The smoky eye look is no longer the domain of professional make-up artists; you can do them at home too! Follow these 8 simple steps for a flawless finish.
1. Choose your colours
Any colour can be used to create a smoky eye, but you’ll need at least three shades in a similar hue.
- Green eyes: look particularly good with a grey and plum smoky eye.
- Blue eyes: pop with gold or copper.
- Brown eyes: go great with shades of navy and grey.
- Choose three shades of each colour: a light, creamy colour, a medium base colour, and a dark smoky colour.
- Avoid colours that are too bright, or if you have very fair skin.
2. Use the right supplies
- Using loose powders gives you the best blending ability, which you need when creating a great smoky eye.
- Use pitch-black eyeliner to accentuate your smoky eye. You can use a pencil, cream or liquid eyeliner, and any will work just fine. Cream and liquid eyeliners give a very smooth finish, while a pencil eyeliner gives a softer blended look.
- Be sure to use good quality makeup brushes. Using dirty, old, or sponge brushes will create a smeared look that doesn’t blend. The best makeup brush for a smoky eye is a domed eyeshadow brush, which is rounded at the top. You can find these at many beauty supply stores.
- Use a concealer and eyeshadow primer to prep your lids before applying the smoky eye.
- Have a large fluffy brush, make-up remover and ear buds on hand to fix any mistakes.
3. Apply your face make-up
Before you put on your smoky eye, you should create your neutral palette. Apply concealer under your eyes and on any dark or red spots, and then apply a powder foundation over the top to set it.
4. Apply your highlighter
- Use your lightest shade of eyeshadow on the inside corners of your eyes and directly under your eyebrow, above your crease.
- Sweep the highlighter underneath your eyes on the inside corner.
5. Put your darkest colour along the lash line
- Take your darkest eyeshadow and use your brush to sweep it along your upper lash line. It should bedarkest near the roots of your lashes, and then blend upwards towards your crease.
- Use a little on the lower lash line, but only near the outer edge. Sweep inwards with your dark shadow, going to about halfway across your lower lashes.
- Only use your darkest shadow halfway up your eyelid.
6. Add your middle tone
- Take your medium shade of eyeshadow and start from halfway up your eyelid, sweeping towards your crease. You should place this colour in the part of your lid where it can meet your darkest colour.
- Blend this colour upwards beyond your crease and into your highlighter. The goal is for your eyeshadow to get gradually lighter from your lashes to your brows.
7. Blend your colours
- Sweep the brush in soft, broad strokes across your lid at the places where the different shades of eyeshadows meet.
- Don’t forget to blend outwards at the edges of your eye, so that your shadow softly fades into your natural skin tone.
8. Add your eyeliner
- For an ultra-dramatic smoky eye, it is best to use a smudged eyeliner look. Use a chunky eyeliner pencil to draw a thick line across your upper lash line only. Then, use your makeup brush or fingertip to blur the edges upwards.