8 steps to master the art of flawless eyeshadow application
Blend it like Beckham
Here’s the thing: There’s simply no room to fritter away time trying to pack on a plethora of colours onto our lids when the real struggle (the daily 9 to 5) of the day is right ahead of us. Whilst we watch all of these influencers perfect their eyelids on the daily, we have no time and no skill to emulate them. They must wake up at 4am or something ridiculous to be able to blend all 15 shades into one shade on both eyes. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
And yet, a well-blended multi-dimensional eyeshadow can really make all the difference in defining your eyes. Unlike the classic winged eyeliner that only serves to elongate and lift up our eyes, a professional finish eyeshadow will further highlight, brighten and contour your eyes for an added punch of allure and sophistication.
If you happen to be one of the few who, unfortunately, have been stuck in a rut of amateur-looking eyeshadow application (or if you belong to the majority who skip eyeshadow altogether due to the preceding intimidating factors), then you’re in the right place. We’ve devised a foolproof 10-step guide to nail a professional eyeshadow application effortlessly.
Don’t prime your lids with concealer or foundation
Been there, done that. This happens to be the biggest mistake we all make when it comes to makeup. Though concealer and foundation may temporarily provide a grip on your shadows, both formulas usually contain oils that will cause your shadows to shift around on your eye as the day goes by. This encourages all sorts of atrocities such as smudging and creasing we’d much rather do without.
Use a primer
Using a shadow primer is half the battle won. Primer technically acts as a form of insurance for your eyeshadow; working as a magnet to really hold your eyeshadow in place and keep it from smudging, creasing or fading. After all, wouldn’t it really suck to have your eyeshadow ghost on you by mid-day when you’ve painstakingly took the time out to make sure it’s perfect earlier on?
If you like the colour pay-off on your lids to really match the shade you see in your eyeshadow palette, go for a primer with full coverage properties in concealing the discolouration and veins on our lids. We recommend Urban Decay’s Primer Potion in Eden for boosting the pigmentation of our shadows.
Start off with a transition shade
To put the term ‘transition shade’ in simpler terms, it’s essentially the middle-man that encourages blending between a darker eyeshadow shade you plan on applying on your eyes to your actual skin tone.
In windshield wiper motion or using small circular strokes, go back and forth with a blending brush slightly above your crease using a light-medium shade of choice. It’s important to use a light wash of shadow as your transition colour before you ‘paint’ on the darker colours subsequently. If you start out with a dark colour too hastily, you may end up with an extremely stubborn, murky spot that will be practically impossible to blend. It’s really like watercolour painting – start with a soft sketch mark, then create darker gradients as you go along.
Deepen up the crease
Further define your crease to create an illusion of deeper set eyes.
Here’s a trick that’ll truly differentiate a professional looking eyeshadow look from the others: Directional blending.
If you want the colour on the outer corner of your eyes to be more saturated, start your brush on the outer corner of your eyes before working your way into the inner corner of the eyes. Wherever you place the shadow first will always be the darkest, so pick the same point of origin every time you add more shadow to create a flawless gradient in your crease.
Further darken up your outer-v
The outer-v refers to the outermost corner of your eye where you can feel the socket of your eye below the brow bone. You should always place the deepest colour in the outer-v to contour your eyes while adding to the illusion of a sunken crease area. Your eyes will look larger and overall, well-balanced when the outer one-third of your eyelid is washed with dark and smoky colours. Use a pencil brush for precision shading on the outer-v and smoking it slightly into the crease.
Use a light, shimmery colour under the arch of your brows and in the inner corner of your eyes. The pop of highlight will instantly brighten up your eyes and enlarges it ever so subtly for you to achieve a polished daytime look. Highlighting your brow bone also grants the illusion of an eyelift to frame a youthful appearance.
Use a shimmery shade on your lids
Go nuts on the shimmer when it comes to packing pigment onto your lids. Go for a glittery or metallic finish on the center of your lids for it to really pop when it catches onto the light.
Smoke out your lower lash line
Last but not least, don’t neglect the lower lash line! Smoke the shadow on your upper lids along to the lower lash line to amp up the smokiness of your eye and consequently completing your look. Using eyeshadow on the lower lash line is an ingenious move that far surpasses its predecessor: lining the waterline with an eyeliner pencil. Using eyeshadow per se skewers the concerns that accompany the liner – namely having it look too harsh and causing your eyes to look even smaller. Use a thin pencil brush or even a q-tip to softly blend the colour as close as possible to your lower lash line. Some shadows tend to take a longer time to blend due to the moisture present on your waterline, so take your time and be patient!