3 Over-the-Top Beauty Looks That Are Perfect For Holiday Parties

While you can never go wrong with a bedazzled blazer or embellished heels for the holidays, you do run the risk of developing style fatigue by wearing the same statement-making accessory again and again.

Plus, now that everything is documented on social media, there’s added pressure to mix things up.

Luckily, there’s one easy way to change up your party look night after night: with makeup and hair. From a dramatic metallic eye to temporary hair color, there are endless eye-catching beauty looks. Here are three over-the-top looks that are perfect–and easy to achieve–for holiday parties.

The Look: Graphic Metallic Liner

The combination of textures is surprisingly flattering. “Elevating the textural interest ensures that the features are balanced. If everything is over the top, you’ll look over-done,” explains MAC Cosmetics Global Senior Artist Ashley Rudder, who’s the brains behind this glam makeup idea. “The goal is to look chic and unexpected!”


  • Apply a long-wear foundation to create a base that will outlast the party, then up the radiance with a cream highlighter. “I used MAC Cosmetics’ Cream Color Base in Improper Copper in the image above, and for a medium to fair skin tone, I would recommend Cream Color Base in Hush or Pearl. This gives that post-spa glow and photographs like a dream,” says Rudder. Sweep a peachy rose blush on cheeks.
  • Next, prep the eyes with primer to keep everything in place.
  • Apply a dark brown eye shadow on the lid for depth, followed by a creamy clay in the crease. Blend it outward toward the corner of the eye to create a cat-eye shape. Rudder recommends the MAC Mischief Minx Shadow Palette.
  • “Add some ‘Twiggy-esque’ drama by drawing a bold line through the crease using the Brushstroke Liner in Brushblack,” says Rudder. “Also, apply a winged liner to the upper lid for elegance.”
  • Smoke out the lower lid with a kohl eyeliner pencil before buffing out the edges with a smoky shadow for a softer blend.
  • Curl lashes and apply a volumizing mascara. Or, amp up your fringe even more with a pair of falsies.
  • Finish the glam eye with some metallic DIY appliques: “I made mine out of metallic craft tape, and secured the edges with lash adhesive. You can cut any shape that you can think of,” says Rudder. “I’m also partial to cutting an irregularly shaped star and applying it below the eye toward the outer corner.”
  • Balance is everything, so pare down the brows, advises Rudder. Brush them up with a tinted brow gel one to two shades lighter than your natural color. Complete the entire look with a sheer nude lip to keep the focus on your festive lids.

The Look: High-Gloss, Holiday Red Lids

High-shine lids are a chic alternative to a glittery smoky eye – and still bring all the drama. MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Educator Nick Lujan shares his steps for getting glossy lids with lasting impact.


  • Start by applying a matte foundation or powder. “Matte skin will allow the eyes to stand out and look polished, not overdone or competing with another area of the face,” says Lujan.
  • Apply eye primer to the entire eyelid using your fingertip to improve the wear of the shadow.
  • Brush a red eye shadow, like MAKE UP FOR EVER’s Artist Color Shadow M-742 (Tomato) on the eyelid, blending it into the crease. Sweep some under the lower lash lines as well.
  • Work a deeper red eye shadow, such as Artist Color Shadow M-847 (Burgundy), in the inner and outer corners of the eyelid to create depth. “Think of a sideways ‘V’ when applying it to the outer corners,” Lujan says.
  • To create a super-lustrous effect, apply a shimmer power to the center of your lid with your fingertip. “If you’re feeling adventurous and really want to go for a glossy, ‘wet’ look, tap a clear lip gloss on the lid using your ring finger,” furthers Lujan.
  • Brighten eyes by adding highlighter to the inner corners. Finish with black mascara and a romantic soft pink lipstick.

The Look: Snowcap Strands

Shimmery snow-inspired hair color is more glamorous than any holiday hair accessory. Not to mention, the platinum shade flatters every hair and skin color.


  • While the temporary treatment works on any hairstyle, James Corbett, Clairol Color Director, suggests creating a deep side part: “It provides a baseline for applying the hair makeup.”
  • After parting hair, curl the ends away from your face using a large barrel curling iron.
  • Apply the Clairol Color Crave Hair Makeup in Shimmering Platinum liberally along your part and over the crown of your head, combing through mid-length.
  • Set it in place with low heat from your blow-dryer, and that’s it! You can wash it out with shampoo post-party.

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