If there’s anything in my life I get complimented on, it’s my amazing, fun-loving, spirited personality. LOL Jk, it’s my eye makeup. I get stopped by strangers and friends and family alike asking how I did my eyeshadow, what I used, where I learned to do that, if I’ll do their makeup one day—you know, the usuals. But I’m no makeup artist, and everything I’ve learned has been from trial and error (and some books and YouTube tutorials, of course). There’s a misconception in the beauty world that eye makeup is difficult, when in fact, it doesn’t have to be.
Ready to get started playing around with your eye makeup but not sure where to start? No matter your skill level, I guarantee you can do these six eye looks.
1. Basic Shimmer With Matte Crease
Having this eye look down will make doing more intricate looks so much easier later. This look has two components: a shimmer on the inner corner and first half of the lid, and a darker matte shade in the outer corner and through the crease of your eye. You only need one or two brushes, depending on if you apply the shimmer with your finger or not (which I recommend for full color payoff).
2. Smudgy Eyeliner
Don’t have an eyeshadow? No problem! Use your eyeliner (black, brown, grey, green—whatever shade you love) and put a slightly thicker line than you normally would along the bottom and top lash line. Then, use either your fingertip or a brush to smudge it out and make it a little smokey.
3. Bright Inner Corner and Brow
I’m not sure I can even count this as an eye look, but it’s here nonetheless. Take your face highlighter on the inner corner of the eyes and right under your eyebrow arch. Then, define your eyes by using a brown eyeshadow or your bronzer in the crease. Go a little extra with your mascara coats, and you’re done.
4. All-Matte Shadows
Take it back to the ‘90s with an all-matte eye look. This look is basic, but it packs a punch when you use shades with a lot of contrasting depth. Karen (also known as iluvsarahii on YouTube and Instagram—if you’re just learning new makeup techniques, her videos are a great resource!) used a very light cream that was even lighter than her skin tone on her lid, and took a medium brown through the crease and outer corner, followed by a darker brown to just emphasize right at the edge of the lash line. Add a liner and mascara, and you’re good to go. This look is so natural that it pairs gorgeously with a bright lip!
5. Liquid or Cream Shadow
Liquid or cream eye shadow is truly the easiest way to an eye look, no questions asked. Place the shadow all over the lid and blend up into the crease, either using your fingertip or a brush. To give some extra dimension, swipe your bronzer through the crease. See? So easy.
6. One Shade
The one-shadow look is a favorite of mine and makeup artists alike. It is truly the easiest eye look to achieve and requires no time, one brush, and just one shadow. This look can be achieved with neutrals (I think this is gorgeous with a honey-toned brown with the depth depending on your skin tone), mattes, shimmers, or of course, pastels and bright shades. Just apply from lash line to just above your natural crease and blend the edges. This is also a great look for those with hooded eyes or monolids because only one shade is the focal point and makes your eyes look bigger and more defined.
You can bring the shadow to the lower lash line, or keep it bare. It all depends on the look you’re going for. To bring it up a notch, I’ll add a light, shimmery color in the same tone of lid shade (for example, if I apply a lavender pastel matte shadow, I’ll use a shimmery, light purple) in the inner corner to add some dimension and texture.