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Create the perfect smokey eye: master the mystery

The smokey eye, with its blend of smudged shadows and captivating depth, is a timeless makeup look that flatters all eye shapes and occasions. But achieving that perfect blend, that balance between sultry and defined, can feel like an art form. Brace yourselves, makeup mavens! This comprehensive guide will equip you with the secrets to creating a smokey eye that turns heads and empowers your inner smokey queen.

Purple and black smokey eye look

Smokey eye essentials: tools and products

Before getting started, you will require some specific makeup tools and products. Here's everything you will need in your arsenal for smokey eye success:

  • Eyeshadow brushes: Invest in a good set of blending brushes, preferably in different sizes, for seamless transitions.

  • Eyeshadow primer: Essential for creating a smooth canvas for your shadows. This product will also prevent creases and blur any crepiness or fine lines.

  • Eyeshadows: Choose a cool-toned palette with matte shades in light, medium, and dark tones. For a classic look, opt for browns, greys or blacks. For bolder options, experiment with purples, blues or greens.

  • Eyeliner: Pencil or gel liner in black or brown works best. Consider a pencil with a smudger for diffused lines.

  • Mascara: Volumising or lengthening mascara to accentuate your lashes.

  • Optional: Highlighter for brow bone and inner corners, false lashes for extra drama.

Blending the crease for a perfect smokey eye

Let’s get started on creating your smokey look

Apply eyeshadow primer to your entire eyelid. Pro primers specifically designed for the lids are best but, if you don’t have one to hand, a good concealer can be used as an alternative.

Priming the lids ensures your smokey masterpiece stays put throughout the day or night, and ensures your shadow doesn’t lose any pigmentation on application. 

  1. Start light: Using your lightest eyeshadow shade, sweep it across your entire eyelid as a base.

  2. Define the crease: Apply your medium shade to the crease, focusing on blending upwards for a soft definition. Use a windshield wiper motion with your brush to buff out harsh lines. If you end up with something that isn’t quite as diffused as you’d like, go in with your base shade and blend some more.

  3. Smoke it up: Now comes the magic! Dip an angled brush into your darkest shade and apply it close to your lash line, focusing on the outer corner. Gently blend upwards and inwards, meeting the medium shade in the crease. Remember, blending is crucial for a seamless smokey effect. I recommend using a clean, fluffy brush for the blending. Less if more, you can build a product until you achieve the desired result.

  4. Deepen the drama (optional): For extra intensity, darken the outer corner further and blend upwards. For this, you can use a darker shade again, just on the very outer corner of the lid. Blend, blend, blend!

Smokey eye with brown, gold and black shades

Smokey eye musts

Line your upper waterline with your chosen eyeliner for added definition. Make sure the nib of your liner is slim but softly rounded. After sharpening, run the liner on the back of a hand or a piece of clean paper to take off any sharp edges. Take your time. This part of the process can be fiddly if you have not attempted it before, but the end result is worth it.

Apply eyeliner along your upper lash line, starting thin at the inner corner and gradually thickening outwards. Smudge with your smudger brush for a diffused look.

Line your lower lash line partially or fully, smudging for a smokier effect.

Fill and define your brows to frame your smokey eye masterpiece. Apply mascara generously to your top and bottom lashes, or add false lashes for extra oomph. If you are using mascara, consider applying a primer first for extra volume and length. 

For a dimensional look, apply highlighter to your brow bone and inner corner of the eye.

Dramatic smokey eye look with glitter

Pro tips for smokey eye perfection

  • Blend, blend, blend: This is the mantra of the smokey eye. The more you blend, the softer and more diffused the look will be.

  • Start light and build up: It's easier to add more shadow than to remove it, so begin with a lighter touch and gradually deepen the intensity.

  • Clean up is key: Use a cotton swab dipped in makeup remover to clean up any smudges or fallout for a polished finish.

  • Practice makes perfect: Don't be discouraged if your first attempt isn't perfect. Like any art form, the smokey eye takes practice. Keep experimenting and you'll find your signature style.

Embrace your super sultry alter ego

With these steps and some practice, you'll be creating smokey eyes that mesmerise in no time. Remember, makeup is about self-expression, so have fun, experiment with different colours and techniques, and rock your smokey eye look with confidence.

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