TikTok is a blessing and a curse. The app has opened our eyes to more makeup trends and techniques than ever, but it can be exhausting to keep up. Just as it's essential to learn your ABCs before learning to write, it's critical to understand the makeup basics before delving into the newest online trends. It's why we look to the industry's leading makeup artists, like Erin Parsons (who just so happens to be Gigi Hadid's go-to), for the fundamentals of makeup that can guide us through any viral phenomena.
Parsons' lengthy resume includes painting the faces of stars like Coco Rocha, Storm Reid, and Gigi and Bella Hadid, and she's worked with countless brands, including her time as Maybelline's Global Makeup Artist and her latest partnership with Dickinson’s Witch Hazel. She has a knack for marrying old and new, bringing a vintage edge to her beauty looks while also staying ahead of the curve, like Gigi's white spiky Met Gala lashes. She knows that trends are fleeting, which is why she relies on staple makeup techniques that withstand the tests of time—literally, as she's gained a significant following on TikTok for her vintage makeup collection and tutorials.
We caught up with Parsons about her makeup must-haves and the trends we'll be seeing everywhere, and came away all the wiser.
Ahead, read eight beauty lessons from celebrity makeup artist Erin Parsons.
Her Top Trend of 2023: Creative Clean Girl
"I think we’re going to see a clash of clean girl-meets-creative [as the number one makeup trend this year]. Skin will be more skincare than makeup, but eyes will have unique shapes, bright colors, opaque matte, and/or shimmering metallics. It will be less about precision and more about self-expression."
Lean Into Creams
"Any luminous foundation will create a glowing base. But skip the powder and use cream products on top to keep the radiance."
The Secret to a Perfect Wing
"On a clean face, start with a non-waterproof pencil and trace out the shape. Fix any mistakes with a pointed cotton bud dipped in Dickinson’s Original Witch Hazel Micellar Witch Hazel Makeup Remover ($6). Use these to clean and perfect the shape. I prefer this makeup remover because it’s not oily, so it won’t ruin any makeup applications. [Next], add any eyeshadow, and after use a liquid liner on top of the wing to set [it] and strengthen opacity. Perfect [the wing] again using the cotton bud and the micellar witch hazel. Now you can add the rest of the makeup, including base and concealer. "
How to Get a Flawless Red Lip
"Using a red lip pencil, outline the lips. Fill in the entire lip with the pencil and then top with your favorite red lipstick. Use a pointed cotton bud and the Dickinsons Micellar Witch Hazel to clean any mistakes and perfect the shape of the lip. Now blot [the lips] with a tissue. You can continue this process until you achieve the desired opacity and finish."
Inspiration Is Everywhere
"[I find inspiration in] art, film, nature, fashion, a model's face, a new makeup product—It truly can come from anywhere."
Don't Forget Your Lips
"A good lip balm [is a winter beauty essential everyone should have on hand]. It’s the first part of the body to dry out in the winter. My favorite is from Lanolips ($17)."
A Beauty Look That Anyone Can Wear
"Simply groomed. It’s your best self without looking 'made up.' This works on every skin tone, every gender, and every age."
Three Products She's Loving Right Now
"Dermaviduals Moisturizer [which is prescription-only], Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Lip Liner in Pillow Talk ($24), and Maybelline Super Stay Vinyl Ink in Red Hot ($9)."