When we say “cocktail”, you probably think “alcohol”, “hangover”, and quite possibly, “mistake” (no judgment). Product cocktailing, on the other hand? Now that’s a whole different story. For those unfamiliar, the term is basically the beauty version of your favourite imbibe; in other words, two or more products mixed together for an enhanced final effect. We spoke with celebrity makeup artist Kirin Bhatty (she’s responsible for Jessica Paré’s always-stunning looks) and hairstylist Ryan Richman (he counts Sarah Hyland as a client) and asked them to share their favourite product combinations. Whether you’re looking for a way to sculpt your cheekbones without sacrificing shimmer, or way to keep your curls in place without weighing them down with gel, we’ve got you covered. We have to admit—“beauty bartender” does have a nice ring.
Click through the slideshow above to see the 11 product cocktails that will change your life!
For a full, fluttery fringe, use two mascaras instead of one. Bhatty first curls her clients’ lashes with Shu Uemura’s Eyelash Curler ($20), then applies one coat of Smashbox’s Full Exposure Mascara ($20). “I’ll comb through the lashes with a lash comb to get rid of any clumps, then finish with a coat of Dior’s Iconic Overcurl ($29),” she says. “The volumizing mascara will give you the drama you want, and the curling mascara will help hold your curl in place all day!”
Product Cocktail #2: NARS Lipliner in Papua + Lipstick + Smashbox Halo Highlighting Wand in Pearl = Luscious Lips
Next time you want to gives your lips some extra oomph, reach for your highlighter. “After applying lipstick, I’ll take Smashbox’s Halo Highlighting Wand ($32) in Pearl and put a drop on the cupid’s bow and on the center of the bottom lip, then spread it out with a lip brush to create a plump effect,” Bhatty says. To create a smooth base for her lip look, she always reaches for Nars’ Lipliner ($22) in Papua: “I love the texture of the lip pencil, and the color works on most skintones!”
This isn’t your average daytime smoky eye. First, Bhatty primes her clients’ lids with Smashbox’s Photo Finish Lid Primer ($20) to prevent creasing. “I’ll use Smashbox’s Jet Set Waterproof Liner ($22) in Bronze on the upper and lower lash lines, smudging with a bullet brush along the way,” she says. “Then I’ll use the lighter shade in Nars’ Duo Eyeshadow ($35) in Cordura to create dimension and shape over the entire lid.” After that, Bhatty takes the darker shade in the eyeshadow duo and applies it to the crease, upper and bottom lash lines and outer corners of the eye, smudging along the way for a smoky effect. And for more dimension—she pats Chanel’s Illusion D’Ombre ($36) in Ébloui (which is discontinued, but New Moon is a similar shade) into the center of the lid with her fingertip, then follows with a shimmery black cream or gel shadow (she uses the same Chanel eyeshadow in Mirifique). Finally, line the inner rim of your eyes with the Long Lasting Kohl Pencil ($10) in Black by Sephora, and voila—you’re done!
Product Cocktail #4: Smashbox Brow Tech Trio + Diorshow Brow Styler Ultra-Fine Precision Brow Pencil= Full Brows
The key to full, natural-looking brows? Powder and pencil. “First, use a clean spooly to brush your brows,” says Bhatty. “Then, I use shades from Smashbox’s Brow Tech Trio ($25) and apply to the brows using an angled brow brush.” Lastly, she combs through with a spooly or clean brow brush to soften the look, then fills in any missing spaces and adds definition with Dior’s Diorshow Brow Styler Ultra-Fine Precision Brow Pencil ($29).
Product Cocktail #5: Nars Matte Multiple in Exumas + Diorskin Nude Tan Nude Glow Sun Powder + Chanel Joues Contraste Powder Blush in Rose Bronze = Rosy, Defined Cheeks
“For cheeks, I like to create a dewy, sculpted look,” Bhatty says. To achieve that effect, she uses a cocktail of both cream and powder blush formulas. “I apply a cream blush like Nars Matte Multiple ($39) in Exumas on the apple of the cheeks with a wet Beauty Blender ($20), then add Dior’s Nude Glow Bronzer ($52) in the lightest shade to sculpt it out and contour.” She seals the look by blending everything together with Chanel’s Joues Contraste Powder Blush ($45) in Rose Bronze. “You get the beautiful, hydrated finish you usually see from a [cream formula], combined with the staying power of a powder!”
Product Cocktail #6: Kate Somerville Goat Milk Cream + Clarins Beauty Flash Balm + Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating Foundation Primer = Dewy Effect
To give your complexion a dewy glow, try mixing your favorite moisturizers with a face primer before applying foundation. Bhatty blends Kate Somerville’s Goat Milk Cream ($55) with Clarins’ Beauty Flash Balm ($46), then applies Smashbox’s Photo Finish Hydrating Foundation Primer ($42) before foundation.
Product Cocktail #7: Benefit Watt’s Up + Smashbox Halo Highlighting Wand in Pearl + Smashbox Fusion Soft Lights in Baked Stardust = Lit-From-Within Glow
“I use a cocktail of three different products to bring out the high points of the face,” Bhatty says. First, she uses a solid highlighter like Benefit’s Watt’s Up ($30) in the inner corner of the eyes with a foundation brush. Then, she dabs Smashbox’s Halo Highlighting Wand ($32) in Pearl along the orbital bone, down the nose and above the cupid’s bow, blending it in with a Beauty Blender ($20) sponge as she goes. Finally, she goes over everything with the shimmery white and pink powder from Smashbox’s Fusion Soft Lights ($30) in Baked Stardust. “The powder gets married to the two liquid formulas, so it gives you a gorgeous, reflective glow,” she says. “It also seals in the liquid so it doesn’t move or smudge.”
Product Cocktail #8: KMS California Free Shape Hot Flex Cream + KMS California Curl Up Control Cream = Sleek, Frizz-Free Curls
If you’ve ever complained about your curly locks looking frizzy, stringy, or dry, this product cocktail is about to change your life. “I think it’s important for any hair type—but especially curly or dry hair types—to use a heat protectant,” says Richman. “I combine KMS California’s Free Shape Hot Flex Cream with the brand’s Curl Up Control Cream.” He mixes two dollops of them together in his palm, then applies generously throughout damp hair and dries with a diffuser. The heat protectant cream will make your hair soft and malleable, while the curl cream will held smooth flyaways and hold your curl’s natural shape as it dries.
Product Cocktail #9: Osmo Clay Wax + Bumble & Bumble Invisible Oil = Shiny, Defined Waves
“Mixing a dryer product with an oil is a great way to hold shape without sacrificing shine,” Richman says. After you’ve finished curling your hair with an iron, take a texturizing paste (he uses Osmo’s Clay Wax ($10)) and mix it with a hair oil like Bumble & Bumble’s Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil ($38) in the palm of your hand. Apply the mixture throughout your hair, starting at your roots and pulling it through your ends. The result? Shiny, defined waves that actually last.
Product Cocktail #10: Bumble & Bumble Prep + Phyto PhytoVolume Actif Volumizing Spray = Smooth, Sleek Volume
“A lot of people think cocktailing products means mixing it with your hands, but a lot of products—especially hair products—come in spray form,” Richman remarks. He suggests spraying a detangler like Bumble & Bumble’s Prep ($21) on wet hair, then spritzing with a volumizing spray like Phyto’s Phytovolume Actif Volumizing Spray ($29). “Sometimes when you use a volumizing spray, it can make your hair dry or hard to brush through. The Bumble & Bumble [product] will smooth out the hair and allow you to detangle.”
Product Cocktail #11: Oribe Royal Blowout + Oribe Volumista = Blowout-Worthy Bounciness
To fake post-blowout bounciness, Richman suggests spritzing a styling spray like Oribe’s Royal Blowout ($59) all over damp hair, then following with a volume-boosting spray like Oribe’s Volumista ($39). Then, just take a round brush and blow-dry as usual. Your strands will look lush, bouncy, and moveable!
CTA: Have you ever tried a product cocktail? Which one of these would you test out? Tell us in the comments!