Smoky eye makeup is a makeup style used to create a dramatic and sophisticated look for the eyes. It is associated with a sexy, nighttime look and is often seen on celebrities at red carpet events and models in glossy magazine ads. Perfectly smudged and blended eyeliner and eyeshadow in deep, rich colors are used to achieve the smoky eye makeup style. Several coats of dark mascara finish the look.
To create the smoky eye look, first select makeup colors. Generally, two or three eye shadow colors are used: a neutral for the base, a dark color for contouring and sometimes a lighter contour color for blending with the main contour color. Popular smoky eye makeup colors include purples and plums, dark browns, grays and even blacks. Sometimes people will select deep blues or greens or other colors that complement their eye colors.
Begin creating the smoky eye by applying a primer to eyelids to help hold the shadow in place. The next step is to line the upper and lower lashes with black eyeliner or liner that matches the deepest shade of shadow. Sometimes people line the lower lashes just halfway, from outer edge to center, to avoid making the eyes look smaller.
Next, apply the neutral base shadow all over the lid and the deep shadow on the lower lid only, starting from the crease and blending outward. If using a third color, apply it before the darker contour. Carefully blend the colors for a soft and sultry effect.
An important part of the smoky eye look is carefully smudged eyeliner. There shouldn't be any hard lines; instead, try to achieve an elegantly messy look. A cotton swab can be a useful tool for smudging liner.
Some people like to further enhance the eyes by curling the lashes with an eyelash curler before applying mascara. Whether curling lashes or not, apply several coats of a volumizing or lengthening mascara on upper and lower lashes. Black mascara is often used, or a deep color such as purple or another shade matching the shadow can create additional drama.
With a smoky eye makeup look, all of the focus is meant to be on the eyes. The eyebrows often are enhanced to frame the eyes and face. To enhance brows, fill them in with a powder brow color that matches the brows using an angled brow brush. The rest of the face is usually kept fairly neutral with light lip color and soft cheek color.