Purple People: Rihanna pulls off violet eyes, Leighton, not so much. Photo: Dave M. Benett, Getty Images | Axelle Woussen, Bauer-Griffin


Two days, two very different takes on purple eye makeup.

Yesterday, we gushed about Rihanna's gorgeous plum liner, nude lip pairing. The pale lips balance the bold eye makeup, and the warm shade of purple complements the singer's golden skin tone.

Unfortunately, Leighton Meester's take was not nearly as successful. The Gossip Girl star wore a cooler violet tone to last night's American Eagle Outfitters Times Square Opening, paired with perfectly penciled red lips and matte, pale skin. The jury at StyeList HQ is out on whether this look is more witchy (Inspired by the Twilight New Moon premiere, perhaps?) or Barnum & Bailey (cue circus music here).

With a few small tweaks, this Meester's makeup could have worked.

If her lips were a little lighter and not so perfectly penciled - but applied more like a stain - the hint of color would play off the violet eye makeup without looking overdone. And a little bronzer would have helped avoid the "I want to suck your blood" effect.

Also, a different shade of purple would look better on Meester. A warmer tone, like eggplant or plum, would help highlight the green and yellow flecks in her brown eyes and warm up her skin tone.

Bottom Line: Purple makeup can look gorgeous on anyone -- just make sure you use the right shade of purple for your skin tone, and pair it with a subtle lip!