She’s 72, loves a smokey eye, and has her own TV show. I’ve been doing her makeup for 10 years and she’s fabulous. What this shows is no matter what your age, you can wear this look. It can be a tad scary I’ll grant, but in the vein of the perpetual cheerleader with pom-poms flailing in optimism, you can do it. Trust me. There are a few specific guidelines, though, that make a smokey eye much more manageable. In the above video, I go through a step-by-step tutorial using a drug store eyeshadow palette, and in this article, I will hit on 3 key points to make it look stunning. (I say this while jumping up and down and shaking my pom-poms!)
Hydrate to Blend
Dry skin, including dry eyelids, are a challenge when applying makeup including eyeshadow. The key is hydration so that you can blend the product, and this is gained through a threefold consistent process. First, drink plenty of spring water (10-12 glasses per day if you can and, yes, you will get to know your bathroom in new ways), take 2-4 tablespoons Omega 3 and 6 oils daily (at a ratio of 1:4), and use either your vitamin c serum around your eyes, or a moisturizer safe to use around the eye area. Some of you prefer eye creams, and that’s fine too as long as it is primarily for hydration.
As an aside, those of you with dry skin should use a light to medium foundation that has the word hydrating somewhere in the description, as matte foundations or primers are awful on dry skin and may cause temper tantrums. Well, they cause me cheerleader style meltdowns, but I’m obsessed.
How to Blur the Lines
One of the top tricks to making up mature skin is the art of diffusion. As a positive ageing advocate, wrinkles are a sign of a life well-lived and should be loved! Having said that, my focus is to soften and diffuse lines both with skin care and in makeup. For example, using retinol every other day on crow’s feet greatly helps to soften the area. Blending and softening eyeliner and shadow will also make the smokey eye look not become garish or clown-ish. In the video I mainly use one brush, the 217 MAC Synthetic Blending Brush. Because I focused on only 2 main shades from my Moira Moonlight Eyeshadow Palette, I could easily clean the brush between colors.
To make any eyeshadow color blend beautifully, use a circular motion all over the entire lid area and up above the crease. If it looks overdone, just wipe it off. It also goes with eyeliner. In the video, I use waterproof liners because often liners used in the waterline will not stay on and can bleed down your face which is not flattering to say the least. Unless it’s Halloween. Yes, the liners I use are not drugstore, but if you like a drugstore brand of waterproof liners, please write down below!
Balance and Tequila
Recently, I attended a tequila festival in the mountains outside of Cuenca, Ecuador where I live. There was a mariachi band playing, and people were happily dancing, doing tequila shots, and busy ignoring the rain and the mud! It was amazing, and the tequila was all home brewed which meant I could barely swallow it, but the experience was so effervescent my friend and I didn’t care. (I don’t know how to tie this in with smokey eyeshadow, but here it goes.) If you drink tequila and don’t eat something substantial you won’t remember why you were dancing in the rain! In much the same way, balancing out your lipstick and your smokey eye is crucial 😆. For example, if you have a strong eyeshadow, and a strong lipstick you can look over done. Try a more sheer lip color or a lip gloss with a lip liner to have just enough glimmer to make it all come together.
Another trick is to be sure to fill in your eyebrows. Many of you can’t wear strong eyeshadow or strong lipstick looks because your brows need to be fuller. It’s a curious trick, but play with your facial dimensions to be able to pull of new and different looks. It’s amazing what this will do!
As your cheerleader, a smokey eye is both playful and gorgeous! Use your drug store eyeshadow or any palette you fancy, and remember to hydrate, blend, and drink tequila (with food).