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Okay, y’all. I know I’m not the only one who is exhausted by impossible makeup tutorials. I mean I LOVE seeing artists work, but it’s tough to see a tutorial knowing that you won’t be able to replicate it! So today I’m showing you guys my go-to eyeshadow look! It’s easy, versatile, only requires a few shadows and one brush, and you can use just about any color. Did I mention no eyeliner? Holla.
Before you start this tutorial, make sure to prime your eyes! Not sure what primer is? Need an affordable, cruelty free option that works amazing? I’ve got you covered. Click here to read my post on the best eyeshadow primer, then come back here!
Choose Your Eyeshadows
First up, choose your three shadows. You want one that’s matte and very close to the color of your skin tone. I usually just open a palette and pick the lightest matte shade. Then you want a “medium” matte shade for your crease – obviously this is a broad term but it’s because you really can use any color. In my photos I’m wearing a pinky nude shade but I do this often with warm browns too. Then last, you need a shimmery shade that matches your medium shade. Do something in the same color family and a similar color or lighter.
I used Stark from the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani palette as my skintone shade, Labyrinth from Colourpop as my medium/crease shade and Steady from the Gwen Stefani palette as my shimmer shade.
Note: your crease shade NEEDS to be matte, especially if you have hooded eyes. You never want to put a shimmer shade in your crease if you have hooded eyes because it makes the hood more prominent. A matte shade will help give the illusion of a bigger crease and help “push back” that hood visually.
Just to give you another example, here’s an affordable palette you can use to create this look, the elf Everyday Smokey palette. I’ve labeled the lid shade I would use with a 1, medium/crease shade options with a 2 and shimmer shades with a 3.
Grab the Right Brush
Now you need your tool – a fluffy eyeshadow blending brush is all you need! You DEFINITELY want something fluffy because this look is all about blending. I’ve linked a few affordable options below, I really love Real Techniques and you get two brushes for the price of one!
Apply your light eyeshadow
Okay first up, sweep the lightest shade you chose all over your lid and up onto the crease. You’re not really going to see it on your eye but this is going to make blending way easier.
Apply shadow to the crease
Now start slow and apply your medium shade to your crease. Dip your brush into the shadow, tap the excess off and sweep, starting in the outer corner so most of the product is there. Leave the lid blank! Repeat and build up the color to your desired level of intensity. Once you’re done, dip back into your light matte shade (the one you put all over your lid earlier) and sweep it along the top of your crease just to help blend out the shadow a bit more. Keep sweeping your brush along the top of your shadow (without adding more product) to continue blending the product out. You want your eyeshadow to be diffused, you don’t want a harsh line where your eyeshadow ends.
Tip: make sure to open your eyes and look straightforward in the mirror occasionally. You might have to apply the shadow a bit higher than you think especially if you have round, hooded eyes (like me).
Add shadow to the bottom lid
This step is optional, but you can also take your medium shade and smudge it along the bottom lash line. If you don’t have a smudge brush, just pinch your fluffy brush so that it’s flat and use that! Multi tasking! I think this just helps finish out the look, but I know some people don’t like having anything under the eye.
Add shimmer to the center of the lid
Last but not least, use your ring finger to pat the shimmery shade onto your lid. Again, repeat and build it up to the desired level of intensity. Afterwards, you might need to go back over the crease with your brush (don’t apply more product though), just to make sure everything is blended nicely.
Just to recap:
- Light shadow all over the lid and in the crease
- Medium matte shadow in the crease – BLEND
- Medium matte shadow under the eye
- Pat shimmer shadow on the lid
Apply mascara and you’re done! No liner, nothing. Super easy and super versatile! To me, this look is the perfect balance between a “no makeup” look and a full on smoky eye. It’s a little dramatic but still completely appropriate for everyday wear. If you want it to be less dramatic, go with a lighter shade in the crease and for more drama, go darker and add false lashes. Easy!
My finished look:
Alright babes, what’s your go-to eyeshadow look? Let me know in the comments! And of COURSE if you like this tutorial let me know and make sure to tag me on social media (@valerybrennan) if you give it a try. I’m dying to see!
PS Don’t forget to pin it!