Ah yes that age old question “how to do a smokey eye.” As a makeup artist, it is the question I get asked most often. The smokey eye makeup look is the most asked for look in makeovers and special event appointments. You can perfect this sultry makeup look at home with some practice using these steps.
Smokey eye how to:
Step 1: prime and prep
If you’re going to put all this work into your smokey eye, your’e going to want it last all night. And you do not want it to crease. I highly recommend investing in an eye primer. You just need a bit, use your finger to blend it over the whole eye lid and up to the brow. At the very least, use your concealer so the eyeshadow has something to stick to.
Step 2: eyeliner
Use a kohl pencil to line around the whole eye into the lash line. Make it thicker on the top and thinner under the eye. The thicker you go the more dramatic it will be. Then take a liner brush (angled or straight) and smudge the line to create sultry look. You don’t have to be exact at all with this step.
Step 3: highlight
Take a very light white shade of shadow and brush on under your brow, on the inner most corner of your lid, and blend outwards to the middle of the lid. If you choose a matte shade of highlighter you will get a more natural look, if you choose a shimmery or sparkly highlighter color it will be more dramatic. Learn more about eye shadow colors and eye brows.
Step 4: the black eyeshadow
This is the step where you use your darkest color of eyeshadow. If you’re going for the full traditional smokey eye you would use black shadow. For a more mild sultry you can use a dark gray. Use a crease brush to apply the shadow to your natural crease and use a back and forth motion like a windshield wiper. Use a very little bit of shadow and build up. You can add more, it’s VERY hard to take color away.
Super Important Tip: When putting any color in your crease NEVER follow the the crease all the way down to the outer most point. This will give the appearance of sagging or droopy eyes. If you take a pencil and run it from the outer most point of your eye to the tip of the tail of your eyebrow – that is the point in your crease where you stop. Then take a bit more color and apply a tiny bit to the outer part of the lid, blending it upwards to the crease. See the picture.
Step 5: the gray shadow
You now have white shadow and black shadow. The last part is to use the gray to blend it together. Use a medium sized shadow brush. Start by putting the grey shadow on the middle and outer part of the lid and blend … a lot! Now use a very little amount of the gray shadow and blend into the crease as well.
At this point step back and assess your edges and the shape of your smokey eye. Are you satisfied? If not, blend blend and blend some more.
Use lots and lots and lots of coats of black mascara to get this look as dramatic as possible!
If you experience troubles with flaking shadows there are two options to help you. Do your smokey eye first so that you can use any makeup remover to take off the excess shadow before you apply your complexion and blush products. Or, put a bunch of loose powder under your eye and on your cheek bone. The flakes of dark shadow will sit on top of the powder. When you’re done just use a fan brush or big powder brush and sweep it away. See more about how to apply makeup.
What are your favorite smokey eye products to use?