You spent ages looking for the perfect pageant wardrobe and finally found pieces that you make you feel as good as you look. You know how to do some basic looks, so you decided not to hire a makeup artist. It’s a half hour before your Evening Gown competition and your prom eye-look isn’t cutting it, but you don’t have time to try something else. And after seeing everyone else’s makeup, it’s clear that you missed out on some kind of memo. Don’t let this be you!
Pageant makeup is a different ballgame from what you may be used to-no, you cannot replicate your prom look (Read: 10 Mistakes New Contestants Make). You want your makeup to enhance your styling, not take away from it; that could make the difference in a Top 15, Top 5, or even winning placement.
In this post, we’ll be providing you with 18 eye makeup ideas that are perfect for the pageant world.
Natural Eye Makeup
The best natural eye looks utilize browns and dull pinks and oranges. Generally, you should stay away from thick, dramatic winged eyeliner and eyeshadow colors like greys, silvers, blues, and blacks. The only exceptions are if you have very pale skin-you can use small amounts of silver on the inner corner of your eye-or deep/rich brown skin-you can use small amounts of black on your outer corner.
Finally, you should use a natural lash to complement the look. Your lip color can be a nude pink or brown, or you can go bold with a darker red lip.
Every contestant in the Jr. Teen division and older should know how to do an age-appropriate natural eye look. This will be your go-to for appearances and Interview, Personal Introduction, and Spokesmodel competitions. If your pageant system allows Preteen contestants to wear makeup, try to stick to similar natural-looking styles.
Natural Glam Eye Makeup
As the name suggests, these eyeshadow looks are a step up from your natural eyeshadow, but they’re not so dramatic that it overpowers the girl. They can be more vibrant with the use of deep pinks and bright oranges as transition shades. This is when you start to see smoked-out eyeliner in the Teen and Miss division.
Popular pageants like USA National Miss, National American Miss, and High School America have a preference for makeup that enhances the natural beauty of the contestant, so stay in this range of looks when competing in onstage walking competitions.
All contestants in the Teen and Miss divisions and above should know how to do a natural glam look, as this is the most common way to do your makeup in pageantry. Its versatility allows it to be used for onstage and interview competitions, appearances, headshots, and more. If you book a makeup lesson with a pageant-trained makeup artists, this is the kind of look that they will most likely teach you. This is my favorite eyeshadow palette for natural glam looks.
Dramatic Eye Looks
There’s a time and place for dramatic looks like these. You have to be careful and do you research on what’s most appropriate for your system. Most makeup looks on the Miss USA or Miss Earth USA stage are a combination of natural glam and dramatic. This is why it’s so important to try a variety of looks beforehand to find what’s best for you.
Now that you know the basics of pageant makeup, you’re ready to try some looks yourself! Don’t forget these key tips.
TIP #1: Try to stay away from glitter pieces! Stage lights are strong and glitter may reflect it. To fix this, try substituting glitter for matte or shimmery eye shadow.
TIP #2: Go for more natural looks for speaking competitions and darker, more glamorous looks for walking competitions. Don’t forget to use natural lashes!
TIPS #3: Younger divisions should use more natural looks and older divisions should use more glamorous looks, but everyone should stick with a nude pink or brown lip.