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Easy and Simple Smoky Eyes Make-Up Tips For Starters and Models

Updated on February 12, 2012

Before proceeding, please be guided with the following:

I am not a fashion or make-up expert. I don’t even have the fundamental training in make-up application or artistry. All pieces of information which will be provided in the succeeding article were all just a product of imagination and repeated trials. My goal is to share my acquired knowledge regarding smoky eyes and eyebrow make-up to everyone, especially to the neophytes of make-up application, hoping that everything shared will contribute to new discovery or needed assistance.

The Author Just Wants to Know...

For females: How Often Do You Wear Make-Up?

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Tina Siuagan. Grand Winner of the 2011 Rachell Allen Image Model Search
Tina Siuagan. Grand Winner of the 2011 Rachell Allen Image Model Search | Source

The Humble Beginning...

A couple of months ago, there has been a sudden twist in my career path. From being a nurse whose life hovered on patient care and supervision of an ambulatory clinic department for almost a year, I suddenly found myself becoming an image model for a certain nursing review company. Thriving in the fashion industry without knowledge of any beauty and make-up essentials made me struggle at the beginning, leaving me clueless most of the time. As compared to comfortable nursing uniforms I wear at work, there were times when I have to leave them hanging in my closet to fit in to designer clothes and apparels. The outfit changes were quite fun and exciting. However, the real challenge came in when I had to do my make-up when artists were not around to do it for me.

During the image model competition, I had to undergo preparations and training such as walking the ramp in high heels, practicing leg and hip exercises, and mastering several catwalk routines. We were also given basic make-up sessions to be used in our own advantage though I wouldn’t say such short classes were enough to make me a pro. And I was equally terrible even thereafter. So can you imagine now how dreadful it was to stand out during the search?

Having experienced it the hard way, I learned that putting on make-up is something every young and grown-up woman ought to know. And when I say ‘know’, they should at least have the basic knowledge on the proper techniques of application. Make-up does not just involve the use of cosmetic products. It is something that should be keenly taken in careful consideration. A properly done make-up should complement your look and highlight your façade and features. In doing make-up, one of the important things you should consider is dealing with colors which properly and compatibly match your skin tone and blend altogether. In my personal opinion, applying make-up in the eye area is one of the most challenging tasks to do. It might just be the most difficult thing to learn for starters.


“The countenance is the portrait of the soul, and the eyes mark its intentions.” - Marcus Tullius Cicero

Even with the absence of speech, a person’s eyes could do the talking. It has the capability to convey even the subtle of all messages which are sometimes best left unspoken. To take advantage of such captivating power, people create different eye make-up variations to provoke a typical or desired look. Also, one of its goals is to accentuate beautiful eye features and hide undesirable ones. Doing your smoky eye make-up is indeed not a petty task to accomplish. But with careful and patient techniques of application, coupled with great eagerness to look stunning, it won’t be painstaking at all. There are various ways in dealing with this, though it is important to develop a system of methods that work best for you. You will be able to fortify and incorporate more on those "methods" as you practice further.

The cold ice would constrict your skin pores. Thus, chances of too much make-up getting in to your skin is, at some point, minimized.
The cold ice would constrict your skin pores. Thus, chances of too much make-up getting in to your skin is, at some point, minimized. | Source

Before beginning your creative endeavour, you have to be well prepared so every step of the way would be easy to deal with. I would advise you to wash your face first with cool water and mild soap in order to leave it oil-free and make-up ready. Some beauty experts say that taking a small block of ice and applying it to your face prior to doing your make-up would minimize the chances of having clogged skin pores since the cold ice would constrict them. You should also prepare everything you need before you start doing your make – up. Basically, you should have your brushes, foundation or base, eyeliner, and eye shadow make-up close at hand.

WHAT MAKE-UP BRUSHES SHOULD I USE?

Just like painters, make-up artists also have their own set of brushes which aid them in blending colors to make and complete their works of art. This time, the canvas is a person’s face and the colors come straight from their make-up palette. Ideally, one should own a set of brushes of different types effective for various applications and purposes. There are brushes used to apply concealer and foundation (or base) in place of traditional make-up sponges that women commonly used in the past. Also, there are brushes which are used mainly for applying eye shadows. Since eye make-up is the focal point of this discussion, one should focus on familiarization with various kinds of eye make-up brushes. These brushes are vital in doing your smoky eye make-up. Such look is highly dependent on how well colors are applied and blended. And the job of these brushes is supposedly to do just that. Properly blended colors would assure achievement of desired outcomes. Since each eye make-up brush is used for a single and unique purpose, it would be very wise and practical to invest on their acquisition.

These are the brushes I use for my smoky eye look. (From left-right:) The first two brushes are the ones I use to blend colors and shades; next, the applicator brush; the fourth, smudge brush; and lastly, the eyeliner brush.
These are the brushes I use for my smoky eye look. (From left-right:) The first two brushes are the ones I use to blend colors and shades; next, the applicator brush; the fourth, smudge brush; and lastly, the eyeliner brush. | Source

The brushes I opt to use every time I create my smoky eye look are the following:

  • Smudge brush
  • Blending brush
  • Applicator brush
  • Eye-liner brush

If you have enough financial resources, it would be better to invest on a brush set or kit. However, you could always take your time purchasing different kinds of brushes as you do further smoky eye make-up experimentations. If you are still starting out, you could begin with those brushes mentioned above.

If you get the chance, it would be great to invest on a set of brushes to  do your over-all make-up!
If you get the chance, it would be great to invest on a set of brushes to do your over-all make-up! | Source

WHAT TYPE OF EYELINER TO USE? Pencil vs. Liquid

In eye make-up application, you may use either pencil or liquid eyeliner to shape up and trace the contours of your eyelids. However, it is more advisable to utilize pencil eyeliner in doing a smoky eye make-up. Pencil eyeliners are easily smudged and blended in contrast to liquid eyeliners. Also, pencil eyeliners are much easier to manipulate and work with.

Pencil eyeliners come in various colors and shades. However, black is much preferable among the rest. Brown shades would do as long as they come in darker tones. Basically, black is the ideal color to use because the principle behind smoky eye make-up lies within the interplay of various neutral shades. And black is proven best to blend with browns, greys, and other neutral hues.

WHAT IS AN EYE MAKE-UP BASE?

Eye make-up bases have gained popularity of use nowadays. Even make-up experts advise consumers to invest in to having one. They come in cream or powder forms which are primarily used to hold the eye shadow longer. Also, they prevent your eye make-up from getting smudged elsewhere or being scattered beneath your eyelids. You could still proceed to doing your smoky eye make-up even if you still haven’t got one. However, it would be ideal to find the soonest opportunity to purchase your own from local cosmetic shops in your area. And oh, don’t forget to apply it after you’re done doing your eyebrow fixes and make-up. Such measure would ensure that you won’t mess up the area with the eye make-up base.

When choosing the eye make-up base for you, always take careful consideration with your options. The perfect base for you is something which goes well and matches your skin tone. Upon application, it should brighten your eye area instead of discoloring it. Also, be cautious in choosing the right product for you. If you have allergies to cosmetic articles such as this, it would be nice to consult with a sales person first about the product types available that are proven mild or hypoallergenic. Most shops provide a free trial on these cosmetic products which aide the consumers to make the right choices.

WHAT EYE SHADOW COLORS SHOULD I APPLY?

In smoky eye make-up, using neutral colors and shades is the rule of thumb, the principle, and the universal standard. It is one of the basic techniques which had been used for years, even until now. However, some go for bright colors or other eccentric shades that suit their preferences. Usually, those who do are professional make-up artists. For starters, you may initially stick to your greys, browns, and blacks while you practice how to blend them altogether, before you move on trying out different colors. You could also use whites or silvers for accentuation and better mixes.

Stick to your neutrals.
Stick to your neutrals. | Source

NOW THAT I HAVE EVERYTHING I WOULD NEED, WHERE SHOULD I BEGIN WITH?

Don’t proceed to doing your smoky eye make-up just yet. It is important to groom and fix your eyebrows first. Doing such would give it a sleek and sexy look. The eyebrows are one of the most important features in your face which are often taken for granted. Make sure you had plucked or waxed them before moving on. In case you are kind of scared to do this yourself, you could always go to the salon to have them done by artists. Try to observe carefully while they do it so you would eventually know how to groom your eyebrows, on your own, the next time you might need to. Just so you know, properly done eyebrows would help emphasize the smoky eyes a little bit more.

There are so many shades to choose from. Pretty sure, you've been wondering where to start.
There are so many shades to choose from. Pretty sure, you've been wondering where to start. | Source

Apply make-up to your eyebrows before anything else. You wouldn’t want to look like someone who has small bushes on his brows, so you have to make sure that you don’t overdo it. In order to accomplish your eyebrow make-up neatly, you will need your eyebrow brush tools, black or dark brown pencil eyeliner, and a dark brown eye shadow. First, brush your eyebrows towards the direction of hair growth. Brushing it in an opposite direction would scatter the hair shafts which would make it look grungy. You could use an eyebrow brush (those which look a lot like miniature combs and brushes built in one small head piece) or a clean and dry mascara brush in doing such. Then for applying the actual eyebrow make-up, you should use your angled brush. This brush is specially designed to do the job. When it comes to picking colors, pick the one which matches the darkest shade in your hair though sometimes, it really depends on what looks good for your brows. Most often, women choose and use black or darkest shades of brown. Dab the angled brush on the chosen color then tap it off a bit before coloring your eyebrows. The angled brush should be directed upward while following the natural contour of your eyebrows. Then after doing so, grab your pencil liner to trace your brows lightly and neatly so as to define their contours more. A properly done eyebrow make-up should start from the inner corner of the eye and end at the outer corner of the eye.

Here's an angled brush for your eyebrows.
Here's an angled brush for your eyebrows. | Source

AND FOR A FEW OTHER REMINDERS...

Smoky eye make-up aims to emphasize your eyes. Therefore, let it be the sole focus of people’s attention. Make sure to apply just the adequate amount of light lipstick (baby or rosy pink) and always avoid reds or other hot colors. As for the cheeks, apply just enough amount of blush-on which corresponds to your skin tone to achieve pleasant facial contouring. Getting wrong with your lips and cheeks would spoil the entire look. For sure, you wouldn’t want to look like a clown.

Don't fret. There's always an easy way to do smoky eyes. Watch and learn!

Remember that true beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. Stay beautiful!

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    • profile image

      acsunga-lee 5 years ago

      nice one sis! hope you do more! haha :)

      (will try this out on my hobo self...haha!)

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much for dropping by this hub acsunga-lee. I hope I could explore on other avenues of make-up application. I readily admit that I am not a pro... am just like everybody else who's looking for methods to work for me. And I hope these pointers would work on you as well. Always remember that make-up is just an embellishment to our facade. What's more important is radiating the beauty that comes from within. Have a great day!

    • Seeker7 profile image

      Helen Murphy Howell 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

      This is a fabulous hub and so easy to follow! Great tips on how to get your smoky eye look!

      I like the other advice you give as well - such as the use of make up should enhance not cover up your face. I think there are so many pretty women out there who overdo their make-up. They do seem to cover their faces up with make-up rather than the products bringing out the best of what they have.

      Great hub + voted up awesome!

      Ps your photograph is stunning! Well done!

    • rLcasaLme profile image

      rLcasaLme 5 years ago from Dubai, United Arab Emirates

      Nice pic sis! And congrats for the win! =)

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      I have to agree with you Seeker 7. You are right. There are so many women who are pretty even without make-up. And yet, maybe because they are influenced by factors such as the media, they seem to overdo their make-up. Thank you very much for dropping by this hub. I have to admit I spent quite a while finishing this hub because I want it to be as concise and simple as possible. I am still in the "beginner's phase" myself so it's like putting myself in my first time readers' shoes. :D

      Thanks kuya Rafael! I had talented make-up artists who made that look. I was surprised myself when I saw the photos after the said competition/pageant. I never thought I could look that good. Hahaha!

    • rLcasaLme profile image

      rLcasaLme 5 years ago from Dubai, United Arab Emirates

      Oh please! You look good. Everyone knows that. =)

    • Cheeky Girl profile image

      Cassandra Mantis 5 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

      You look terrific! You should do more modelling! Maybe it pays more than nursing, though nursing is a great skill to have as fall back job. This is an excellent hub on makeup! Really excellent. Rating this up. You are a great Hub writer. Happy to follow you!

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much Cheeky Girl! *Blushes* I would love to do more modelling... maybe after I am through setting up my band and composing more songs. I really appreciate that you find this hub interesting. And it's an honor being followed by a great writer like you. :)

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      I like this! Clear, concise and informative. After having my own make-up person for stage and various shows, I remember how disastrous it was when I first applied my own makeup. Yikes! Not a pretty picture.

      Thanks for sharing and hoping your New Year is absolutely awesome (like you!)

      vocalcoach~

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much vocalcoach. I had a great time making this article... Though I would have to admit I spent quite a while collating and making these simple methodologies. In my most honest opinion, I don't think you need too much make-up. You're a natural beauty. ;)

      I hope you and your family have a wonderful and prosperous 2012 as well! :)

    • savannahsmith098 profile image

      savannahsmith098 5 years ago

      Awesome! I am definitely going to try this out!

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you for stopping by Savannahsmith098! I hope this one helps... :)

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Maybe if you can drop by Cebu you can give me a make up lesson? LOL I will bookmark your hub and study this again and experiment some more!

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much for reading ripplemaker! I know how hard it is to put on make-up that's why I thought I'd share some simpler ways to do it. The key is careful application and right blend of colors, especially on the smoky eye make-up. :D

      Anyway, you look pretty even without too much make-up on. Stay beautiful!

    • profile image

      KatrineDalMonte 5 years ago

      Great tips for any woman! Thanks :-)

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much KatrineDalMonte! I hope these are helpful. :D

    • ishwaryaa22 profile image

      Ishwaryaa Dhandapani 5 years ago from Chennai, India

      This is a very detailed and helpful tutorial on smokey eye-makeup. You looked very pretty & Congrats on winning the title! My mother is an expert at eye-makeup and artfully made the best use of eye-liner for drawing well on the upper eyelids and eye-pencil for lining the lower eye-rims. Though I use overall make-up occasionally, my mom often advise me to use eye-makeup daily to highlight my look. Well-instructed hub! You spoke like a makeup expert!

      Thanks for SHARING. Useful & Awesome. Voted up and Socially Shared.

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much ishwaryaa22, my friend. Those were the days... :D Wow, I would love to learn from your mom. Maybe you can also write about some of her beauty and make-up secrets. For sure, lady hubbers would check it out big time!

      You are such a pretty girl sis (not to mention, a taller one!). You are right about putting make-up to highlight your look. It's supposed to be like that. Make-up paraphernalia are not made and put to change someone else's appearance in the first place. They're meant to enhance it. :)

      Thank you very much for reading. Take care!

    • vinner profile image

      vinner 5 years ago from India

      You are a cool writer. Waiting to read more articles from you.

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you vineer! I really appreciate you taking the time to read this one. :)

    • ideasinked profile image

      ideasinked 4 years ago from Mumbai, India.

      I generally do smokey eyes as my eyes are bigger! I love experimenting with different colors and techniques. Retro is my favorite look It goes with every outfit.

      Great hub! :)

    • diplorging profile image

      diplorging 4 years ago from Serbia

      This is a great hub, you made some great points here. I have aslo write about smoky eyes, but you added some great tips I wasn't thinking about so I will share this.

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Hi Ideasinked! :) I would love to see that retro look. Why not make a hub about it? I'd love to read about that. I'm not really an expert in doing smoky eye make-ups, so for sure, your inputs would be of great help for me and others. Thank you very much for dropping by!

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you diplorging. Your feedback made my day. I only wrote what I experience each time I do a smoky eye make-up. Most people who see my look would request me to teach them how to do it. I am very humbled with the confidence they have in my so called 'creativity'. And with that, I decided to share my simple techniques in a hub.

      Thank you very much for reading! :)

    • bwhite062007 profile image

      Brianna 4 years ago from East Coast

      Awesome hub and great informative advice! With just a little practice, anyone can get the the basics of makeup application. Congrats on your winning title and you are beautiful!

    • livhappy profile image

      Josh Schaitel and Olivia Alverson 4 years ago

      This is so helpful! The best make up tutorial I have ever used

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you bwhiteo62007 for that wonderful comment!

      When I encounter some form of difficulty in completing an endeavor - no matter how big or small it might be - I see to it to share my learning experiences to others. I thought this simple yet reality-based make-up tutorial would be able to help beginners as they venture the somehow-intricate-world of make-up.

      I'm really glad you liked it!

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much livehappy!

      I never thought my simple make-up tutorial would be able to help you in your own make-up activities. Doing eye make-up is one of the hardest thing I had to do in the past. But I found out that it's manageable to do every time, as soon as you practice more.

      Thank you for dropping by my hub. Feel free to share this tutorial with your friends and loved ones. :)

    • jennzie profile image

      jennzie 4 years ago from Lower Bucks County, PA

      This is a great tutorial on how to do a smoky eye. I am going to try this tomorrow.

      Voted up and useful.

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much Jennzie! I never thought this tutorial would help a lot of people in their make-up (smoky eyes) ventures. I hope when you try it yourself - it'll be useful for you. :)

      Have a great day!

    • TeachableMoments profile image

      TeachableMoments 4 years ago from California

      Thank you for the wonderful tips! Everything you suggested is extremely useful. I've tried the smoky eye look before, but I always end up looking like a raccoon. I will try your tips tomorrow. Thanks for a great hub.

    • thesingernurse profile image
      Author

      thesingernurse 4 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Thank you very much TeachableMoments! :)

      In making your smoky eye look, it's very important to choose the right combination of colors. I also suggest that you start lightly and darken the shades as you see fit. It's best to start gradually so that you'd have complete control on how hues are blended altogether.

      Good luck! And I hope everything will work for you. :)

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