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Spring trends may leave you thinking of ditsy floral and blushing beauty looks, but this year’s fads are taking a darker turn. Instead of breezy dresses and pink-hued makeup, the girls are going goth. Soft goth, to be exact. No, that isn’t a paradox — it really is the newest spring aesthetic everyone wants to nail.
Though the term “soft goth” was largely coined on TikTok, its inspiration comes from Netflix’s recent reimagining of an iconic gothic teen: Wednesday Addams. The wildly popular Wednesday series introduced viewers to a Gen Z version of Wednesday Addams with a penchant for modern gothic fashion. While much of TikTok was obsessing over her dance moves at The Raven, Gen Z watchers were also all about Wednesday’s look — a look that was definitely goth-inspired but a little, well, softer.
While “traditional” goth makeup may lean on black eyeshadow and blacker lipstick, Jenna Ortega’s Wednesday Addams favored a smoky eye and a neutral lip. The soft goth beauty aesthetic takes notes from Ortega’s character, revolving around a deep diffused eye look. But the smoked-out eyeshadow in question doesn’t even need to be black. In fact, soft goth girls have flocked to purple shadows to get their ideal makeup look.
Purple eyeshadow is just a few steps away from black and gray shadows, allowing you to create a dark smoky eye with a softer edge. To get the soft goth makeup look, the most popular purple shades are cool and dusty, having a grayish tinge that keeps things glamorously gloomy (in the best way). Aside from neutral hues like cool browns, grays and blacks, purple is largely the only color that works with creating a macabre-lite look. See why it’s popular?
To get the goth-leaning spring look for yourself, check out the best purple eyeshadows every soft goth girl needs below. You know Wednesday would be proud.
1. e.l.f. Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow in Purple Reign, $6
For only $6, you can make your soft goth beauty dreams come true, thanks to e.l.f. The budget beauty brand’s shimmery and long-lasting Liquid Glitter Eyeshadow comes in a purple-gray color that is perfect for an easy soft goth smoky eye. Just apply the product to your lid with the wand and smoke out the edges with a dense eyeshadow brush. Even goth girls like glitter!
2. Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeshadow in Set List, $21
Urban Decay’s cool-toned 24/7 Eyeshadow in Set List is a deep purple color with a blue shimmer shift. Wear it alone or pair it with a black, gray or cool-toned brown shadow for a more dimensional soft goth smoky eye.
3. about-face Matte Fluid Eye Paint in New Karma, $16
If you’re looking for a more vibrant purple shadow, about-face’s Matte Fluid Eye Paint in New Karma is just what the makeup artist ordered. The hyper-pigmented shadow is bright purple, giving you a vivid eye look that is still edgy. It’s especially great for those with deep skin tones due to the bold hue and the buildable formula.
4. r.e.m. beauty Midnight Shadows Lustrous Liquid Eyeshadow in Science Fair, $16
Ariana Grande isn’t exactly the first person you think of when soft goth beauty goals come up. But the singer’s r.e.m. beauty line carries a Lustrous Liquid Eyeshadow in Science Fair, and it’s purple eyeshadow bliss. The metallic violet hue can be used as an eye-catching base color or a buildable solo shade.
5. Ulta Beauty Eyeshadow Single in Sunday Funday, $9
Micro glitter gives a slight metallic-like finish to Ulta Beauty’s Sunday Funday eyeshadow. Described as a “medium blueberry shimmer” shadow, the product is a great standalone shadow or a top-notch eye topper. Pro tip: You can also use it as a corner highlight with other products on this list.
6. MAC Matte Eyeshadow in Darkroom, $21
MAC’s Darkroom is a cool purple matte shadow with a slight shimmer. Wear it alone or pair it with black or gray shadow for a more complex smoky eye. P.S. It’d look great with black lipstick if you really want to push the boundaries of soft goth glam.
7. KVD Beauty Super Pomade Shadow Pigment in Roxy Purple, $25
For the boldest shadow of the bunch, nothing beats KVD Beauty’s Super Pomade Shadow. The pure pigment is a true purple that can be applied as eyeshadow, eyeliner and brow product. The formula is like a cream eyeshadow, which you can apply with your finger or a brush. Be warned: A little goes a long way.
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