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Mixing colors a bright idea when it comes to makeup

Like Katy Perry, you too can combine old fave colors and come out on trend. 

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Like Katy Perry, you too can combine old fave colors and come out on trend. 

Emma Stone in fuchsia and red. Zoe Saldana in a kelly green skirt paired with a hot pink neon top. Clearly, yesterday's color rules are, well, so yesterday.

Today, we can wear yellow with pink or red with green without attracting the wrath of the fashion police.

And even the classic makeup rules, such as strictly sporting nude lips with smoky eyes, no longer apply.

Worn with confidence, today's well styled face is adorned with myriad colors that once were taboo. The key is combining colors that complement — without matching — and applying them expertly. Go ahead, get wild.

Pink meets purple, PDA ensues

When we were 10, we just naturally "got" that purple and pink belonged together. Then, time went on, we got older and wiser (read: boring) and decided that nude and peach were a more flattering combination.

But like Katy Perry at the launch for her "Purr" fragrance, you too can combine these old fave colors and come out on trend.

It all starts with the perfect purple hue, which is easier to find than one might think.

Start by picking a shade that best suits you, and blend with shades of gold, taupe and brown to keep your purple look reined in. MAC Satellite Dreams shadow is a medium purple that's ultra-wearable and Mirabella's Violet Vision Eye Colour Trio has three shades meant to be mixed and matched to complement your skin tone.

Here's a tip on picking the right shade:

Generally, the lighter your skin, the lighter the shadow can be and the darker your skin, the brighter the shadow can be.

Be sure to apply shadow before the rest of your makeup so that accidents can be fixed; purple shadow remnants left to linger under eyes will end up making your look more raccoon than ravishing. Get a good night's sleep or fake one with eye drops. Red eyes and purple shadow are not the color combination we are going for.

Chic cheeks

Bronzers may have served you well during the summer, but it's time to experiment with colorful cheeks. Fuchsia, coral, bubble gum pink and the like are showing up on the apples of the most stylish cheeks. That's because a pretty pink flush is flattering, taking years off the face. Get even more daring — and on trend — by pairing your rosy cheeks with smoky eyes in shades of forest and emerald green.

Best of all, bold cheeks are so easy to apply. Just swipe blush from your temples to your cheekbones in a slight arch. Smile, and then deposit more color on the apples of your cheeks, the part that protrudes the most when you smile.

Be warned, brighter blushes can look blotchy, so be sure to start with a smooth, even palette by using a light foundation or powder. And opt for one of my favorite blushes, a fail-proof product from VMV Hypoallergenics, Skin Bloom Blush. Just as the name implies, these blushes give cheeks a natural "bloom" of color in shades such as Rosebud, Georgia, a vivid pink, and Smauve ($40 at

When in doubt, or in need of inspiration, simply turn to a Rihanna video or photo. Here's a woman who has single-handedly proven that ferocious colors can combine and look utterly fierce, and now, ultra-fashionable.

— Carolyn Brundage is the founder of, a guide to the best in local beauty. Need beauty advice? Tweet up with Carolyn on Twitter @tampabaypretty.

Mixing colors a bright idea when it comes to makeup 11/10/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 7, 2011 3:26pm]
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