While working your way up the corporate ladder, you might want to reassess the contents of your makeup bag.

Unless your office is a nightclub, forget dramatic smokey eyes and dark burgundy lips. Instead, think in favour of natural-looking skin, flushed cheeks and soft pink lips for office-appropriate beauty.

Here, we reveal the makeup shades to get you through the daily grind.


Fact: fluorescent office lighting can lend a greenish cast to your complexion. Beat its ghastly glare, between the hours of 9AM and 5PM, by wearing a liquid foundation that’s a half shade darker than your natural skin tone. Choose a medium-coverage formula that evens out skin without looking streaky or cakey. Try NARS Sheer Glow Foundation.


We’ve all experienced one of those mornings when we come into work, spot our reflection and wonder, ‘Great Odin’s raven! Did I do my makeup in the dark?’. During winter, chances are you did. Peach blush tones are your saving grace – they keep skin from looking sallow or grey. Plus, it compliments just about any warm eye shadow such as bronze, copper, rose-gold, or champagne. We love Becca Mineral Blush in Songbird for its healthy-looking, flushed finish. Plus, it’s nearly impossible to overdo. Your boss will never know.


Before you call beige boring, think again. Urban Decay Naked 3 Eye Shadow Palette allows you to transform your daytime neutral eye base to absolutely bangin’. Try adding a touch of rose gold eye shadow to the inner corners. It’s still a neutral, but a tinge of pink and a hint of shimmer will help lift even the most conservative office uniforms. Dust it all over the eye lids and finish with a dark brown pencil and lashings of black mascara.


We’re not suggesting you toss your staple black liner – we would never! – but open yourself up to the idea of working a new but still subdued shade. Two shades that are office-proof are MAC Eye Pencil in Grey Utility and Dior Diorliner Precision Liner in Brown. Both give eyes definition without looking harsh. To apply, line along the top lash line, making sure there’s no gaps in between the lashes, and gently smudge with your pinkie finger. You can thank us later.


An office-friendly lip colour is always a hot topic for debate. Depending on the culture of your office place, you might have more scope to play with poppy reds and statement pinks – go you! However, for those who prefer more of a fail-safe shade that is universal for all ages, skin tones and industries, try CHANEL Les Beiges Healthy Glow Lip Balm (which is worn favourably below). It’s the perfect mix of beige and pink. Plus, it’s ultra nourishing. Use it to enhance your existing natural lip colour and work what your mama gave you.

Ultimately though, when it comes to cosmetics in the work place, Robbie Myers, Editor-in-Chief of ELLE US put it perfectly.

Quote: “Do you have to wear makeup to be taken more seriously? No. It’s just a matter of what your look is and how you feel about it.”

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I completely agree with the last quote. And I love the look here.

Kat Horrocks

Gorgeous look, love the shirt! I always cheat a little extra colour with foundation as well, it saves me having to pile on loads of bronzer Kat |

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