How Many Shadows Do You Usually Use in a Typical Eye Look?

Published in: Just For Fun

Hourglass Modernist Eye Shadow Palettes in Color Field and Obscura on my eyes, NARS Lodhi on my lips

Wearing the Hourglass Modernist Eye Shadow Palettes in Color Field and Obscura on my eyes and NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Lodhi on my lips

Ooh, gurl! Probably a little more than I need to.

My typical work look is smokey (smoky?), which requires lots of transition shades, you know, ’cause you’re going from lighter to darker, yadda-yadda-yadda, so I’d say…


One, two, three, four…five!?

Oh, my heavens.

Five. Sometimes six.

Yeah…I’m trying to do this whole less-is-more thing, though.

Oh, well. It takes a village to do a smooth smokey eye.

Wearing the new Hourglass Modernist Eyeshadow Palettes in Color Field and Obscura on my lids

Wearing the new Hourglass Modernist Eyeshadow Palettes in Color Field and Obscura on my lids

Mind you, this is just for pics, meetings and events. For something like going to the grocery store, I’m not gonna put on six eyeshadows, no. For things like that, it’s usually just one or two. Sometimes three if El Hub’s not yelling, “Come on, let’s go!” 🙂

How many shadows do you usually use in a typical eye look?

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Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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  1. MonicaP says:

    Definitely not more than 4. Some days .. just one .. a sweep of whatever and eyeliner.

    MonicaP recently posted … Time to get up and go

  2. Holly says:

    My everyday look is bold colored eyeliner from a kohl-type pencil ((crayon?) on my top lid with a neutral shadow & maybe a highlight or accent shadow. I love my Maybelline Colour Tattoo shadows, especially the slightly shimmery nude powder which I generally use as a base & the Inked in Pink metallic which really brightens up my face. On the rare occasion I go someplace special, I do use more shadows & go a little smokey-eyed.

  3. Usually three. Two on the lid and one in the crease. And sometimes a fourth shade along the lower lash line.
    Kiss & Make-up recently posted … Review | 5100 Skincare Glacier DD Cream

  4. Erin says:

    1-4 is the common number. I can only think of a few times that I’ve used 5. I don’t have much in the way of lid space.
    Erin recently posted … Révélation 2013 Chardonnay

  5. Anya says:

    I recently went to a mini makeover and the woman used EIGHT eyeshadows on me – I looked horrific! Plus she kept trying to push the palette on me (even though it was WAY too expensive). (There was also the fact that she kept trying to push every product the company sold on me, despite me firmly saying “No thank you”, but that’s a story for another time.)

  6. Trisha says:

    I usually use three or four. Pretty standard for me to use a light, medium and dark shadow for looks. So, I almost never use less than that. <3
    Trisha recently posted … When it Comes to Makeup, Practice Makes Perfect

  7. To be most honest, I usually just stick to an eyeliner .. Mascara if I need that oomph .. Eyeshadows only for extremely special occasions .. I loathe them
    Talkerblogger recently posted … Giorgio Armani Fluid Sheer Highlighter In 10 

  8. Sarah says:

    I’d say 4 or 5. Lid, crease, highlight, and usually a transition shade or pop of sonethin’ special in the middle of the lid, or both!

  9. Tulipthecat says:

    I love collecting eyeshadows but I never know how to put them together. I think I’ve used 3 max but most of the time it’s just 2. One day I’ll have to take a lesson on how to put shadows on.

  10. Divya says:

    I am usually a one-wash-wonder woman 😛 but ocassionally I like to layer a powder over cream for longevity. Like MAC’s Soba over Chanel’s Mirage illusion D’ombre.. they look stunning together btw! 🙂
    Divya recently posted … You Need This Solid Cleanser In Your Life!

  11. Natalye says:

    I would say between 3-4 since I usually like to use shadow as a liner

  12. Lulle says:

    Typically 3: a lid color, a color for the outer corner and crease, and a highlighter for the inner corner and brow bone. Sometimes I’ll use a different shade for the crease but not very often.
    Lulle recently posted … Polished Lips with Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfectors

  13. Nikki says:

    I try not to use more than 3. I am just not that sophisticated with eyeshadow. I really love the single eyeshadow that can be smoked out to look like I am wearing multiple shades.

  14. Majick says:

    I typically use 4 colors, sometimes more/sometimes less but the general number is 4ish. 😀

  15. On an average day, I do a quick all over light shade, followed by a brown from lash line to crease, and sometimes a lighter brown blended into the crease as a transition.
    Mandy @ Mandy’s Books and Beauty recently posted … The Haunting of Sunshine Girl: Book One by Paige McKenzie

  16. Jason says:

    A standard day-to-day look typically will use 4, unless I am feeling fancy. A shift at my Sephora job generally gets a little more effort, though, and warrants 5 or more!

  17. Fran says:

    I love eye shadow and love playing with color, so, occasionally I’ll do a one-color wash, but it’s usually at least four colors for my hooded eyes:
    above the crease — a nude matte base and a mid-tone matte for contour (two)
    on the lid — a light shimmery color on the inner lid and a darker shimmery color for the outer lid and maybe up into the crease or outer V (four)
    often, I add a bright highlight for the inner corner (five)
    Sometimes, for a little drama, an additional dark color to contour the crease more (six)
    once in a while, a gradient of three shimmery shades across the lid instead of just two (like for a sunset eye) (seven)
    Seven is pretty much my max, lol.
    Unless you count the cream color base that I use some of the time, that pushes it up to eight.
    I use the same colors on the lower lash line that I use on the lid, often over an eyeliner pencil or two.
    Like I said, I like color. And my eyes are hooded, so you really just see a peek of it from behind my glasses — I need some kind of way to make my eyes noticeable!

  18. Rachel R. says:

    Usually 3 (lid, crease, browbone highlight). I will wear anywhere from 1-5, though. I don’t think I’ve ever done more than 5. I have only so much room. lol

  19. Maria Jacobs says:

    Definitely more than 5 eyeshadows that’s the fun part trying all the goodies you have and come up with a good smokey look. It’s absolutely more is more fun! I love reading your blogs Karen.

  20. Fancie says:

    Usually 3. A lid, transition and crease shade is good for me. Anything else requires a little too much blending for my lazy self lol
    Fancie recently posted … Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Gloss Now Available at Macy’s!

  21. Usually 4 – two on the lid, 1 for the crease and lower lash line and one to highlight. But sometimes when I’m doing a special look, I would use more! If I’m in a rush, then just 1 or 2 eye shadows.
    Ankita@corallista recently posted … GlossyBox Japan February 2015 (Video Review)

  22. smeegal9 says:

    Three always!

  23. I usually go for something between 3-4 depending on the time I have in hand 😉 .. but I can for as more as 6 if I am in a mood for mastering the blending thing 😀 😀
    Poo@beautyandmakeupmatters recently posted … Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Strengthening Shampoo and Conditioner Review, Swatches

  24. Emixlea says:

    I usually use about two or three, but that is mostly because I often lack the creativity to use moreXD haha
    But I do try to use more from time to time to go out of my comfort zone!*^^*

    Emixlea recently posted … Makeup Tutorial: Dark Purple Look

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