3 Makeup Color Combinations That Don’t Work (So Don’t Even Try Them)

What the mall makeup-counter ladies say isn’t always right.

Come closer. We need to share something but we don’t want the Internet to hear. Ready? Okay. Sometimes our makeup looks bad. Okay, really bad. Like, eighth-grade picture bad, when you’re combining braces, big-framed glasses, and hair you haven’t figured out quite how to tame yet.

How does this happen into our adult years? We’re not quite sure. Maybe we’re swayed by catchy magazine layouts that promise the latest trends that don’t translate off-page. (Or they do translate, but they read: clown.) Maybe we’re influenced by a makeup artist who sits us in a department store chair and plies us with powders that look great under fluorescent lighting, but look fluorescent under the light of the sun.

Or maybe, it’s time for all of us to just take a stand and say NO MORE to certain makeup trends and tap into what feels right to us. Regardless, here’s a few combos we advise you steer 100 miles clear of.

Blue eye shadow and red lipstick
Blue was once the glory of all eye shadow. We plied it across our Barbie’s lids, convinced it was the most fabulous accessory short of the silver saddle jauntily sitting across a My Little Pony. Now, blue eye shadow, especially when matched to red lipstick, is like the Sasquatch of makeup. It sounds interesting in theory, but we have yet to see it work in person.

Matchy-match eye shadow and lipstick
Pink and pink? You look like you’ve escaped from your hospital bed and are about to start a zombie plague. Blue and blue? You’ve already started the zombie plague. There’s not a color match on planet Earth that can work on any complexion without completely washing it out. Seriously, Stephen Hawking would back me up on this. It’s a law of physics.

Black eyeliner and nude lips
This is perhaps the most controversial of our bad color combos. Black eyeliner, artfully applied, is the ultimate tool to make eyes pop. But combined with a too-pale lip? Your eyes are popping while the rest of your face looks like it’s given up and gone to bed early with a glass of warm milk.

Image: soundfromwayout, xlordash

Katherine Butler

Katherine Butler is the Beauty Editor of EcoSalon and currently resides in Los Angeles, California.