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4 Spring & Summer Beauty Trends You’ll Actually Wear

May 9, 2017

best beauty trends and makeup ideas for summer

It’s no secret that I’m personally not one to closely follow a lot of trends. This is especially the case when it comes to makeup–for example, while they’re “so hot right now”–you won’t ever see me sporting baby blue lipstick or spiky eyebrows that look like the scary centipedes that show up in my bathtub in the springtime. Yes, that’s actually a thing. (I mean, no judgement–if you can pull that off, more power to you!) It’s safe to say that natural makeup is more my jam.

Every so often though, a few there ARE a couple of trends that I can get behind. Well, while “they” say (they, as in the people who make this stuff up–who are they anyway?) many of these are “trends”–in my opinion, they’re more like the classics that never go out of style. You know, like “florals for spring” but in the beauty category?

Anyway, I’m excited to team up with Nordstrom (one of my go-to places for beauty products, as you know) today to bring you four awesome tutorials highlighting some of my favorite beauty trends that you’ll actually want to wear this year.

beauty tips-Chicago Fashion Blogger

1. A dewy, sun-kissed glow

natural makeup-makeup ideas from Chicago Fashion Blogger

I also like to call this natural makeup look, “no makeup makeup with some strategically placed bronzer.”

The good news, if your like me, is that you’re already doing the whole “no makeup makeup” thing (we’re so trendy) so pulling off this look won’t take much additional effort. This is essentially the makeup routine I use when I want to look like myself but way better. (Everyone will think you look stunning but won’t be able to put their finger on what’s different, exactly. This quality makes this kind of makeup excellent for date nights as well.)

Here’s how to do it.

Skin prep:

Peter Thomas Roth Firm Rx Peel: First, to prep skin for an even foundation application, I apply this peel (I did a whole review about it here) and follow that with moisturizer. You apply it to dry skin and it literally rolls the dead skin cells off your face. Totally disgusting yet amazing at the same time, and makes for the most amazing foundation application.

Primer: I then apply primer, concentrating on my main problem areas that tend to be less smooth and/or oily (I have combination skin, so parts of it can get really chronically dry, and parts of it more oily). Smashbox is one of my favorites! I also love Benefit’s pore minimizing formula.


Burberry Fresh Glow Luminous Fluid BaseI love love love this base. Admittedly, it’s a big splurge. BUT, you can use it quite a few ways, and you also only need one small pump to cover your whole face. For a summery glow, go with the darker color. (It looks so pretty when dabbed on your collarbones, too!) It looks really dark in the bottle, but I promise, it goes on very sheer.

Burberry Fresh Glow FoundationThis is one of my favorite foundations that I’ve used to date. It’s very versatile in that you can build it pretty easily, and it leaves you with the prettiest dewy finish. It’s very natural, mimics the look of your actual skin, and never looks cakey. The best part is that it doesn’t crease like a lot of foundations do, and it stays on nicely throughout the day. It is a to-die for combination with the luminous fluid base underneath.

NARS concealer: I use this where I need additional coverage for blemishes, redness, or uneven spots. It’s a great full coverage concealer. However, I don’t prefer it for under eyes!

Burberry Sheer Luminous Concealer: I use this for under-eyes exclusively. For the longest time I used the same concealer for my under-eyes as I did to cover blemishes, but they serve completely different purposes, and therefore, you shouldn’t use the same for both! This Burberry concealer is magical. It has properties in it that reflect the light and go a really long way in brightening your under-eyes! I also like that, similar to the foundation, it doesn’t crease like so many other concealers do. See below for proof!

Before Burberry under-eye concealer 
After Burberry under-eye concealer: 
natural makeup–makeup ideas from Chicago Beauty Blogger, Jess Keys

Subtle bronze contour:

There are so many ways to approach contouring, so how you do this really just depends on your personal preference! I’d recommend trying both and see which one you like better. In my experience, the sticks are a little quicker and require less finesse, if that counts for anything 😉 Also–don’t worry, I know “contouring” can be a scary word, but I promise doing it is just as easy as applying your regular bronzer, and you won’t end up looking like a Kardashian.

Burberry’s face contour pen: This stick  goes on super easily and are such a snap to blend.

This is where it gets REALLY fun. Sometimes I channel my inner three year old and draw squiggly lines all over my face. Or you could draw a straight one. Or a dotted one. Whatever.

I apply it at the outer edges of my forehead, down my temples, right below the cheekbones, and then under the jaw-line. (Imagine you were drawing a backwards three on your face). Use a dampened beauty blender or makeup sponge to blend.

Other contour favorites: This weekend, when I got my makeup done at Nordstrom’s Charlotte Tilbury counter, and my makeup artist, Maria, used this “Filmstar” palette for both contouring and highlighting and I LOVED it. (Saving up to buy it next!) She also applied it higher than usual (i.e. in the upper hollow of your cheekbones vs right in the middle, where it’s usually applied.) I thought this was a really flattering effect, so that’s what I did here.

Blush: After my makeup session I picked up Charlotte Tilbury’s “Swish and Pop” blush in “Love Glow” and I really really love it. I apply it just to the tops of the apples of my cheeks with the pointy end of my blush brush and it results in this flush glow that looks like you’ve just come in from the pool.

Makeup ideas–Chicago Fashion Blogger, Jess Keys

Highlight: Honestly, there are a LOT of highlighting products I really love, so it’s hard to choose just one, and I think it really depends, again, on personal preference. I love the look achieved from the Charlotte Tilbury palette (and the fact that it has contour and highlighting in one!) but two other favorites are NARS “The Multiple” stick in “Copacabana,” which I’ve used for years, and also Burberry’s Fresh Glow highlighting pen (illustrated below!) I think the latter is a little more subtle and I like that it’s a pen vs a thick stick, so you can more easily use it on your eyes, too!

Bronzed Eye:

Bronze shadow: Following my base, I applied a brown shadow (part of this palette, which comes in an awesome set, btw) to my lids and used it as a liner to line my lower lashes.  As an even easier alternative, you could also sweep the Burberry face contour stick on your lids and lower lash line! If you want a darker liner on the bottom, go with a subtle brown liner and blend. (I use Estee Lauder’s DoubleWear eye pencil in “Espresso”!)

Upper water-line: I’m really not a huge fan of the “water lined” eyeliner. I think it makes your eyes look smaller and appears harsh. However, lining just your upper water line makes your lashes look a lot thicker! You can do this with black liner or brown liner depending on how dramatic you’d like the effect to be. In addition to Estee Lauder’s eyeliner reference above, I really like MAC’s PowerPoint Eyeliner, which is also waterproof and doesn’t smudge! (Fun fact: It was the first eyeliner I ever purchased in high school!)

Makeup ideas–bronze eye, no mascara–Chicago Beauty Blogger, The Golden Girl

Lashes: I get more into this below, but mascara seems to be a lot more optional these days than it has been in the past! I never thought I’d say this, but I’m kind of into the au natural lashes look, which you can see in the photo above. If you’d like to give eyelashes a curl, feel free to do so (I love Charlotte Tilbury’s eyelash curler).

When I do want to apply mascara, I love love Dior’s Iconic Overcurl formula. It makes my lashes literally huge to the point where everyone asks me if I’ve gotten lash extensions. I also recently tried Charlotte Tilbury’s Full Fat Lashes mascara and loved that as well. I will say it’s definitely different than Dior’s in that its a bit more natural looking and focuses more on lengthening and separating rather than thickening–so it just depends on what you’re looking for! I think CT’s is my new daytime go-to, with Dior’s being reserved for nighttime when I really want dreamy dramatic and thick lashes.


Makeup ideas–Burberry Lip Contour Review

Finish with a pinky-nude lip color–I love MAC’s lipstick in “Kinda Sexy” because it’s more of a salmon-hued nude that is perfect for the sunkissed look. If you want something even more natural, I love Burberry’s Lip Contour pen. To make lips appear fuller, line the outer lips and blend it inward, or just swipe it as a lipstick for subtle all-over color.

Get the look: 

2. Red lips + naked face

Makeup ideas–Red lipstick

Red lips. Ah, my old faithful. If red lips ever go out of style I don’t know what I’ll do. (Actually, what I’ll do is keep wearing them anyway, let’s be honest.)

Luckily, the red lip “trend” (if you could even call it that. More like “always in style anti-trend”) is here to stay. What is a bit different this year though is that wearing a red lip with a nearly naked face is now the thing.

Last year when I was in Paris, unbeknownst to the fact that this would soon become a trend, this was my makeup routine pretty much every day. It also pairs wonderfully with unwashed-day-old hair swept up into a messy bun. (As if you actually planned it that way, instead of just running out of time in the morning!)

Base + no eye makeup: When I took my trip to London to meet with the Burberry Beauty team, their makeup artist (who helped create all of their most recent products! So cool!) Wendy, gave me some mind-blowing advice: “Young women don’t actually need mascara. It makes them look older.” (What!?)

I’m really on the fence about this. I would never not wear mascara when I go out at night, but it’s kind of refreshing to skip during the day. She’s right, it does make you look a lot younger and more fresh-faced.

A swipe of classic red lipstick: Here are my favorites.


MAC “Lady Danger” (a more orangey-red hue)

Charlotte Tilbury “Red Carpet Red”

Clinique Lip Pop in “Cherry Pop” (this one has primer in it and keeps lips moisturized!)

Get the look: 

3. Natural brows

I don’t have exquisitely well-shaped eyebrows, nor am I skilled or patient enough to pull off a super sculpted brow. When I started seeing more natural brows pop up this year for spring and summer, I did a sigh of relief! There are a few great “one-size-fits-all” (meaning, they have a pencil and spoole brush in one) brow pencils out there right now that I really like–here, I’m using (no surprise) Burberry’s Effortless Brow DefinerCharlotte Tilbury’s version also comes with a highlighter which is awesome, and Estee Lauder’s version also is one of my go-to’s.

To start, I comb my brows in an upward motion with the spoole brush. Then, I fill in my brows using short, sweeping strokes. The point is to make the pencil strokes look just like your natural eyebrow hair. I then use the spoole brush to blend the inside corners to look more natural, and give them one more sweep through so they look groomed and filled in, but not overly sculpted or drawn on!

Get the look: 

4. Magenta lips

Makeup ideas, Chicago Beauty Blogger Jess Keys

I’m partial to a red lip, obviously, as you know. (We’ll get more into that below!) However, I’ve magenta lips have been popping up everywhere and it’s such a flattering hue on so many different skin tones! Burberry’s “Bright Plum” hue is one I’ve been wearing several times per week and it’s a totally different, but equally pretty statement! Their “Burberry Kisses” lipstick formula is really versatile, because you can have subtle color in one coat, but build it for more bold color. I also like that it’s moisturizing and doesn’t crack.

On left: One coat || On right: double coats [one-half-first] [/one-half-first][one-half][/one-half]

Now, keep in mind, the fun part about makeup is that it’s so customizable. There isn’t a wrong or right way to approach all of these trends! Experiment with different things–what works for one person might not necessarily work for another, but it’s really fun to play around in the process!

Get the look: 

The reason I love Nordstrom so much is because they offer so many different brands–I’m constantly discovering new brands and products I love. (For example, I didn’t even start using Burberry OR Charlotte Tilbury until this year–yet, this entire post is comprised of mostly those two brands!)The makeup ideas are endless 😉 Another reason I buy so many beauty products from Nordstrom? I know that if it doesn’t work for me, I can return it–no questions asked!

Natural makeup: a sunkissed dewy glow | Chicago Beauty Blogger

Which of the above is your favorite? Are you planning on trying out any other beauty trends this year? I hope this gives you some fun makeup ideas to try at home!

P.S. You also might want to read “3 Favorite Peels and Exfoliants” and “A Rose Gold Makeup Tutorial”

Thank you to Nordstrom (the retailer I do 99% of all my shopping at!) for sponsoring this post, and thank you for supporting the brands that allow GG to keep growing! 

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