There’s something about the word emerald that has our hearts aflutter. Emerald-cut diamonds (we’ll take two, please), shimmery emerald green waters in a tropical setting, that sparkling namesake gemstone – all reasons to love the word. Now we have even more reason to praise the mighty emerald. Pantone, ultimate colour authority, named ‘PANTONE 17-5641 Emerald’ the colour of the year and this bold, spirited shade is appearing everywhere – from the runways to makeup.

We’re excited about emerald but when it comes to makeup, we’re the first to admit, it’s not the easiest shade to wear. Toronto-based makeup artist Amanda Elysia gives us the skinny on how to choose the right emerald hues.

Emerald makeup can look absolutely stunning, but things can also go wrong very quickly if your placement isn’t strategic,” says Amanda. “It may take a little extra work but the payoff is definitely worth it,” she says.

So don’t just swipe on green makeup and walk out the door. Treat the colour with care to perfect the look. First things first: consider your eye colour and skin tone.

Choosing the right emerald green

According to Amanda, there’s an emerald green out there that’s right for everyone, regardless of hair colour, eye colour and skin tone. “If you choose a rich jewel-toned emerald, it can really work to bring out anyone’s skin, eye or hair colour,” she says. “The blue tones in emerald work to contrast and bring out the warmth in your colouring, while the gold complements all complexions.” The key though, is finding a product that has the right balance of blue and gold. “The wrong emerald can suddenly look more blue on darker skin tones, and muddy on lighter skin tones.” Because your skin tone can affect the way the colour appears on your skin (it may look different in the pot than when you put it on), just keep experimenting until you find the colour that looks best on you.

“Touch up your blush or bronzer after you have your eye makeup on,” says Amanda. “Green has a tendency to wash you out. Peachy blushes and lip products are always a great pairing with emerald.”

Check out some of our favourite emerald-hued makeup products here.

Read on for more tips and tricks on how to wear emerald green!


Finding the right emerald eye shadow and eyeliner

When it comes to eye shadow and eyeliner, Amanda says to look for shimmer and to avoid anything matte. “Think of an emerald shimmering in the light and how less captivating its colour would be without all that sparkle.”

If you want to achieve a more subtle pop of colour, skip the eye shadow and just go with eyeliner. “Try a winged out cat eye for some drama, or run a pencil along your lower lashes to keep it subtle,” says Amanda.

TIP:Black mascara is your best friend when wearing green to keep your eyes defined,” Amanda says. Want to amp up your look? Add false eyelashes.

Dos and don’ts for wearing emerald green makeup
Amanda offers up these tips for getting the look just right:

DO keep the rest of your face relatively neutral. You want the focus to stay on your eyes.

DO make sure that your eye is well defined. To achieve this, curl your lashes and apply a generous coat of jet-black mascara. Take this one step further and run some black eyeliner between your upper lashes. You will see in immediate difference in how much better your makeup looks.

DON’T go into emerald overload. The key with using a strong colour is balance and contrast.

DO pick a rich jewel-toned nail polish with some shimmer or add a glitter topcoat for extra jewel-like sparkle.

DON’T be shy! A light wash of green can make you look sickly because you’re only adding a slight green hue to your skin. Make your emerald look intentional and wear it proudly!

Read more:
Our favourite emerald-huedbeauty products
Beautiful emerald accessories
Fall fashion trend: Emerald green
The hottest hair and makeup looks of 2013