Tutorial: How to apply eyeshadow
Say Goodbye To Creasing Or Smearing Eyeshadow
Thanks to its versatility, eyeshadow has the ability to transform your look and make your eyes really stand out – and it’s not a new trend either.
The ancient Egyptians used eyeshadow as far back as 10,000 BC, and like all art, a rich history means disagreement about it should be applied.
The thing is, everyone is different. A technique that may work for one person may not necessarily work for another – it’s all about finding the right look for you. In this blog, we will look at the best ways to make your eyes pop!
There are pros and cons to all forms of eye shadow, so let’s find the best formula for your skin. You can choose:
Powder – Powder eyeshadow has always been the most popular form, mainly thanks to its cost effectiveness, as well as often being sold as part of a palette of matching colours. For oily skin, powder is the way to go as other forms can easily wear off during the day.
Cream – Usually sold in a jar, cream based eyeshadow has many fans around the world – mainly those who suffer from dry skin. Thanks to its moisturising properties, and the availability of water-proof formulas, cream is a godsend for those who can’t use powder.
Pigment – Applied over either a cream or primer, pigment is a highly-concentrated powder that if used correctly can really bring the best out of your look.
Eyeshadow finishes – which is best?
When you’re in pursuit of that cohesive appearance, the choice of finish in your eyeshadow should be at the top of your priority list.
Matte – Whilst cheaper matte eyeshadow can appear a little inconsistent, a good brand can help you exhibit colours like no other – and thanks to its popularity, most shops have a huge selection.
Frost – A frost eyeshadow can help to emphasise both the centre and inner corners of the eyes by using light-reflecting particles.
Satin – A more subtle version of frost eyeshadow, satin tends to have more in common with matte finishes, but the understated sparkle can add a little mystery.
Pearlised – A mid-point between frost and satin.
Metallic – As the name suggests, metallic eyeshadow uses larger reflective particles to produce an elegant metal-esque appearance.
Velvet – Using velvet eyeshadow can produce a smooth finish with varying degrees of shimmer.
Know your eyes
While many professionals use 8-10 terms to describe different areas of the skin around the eye, the jargon is almost always unnecessary. The important parts are:
Eyelid – As the name suggests, the eyelid refers to the skin that stretches over the eye when we blink or rest.
Brow bone – The bone just below your eyebrows that juts out and controls the protrusion of the forehead.
Crease – The contour where your eyelid meets the brow bone.
How to apply eyeshadow
Once you’ve got hold of your preferred formula and finish, it’s time to get started.
1) Start with a fresh canvas
It’s important not to waste good make-up (and money) – so make sure you use either a paraben-free face wipe or cleansing lotion to ensure your skin is clean. While you can use moisturiser, try to avoid applying it to your eyelids as this will prevent your cosmetics from sticking.
2) Get primed
Primer is often overlooked by many as being unnecessary. However, for some women - especially those with naturally oily skin whose eyeshadow has a tendency to crease - primer is a must. Simply rub it into your eyelid gently, from your upper lash line to your brow bone.
3) Apply a base
A base can help to even out your skin tone around your eyes and allows the eyeshadow to stick better. If you don’t possess a base, a simple concealer or foundation should work nicely. The base should be gently rubbed with a finger or a flat brush directly onto the eyelid - and depending on personal preference – on the area below the eye to cover up bags or blemishes.
4) Map out your colours
As most eyeshadows are sold in palettes with matching colours, its essential that they are applied in the correct areas.
a) For the eyelid, a medium strength colour should be softly applied using a flat brush by simply patting the eyeshadow of choice onto the lid using one side of the brush. It’s often easier to start from the centre and work outwards, allowing you to keep consistent concentration across the entire area through blending.
b) For the crease, use a matching colour that is darker than those on your eyelid and browbone. Many women prefer to use frost or shimmer finishes on the eyelid and browbone, and counter this by using a matte finish on the crease. Crease eyeshadow is best applied using a finer brush than previously to ensure a more exact application, and most find it easier to start in the outer corner of the eye and slowly move inwards.
c) For the browbone, a lighter colour helps to accentuate the darker colours you have chosen for the eyelid and crease – again applied with a flat headed brush from the inside-out. Once applied, use a rounded blending brush to gain a clean finish that allows light to bounce naturally.
5) Blending time
At this point, the differences in tone between the three chosen shades can be a little obvious – and that is why we use a blending brush. Using light strokes and a circular motion, use the brush to create a natural and unified finish.
6) Learn to experiment
While this is a basic tutorial for a simple three-tone eyeshadow application, there are a number of different ways to use the aforementioned steps to vary your approach and find the way that works best for you. Try experimenting with different tones, bases, and finishes to ensure a personalised look – and don’t forget to look for examples in the media of people with similar facial structures to yourself – celebrities pay a lot of money to cosmetic professionals in order to achieve the perfect look, so learning from the media is a great way to gain new ideas.
7) Finishing touches
Once the eyeshadow is applied, there is still much work to be done for the perfectionist – from eyeliner, to lash curling, to mascara application – the list is endless. But remember, a generous amount of make-up does not necessarily provide great results, so tailor your look accordingly and make sure you do what’s best for the look you desire.
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