By Amy Sciaretto
Smoky (or smokey, depending on which product your are using) eyes will never go out of style. The look has dominated the runway, urban centers and suburbs everywhere for several years and shows no signs of fading from view! While the smoky eye is versatile since you can create the look with black, brown, purple, blue and even red shades, it’s also one of the simplest looks to master. Yet so many women continue to have questions on how to create the perfect smoky eye. We know, because we get questions emailed to us through our “Ask the Experts” column on our site!
The good news is that there is no such thing as a “perfect” smoky eye. It’s meant to be a smudged, “slept in” look. The other crucial element is using three or four shades in the same color family to create varying gradations and washes of color over the lid and up to the crease. Beyond that, the look is customizable according to your own preferences. You can go slightly beyond the crease. You can go as close to the brow bone as you like; just remember to blend away any harsh, hard lines for a soft, buffed shape. Going mascara-free is also not an option with this look. Three coats of black mascara will bring the look to smoldering completion.
We know you still have questions, so we’ve rounded up newer, dedicated products that will assist you in creating a gorgeous, smoky eye.
Remember Lee Press On Nails, which were (unfortunately) massively popular in the 1980s? Thank goodness they have gone the way of shoulder pads, but the concept is back with ColorOn’s Eye Envy Smokey Kit. This pat and peal product is more advanced and precise; when applied properly and with care, it looks stunning, as if you customized it with your own two hands and a professional quality brush! Don’t cringe over the fact that the color strips look like those Biore pore strips designed to extract blackheads with tape-like technology. These pads are much more sanitary and fun! Those with larger, more hooded eyelids will have the best success with Eye Envy. Those with smaller lid real estate will have more trouble maneuvering the strips for an even deposit of color. Eye Envy doesn’t take the “fun” out of blending and buffing either, since the product’s major pro is its creamy, blendable formulation and accompanying powder, which sets the product. EyeEnvy eliminates the guess work and the time it takes to create a smoked out eye. Available at Sephora locations or coloronpro.com.
Stila Smoky Eye The Talking Palette
It’s like having your own personal make up artist with Stila’s Smoky Eye The Talking Palette! The quad literally answers what it claims is currently the #1 most asked cosmetic question: How do I achieve the perfect smoky eye? The polite palette – the soft female voice actually thanks you for your purchase – holds four complimentary neutral, brown and black toned shadows and offers a speaking, step-by-step guide as well as labeled pans. You will be instructed which brushes to use, as well. You can’t go wrong when you have a talking palette giving you instructions. Available exclusively at Sephora locations or Apothica.
A smoky eye needn’t always be super dark. Mark. coordinates several pinks, greens and blues in its current fall collection. To get the jetsetting, up-all-night-and-loving-it look, don’t be afraid of rich shades other than black or brown. Dust the youthful, vibrant i-mark shadow in the greenish Retro Peacock on lids and trace your lash line with eyemarker in Enchanted Forest. Tone down the drama to a simmering, rather than blazing, level by sweeping a lighter shade on lids and using powder shadows to line the lashes as though it were an eyeliner. Buff away hard lines and proceed to turn every head in the room with your eyes that smolder like embers! Available at mark.com or via your local Avon representative.
The gold standard of the smudged, bedroom eyes, Chanel’s Smoky Eye Les 4 Ombres Quartet is foolproof. The four-pan palette includes black, white, gray and print shades. The white is primo for brow highlighting, while the darkest, most carbony shade is expressly for the lash line smudge. Play with the slate and print shades and keep making sure the color gets increasingly lighter as you go higher. You can also pop the fairest shade in the inner corners for an extra dose of glam. Finish with two coats of black Chanel mascara. Available at Chanel counters and perfume-worldwide.com.