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How to Create a Smokey Eye

Learn how to do a smokey eye in this eye makeup tutorial from Howcast.


Every girl loves a smoky eye but sometimes you just don't have the time and you need to get out the door. So these are tips for the basic smoky eye. What I'm going to do is start with a nice black eyeliner. I have the Perversion eyeliner by Urban Decay. I absolutely love these liners because they are very, very pigmented and they go on creamy; they're perfect for smoky eyes because you can place them on and then also smudge them up.

Right now, I'm starting to line at the base of her lash. You just want to make sure you're as close to the lashes as possible, especially for a smoky eye because you don't want to get a space in between the lashes and where you're applying the liner. I'm using black right now but you can incorporate this with any other type of color. I'm going all the way in towards her inner corner. Don't worry if the line is not perfect because we're just going to smudge it up in a second.

So there we have the line. Next, I'm actually going to take a smudge brush; I'll show you what that is in a second. It's got a really nice, small, firm type of brush. What it's going to do is best for dark pigments. So I'm now going to take a little bit of black shadow, load the brush, and then I'm going to go right over top of the liner and just smudge it up with small little back and forth movements.

You want to make sure that you do this pretty quickly because the eyeliner will set; it is very water proof but it does go on creamy so you have a little bit of time to work with it while it's still pliable. Now, you want to keep fading it upwards. Smoky doesn't necessarily mean dark or black; it just basically means the technique that you're using where it's very blended. It is usually some sort of gradation of color; for this look, from darkest to lightest up at the brow.

We're not going to go into too much depth just because this is a nice quick smoky look. Here we go; we blend it up with our smudge brush. I'm going to go ahead and go over top with a blending brush. You can either load this with some other slightly lighter color or just blend right over top without any color on top. I added a little bit of brown just to give a little more intensity there, blend everything. So now that we're nice and blended, I'm going to go ahead and add a little color underneath the eye. This is really where the smoky color stands out.

I'm actually just going to take the smudge brush again, with the black, I'm going to have you look up for me, and I'm going to go right under the lash line, and I'm adding this shadow here. Another tip, definitely use primer first, especially for smoky eyes because it's a lot of color, a lot of pigment, and you don't want that fading or running and becoming too smoky. I'm going to go ahead and clean that up. If you have a little fallout, that's fine; it's makeup, it comes right off so don't worry about that. You want to make sure too, that the shadow on the bottom and the shadow on top is connected so I'm going to go ahead and do a little extra work right in this corner here. If you want, you can add a little eyeliner on the inner rim but, other than that, that's a quick basic smoky eye.

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