These colorful smokey eyes hacks will have you trying out every color shadow in the rainbow, and forgetting about basic black.
Go bold, or go home. If you’re going to try a smokey eye, put down that boring black shadow, and take a look at these colorful smokey eyes. While the thought of using a bright-colored lipstick may make your hands quiver more than when you apply eyeliner, it is worth switching up that tried-and-true neutral smokey eye from time to time. A bit of color isn’t that scary, I promise. And unlike sooty black, bright colors don’t make it look like you have two black eyes when you overdo the shading.
Here are 15 colorful smokey eye hacks that will make you forget that you even own a black eyeshadow:
- Smokey Eye Guide: Before you even pick up that eyeshadow brush, you need to know the correct places to apply the color; otherwise, you could end up looking like you have a weird eye infection.
- Ivory and Navy Smokey Eye: If asking you to not use your favorite neutral shadow is like asking you to not watch the new season of Orange Is The New Black (read: impossible), I understand. Here’s how to slowly incorporate color with a lighter neutral shadow.
- Hint Of Turquoise Smokey Eye: Here’s another one for you, if you want something that doesn’t scream: “COLOR!!!” The blue shadow with a touch of turquoise near the inner corner is a great stepping stone for building up your color threshold.
- Pink And Purple Smokey Eye: If you think pink and purple can only be sweet, this vibrant eye is anything but cutesy. The thick cat-eye makes it even more badass.
- Soft Green Smokey Eye: If you fancy a bit of color but are looking for something subdued, this soft green smokey eye is a more exciting alternative to taupe. You can even get away with it during the day, without your co-workers saying some snide remarks about your makeup.
- Sunset Smokey Eye: Mixing pink and yellow shadow could be a recipe for looking like you caught a nasty eye fungus, but when you choose soft metallic shades, it isn’t that much of a change from a metallic brown smokey eye.
- Lilac Smokey Eye: If you’re looking for something a bit girly that isn’t pink, this lilac and purple smokey eye should fulfill the feminine quota.
- Hot Pink Smokey Eye: To tone down an electric shot of colored shadow, blend it with deeper tones and a dusting of black. See, I let you use the inky shade somewhere!
- Orange, Purple, and Turquoise Smokey Eye: Once you master your smokey eye, you can go crazy with different color combinations. If you want to know which colors best enhance your eyes, here are some flattering shade suggestions.
- Bright Blue Smokey Eye: I’m pretty sure that if Ariel from The Little Mermaid had worn eyeshadow, it would look something like this. This is one easy way to define your eyes if you’re a redhead.
- Aqua And Pink Smokey Eye: There’s something about this muted turquoise and pink eyeshadow combination that reminds me of a watercolor painting. Luckily you don’t need the skills of a master painter to pull this off.
- Fire Smokey Eye: Red eyeshadow is intimidating. Let’s face it; red lipstick is scary for most of us. This color combination isn’t for the faint of heart, but it has the guts, channel The Hunger Games, and go for it.
- Purple And Blue Smokey Eye: A blue smokey eye looks awesome on its own, but when you add purple shadow, it looks that much cooler.
- Peacock Smokey Eye: This blue and green smokey eye looks amazing on dark eyes. If you’re in the mood for even more color, you can even pair it with green and blue mermaid hair, though that may be a bit too much.
- Rainbow Smokey Eye: Forget about just using one or two colors, and go for every color under the rainbow. If you can’t get enough of multi-colored makeup, here are some other great ideas.
If There Is Another Eye Makeup Look Besides The Smoky Eye I Do Not Know It
The Only Eye Makeup I Ever Wear Is Smoky Eye Makeup, and even though I am due for a change I just can’t put down the kohl.
Sali Hughes wrote in The Guardian today that even though women are intimidated by smoky eye shadow that:
Sexy, smudgy, smoky eyes: everyone seems to want them, while mostly feeling that successful application is beyond their capabilities. This must be overcome, because it is one of the more versatile and egalitarian looks. The joy of smoky eye makeup is that it suits every age, face and eye shape, and is one of the few shadow techniques that works just as well on hooded lids, because it doesn’t rely on the crease line. It’s also fabulous on deep-set eyes and glasses wearers. Uniquely, it looks better as the evening progresses and things get a little more blurred and grimy.
And I agree with her because I have no idea how to apply my eye makeup any other way. I can basically do a thin line of liner and mascara and be done with it, but even that proves even more difficult than creating a smoky eye. I think because I am a messy makeup applier.
I’m sort of at this stage now where I KNOW I should do something different with my eye makeup, I am in a total rut, but then again I am also too lazy to plop down at the Sephora counter and demand someone teach me another way. I love makeup, but day in and day out it’s s brown smoky eye followed by a black smoky eye for evening.
I think I could possibly look good in plums or wines, I have blue eyes and pale skin, but even that seems like it would look garish compared to what I am used to. Instead, I am just swooning over Sali’s picks for smoky eye products and considering buying them, even though I already own similar things, she suggests the Smashbox Fade To Black palette and Charlotte Tilbury chameleon crayons.
Do you ever find yourself bored with your typical makeup looks and how do you get over that? Or do you just do as I do, and stick with the same oh same oh because if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it? More importantly, I need suggestions about how I can get Sam to invite me over for a makeover.
Smoky Eyes 101
Love the look of smoldering eyes but don’t know how to do it? Here are a few simple steps to get this perfect fall look.
Smashbox Cosmetics makes a trio of shimmer-based eyeshadows called “Smokebox Eyelights.” It makes the perfect starter set for smoky eye novices.
Each shade in this palette has a specific purpose. The lightest shade works best as a brow highlighter and a base color. The medium shade gives you contours and also works well for a daytime smoky look. And the darkest shade will give you the dark, smoldering, sexy look.
Before applying the base color, use a small amount of primer or concealer over the entire eyelid area, then set it with some loose powder.
Apply the lightest shade on the eyelid. Use the most color on the lower part of the lid while gently sweeping the color upwards towards the brow.
Next, apply the medium shade. Start near the lash line and blend upwards into the crease using a loose blending brush. Use a horizontal sweeping motion and blend well.
If you want a more dramatic smoky eye, use the darkest of the three shades. Apply the color just like the medium shade or just in the outer corners for contrast. Remember to blend, blend, blend!
Use a pencil brush to apply the medium or dark shade under the bottom lash line, then soften it by smudging the color.
Finish this look with some black eyeliner on the inner lash line and a touch of mascara. This creates the perfect smoky finish.
Makeup Expert & Manicurists, Contributing Editor
Jessica is a writer who feels it is a job requirement to own every shade of nail polish. She thinks any bad day can be improved by a trip to Sephora–provided there aren’t 10 people giving themselves makeovers, in front of the new lipsticks.