Lately I’ve been enjoying playing with eyeshadow application. Now, this is new to me because I’ve been a non-fussy makeup wearer for as long as I’ve been wearing makeup. As a 40-something though I really figured it was time to figure out how to do my eye makeup. I wanted to add a bit more fun and whimsy into my makeup routine, I guess. So, to go from never wearing eyeshadow to all of a sudden wearing eyeshadow, I’ve had a lot to learn (and still do). The funny thing is, so many of my friends are now commenting on my eyeshadow and saying they wish they could do it too. Well, I’m here to tell you, you ABSOLUTELY can.
The biggest tip I have for anyone who rarely wears eyeshadow is blend, blend, blend baby! You can blend out a lot of mistakes with a good blending brush. The one I use is the NYX Professional Blending Brush. It’s super soft and the bristles are very flexible so this brush has been really good to me while I’ve been figuring out what to do.
As far as brushes are concerned, I just went out and bought myself one of those QUO (Shoppers brand) kits with 10 brushes for $50. What I’ve found is that, although it’s great to have all these brushes I’m only using 4 of them for my eyeshadow. Although you can get these kits from Shoppers any time, I’d suggest getting a kit for a fraction of the cost through Amazon. Here’s a good one from a brand I’ve bought before, Bestope. I’ve marked out the 4 brushes I use the most from my QUO kit, where you can find similar ones in this Bestope kit:
#1. I use this brush for my all-over lid colour for the background. Typically a lighter colour. I blend.
#2. I use this brush to apply my foreground colours; making sure I stay within the same shade range for these foreground colours. If I want an contrasting colour for a pop, I use another similar-sized brush to add that on. The key here is, instead of brushing it on, I find I’m mostly tapping it on the lid and then spreading it. From there I blend the heck out of it.
#3. I use this brush for the highlight in the inner corner of my eye and just below my brow.
#4. I use this brush for my “eyeliner”. I can’t seem to use an actual eyeliner pencil or liquid liner without it irritating my sensitive eyes. It just never works for me, regardless of the brand. So, instead, I use a black eyeshadow and I use this angled brush to apply it right along my lash line. Then I blend.
Again, with each step, I’m blending with the NYX Professional blending brush. The only thing I don’t blend is the highlight in the corner of my eye. I like to have that pop. At most, I might use my finger a bit but that’s it.
As far as eyeshadow goes, if you’re just starting out, just buy a palette with a good number of pinks, browns, golds, blacks, and some other funky colours like aqua, blue, and purple. The palette I sprung for was the professionally priced Morphe Jaclyn Hill palette, but you can find a total knock-off on Amazon with great reviews for, again, a fraction of the cost. Here’s the comparison between my Morphe palette (on the left) and the Beauty Glazed knock-off (on the right):
In general, my application usually follows a mix between the “smoky look” and “intense look” rules (I put the “A” colour as my all-over background colour but then follow the rest of the “intense look”), but rules are meant to be broken so feel free to follow but don’t be afraid to try new things either! The best look seems to be a blend of a lighter colour from the inner eye, getting increasingly darker toward the outer eye.
Hopefully this has proven somewhat useful if you’re new to eyeshadow application. I’m by no means an expert but these things have helped me so hopefully they’ll help you too if you want to give it a try.
Let me know in the comments if you’ve used any of the advice here. I’d love to hear from you!