Pastels Aren't Groundbreaking, But They're Perfect For Spring 2023 — Here's How To Wear Them

Spring has sprung, and springing up right along with it are bold colors that put a bit of spring in our step and on our eyelids. It's the season to go wild and whimsical with our makeup, and there's no better way to do it than by creating looks centered around a pastel palette. 

"There are several places I'm looking for spring makeup inspiration this season but I think number one, I'm browsing TikTok," Emily Gray, a makeup artist to the stars, explained to Byrdie. "Some of the themes I anticipate being most prominent are glowy blush, lighter foundation routines, and shades of white on the lids." When it comes to our cosmetics, this season is all about light, airy colors paired with vibrant looks. We're loving the fun, free-spirited vibes these makeup trends put on display. 

Luckily, when it comes to popular facial effects that are all about a specific color palette, there are plenty of ways to get on board without being a professional or mastering a specific technique. It's time to rock a fun, pastel makeup look for Spring 2023, and we've gathered our favorites to get you into the swing of things.

Coordinating pastel shadows

Perfecting an eyeshadow look is one of the easiest and most accessible ways to incorporate a pretty, pale palette. Using pastel shades on your lids with otherwise subtle, pared-down, and extra glowy makeup is super on-trend and ideal for the warmer months. One elevated way to rock this look is by using a pastel shade on your upper eyelid and a slightly deeper shade of the same color below the eyes. This adds a bit more drama and dimension to your spring-ready look. 

Dreamy gradients

One of the most prominent ways that we're seeing pastel eyeshadow executed these days is with light and pretty gradients. The trick to this is plenty of blending to combine different colors without harsh lines. That said, blending is basically the only technique you need when creating a pastel gradient eye look. Mixing different colors with matte and glittery finishes in various shapes is cool and eye-catching while still easy to produce. Get creative and experiment with colors, shapes, and embellishments. 

Cute cut crease

A cut crease is a relatively simple and classic way to achieve a bold and graphic eye makeup look. We love the mod-yet-modern vibes of a spring-ified cut crease with pastel hues. You can pull off a cut crease no matter your eye shape; just use a lighter pastel on the lid with a deeper shade to create a line in your crease. We love the way this green shadow looks when paired with glossy lips and rosy cheeks for spring.

Simple pastel liner

For folks without a steady hand, the popular graphic and intricate eyeliner looks may be intimidating. In reality, though, colorful eyeliner can be such a big statement on its own that you don't need to get fancy with how it's applied. Even with a pared-down, "no makeup" makeup look, adding liner and swapping out black for pale pink or baby blue can bring lightness to your look. Pro tip: Adding a colorful line above a black line can add a subtle pop without the risks of eliminating dark liner altogether.

Pastel lower liner

If you want to kick your makeup style into spring without spending too much extra time on your routine or going too big, popping a pastel eyeliner on your lower lash line is the unexpected trick you need. Applying lighter colors around the eye opens them up, which is why white liner is a super-popular eyeliner hack to make your eyes look bigger. We recommend swapping the white for a vibrant pastel and using your normal black or brown liner up top. The look is chic, understated, and spring-ready. 

Monochrome eye makeup

Creating a monochrome eye makeup look by pairing liner and eyeshadow in coordinating pastel shades is another great way to make an impact. We love the idea of using lavender liner and a shimmery lavender shadow, but this look works just as well with other pastel hues. Keep in mind that, in this case, monochrome doesn't mean matchy-matchy. Pairing identical liner and shadow together will cause the elements to blend with each other and fall flat, so make sure that the shades are coordinated but not exactly the same.

Paired pastels with white

Most of us think of pairing darker colors like black and brown with our eye makeup looks rather than white. However, white can add an unexpected twist and lighten things up a bit for warmer months. From using a white liner to brighten up the eyes or incorporating white eyeshadow with your pastel cosmetics, adding light accents can be a subtle and simple way to freshen up your look. If you'd like to go in a bolder direction, create dots, flowers, or other accents with white eyeliner for a more intricate effect. 

Dots for spring

Adding dots is a cute, whimsical way to incorporate multiple pastel colors into your look. We love this graphic art that alternates green, purple, pink, and blue pastel dots. Not only is this a bold and perfectly spring-ready style, but creating dots with eyeshadow or eyeliner is an innovative way to create a graphic look. Mix and match the size, colors, and placement of your dots to create different effects with one bold element.

Graphic liner and glitter

Not everyone is a master of graphic eyeliner, but if you have this skill in your makeup wheelhouse, a pastel version is utterly unexpected and cool. Creating a big cat eye with varied pastels or drawing different abstract shapes can add an edgy yet sweet dimension to your appearance. We especially love one that goes all the way and pairs graphic eyeliner with glitter or embellishments. This is the kind of look that screams "Euphoria" but makes it springtime, and who wouldn't want that? 

Spring-inspired prints

In fashion and beauty, few things scream "spring" quite the way pastels do. Another unmistakable statement of the season is a print with florals, sunshine, or nature themes. If you dare to be different and make a major makeup statement, why not incorporate some elements that give off literal spring vibes to pair with your soft color palette? If you're particularly artistic, this is a great time to get creative and show off your skills in creating flowers or other designs — maybe even try some pastel lashes to offset your eyeshadow. If you're not, you can still get in on the fun; try making some daisies with dots to make your eyes pop all springtime.