There is something very seductive about dark, smouldering eyes. When done well they tend to command attention drawing observers in. There is, however, a very fine line between looking like a sultry goddess and a racoon. Try my tips and tricks to mastering the art of a smokey eye makeup.
I always start a smokey eye look with the eyes first as this allows me to clean away any eyeshadow that has fallen onto the face during the application. This can be a little hard to look at, as to begin with you have these huge heavy dark eyes with no foundation.
Persistence here is key, keep going with the eye makeup until it is complete before starting your base.
I love Mac Paint as a base for all eye makeup as it is a waterproof cream shadow which prevents your eyeshadow from pooling into creases if you get sweaty or oily. You can use a neutral colour like Bare Canvas so it won’t affect the colour of your chosen shadow. Apply the paint all over the eyelid and out past the outer corners of your eye. Blend well to ensure the base is smooth and even before applying any eyeshadow.
Next, use a dark, but not black, shadow all over the eyelid and up to the crease of the eye as well as smudged along the lower lash-line. Some of my favourite Mac eyeshadow colours for a smokey eye are Bronze, Embark, Green Smoke, Sketch, and Club.
Blend the crease area well with a clean blending brush. Next, apply a little colour to the crease using the same blending brush, I love Rule and Passionate, apply these sparingly as the idea is to create an interesting fade of colour, not a dominant colour. This can also look great smudged into the lower lash-line colour to create the colour fade all around the eye.
Use an angle brush to apply a matte black eyeshadow along the top lash-line, you can stop at the edge of your outer lash-line, or you can wing it up and out a little depending on your mood or the look you are going for. Add a little of the black shadow to the outer lower lash-line until it meets with the outer top lash-line. Either use the same angle brush or an eyeshadow brush to blend the black into the lighter eyelid colour.
Notice every colour is gently smudged and blended into the previous, you want to avoid having any obvious lines or colour changes. The idea is to go from the black on the lash-line to a darker shade on the lid to a warmer lighter colour in the crease.
Add a touch of highlighter along the brow light and in the inner corners of the eye. Try avoiding anything too white or light as this looks very stark and obvious against the dark shadow. Instead, try soft golds, pinks or beiges as your highlight colour.
Apply copious amounts of mascara and a half lash rather than a full strip lash to avoid looking over the top. Now use a cotton pad and eye makeup remover to clean away any dark shadow which has fallen beneath the eye and apply the rest of your makeup for a flawless clean Smokey eye.
Credits: Matt Briggs Photography, Makeup: Di Grover, Model: Cassidy Schiavone (Models and Actors), Hair: Alana Johansson and Styling; Lara Lupish.