My three top tips for wearing colorful yet wearable eye makeup. You know I’m all about approachable looks these days!
1. Pick one bright element of your eye look and run with it
When wearing bright eyeshadow, you can dial it back quite a bit and still make a big impact.
It might seem like everyone who wears bright eyeshadow adds all the bells and whistles, combining each and every aspect of strong, bold makeup, especially if you judge by all of the Instagram-style trends that appear to be everywhere, but…ya know, just because it seems like everyone online is wearing neon orange eyeshadow with bladed brows, razor sharp tails and a blown-out rainbow-hued lower lash line doesn’t mean that’s actually happening in real life. (Side note: this is a lesson I learned along the way.)
Lately I’ve been taking a restrained approach to applying bright eyeshadow, and I think it’s more approachable and less intimidating than brights can be.
The key is to just pick one colorful element and roll with it — like, a smoky metallic green lid, or an intense spotlight of bright teal in the inner corner highlight — and letting that single statement be the life of the party, rather than combining multiple bold eye makeup elements.
The bold statement I chose for the makeup I’m wearing here is the purple smoky eyeshadow. Everything else is restrained.
2. Keep the rest of your eye makeup understated
Speaking of restraint, letting one bright eye element steal the spotlight works well when the rest of the eye makeup is kept low-key.
So, instead of adding a pair falsies the size of bat wings, go with your natural lashes and a lengthening mascara instead, and if you’re highlighting your inner corner, dial back the intensity of the shimmer and opt for a sheen or a satin finish instead.
Lastly, if you’re lining your waterlines, swap the black eye pencil for an eyeliner in a color similar to but darker than your single bright element. This will still intensify things but won’t look as harsh as black liner can look sometimes.
That’s what I did here! To complement the cool purple shadow, I lined my waterlines with a mix of brown and purple pencils (I layered the purple on top of the brown).
3. Purposefully pull back on your base, cheeks and lip products
Yup, keeping your makeup minimal on the rest of your face also helps to keep the focus on your single bright element. You’ll want makeup that doesn’t compete with your eyeshadow, so
go for the barest of bare bases — for me, that means a sheer tinted moisturizer and a sheer cream or liquid blush (and/or bronzer).
If you want to add highlights, go for something with a glossy finish instead of a frosty or metallic finish.
And don’t forget to do your version of nude lips, of course! 😁
Makeup worn in this look
- Juvia’s Place Wahala Palette — Woke, Unafraid and Be You on lids
- Covergirl Full Spectrum Palette in So Saturated — warm brown matte on lower lash line
- MAC Coffee Eyeliner and NARS Nagoya Velvet Eyeliner — layered together and worn on lash lines
- Laura Mericer Caviar Volume Mascara — upper lashes
- Innisfree Skinny Waterproof Mascara — lower lashes
- Covergirl Easy Breezy Brow in Medium and Maybelline Tattoo Studio Brow Tint Pen in Soft Brown — brows
- Neutrogena Radiant Primer + Serum Healthy Skin — prep
- Neutrogena Protect + Tint Tinted Moisturizer in Tan to Medium 40 — all over face
- Neutrogena Healthy Skin Radiant Cream Concealer in Almond Medium 2 and Toffee Medium 3 — underneath eyes and on cheeks
- MAC Medium Golden MSF Powder — center of forehead and down the sides of nose
- Innisfree Smart Drawing Cream Blusher in Cherry Blossom — cream blush on apples
- Innisfree My Blusher in 19 — dusted lightly on to cream blush to set
- Innisfree My Highlighter Cream in 1 — tapped on tops of cheekbones
- Innisfree My Lipbalm in Green Peppermint Tea — prep
- NUDESTIX Gel Color Lip + Cheek Balm in Haven and Lip + Cheek Pencil in Mystic — mixed together
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,