Smokey eyes are one of the most popular eye makeup trends out there. It is one of the go-to’s for evening and formal makeup, but can also be worn for a daytime look. This look is also quite flattering on anyone, so it is no wonder why it’s so loved and very popular among women of all ages.
So, what is a smokey eye exactly? Can a Smokey Eye be an “every day” look? This style of eye makeup consists of a dark shade of eyeshadow being applied to the lids, then blended out with a lighter eyeshadow shade to give a smokey effect as the name implies. Usually, the same process is done on the lower lids for a more complete eye look. A dark color eyeliner is sometimes also applied and then blended out for an even smokier look.
Fun Fact: It is believed that smokey eye makeup has roots in Egyptian culture. In ancient times, Egyptians wore dark, smudged eye makeup using Kohl and powders that came from crushed mineral stones. Kohl is still used today as well as mineral makeup. Pretty cool huh?
This trend started out using mainly black and grey shades, but nowadays a smokey eye can be achieved using all kinds of eyeshadow shades. The more popular shades are still blacks, greys, and browns, but purple, mauve, and taupe shades are becoming popular as well, especially for warmer weather season.
Though a smokey eye is usually worn for evening occasions, you can make a smokey eye look work for daytime too, just choose eyeshadow shades that are not too dark. Go with darker and richer colors for evening wear, like black and greys and dark browns. For daytime wear, opt for softer browns, mauves, plums, and taupe shades.
In this article, we have an easy and simple step-by-step smokey eye look tutorial using, of course, Red Apple Lipstick products. Before we get started with the tutorial, though, let’s talk about what lipstick to wear with a smokey eye. What shades of lipsticks are best to wear with a smokey eye look?
How To Pair A Lipstick With A Smokey Eye?
When it comes to choosing a lipstick to wear with a smokey eye, the key is to choose a lipstick that will complement the look. The eyes will be the main focus, so pick a color that will complete the look without competing with the eyes.
The best types of shades that will look great with a smokey eye are light and subtle colors. Think of pinks and light pinks, peachy shades, as well as nudes (including pinky nudes and peachy nudes). These are all great choices when it comes to lipsticks to wear with a smokey eye look. Play around with these types of shades and see what works best for you.
Pink lipsticks will look great with black, grey, blue/navy, and plummy/mauvy smokey eyes, especially on lighter skin tones.
Audrey– this lipstick color works pretty much on any skin tone so this one is a go-to but looks beautiful on lighter complexions. It’s a soft, neutral pink lipstick that’s elegant and timeless.
Maven Mauve- this is a blend of dusty rose and mauve, perfect for those with cool and neutral undertones. (PICTURED LEFT)
Secrets– cool-toned pink with a deep golden shimmer. This lipstick shade is great to help make the lips appear fuller.
Nude Lipsticks are the popular go-to’s for smokey eyes, these work amazingly well with any smokey eye look. In general, pinky nudes will work best for those with cool skin tones, while peachy and beige nudes will work best for warmer skin tones.
Naughty– the perfect tan nude, has no shimmer but it does give the lips a healthy shine.
New York– a pink-based nude with warmer undertones, great for those with warm and neutral undertones.
Oh My Guava– nude pink shade with less brown and more pink undertones, works great with any undertone but is very flattering for those with cool undertones.
What if you prefer a bold lip?
In general, subtle and lighter shades work best with smokey eyes. However, red lipstick can look amazing with a smokey eye.
The key to wearing red lipstick with a smokey eye is to find the right shade that will complement it rather than overshadow it. A classic smokey eye (black and grey shades) will pair well with a red lip.
The key to wearing red lipstick with a smokey eye is to find the right shade that will complement it rather than overshadow it. A classic smokey eye (black and grey shades) will pair well with a red lip. Red lipstick will also look amazing with brown smokey eyes.
Appley Ever After– the perfect mid-tone blue-red that is not too bright or too deep. It’s a rich and sophisticated red, perfect if you are looking for a shade that is a little darker but not too deep.
Rebel– a gorgeous deep and sultry blue red shade, the classic retro red lipstick. It has a beautiful satin finish that gives the lips a healthy-looking shine. If you are looking for a matte finish though, blot after applying to remove shine.
Risque!– warm-toned red with orange undertones.
Reddish Fetish– a deep pinky-red with a slight brown undertone. It’s a neutral red shade that leans more cool-toned, giving it a similar appearance to that of a blue-red lipstick.
Strawberry Lips- a gorgeous light red that can be worn sheer for a berry-stained look, or layered on for more depth.
Plum / Berry Lipsticks
If you are not a red lipstick kind of girl but still want something a little bolder than a light pink or nude, try a plum/berry lipstick. Go with a shade that is not too dark and deep so that it doesn’t take the focus away from the eyes.
Plum Sexy Crazy– a deep, multi-dimensional red plum color with a golden shimmer. Apply one coat for a sheer berry tone, or apply multiple layers for a rich, warm golden plum color.
Vogue- a classic berry-toned shade with a hint of sparkle. Starts of sheer with one coat, but intensity can be built up with additional coats.
Mayberry– dusty rose mauve with medium depth with a cool-toned berry undertone. This lipstick color makes a beautiful nude shade on dark skin tones.
Ooh La La– a dusty rose shade that is slightly pink, slightly brown. Good for all medium skin tones, but looks great on those with cool undertones.
Smokey Eye Tutorial
What Eye Products Will I Need?
Prime Time Eye Shadow Primer– helps color correct and prime the eyelids, eliminating eyeshadow creasing and tired-looking eyes.
Porcelain Eyeshadow– a light, matte, off-white, creamy nude eyeshadow that has a slightly pinkish, peachy yellow tint to it. Works great as an eyeshadow base as it helps to neutralize discoloration on the lids.
Brownie Points Eyeshadow– a matte, medium brown with a warm undertone. Can be applied lightly all over the lid, heavier for the crease or outer corner. It even works great as a brow powder for those with light to medium brown hair.
Blondeshell Eyeshadow– a matte honey blonde shade of brown eyeshadow. Blendable, buildable, super pigmented, and silky smooth.
Heirloom Eyeshadow– a light yellow shade. Makes a great base color.
Buttercream Eyeshadow– a light, shimmering off-white shade that has a slight yellow tint- a great highlight color.
The Lash Project Mascara– a hypoallergenic mascara & lash conditioner in one that is classic and timeless in satin black. Gives lashes a weightless, soft feathery look all while defining and strengthening them.
Step 1: Prime the Lids
Begin by priming the lids using the Prime Time Eye Shadow Primer. Using a tiny amount, apply all over the lids going up to the brow bone. Give it a couple of minutes for the primer to dry. (You could fill in your brows if you have already applied your foundation, while the primer dries.) Once dried, you can take the extra step of setting it with a bit of setting powder if you want to, this helps eyeshadows to blend even more smoothly.
Step 2: Apply The Bases Shadow
Base Color Next, apply a base color to the lids. With the Wet/Dry Eye Brush, or a brush similar to it, apply Porcelain eyeshadow all over the lid taking it up to the brow bone. (If Porcelain eyeshadow is too light for you, feel free to use another eyeshadow shade that is closer to your skin color.)
Step 3: Apply The Lid Color
You now want to apply Brownie Points eyeshadow onto the lids, taking it up into the crease (that folded area above the eyelid where a literal crease forms). Using the Vegan Wet/Dry Eye Brush pack on the color until you reach the intensity you desire. Darker and deeper for an evening look, but less intensity if you are doing a daytime look.
Step 4: Apply and Blend Crease/Transition Color
Using the Vegan Crease and Blend Brush, you now want to add Blondeshell eyeshadow into the crease to help blend out the edges of Brownie Points. Use windshield-wiping motions and circular motions to blend it up, taking it slightly into the transition area (area above your crease).
Step 5: Blend Edges
Blend out and soften any hard edges using Heirloom eyeshadow. Take the Vegan Crease and Blend Brush and blend Heirloom eyeshadow onto the edges of Blondeshell. You can also take some more of Brownie Points eyeshadow and darken the lids if you need to.
Step 6: Apply Bottom Lash Line
Add Blondeshell eyeshadow across the bottom lash line using the Vegan Crease and Blend Brush. Then add Brownie Points eyeshadow to darken that up, using some of Blondeshell again to blend that out using windshield-wiping motions.
Step 7: Apply Highlight Color
Apply Buttercream eyeshadow to the brow bone and the inner corner of the eyes, on the tear ducts, to lightly highlight the eyes.
Step 8: Apply Mascara
Finish the eyes by applying The Lash Project Mascara. Apply 3 to 4 coats for a dramatic lash look.
Completed Look! Wow!
Here’s a gallery of this completed smokey eye look with several lipstick shades. It looks amazing with them all!
Face Makeup For This Look
On the face, Sundrop Bronzer was used to add some warmth as well as some definition. Using the Vegan Blush Brush, it was applied to the forehead (towards the hairline), on the temples, and the hollows of the cheeks.
For blush, Coy blush was used for this look, which is a matte apricot pink shade that helps bring out the rosiness in your cheeks and enrich any natural golden undertones. Buttercream eyeshadow was used to highlight the face, applied on top of the cheekbones, on the nose bridge, and the cupid’s bow and center of the chin.
To finish the whole look, you can use either Strawberry Lips, Naughty, Oh My Guava, Maven Mauve, or Risque lipstick. I chose Strawberry Lips for my complete look, but any of those shades will work well with this smokey eye look.
What are some lipstick colors that you like to pair with smokey eye looks? Do you have a favorite RAL lipstick for your smokey looks? Share with us in the comments below, and let us know your thoughts on this tutorial.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What do you need for a smokey eye?
This will depend on what kind of smokey eye look you are doing, but usually, you will need at least 3 eyeshadow shades for a basic smokey eye. A light shade for a base color, a dark shade for your main lid color, and a medium shade to blend out the dark lid color.
- How many types of smokey eyes are there?
There are many types of smokey eyes, you can pretty much do one with any eyeshadow shade. The more popular ones, though, are the classic black, grey, brown, and also the smudged smokey eye that is done using black eyeliner. However, there are also some other common ones such as navy, plum/mauve, green, and your shimmery smokey eye, just to name a few.
- Do smokey eyes look good on everyone?
Yes! Black and brown smokey eyes are flattering on everybody. Even those with smaller eyes can look great with a smokey eye, the key is to not go too dark and to apply a lighter color (or highlight color) in the inner corner of the eye. This will help open up the eyes, creating a gradient look that will prevent the eyes from looking smaller.
- Does red lipstick go with smokey eyes?
Although smokey eyes are generally paired with nudes and lighter, more subtle lipstick colors, red lipstick looks amazingly well with smokey eyes. The key is to find the right shade that will complement rather than overshadow the eye look. Red lipstick will look great with a classic black and with a brown smokey eye.