Read these 37 Eye Shadow Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Make-Up tips and hundreds of other topics.
All makeup minded individuals have heard about eyelid primers and how fantastic they are. Even though they are helpful in some cases, it is important to know the ins and outs of these primers in order to get the most out of what you buy.
The first characteristic that you are looking for in a good primer is consistency. If a primer is very watery or thin, it is likely not going to work properly. You want a primer, be it clear or tinted, that is of medium thickness and wetness, and has a smooth texture both in the tube and on your eyelid after application. The whole job of an eyelid primer is to create a smooth and natural canvas for your shadows, instead of a wet and gritty mess.
The next thing you want to think about is color. In most cases, primers are either clear or nude. If you are opting for a clear primer, then this bit does not really apply to you. However, for those that choose a nude primer, you want to be sure that it at least matches your skin tone to a certain degree. Though it does not have to match perfectly, finding one that is similar in color and tone to your own skin will help even out your makeup and make the application that much easier. The last thing you need to remember is that sometimes you do not need a primer at all; concealer or foundation can be just as helpful as a primer, and is often far less expensive.
If you don't wear eye makeup often, it may seem impossible to get a natural yet beautiful look. However by following some simple guides, you can learn to apply eye shadow very easily.
Select your colors.
Start with neutrals. Before experiment with bright, metallic or dark colors, you should get comfortable with neutrals. Brown shades look good on everyone. Once you get the hang of applying shadow, you can begin experimenting with more vibrant colors.
If you are having problems selecting colors, Makeup.com offers a variety of different eye shadow kits which usually contain three coordinating colors. Makeup.com features top brand names such as Becca Cosmetics, Cargo, Lola Cosmetics, Paula Dorf, Too Faced and several others.
Apply the shadow.
You should have three shades in the same color family. You will apply the lightest color on the brow bone, the darkest color in the crease and the medium shade on the eyelid.
Whether your brown eyes are the color of fine grains of sand or deep mahogany, it takes certain hues to emphasize them. To draw attention to brown eyes try blue tones; these shades will accentuate the various shades of brown eyes. Try not to buy shades that look like something you had in the 80's! Lighter shades give better results. Darker shades should be used in the crease of the eye and blended outward. Shadows that display shimmery textures work best. To apply, start from the lash lines and blend up to the brow bones. Use a light color under browbone as a highlighter. Use a navy eyeliner to pop brown eyes and black mascara. Looks great every time.
There's definitely a method to eye makeup application. Want those baby blues to shine like a clear summer sky or glisten like a tropical sea? To emphasize blue eyes use brown and rose shadows. Warm hues will contrast the coldness of blue eyes, making them really pop. To apply, start at the lash lines and work up to creases. Use a light hue under the brow bone. Use a dark brown eyeliner and smudge it with your finger to look natural. To finish off the look add a coat of black mascara. Make sure to do lips light and sparkly!
In order to achieve the “smokey eyes” look you must select dark, neutral colors. Black eyeliner with gray eye shadow will work well for the smokey eyes appearance. First, line your eyes with a black eye liner pencil. Make sure you line both top and bottom paying close attention to lining around the natural eyelid contour. You can use concealer under your eyes with a thick coat of powder that will catch any excess eye shadow, which will later be brushed away so you don't get the dark colors under your eyes.
After you line your eyes carefully smudge the liner in the outer corners to soften the line. Then apply a thin line of black eye shadow over your eyeliner to further soften the look and create a stronger contrast. Next apply your eye shadow all over your eyelid, use a charcoal shadow or a neutral brown. Now top it off with black mascara and neutral lipstick and blush colors. Smokey eyes are a popular for evenings or “night on the town” adventures.
Want to give your eyes a striking and vivid appearance? How exactly should you choose eye shadow hues? Here are some helpful hints: Blue eyes will really “pop” if you use a shadow that is much darker. Brown hues work best. For hazel eyes choose shadow colors that are the same as the color flecks that you wish to highlight (green, gold, brown, etc.). Brown Eyes look fantastic with almost any color but for a dramatic effect pair a dark liner with a softer shadow and finish off with a darker shade on the crease. Blue hues look the best when trying to pop brown eyes. Colors from the same greenish family will brighten green eyes and make them stand out, along with choosing the color from the opposite side of the color wheel, purples work best for a dramatic effect.
The best way to make your eyes "stand out" is to use light colored eye shadow. Use a light base shadow like a pale pink, yellow, cream or beige. Apply the light color all over your eyelid and then to accent the eyes use a darker shade only in the outer corners and sparingly. If you use dark colors on the lids or in the crease you will create a closing effect and make the eye appear to be even farther back.
You can also use liquid eyeliner making a thin line along the top eyelid and smudge with fingertips. The line will accentuate your eyes and give them some definition.
For puffy, tired eyes, use a natural-looking color (beige, taupe) on the top lid, then apply a pale, cool shade (white, ivory)of shimmery eyeshadow just below the brow line. Put tiny dabs of the same color in the inner corners of your eyes. For dark circles under your eyes, use a yellow concealer. You might want to use a brighter lipstick to draw attention from the eye area.
When making hue selections with eye makeup, choose a color that will make those brilliant green eyes sparkle like dazzling emeralds. To highlight green eyes, utilize shades of browns and lavender. Purple shades in direct contrast with green eyes will create a dramatic contrasting effect; this is a striking look that is perfect for evening wear. On the other hand, warmer shades of browns blend harmoniously with green eyes and will create a subtle, natural effect; this is a great daytime look. Use a natural lipliner and lots of gloss to pout those lips! Finish the look off with a great brown mascara.
Eyes are one of the most important parts of your face. When applying make up, some experts believe your eyes are the focal point. If your eyes are perfect then everything else will fall into place.
Women with small eyes should use a light color over the entire lid and add only a small amount of dark shadow in the outer corners. Light colors will make your eyes appear bigger. Dark colors tend to have a closing effect. Never line or put mascara underneath eyes as this tends to make eyes look smaller. Using a natural looking brow pencil on groomed eyebrows may also help make your eyes stand out.
When choosing eye makeup for green eyes, you should consider your skin tone as well as your eye color. Many women with green eyes have fair skin and freckles. If you have a light complexion, try to avoid eye shadow that is too deep or shimmery. However, some women with green eyes have olive skin. These women should avoid silver and blue shadows.
All women with green eyes look great in brown colors from light beiges to deep chocolate browns. Purples and pinks also complement with green eyes. Some people will suggest that you shouldn't wear green shadow if you have green eyes. However, light green can be very flattering when applied sparingly.
Brown eyes look great in blue and pink tones as well as golds and burnt oranges. The intensity of color you wear depends on your skin tone. For fair skin, use a soft blue on the eylid, plum on the outer edge of the eye, and pink under the eyebrow. For medium to deeper skin tone, the plum could be used on the lid and into the crease area. Line eyes with a navy or plum color and black mascara.
I recommend a natural bristled, long handled brush to apply eyeshadow. It should be flat and large enough to apply shadow on the eyelid and the edge of the tip can be used to apply shadow in the crease of the eye. The larger the brush, less will be deposited on the skin, for a wash of color.
Applying dry eye shadow with a brush will help you to coat your lids with beautiful sheer, all over color. To intensify the color of your eye shadow, use a sponge applicator. For a slightly more dramatic effect, apply your shadow wet with a brush; this will deepen and brighten the hues as well as increase shimmer.
If you're looking for a way to play up your eye color, go smoky. A smoky effect makes eye color pop and creates a dramatic evening look. Read on to learn how to create a flawless smoky eye.
Create a smooth canvas for eye makeup. First, you'll want to apply a primer to your entire face, including the eye area. Then apply a concealer to get rid of redness and dark circles. Finish off by applying a moisturizing foundation to create a flawless canvas.
Apply eyeliner. Use a black liner and draw a line across the upper lash line. When you get to the middle of the eye, make the line a little bit thicker. Choose a lighter-colored eyeliner and line the bottom of your eye. Smudge the liner with your finger to create a smoky appearance.
Apply two colors of eye shadow. In order to select the right products, check out eye shadow reviews. You'll want a color palette that has both a light and a dark color, such as L'Oreal Paris HiP Concentrated Shadow Duo. Use the lighter color as a base and blend the color all over your upper lid. Then, apply the dark eye shadow, starting at the lash line and blending upward.
For a fabulous fun look, use bright eye shadow colors. The trick to this look is keeping it from fading or creasing throughout the day. There are several things you can do to help your bright eye shadow stay put.
Don't skip the primer.
Eye shadow primer provides a smooth canvas for your eye shadow. Using a primer will help your eye shadow stay in place and not crease or appear cakey. Apply a light coat of primer from your lash line to your brow bone. Add a light dusting of sheer powder over the primer.
Apply shadow with a brush.
A brush will give you control when applying pigments. Use a small, fine brush made especially for eye shadow. If you want your color to appear deeper, dip the brush in water before adding the shadow.
Use both cream and powder.
Eye shadow comes in both cream and powder form. To help your bright eye shadow color last all day, try matching colors in both cream and powder formulas. Apply the cream in a thin layer (to avoid creases later in the day) over the entire lid. Follow by applying your powder shadow as usual.
1. Reduce fine lines. Apply a little eye cream on the brow bone and under the eye. Next dab on a concealer that matches your skin tones. Blend well with a concealer brush. The last step is to line the eye with a white pencil just beneath the lash line. Blend with fingertips. This will give the impression of larger and brighter eyes.
2. Shadow eyes with eye shadow and apply from the inside corner outward. Always blend up and outward. Highlight just under brows with a lighter, shimmery shade. Try to use at least two shades of shadow.
3. Softly line with eyeliner, brush or pencil, draw a thin line along lashes next to roots. For softness and more natural look smudge with fingertip or Q-tip.
4. Brush brows upward. Carefully trim any excess hair above the top of your natural arch. Look closely at the shape. Your brow should begin at your inner eye, peak at the outer edge of your iris and end at the outer corner of your eye. Hold a pencil in line with the outer side of your iris and note where the peak of your arch naturally occurs. From the arch to the outer corner of the eye, your brow should fall in a straight or slightly curved line, depending on the look you're trying to achieve.
5. Do not sleep in your make-up as this can cause your lashes to dry out and become brittle. Elevate your head when you sleep, to keep fluid from settling around your eyes.
There is no standard for color selection. If you have light hair and skin with pink undertones you would be safe to use pastel light colors.
Here are some color combination suggestions:
Light pink shadows all over with gray or charcoal in the outer corners.
Lavender shadows all over with dark purple in the outer corners and/or half way in the crease of your eye.
Use silver shadow all over with dark gray or charcoal in your crease and/or outer corners of the eye.
Light pinks all over with a shade darker on your lower lid and burgundy in the outer corners.
You will be able to open up your eye if you use lighter colors on the lid, especially at the top of your eye!
Set your eyeshadow with loose transparent powder and you will not have a creasing problem, even towards the end of the day. You can apply the powder prior to or after the eyeshadow. Experiement both ways to find the one that suits you. Use a powder brush after coloring but before putting on mascara and swipe over eyes to remove any excess powder.
Brown skin tones look great with light pinks, tans, or even greens. If you like the light colors such as white for your eye shadow, which gives you a noticeable contrast then I would recommend trying a light pink eye shadow with a darker color in the outer corners of your eyes. A tan or almost cream shadow would also be a good choice, it will give a little more contrast than a normal brown and will still work well with your skin tone.
If you are feeling adventurous you could try a light green shadow with dark forest green eyeliner to accent your eye shadow.
As far as foundation goes, I would wear whatever you feel comfortable wearing. You can buy a sheer coverage foundation that will somewhat hide your freckles, but not look thick or “caked on”. Foundation basically is used to even out your skin tone and cover any imperfections you may have on your face. If you feel more comfortable with just powder then you should go with that option.
Eye shadow won't stay put? A common makeup problem is wandering eye shadow—sprinklings finding their way to other parts of your face, other than your lids. No worries, however, this problem can easily be resolved. Before applying the shadow, tap all excess powder from your brush. Keep in mind that some eye shadows are much more powdery than others so make smart decisions when purchasing. Want to know a great trick? Before applying your eye shadow, apply a foundation and concealer to the eye area. Then, apply your shadow followed by liner and mascara. Finally, apply foundation to the remaining areas of the face evenly.
You definitely want to wear shadows that accentuate your eyes. Depending on your skin tone, neutral colors such as taupe, browns and dark greens or olive look fabulous with green/hazel eyes. You can brighten them up a little with a pale pink and pastels. Lighter pinks look great mixed with brown shadows.
You may also want to try brown or purple eyeliner to accent the eye shadow. Remember to blend outward with fingertips for a natural look.
The most elegant look with a black dress and blue eyes would be the "smoky eyes" look. Start with a medium blue shadow from the bottom of your eyelid to the crease. Next apply a gray shadow on the outer half of your eyelid, from the bottom of the lid to the crease, kind of smudging with your finger. Line the top and bottom lashes slightly past outer corners with a black kohl pencil. Smudge liner with a cotton swab or fingertips. If you're looking for something a little more advanced, before applying black mascara, apply a purple/mauve eye shadow from the lid to the crease, (instead of blue) becoming less intense toward the outer corners. Curl lashes and apply mascara for maximum intensity.
For blue eyes and blond hair the best looking eyeshadow colors are violets and lavenders or neutral tones. Use the violet on the lid and in the crease of the eyelid. Use the lighter color lavender above the crease to the eyebrow bone for a dramatic night look. Use natural colors for daytime.
Eyeshadow recommendation for blue eyes and blond hair: Natural tones for day and purple hue's for night!
Try to go with purple or plums, or even a cocoa or dark brown as the color in the crease of your eye. You will need a shade lighter for the upper lid to the eyebrow. Pick three shades in the same color family and blend them for a smooth, sultry look. Use your favorite base shadow for all over cover and remember to blend blend blend!
The eyeshadow colors one chooses are based on skintone, eye color and hair color. Neutral looks good on all of us. If you have blue eyes and want to accentuate them, use deep brown colors. Green eyes? Use purples to pop those babies out! Brown eyes? Blue is the color for you!
There is no certain color that is specifically made for fair-skinned blondes, but there are some colors that may look better than others.
Today it is pretty much "anything goes" as far as make up and color combinations. In the past they would tell you what season you were and what colors you should wear. Now most women like their make up to match their clothing somewhat. Use light shades like pastels or neutral colored hue's with a pink/purple undertone. Never use dark dramatic colors without playing around with the look first.
Dark circles may be the result of several factors. It may be that you are not getting enough sleep. It may be a result of pigment discoloration in your skin or it could be caused from makeup flaking and settling under your eyes. Make sure to use light colors as dark colors will make eyes look even more dreary. Do not line on lower lash line. Try using Visine or Clear Eye's to get the redness out. Another idea is to try a moisturizing eye cream that will nourish the delicate skin under your eyes.
Coordinate your eyeshadow to go with your eye and hair color rather than the color of your clothes.
For blue eyes and blond hair the best looking eyeshadow colors are browns and lavenders. Use the violet on the lid and in the crease of the eyelid. Use the lighter color lavender above the crease to the eyebrow bone. For a dramatic night look, use deep set browns and brown liner to accentuate the blue of your eye.
If your eyes seem irritated from using eyemakeup remover, be sure not to saturate the cotton pad. Maybe use less or first apply water to the pad so the product will be slightly diluted. You can use a facial cleanser on your eyes, but only if it is opthamologist tested. I suggest removing eyemakeup first, then your foundation and follow with a splash of water. Then follow with your freshener.
Dark eye circles don't discriminate; they can target any of us no matter what our age. The good news, however, is that we don't have to walk around with murky, puffy eyes that make us look more old and tired than we actually are—there is a solution. Eye gel, a Skinceuticals skin care product, can help you achieve more youthful-looking eyes. Try putting an eye gel in the fridge and use in the morning sparingly around the delicate eye area. The coolness of the gel with help alleviate swollen areas. Try a good Eye Creme with Vitamins and antioxidant to keep skin rejuvinated.
To minimize the appearance of sagging eyelids, don't use frosts on the overhang, but instead use a medium shade of brown, khaki or gray to minimize the excess skin. Never line or put mascara on bottom of eye or this will draw more attention. Use shades that do not have any sparkles.
With deep-set eyes the eyelid crease is set back so the area from the base of the eyelashes to the brow bone seems hidden. To enhance deep-set eyes line both the upper and lower lids. Choose light shadows: pale pink, peach or beige. More intense shading on the brow bone also gives the eyes prominence.
Choosing the right eye shadow product can be tricky, leaving you with tons of products that have only been used a couple times. Checking out eye shadow reviews allows you to learn from other women's successes (and mistakes). Read on to learn eye shadow tips for choosing the best products.
Cream eye shadows. Women in eye shadow reviews consistently rave about Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Eye Shadow. Application is super easy – you can sweep the shadow onto your eyes with a few finger strokes, and if you want a more dramatic eye, you can use an eye shadow brush to create a stronger look.
Shadow Duos. Check out L'Oreal Paris HiP Concentrated Shadow Duo. This product is great for creating more depth in the eyes. The lighter color can be applied all over the lid and the deeper color in the creases to create a dramatic effect.
Eye shadow color palettes. Products like LORAC Showstopper Palette get high reviews for quality and versatility. Creating a daytime look is super easy with a variety of soft shades. And, you can layer on deeper shades in the evening to create a smoky affect.
Try cool cotton compresses with an alcohol free toner to cure red eyes. Cucumber slices may be beneficial if you want to try a more natural method. Never underestimate the power of Clear Eye's or Visine. This also helps to moisturize eyes and keep them from becoming any more irritated. Now for the makeup. Use a minimal amount. Play up your lips instead. Apply a neutral color eyeshadow. If you must wear mascara, opt for a waterproof type, in brown. Skip the colored ones except for navy, which would whiten the whites of your eyes.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|