If your comfort level with eye makeup lies squarely in the neutral zone, we've got some news for you: Color is making a play for eyelids this fall, and we've got three ways to wear it that are sure to become a part of your beauty repertoire. Makeup artist Brenna Drury shares her tips on how to pull off these hue-heavy looks with minimal effort.
The Bold Graphic Eyeliner
You don't need to bathe your entire eyelid in color to get in on fall's painted-eye trend. Instead, add a pop of color with eyeliner — and, better yet, make the line design an interesting graphic shape. "Graphic eyeliner is so fun!"says Drury. "It gives you a pop of color and can create a statement without being too dramatic." To nail the look, prep eyelids prior to applying color to ensure lasting wear and zero slippage. "If you tend to get oily lids, choose an oil-controlling primer," Drury advises. Or, if you've applied liquid foundation to your eye area prior to creating your eyeliner design, make sure to pat a translucent setting powder over the top to "prevent the product from moving," she says.
Finally, select a quick-dry liquid liner with a sharp point; these allow you more control in creating thin, tight lines and sharp geometric shapes. "Choose brighter pastel colors for a fresh, youthful look or deeper jewel tones to add drama," Drury says.
Primer First: Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion Original, Sephora (left). Line With: Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner in Periwinkle, Sephora (right).
The Watercolor Eye
If you love the idea of the season's most daring eye shadow colors (think pink and red), but you're not quite ready to wear a full-blown smoky eye, try a hazy watercolor effect instead. Drury believes this type of eye design makes perfect sense for the autumn months. "When transitioning to fall, our looks change pretty drastically from summer," she says. "The colors get deeper outside, as well as in our clothing and makeup. Softening more daring colors around the eyes can help balance your overall look."
The key to achieving a watercolor design? "Blend, blend, blend!" Drury says. To create a look similar to this wash of hazy red and pink, she recommends selecting two corresponding eye shadow shades — one dark, one light —and then patting on the deeper color along the outer edges of the eye and blending outward. Then, tap on the softer color directly over the eye, and blend it together with the darker shadow to create a smooth transition.
Blend With: MAC 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush, Macy's (left). Color With: Make Up For Ever Artist Shadow Matte Finish in Morello Cherry, Nordstrom (center). Color With: NARS Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow in Cassiopeia, Nordstrom (right).
The Vivid Smoky Eye
Rather than reach for the usual suspects (gray and brown come to mind), fall's best smoky eye features vibrant, head-turning color. Drury singles out shadow shades like amethyst, sapphire and emerald as top picks for bringing this trend to life. "Jewel tones have a certain energy I love when creating a smoky eye. I think they demand attention — in a good way!"
To recreate this vivid smoky eye, Drury advises choosing your eye shadow wisely: opt for powder formulas that pack in a ton of pigment and apply seamlessly allow you to layer color until you reach the right intensity. "I suggest layering on a highly pigmented shadow across the lid and then sheering the color outward," she says. If you're feeling extra adventurous, Drury recommends playing up texture, such as adding a gloss. "It creates a natural highlight across the lid, which intensifies the color. But be careful about the formula. You want a gloss that's not too sticky or gooey, so your shadow doesn't move."
Color With: Chanel Les 4 Ombres Multi-Effect Quadra Eyeshadow in Tisse Jazz, Nordstrom (left). Gloss Up: Kevyn Aucoin The Exotique Diamond Eye Gloss, Sephora (right).