20 spring makeup looks to inspire your new-season beauty shopping

Our edit of easy spring make-up looks, from raspberry lips to golden highlighter

Collage of three models wearing spring makeup looks including colorful lipstick on a beige background
(Image credit: Future/Getty images)

Finally, the time has come to think about spring makeup looks. The evenings are getting lighter, blue skies are back (some of the time) and we can just about foresee venturing out without being bundled up in layers of knitwear. 

Trying new, spring-like easy makeup looks will spark joy, speed up your routine, and refresh your makeup wardrobe. Whether that’s picking a brighter lipstick, choosing the best mascara to survive April showers, or finding out how to apply foundation for a radiant glow. These swaps will get you excited for the warmer weather to come and change your mindset for that fun, carefree spring mood. 

Caroline Barnes, Max Factor’s Makeup Artist Ambassador agrees that now’s the perfect time to experiment. “When it comes to color, go bold!" she says. "Don’t be shy—this season it’s all about embracing color, trying out new things, and finding the right colors to suit you. Bold, bright makeup can even make you look younger, styling out a striking look that’s on-trend." Who doesn't want that?

How to choose flattering spring makeup looks

Playing around with makeup is the ideal non-committal way to switch up your look—after all, you can always wash it off and try again! When you're trying out something new, consider these tips:

  • Ease in gently: We keep saying, "Be brave, go bold!" but we also understand that it can be intimidating. You could find yourself trying to style out a colorful eyeshadow, your best pink mascara, and bold blush all at once, which can feel OTT. If you're not sure where to start, pick just one area to focus on for a soft glam makeup effect. Keep eyes neutral and pick a pillar box red lip, or go for a dramatic eye look and pair with nude lips. 
  • Play with lip textures: If you're self-conscious about a new bold lipstick, it can be easy to overthink things. Caroline has a top tip to help, "If you can't feel the product on your skin, you'll think about it less," she explains. "A drying, thick lip color will feel heavy, and it could make you feel more self-conscious. Look for light, wearable options that give you extra confidence."
  • Practice at your own pace:  Don’t decide to try a whole new, dramatic makeup look five minutes before you need to leave the house, that’s a recipe for disaster. Set aside some time on a day where you have no plans, and get playful. Layer on some new colors, experiment with new shapes of eyeliner flicks, try out new combinations. Then you can really see what works without the pressure. You may be surprised by what suits you! 

20 inspiring spring makeup looks for 2022

1. Sheer perfection

Now's the ideal to swap out your heavy, full-coverage foundations for lighter, sheer options. They tend to be more flattering on the skin, giving a youthful glowing finish, rather than matte formulas that can sink into wrinkles and creases. If sheer seems like a scary step, ease yourself in by mixing your best full coverage foundation with a sheer tint or BB cream, to gradually lighten the coverage. You can keep the rest of your look minimal, to let your glowing skin take centre stage. 


Max Factor Miracle Pure Skin Improving Foundation | RRP: $15.59/£13.99 

This sheer foundation gives a gorgeous glowing finish. Plus, it's a base with benefits as it's made using 89% skincare ingredients, including Vitamin C and hyaluronic acid. This means it'll help treat your complexion while adding a lovely radiant glow. Perfect for the spring.

2. Copper Eyes

Copper or rose gold shades suit all eye tones, but will look especially gorgeous as eyeshadow for blue eyes and eyeshadow for green eyes, like Bobbi Brown Pro Makeup Artist Hollie Olivia Ellis shows. She's applied the shadow across the whole lid, adding touches of lighter tones by the inner corner. She's also taken the rose gold shade under her eye line, to open up her eyes. The end result is beautiful, and definitely something we'll be trying out in our spring makeup looks this year. 


Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Colour in Forbidden Rose | RRP: $29/£23

An eyeshadow stick makes application extra speedy, and Laura Mercier has some of the best ones out there. Buttery soft and available in gorgeous iridescent tones, this creates a flattering eye look in just a few sweeps.

3. Get the gloss

Glossy lips don't always have to be a neutral nude, just as a bright red lip doesn't have to always be matte! Play with different finishes of your favorite colors for a twist on your own tried and tested spring makeup looks. We love the idea of a luxurious, high-shine red. It's like an '80s makeup look in all the right ways. Wear on its own to let it stand out, or pair with golden eyes in the evening.


Anastasia Beverly Hills Color Lip Gloss in Crystal | RRP: $25/£21

Clear glosses can be used to transform the finish of your existing lip shades. This one glides on smoothly and isn't sticky or drying. Shiny glosses also help cheat fuller lips, so the trend's doubly worth trying out. 

4. Turquoise Tones

Speaking of the '80s, a big pop of turquoise must be right up there with the best blue mascara in terms of iconic throwback looks. If loved this eyeshadow look the first time around, you can give it a modern spin to make it wearable. Stick to one tone, like this, to keep it simple but effective. What's key in this look is keeping the rest of the face minimal, so it's not too busy.


Smashbox Always On Cream Eye Shadow in Cerulean | RRP: $24/£18

Cream formulations are easy to apply, especially if you're sticking to just one tone. Just swipe on and blend with your fingers. This velvety matte option's available in 15 shades, but this cerulean tone really sparks joy.

5. Brushed up brows

We're choosing to ignore the rumors that the ultra-thin 90s makeup eyebrow trend is coming back. Ignorance is bliss. Instead, we'll be opting for flattering, structured brows, which help add youthful definition to the face. For maximum trend points, brush them up to define every brow hair, just like Caroline Labouchere has here. Use a clear gel if you have thick brows to begin with, or cheat it with a fine eyebrow pencil.


NYX Professional Makeup The Brow Glue Instant Brow Styler |RRP: $8/£7.50

For serious hold, look no further than this clear brow gel. They weren't joking when they named it glue—it brushes up brow hairs instantly, holding them in place all day and all night.

6. Rosy Raspberry Lips

If even the best red lipstick feels intimidating, but pale pink feels a bit boring and 'been there done that' try the perfect middle ground—a deep raspberry pink. "You can wear a bright lipstick at any age—the right one will make your teeth look whiter, and even help brighten the whites of your eyes,” says Barnes. This particular color works in all finishes, but this satin texture by Pat McGrath Labs looks totally irresistible. You can wear it with a smoky eye look for date night, or with eyeliner flicks for fancy events. 


Chanel Rouge Coco Flash Colour Shine in Emotion | RRP: $42/£33

Soft like butter, this glides on without dragging on lips and has a lovely sheeny finish. This is one of the best pink lipstick options with a blue undertone, which will suit all but work especially well on cool-toned complexions. 

7. Detailed Dots

Sometimes little touches of detailing can have the biggest effect. We love this lilac look, which is subtle but still playful. Violet is Pantone's color of the year 2022, so it's worth experimenting with shades of purple, but this hue works for anyone. Pat the shadow into the corners of eyes, both the inside and outside. Keep the rest of the lid clean to make it look purposeful, not smudged, then add lashings of mascara.


Barry M Clickable Eyeshadow in Intrigued | RRP: £2.99 (UK only)

Barry M's eyeshadows are pocket-friendly without compromising on pigment. This is the perfect buy to experiment with—apply with a small eyeshadow brush to create the detailing. 

8. Va Va Volume Lashes

Go on the lash with bold and beautiful eyelashes. Whether you're looking for the best Maybelline mascara, a volumizing buy or you're looking for real curl power, the right mascara is all about what works best for your lashes. Make sure to always use a dedicated eye makeup remover when cleansing, to make sure to remove every scrap of mascara and eyeliner. This will stop your lashes from falling out, and help them look fuller. 


Huda Beauty Legit Lashes Mascara | RRP: $19/£24

One end has a curved wand to curl up lashes and build up the length, while the other, chunkier side of the wand adds thickness and volume. The two-step process really amps up the lashes, and it's worth the extra minute of application.  

9. A monotone moment

Monotone doesn't mean boring! Sticking to one block color, like hot pink, just like Caroline Barnes has here is a great way of going for a bright look without overcomplicating things. She's applied a pretty pink eyeshadow, combining it with matching lipstick and blush, for a simple but striking effect. 


Huda Beauty Rose Quartz Eyeshadow Palette | RRP: $67/£58

This palette is almost—almost—too pretty to use. With a mix of matte and shimmer shades, you can build endless eyeshadow looks, but we also love how the shades are strong enough to stand on their own, too. 

10. Go graphic

If you're feeling artistic (and have a steady hand!) experiment with bold, graphic shapes across your eyes. Eyeshadows don't have to be traditionally blended across the whole lid, and liners don't have to just be cat-eye flicks. Think outside of the box for an arty twist. Learn how to apply eyeliner for an arty swoosh, or use a skinny eyeshadow brush with a nice bright shadow (dip it into some water to help the color come out with a higher pigment.) 


Diorshow On Stage Liner in Matte Pink | RRP: $31/£28

Who could resist this hot pink shade? This felt tip liner has a brilliant color payoff, and the sharp pointed tip means creating swishes and flicks is easy. 

11. Golden highlighter

Highlighter is a great way of creating a glow, instantly. Caroline Barnes has a top tip to help boost radiance. “I love mixing in a highlighter with blush, it creates a multi-tonal glow that gives you that elevated professional finish. It also stops it from looking stripey against the blush and or bronzes," she explains. "Mix a liquid formula with powder or cream blush on the back of your hand before applying with your fingers.”


Fenty Beauty Killawatt Fluid Freestyle Highlighter | RRP: $28/ £24
Fenty's Killawatt highlighter is a global bestseller, so we were cautiously excited when they released a liquid version. It's fantastic, of course—the tiniest amount offers impressive, mega-kilowatt glow.

12. Fancify your flicks

Who says your cat-eye flicks always have to be black? We love this multi-tonal look, which uses a mix of two liquid eyeliners—a copper and a navy. You may not have considered pairing these shades together, but the combination of the straight graphic lines and a pared-down face has a really striking effect. To try it for yourself, start with just one color—navy is a great option to start with, then venture out to brighter colors like orange, green, and silver. 


Rimmel Wonder'Swipe 2-in-1 Liner To Shadow | RRP: $8.99/£6.99
Available in five shades, this liner creates flicks in an instant, but can also be used as an eyeshadow when you blend with a brush. We like the original liner option—it doesn't smudge and the color payoff is impressive. 

13. Embrace your freckles

If you're blessed with natural freckles like Julianne Moore, the spring months are the ideal time to let them peek through. They add a pretty, youthful touch to any face, and we love how much character it adds too. Use a sheer base to even out your skin tone, that will still let them shine through. To cheat it, you can use freckle pens to dab on some detailing across your nose—the results are surprisingly effective. 


Lottie London Freckle Tint | RRP: $9/£6.95

Hear us out. While the concept of painting on freckles seems a bit strange, when done right the effect is really natural. Especially with this pen—the color is really light and sheer, so won't look like dots on your face. Dab lightly, start small. Soon you'll be hooked. 

14. Wearable Smokey Grey

A smoky eye is a truly classic eye look, but it can look severe on some eyes, as well as being a bit dark and moody for the summer months. Swap darker tones for a more flattering grey, like Hollywood power player Reese Witherspoon. It strikes the perfect balance between sultry and wearable, and it pairs perfectly with her pink lippie. 


Lancome Hypnose Eyeshadow Palette | RRP: $50/£45

You don't always need a huge, all-singing-all-dancing palette to create striking looks. Sometimes the petite, small but mighty ones work even harder. This option, with five wearable shades, blends really well together, perfect for creating that smokey eye. 

15. Upside Down Eyeshadow

The under-eyes often get neglected in make-up, as we're so used to painting on color to the top lids. Get experimental with your bottom lash line, keeping your lids minimal and adding a pop of color to the bottom lashes. We love this pretty pastel look, which is perfect for weddings, birthdays, and celebrations. It could also add a bit of fun to a daytime look, pairing with a white tee and jeans. 


Natasha Denona Sunrise Palette | RRP: $72/£60

15 gorgeous shades make this palette seriously hard to resist. Take the pink and orange shades underneath the lower eye line for a pretty, color-popping look. Use a dense detail brush, and wet it to make the color extra vibrant. 

16. Boost your blush

Contouring and bronzer have taken over in recent years, but now’s the time for blusher to come back with a bang. It has the power to transform the dimensions of your face, helping you look younger and chisel out cheekbones. “If you want to add fullness to hollow, long faces, apply to the apples of your cheeks, blending with a big fluffy brush,” says Barnes. “To add definition to a round face, take it underneath, emphasizing bone structure, drawing attention to your cheekbones.” 


Sculpted By Aimee Cream Luxe Blush | RRP: £16 (UK only)

Peach tones are perfect to flatter all skins and look beautiful against the beginnings of a tan. This is a creamy formula that’ll go on best by blending with your fingers. Apply to your eyelids and lips too for a stylish, monotone look. 

17. Lip liner hacks

Get clever with your lip liner to create a multi-tonal look on your lips. Start with nude tones to ease yourself into the tone. Use a shade one or two tones darker than your natural lip color, then blend in with a nude satin lipstick or lip gloss. It will help your lips look fuller in under a minute. Genius!


MAC Lip Pencil | RRP: $19/£17

Mac's lip pencils are some of the best lip liners out there, and their huge range of shades means you're sure to find your perfect match. This won't drag along lips, and blends effortlessly.

18. Bronze goddess

No matter what your skin tone, a bronzer will add a beautiful sun-kissed hue, just in time for spring. The finish you choose is dependent on the result you want—for contouring, go for a flat, matte option. For boosting glow, pick a shimmery option, and apply where the sun would naturally hit—the temples, nose, and cheekbones. 


Nars Bronzing Powder in Laguna | RRP: $38/£31

Nars offers the gold standard (pun intended) when it comes to bronzers. This signature shade, Laguna is a brilliant all-rounder that works for the vast majority of skin tones. Apply with a big fluffy brush.

19. Tangerine Dream

Swap your pillar box red lipstick for a joy-sparking, orange-toned option—it just shouts 'spring makeup looks' (don't worry you don't have to do the yellow eyeshadow too) This look works well on almost anyone, as both fair and darker skin tones look gorgeous while wearing this vibrant shade—the brighter the better. 


Illamasqua Animatter Lipstick in Farenheit | RRP: £20 (UK only)

Illamasqua is known for bold, bright shades, so they're the ideal go-to when you're looking for an all-out bright lipstick. Their shade Fahrenheit is the ideal orange-toned red. Swoon

20. Multicoloured Magic

If you're looking to make a real statement, mix and match a few different tones like Katie Jane Hughes. We can't get over this absolutely stunning mix of iridescent shades, which are sparkly without looking childlike. Stick to a 'family' of colors if you're not sure which go together—for example, oranges reds and pinks, or greens, blues, and Aquas. Or go full throttle with clashing tones. 


Lime Crime Venus XL II Eyeshadow Palette | RRP: $58/£56

The perfect combination of pretty pastels, this palette is the perfect investment for creating spring makeup looks. Mix the mint and pink for a bold, but beautiful look.

woman&home thanks Caroline Barnes for her time and expertise 

Rhiannon Derbyshire
Senior Beauty Editor

Rhiannon Derbyshire is the Senior Beauty Editor for Woman & Home and other publications. 

She started interning for glossy magazines while working alongside her Fashion Journalism degree. There, she was lured to the beauty desk, seduced by matte lipsticks, posh shampoos, and every skincare product imaginable. 10+ years into her career, she can confidently tell you why the best mascaras are always high street, and why SPF is a non-negotiable all year round. Ask her about her curly hair routine, skincare minimalism, and how to find the exact right red lipstick