Everyone has a different definition of what “clean beauty” entails, but we can all agree that what the phrase (or rather, the virtuous, gold-standard movement that’s forcing the beauty industry to take a harder look at product ingredient lists) conjures up is enviable radiance: Super-dewy complexions, rosy cheeks, a lit-from-within glow. Rarely a dry, scaly flake in sight. But also — rarely any expressive angular shapes drawn with high-octane pigmented eyeliners, vividly bright lipsticks, or glitter-packed accents.
While some products formulated without synthetics and chemicals — parabens and formaldehyde, for example — end up compromising on color or quality, they don't have to. That’s why Target has set out to give new meaning to “clean beauty” with an extensive cosmetics range without ingredients like propyl-parabens, butyl-parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, Oxybenzone, hydroquinone, BHA or BHT, and more. Amid the usual suspects of moisture-rich balms and creamy neutral shadows, there are punchy matte liquid lipsticks, high-intensity neon shadows, and so much more. To prove just how brilliant they are, we had makeup artist Jaleesa Jaikaran create three bold looks using products that meet Target’s definition of clean beauty in all their bright, colorful glory.
It was really only a matter of time before beauty enthusiasts found a way to contour something other than cheeks. If 2016 was defined by flat, matte liquid lipsticks, then 2019 is all about bringing back dimension, playing with light and shadow. A contoured lip done right “should look even and should be blended, so you shouldn’t see a demarcation between lipstick and lipliner,” Jaikaran says. “People shouldn’t even be able to tell you’re wearing lipliner — it’s really there to create shadow.”
To achieve that effect, first outline the lips with a liner that’s at least one or two shades darker than the lipstick, starting in the corners with a thicker line and then thinning it out once you’ve reached the center. The next step requires speed: Once matte liquid lipstick is applied, quickly blend it in with the liner before it sets. (If you were to use a regular lipstick, Jaikaran advises switching the order: lipstick first, then liner, and blend.) Lastly, dab the center with a gloss for light-catching shine, like this one by W3LL PEOPLE, which is formulated with hydrating botanicals and aloe.
“Matte lipsticks are great because of the color payoff and longevity, but it sets really quickly, which is why you need to use the liner first in order for it to blend properly,” she says. “I’ve seen instances of people bringing the contour in too much — I would really concentrate on the perimeter of the lips and blend inwards for a nice gradient.”
The consensus these days: The bolder your look is, the better. And while there’s nothing bolder than a swipe of a highlighter-bright hue across the lids, it pales in comparison to three highlighter-bright hues. To ensure optimal vividness, the first step is to prep with an eyeshadow primer before laying down a sweep of matte neon-pink shadow across both lids.
For the graphic shape, Jaikaran recommends using a white pencil eyeliner (either use a freshly sharpened pencil or crush the tip and pick up the color with a thin eyeliner brush). Begin about a quarter of the way from the eye’s inner corner, going up and out to follow the contour of the eye “like a big wing,” and then bringing it down to meet the outer corner. “When I’m doing makeup that requires a steady hand, I grab the wrist of my drawing hand with my free hand,” she reveals. “It acts as an anchor and gives me more control.”
Once the white outline is in place, trace it with two neon matte eyeshadows. Jaikaran’s pick: slime green and citrus yellow for a neat contrast against the pink. Using a thin eyeliner brush, carefully go over the white pencil with the green shadow, stopping once you’ve reached the center. Take another eyeliner brush (or thoroughly clean the first), and do the same from the opposite end with yellow. Have the colors overlap in the middle for a cool dégradé effect.
“If you mess up with the liner, don’t worry — just take a cotton swab and clean it up, just as you would with any eyeshadow technique,” Jaikaran says. “You can always go back and pop the pink shadow back on your lid.”
As wonderfully blinding as full-on glitter brows are, the look is probably a better idea in theory than in practice (both in terms of execution and clean-up). But the same level of high-shine impact can be achieved with an ultra-glittery accent that’s as highly wearable as it is low maintenance to apply. The primary focus is, of course, the brows, which you’ll want to comb upward before you fill them in. “Combing the brows allows you to see where you’re missing hairs,” says Jaikaran, who prefers brow pencils over powders for better control and coverage. “And if you miss a space, it’s hard to see in real life; I like to take selfies because a camera captures sparse areas.”
Comb and fill in as you work your way through the brow; finish with a clear brow gel for definition and staying power. For the accent, take a thin eyeliner brush to draw a glittery line at the base of the brow. Eschew powders for a glitter-specked cream eyeshadow to deliver a greater — and more precise — impact (our pick: This cream-based product from Pixi that's made with plant-derived castor oil). Do it in parts, Jaikaran advises, to avoid messing up. Start in the middle — the arch — because it’s the thickest and bring the line out with a small flick.
“You want a smooth transition, from thin to thicker to thin,” she says. “If you have a very strong brow, the line can be a little thicker. If you have a thin brow, then you’ll want a thinner line.”