If you don’t have any shadow on hand or have a bunch of colored liners you have no idea what to do with, fret not. With these easy tricks, you can get the look of shadow using just liner. Makeup artist Gigi Shaker shows you how.
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1. Master the art of a smoky eye with this map. Use different eyeliner shades to fill in sections of your eyes, and then blend to perfection using an eye shadow brush (or your finger).
Products in this look: CoverGirl Flamed Out Shadow Pencil in “Silver Flame” (a charcoal color) and in “Crystal Flame” (the shimmery white shade), CoverGirl Queen Collection Vivid Impact Eyeliner in “Midnight” as the liner, and Nars Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner in “Rue Bonaparte” as the nude highlight along the brow bone.
2. Make small eyes appear larger by drawing lines at the outer corners of your lids and up toward the brow bone.
Using a colored liner of your choice (here, model Brooke used a deep purple, which complements brown eyes), draw several lines from your lash line almost to the brow to help create the illusion of a bigger eye. (Notice how the eye on the left appears larger.) Products in this look: NYX Cosmetics Retractable Eyeliner in “Deep Purple,” layered with CoverGirl Bombshell Shine Shadow in “Ooh La Lilac.”
3. Make wide-set eyes look closer together by applying the majority of the color toward your nose.
Make sure to blend the liner with your fingertip quickly before it sets. Products in this look: NYX Cosmetics Slide On Pencil in “Tropical Green.”
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4. Make close-set eyes appear farther apart with a “V”-shaped smoky eye. (Hint: You have close-set eyes if the distance between your eyes is shorter than the width of one of your eyes.)
Draw a line over your crease with a thick shadow liner, another line from the outer corner of your eye toward the tail of your eyebrow, and then line your lower lash line. Next, fill in the “V” with the same shadow stick only at the outer corner of your eye and blend. Products in this look: Tarte SmolderEyes Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liner in “Gold,” layered with Shiseido Shimmering Cream Eye Color in “Sable,” lined with Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in “Perversion.”
5. Give yourself a flawless cat-eye by drawing dots with an eye pencil, then connect them with liquid liner.
Add depth with cream shadow in the crease of your eye if you have any on hand. Products in this look: CoverGirl Liquiline Blast Eyeliner in “Blackfire” to create the guideline for the cat-eye, Maybelline New York Eye Studio Master Duo Glossy Liquid Liner in “Black Lacquer” to make the winged liner look crisp, and MAC Cosmetics Paint Pot in “Quite Natural,” a taupe shade, to add depth to the crease.
6. Create a crease with a smoky shadow.
Apply black eyeliner at the lashline and smudge it out with a cotton swab. Then, using a gray shimmer liner, draw a line over the top of your eyeball. With a windshield wiper-like motion, use an eye shadow brush to blend the liner. Remember to leave some space between the darker shade and your brow bone. Products in this look: Sephora Collection Jumbo Liner 12HR Wear Waterproof in “Gray Glitter” and Chanel Le Crayon Khôl Intense Eye Pencil in “Noir.”
7. Use quotation marks to create a smoky eye.
If you want a subtle smoky eye, apply your darker liner in a quotation mark formation (if you have wide-set eyes, place the quotation marks on the inner, upper corners of your eye; if you have close-set eyes, position them at the outer corners of your eye), and then blend the liner in with an eye shadow brush. Line your eyes to finish the look. Products in this look: NYX Cosmetics Slim Ey Pencil in “Gunmetal Gray,” Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes in “Silver” (apply a light liner shade opposite of the quotation marks and blend with your fingertips to lighten and diffuse the look), and Maybelline New York Master Duo by Eye Studio in “Black Lacquer.”
8. To make your eyebrows pop, draw a line along your brow bone with nude pencil, and then diffuse it with an eye shadow brush spritzed with water.
The moist brush will help move the formula and blend it into your skin flawlessly. Products in this look: Avene Thermal Spring Water Mist and MAC Cosmetics 219 Pencil Brush.
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9. Make eyes appear wider by applying a soft, shimmery shadow in the upper, inner region of your eyelid.
This creates the illusion of more space between your eyes and adds a touch of glimmer without being too much. Products in this look: Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes in “White,” Chanel Illusion D’Ombre Long Wear Luminous Eyeshadow in “Fantasme,” which was applied with a contouring eye shadow brush to add intensity, and Revlon ColorStay Eyeliner Pencil in “Black.”
10. Use an @ or # symbol at the outer corner of your eye to create a smoky look.
Blend with an eye shadow brush. Products in this look: MAC Cosmetics Powerpoint Eye Pencil in “Bountiful Brown” and line the inner, upper rim of your eyes with Benefit Cosmetics BADgal Liner Waterproof in “Black.”
11. Blend your favorite navy liner along your lashline for a blue smoke effect.
Products in this look: Maybelline New York Unstoppable Smudge Resistant Eyeliner in “Sapphire” (make sure to diffuse this with a smudger brush quickly, since it sets fast) and L’Orèal Paris Infallible Silkissime Silky Pencil Eyeliner in “Black.”
12. Finally, if you have trouble blending any hard lines, diffuse them with a translucent powder and tiny eye shadow brush.