Skip to main content

50 Holiday Party Makeup Ideas to Steal From the Red Carpet

From red lips to glittery eyes, your festive season makeup inspiration is right here!

If there's a time to experiment with your makeup, then THIS IS IT, you guys. The holidays not only present the perfect excuse to try out a bolder look, but chances are, you'll also have plenty of opportunities to show it off, what with party season now in full swing. 

Personally, I get the most inspiration from gawking at close-ups of celebs (as you might've guessed!) and then trying to recreate their makeup on myself. In fact, today's post came about as a result of my own research purposes. I was looking for a holiday makeup idea, and then I ended up finding soooo many looks I loved that I knew I had to share them all. (For the record, what I ended up going with was the Kate Hudson eyes with the Ashley Madekwe mouth.)

There are 50 celebrity photos in this post, all from 2014 red carpet events. (If I crash your computer, I'm sorry!) I've grouped them into six key holiday makeup categories: red lips; shimmer/glitter shadow; berry lips; smoky eyes; eyeliner; and fuchsia lips. Do I think all of these are perfect? No. (Emma Stone's faux eyebrow tail is bugging, for example, and Emma Watson might attend to her moustache.) But I think each general idea is awesome, so Pin your faves, give 'em a try at home... and have FUN!

Red Lipstick Ideas

Nothing is more classic, festive and simple than a red lip. I'm really digging the idea of emphasizing the eyes at the same time (a la Kate Upton, with smudgy soft liner). Also a perfect pairing: a clean swipe of black liquid liner or shimmery shadow on the upper lids only.

Kate Upton's deep red lips and smudgy black waterlines:

Kate Upton at a 2014 screening of 'The Other Woman'.

Emma Watson's red lips, flushed cheeks and defined lashes:

Emma Watson at the 2014 ELLE Style Awards.

Ashley Madekwe's matte red lips, black liquid liner and fresh skin:

Ashley Madekwe at a 2014 Audi Golden Globes event.

Anne Hathaway's red lips, black liquid liner and flushed cheeks:

Anne Hathaway at the 2014 American Cinematheque Awards.

Keke Palmer's red lips and shimmery-smoky eyes:

Keke Palmer at the 2014 ELLE Women in Television celebration.

Christina Hendricks' creamy-matte red lips and luminous skin:

Christina Hendricks at the 2014 International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Emmy Awards.

Sarah Hyland's red lips with soft shine and shimmer around the eyes:

Sarah Hyland at the 2014 Grammy Awards.

Taylor Schilling's red-orange lips and graphic winged liner:

Taylor Schilling at the 2014 Variety and Women in Film Emmy nominee celebration.

Reese Witherspoon's red lips with bright silver eyeshadow:

Reese Witherspoon at the 2014 American Cinematheque Awards.

Diane Kruger's matte red lips, strong brows and illuminated inner corners:

Diane Kruger at the 2014 Fox Summer TCA party.

Kate Bosworth's vivid red-orange lips with matching cheeks:

Kate Bosworth at the 2014 Art of Elysium Heaven Gala.

Shimmer and Glitter Makeup Ideas

There is SO much you can do with shimmer, and I love it all! For big drama take it all the way up to the brows, and in a colour (like Hailee Steinfeld's copper), or just do a 360-degree rim of the lash lines in purple like Olivia Wilde. One of my favourite ideas is Bella Thorne's touch of gold at the inner corners.

Taylor Swift's grey smoky eyes with shimmery inner corners and pink lips:

Taylor Swift at the 2014 Grammy Awards.

Olivia Wilde's glittery purple all the way around the eyes with nude lips:

Olivia Wilde at a 2014 Golden Globes after-party.

Hailee Steinfeld's glittery copper shadow with dramatic cat's eye liner:

Hailee Steinfeld at KIIS FM's 2014 Jingle Ball.

Rita Ora's green and gold shimmery-smoky eyes with nude lips:

Rita Ora at the 2014 BRIT Awards.

Bella Thorne's gold inner corners with feathery lashes and nude lips:

Bella Thorne at the 2014 Teen Choice Awards.

Lupita Nyong'o's green metallic cat eyes with copper shadow and shimmery red lips:

Lupita Nyong'o at the 2014 GLAAD Awards.

Liana Liberato's shimmering rose under the eyes:

Liana Liberato at the 2014 ELLE Women in Hollywood Awards.

Kate Hudson's champagne shimmer lids with peach lips and cheeks:

Kate Hudson at the 2014 IWMF Courage in Journalism Awards.

Chanel Iman's silver shadow all the way around the eyes:

Chanel Iman at the 2014 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 50 Year of Swim celebration.

Allison Williams' silver shimmer and heavy black waterlines with clear lip gloss:

Allison Williams at the 2014 Golden Globe Awards.

Maddie Hasson's gold shimmer at the inner corners with bold brows and bare lips:

Maddie Hasson at the 2014 Young Hollywood Awards.

Emma Roberts' bold copper shadow and black waterlines:

Emma Roberts at the 2014 premiere of 'Palo Alto'.

Leighton Meester's shimmering bronze shadow with defined waterlines and fresh skin:

Leighton Meester at the 2014 Met Gala.

Berry Lipstick Ideas

If you're not down with red lips, these berry ones are great to play with. They can go deep and vampy, like Chrissy Teigen's, or scale back to a subtle stain like Jamie Chung's. Even though matte textures are becoming more popular, I think Amy Adams' glossy finish is really pretty.

The Skincare Edit Recommends

Lucy Hale's deep berry lips with long lashes:

Lucy Hale at the 2014 American Music Awards.

Jamie Chung's berry stain with warm brown shadow and subtle liner:

Jamie Chung at a Monique Lhuillier show in 2014.

Chrissy Teigen's deep berry lips with subtly shimmery shadow:

Chrissy Teigen at the 2014 Night of Stars.

Amy Adams' long lashes and glossy berry lips:

Amy Adams at the 2014 BAFTA Awards.

Salma Hayek's berry lips with matching shadow:

Salma Hayek at a 2014 Equality Now event.

Léa Seydoux's glossy berry lips with silver shadow:

Léa Seydoux at the 2014 premiere of 'Saint Laurent'.

Stana Katic's berry lips with gold eyeshadow:

Stana Katic at The Music Center's 2014 anniversary event.

Olivia Munn's berry lips with flushed cheeks and natural lashes:

Salma Hayek at a 2014 Equality Now event.

Smoky Eye Ideas

Smoky eyes will never go out of style, but what's interesting me more right now is the smoky eye with a twist—like Camilla Belle's blue and brown combo, Emma Stone's monochromatic green, and Emily Blunt's cat eyes done in shadow. Think about reinterpreting it in different textures, colours and shapes.

Camilla Belle's blue and brown smoky eyes with peach lips:

Camilla Belle at the 2014 Guggenheim International gala.

Emma Stone's green smoky eyes with stained lips:

Emma Stone at the 2014 premiere of 'Magic in the Moonlight'.

Kristen Stewart's smoky eyes with bright highlights at the inner corners:

Kristen Stewart at a 2014 screening of 'Still Alice'.

Selena Gomez's charcoal smoky eyes with subtle shimmer and opaque peach gloss:

Selena Gomez at the 2014 LACMA Art and Film Gala.

Olivia Palermo's charcoal smoky eyes with shimmery inner corners:

Olivia Palermo at the 2014 British Fashion Awards.

Adèle Exarchopoulos' brown smoky eyes:

Adèle Exarchopoulos at the 2014 Critics' Choice Awards.

Lizzy Caplan's matte black shadow and black waterlines:

Lizzy Caplan at the 2014 ELLE Women in Hollywood Awards.

Debby Ryan's subtle grey smoky eyes with peach lip gloss and blush:

Debby Ryan at Fashion Week in 2014.

Emily Blunt's charcoal shadow in a cat's eye shape:

Emily Blunt at the 2014 premiere of 'The Edge of Tomorrow'.

Keira Knightley's silvery-grey smoky eyes with nude lips:

Keira Knightley at the 2014 premiere of 'Begin Again'.

Eyeliner Ideas

Some of us aren't big eyeshadow fans, so this section is for you! The cat eye is never wrong, for any occasion, and I just love it against bare, fresh skin. Also check out Margot Robbie's tightlining job—simple but oh-so-stunning.

Anna Kendrick's winged liner with fresh skin and medium-pink lips:

Anna Kendrick at the 2014 premiere of 'The Voices'.

Margot Robbie's black waterlines with nude lips and cheeks:

Margot Robbie at the 2014 Night of Stars.

Elle Fanning's extended cat eyes, full brows and shimmery gloss:

Elle Fanning at the 2014 premiere of 'Young Ones'.

Lily Collins' winged liner on both the upper and lower lash lines:

Lily Collins at the 2014 premiere of 'Love Rosie'.

Bright Lipstick Ideas

Last up we have one more lipstick colour—fuchsia. We see it more often in the summertime, but I like the surprise of pink in the winter season, and love how it wakes up a face. Padma Lakshmi has a GREAT idea of pairing it with some gold eyeshadow.

Padma Lakshmi's fuchsia lips and gold shadow at the tear ducts:

Padma Lakshmi at the 2014 Variety and Women in Film Emmy nominee celebration.

Julianna Margulies' glossy fuchsia lips with rosy cheeks:

Julianna Margulies at the 2014 Variety and Women in Film Emmy nominee celebration.

Lea Michele's hot pink lips with strong brows:

Lea Michele at the 2014 Kids' Choice Awards.

Rashida Jones' iridescent fuchsia lips with rosy cheeks:

Rashida Jones at a 2014 NBC and Vanity Fair TV event.

Have Your Say

Which of these looks are your favourites? And which ones will you be wearing this party season?

Read Next

9 Blush Mistakes You're Probably Making

How to get this tricky part of your makeup application right.