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A Simplified Definitive Guide to Basic Eyeshadows and Application Techniques

*Post originally written by Olivia J on The Unknown Beauty Blog. If you see this post elsewhere, it has been stolen.*

After writing all these posts on basic eyeshadow colors and the many eyeshadow tutorials.  I had to organize them down even further to a much more simplified guide for the average q-tip (makeup applicator or non-makeup artist).  For this guide, my philosophy on creating depth and shape was the main criteria, yet it had to be easy to understand and save time by creating shortcuts.

Let's be honest we all love makeup and the eyeshadow palettes but you may notice as one gets busy in life, playing with makeup means creating space and time in one's day.  If you don't have that time and you still want to make your eyes look polished and defined, you need to organize as much as possible. 

The Colors - Ivory Gold Shimmer, Apricot Shimmer, & Matte Taupe

Okay, let's get started.  I have cut down the basic eyeshadows into eight colors.  I have also included shimmer eyeshadows.  Now, before you say, "I can't wear shimmer because I have those wrinkly crinkled eyes."  You can because the shimmer is layered.  In fact, this entire definitive guide is based on layering eyeshadow.

Here are the eight most important colors.  These eight will create looks from the most natural no-makeup look to the dramatic smoky eye look.

The Basics

I call these the basics because these are the ones used all the time for every eye look.  Of course, two of the colors can be substituted for different colors BUT to avoid any chance of your head spinning like Regan in The Exorcist due to confusion, let's stick to these three.

  • Ivory Gold Shimmer - Yes, it is a shimmer!  This brings light to the eyes.
  • Apricot Shimmer - Another shimmer! This will bring light and add soft depth to the eyes.
  • Matte Taupe - This is a very important color!!!!!

The Basics Explanation

I am going to start with the matte taupe eyeshadow.  I have mentioned the importance of taupe.

Now, let me explain again and with possibly another and different point of view on the importance of this color.  I mentioned a good matte taupe contours and defines the eyes.  The color is made up of all the primary colors plus black and white.  Taupe looks natural in any lighting situation to the point where it seems to disappear in bright light yet reappear in low lighting situations without competing with the other surrounding eye colors.  It is the chameleon of eyeshadows. 

Taupe ALSO stabilizes the color of the skin on your eyes.
Anything you layer over it will adhere better and also balance better with other colors.  For example, let's take the ivory gold shimmer.  If you place that straight onto your eye prepped only with a concealer, you might notice how shimmery or even frosty it can be.  And, if you are a mature woman, you will probably not like what you see.  The color sinks in between the fine lines and just illuminates the crevices that you never knew were even there! Talk about self-discovery and adventure!

Yet, you still want shimmer.  When you layer the ivory gold on top of the taupe, the shimmer looks more even and doesn't fall into those cracks.  The color is also softened but your skin still looks like your skin tone because the taupe just acts like your skin color.

Matte Taupe

Here is how the matte taupe eyeshadow would be applied.  Notice, how it is on the entire eye area above and below.  I know this is different from what I have said in the past and very different from many other methods.  I just am trying to save you time yet allow you to look your best no matter what age you are. 

Next is ivory gold shimmer.  Why did I choose an ivory gold shimmer instead of just matte ivory which I happen to mention many times over?  Let's face it, shimmer is nice and nothing to be scared about especially when I explained how it can be layered on top of taupe.  Shimmer will soften the eye look AND it will also allow matte shadows to glide on more smoothly.

You can see from the diagrams where the ivory gold can be placed.  The lid and the brow bone is the most common area to apply for the best effect.

Ivory Gold Shimmer 1

Ivory Gold Shimmer 2

Apricot Shimmer is important too because it will capture the light softly while mimicking a skin tone or flesh tone color.  If you have darker skin, just go for a darker apricot or one that is saturated with color.  Apricot will also create a soft natural contrast and balance brown eyeshadows.

The pictures below show the the important areas where apricot shimmer can be applied.

Apricot Shimmer 1

Apricot Shimmer 2

These are the basic three colors you should have all the time.  These colors create dimension to your eyes by allowing light to bounce off your eye shape and bone structure.  In the next post, I cover the important matte eyeshadows, the browns.

Check out: Simple Daytime Look

Read by the Intelligent! Uncredited, copied, and plagiarized by the idiots!
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