes, grab the L'Oréal Paris Colour Riche Pocket Palette Eye Shadow in Avenue Des Roses, then complete your look with the L'Oréal Paris Glow Paradise Balm-in-Lipstick with Pomegranate Extract in Peach Charm and the L'Oréal Paris Age Perfect Makeup Radiant Satin Blush with Camellia Oil in Rosewood.
14. Silver Glitter Eye Makeup
For a more intense glam look, why not try silver glitter? Don’t be intimidated, silver glitter eye makeup is pretty easy to execute. If you’re worried about glitter everywhere for days following prom, don’t be — learning how to remove glitter eye makeup is also pretty simple.
15. Chocolate Lips
If you really want a look that’s so atypical for prom that no one else will be sporting it, go dark — dark chocolate that is. A chocolate lipstick is the perfect pick for a sultry look that’s neutral and beautiful. Try the L'Oréal Paris Colour Riche Satin Lipstick in Spice or Bronzine, or the Age Perfect Satin Lipstick with Precious Oils in Cinnamon Spice.
16. Purple Blush
If you feel like no makeup look is complete until you’ve applied blush, why not let that be the focus of your makeup for prom. Right now, purple blush is super on-trend and is perfect for a special occasion when you want a splashy look. With this trend, it’s all about blending, so be sure to get really acquainted with your brushes.
17. Sheer Smokey Eye
Also known as the lived-in smokey eye, the sheer smokey eye is a more wearable and understated version of the classic eye makeup look we discussed earlier. This is a great eye makeup option if your dress is on the bolder or brighter side, and you’re trying to keep your makeup look minimal without going too understated.
18. Layered Blue Eyeshadow
We would be remiss if we didn’t mention blue eyeshadow in this round-up, since it’s one of the trendiest and coolest colors of the moment. Even if your dress isn’t blue, this eye makeup look can really make your eyes pop — and pair well with whatever you’ve chosen to wear. Take two or more blue shadows and layer the look to give it dimension and interest.
Need some product recs? We love the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Pocket Palette in Avant Garde Azure for a variety of blue hues in one palette, or the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Monos Eyeshadow in Agrentic and Grand Bleu for that extra shimmer.
19. Two-Tone Makeup
When you can’t choose between two standout colors, choose both! Two-tone makeup is not for the faint of heart or the makeup shy but when it’s done right it can look downright stunning. Try two-tone eyeshadow or eyeliner where your top and bottom colors differ, or a two-tone lipstick look that you can make your own.
20. Soft Glam Makeup
Finally, if nothing else piques your interest, try a soft glam look that you can do right at home. Whether you decide to go with solid-colored lids and a bold lip color, or a neutral palette and eyes that really pop, you’ll create a look that you can treasure for years. Photos are forever, so keep that in mind as you complete your look.
Edited by Shalwah Evans, Photo Credit: Chaunte Vaughn
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