The wide world of color cosmetics appeals to everyone. You can color coordinate eye makeup with an outfit or create a dramatic evening look with just a few shades. No matter what your preference, these special techniques make it easier to apply shadow in a natural way -- especially if you're just starting out.
Take a stroll through Sephora or Ulta and you'll find a dizzying array of eyeshadow palettes all beckoning to be taken home. If you've already snapped up one but still need a little guidance, you're in luck. These short videos address some key techniques to help you improve your color game in no time.
Find your eye shape
Your eye shape affects how you apply eyeshadow, as there are different shading techniques that work best. For instance, focus on defining the lash line if you have deep-set eyes or hooded eyelids. For down-turned eyes, concentrate on the lid.
Learn eyeshadow terminology and understand what colors should go where
To take your eyeshadow game to the next level, you first want to know the lingo -- for example, upper lashline, browbone, outer V. Then you need to understand what kind of colors should go where. For example, your highlight color typically goes near your brow/browbone and the inner corner of your eye, whereas the darkest color of an eyeshadow palette would go in the outer V.
Mistakes to avoid when applying eyeshadow
So, you think it's an effortless task to apply eye shadow? Tell that to all the people walking around with eyes that appear too close together, too far apart or totally uneven! Clearly they don't know the best mistakes to avoid eye shadow disasters.
Full Tutorial: Avoid these mistakes when you are putting on eye shadow
Use post-it notes to create a crisp edge
Ever wonder how those YouTubers get such a sharp outer edge using eyeshadow? If you have trouble achieving it freehand, try this fun hack. In our video, learn where to place an ordinary sticky note and how to use it as a guide for shadow. The Post-it acts as a barrier, and when you peel it off you have a crisp, defined shadow line -- no makeup remover needed.
Use an eye shield
Raccoon eyes are the worst, and cleaning up eyeshadow fallout (the excess dust that falls off the brush) is a complete drag. Even the best brands sometimes have fallout, but you can avoid an unnecessary mess by investing in shadow shields.
Priming eyelids may seem unnecessary, but it makes a real difference in the final look. Primer serves two purposes: It evens out skin tone and helps eyeshadow adhere longer. Apply it with your finger -- but watch the quick video for additional tips on reaching inner corners.
Line your lower waterline in white or nude
Lining your eyes with dark liner can make them not only look smaller but more tired. If you didn't get 40 winks, sweep a white or nude liner along your lower waterline -- your eyes instantly look brighter. See the effect on the left eye in the picture below:
Put some shimmer on the center of your eyelid and the inner corners of your eyes for a brighter, larger eye look.
Know the parts of the eyeshadow palette
When you're just starting to wear eyeshadow, the whole palette concept can be confusing. Most mini-palettes have three or four colors, but how are you supposed to know where each one goes? The following tutorial helps take some of the guesswork out of using a multicolor palette. Tip: Unless you're going for an evening look, you'll rarely use the darker shades on the lid.
How to blend eyeshadow
One tip you'll hear over and over again from makeup artists is to blend, blend and blend some more. Harsh edges never flatter anyone, so if you're just venturing into the land of high pigment, this video really helps. Dark shadows should be applied with light to medium pressure, and they should be limited to the lower portion of the eyelid.
Full Tutorial: How to properly blend eyeshadow
Fix broken eyeshadow with ease
Did your eyeshadow break? Don't worry. Spritz a little bit of alcohol and spread the mixture with a tissue. Ta da!
Dye your hair
Use eyeshadow to temporarily "dye" your hair, then fix the color in place with hairspray.
Amplify color with white base
Getting a true-to-pan color requires a bit of ingenuity. You could apply layers of eyeshadow until you achieved the preferred result, but that's a big waste of product. To get the truest shade, grab a white eyeshadow or eyeliner pencil. The white base neutralizes the natural color and brightens any color that's applied on top. Get the full tutorial here.
Never use liquid liner below your eyes
You have a beautiful liner in your makeup bag, but it's simply too wet and intense for using anywhere other than your upper lid. Limit its use to that area. It's better to use an eyeliner pencil. See the difference in the picture below -- the left eye uses liquid eyeliner, whereas the right eye is an eyeliner pencil.