Eyeshadow is one of the more challenging makeup techniques to master (although it still isn’t as hard as eyeliner, if you ask me). From selecting the right colors to proper blending, there are a lot of elements involved; one you may not consider at first but should is your eye shape.
With so many different eye shapes out there — almond, hooded, upturned, etc. — you’ll want to apply your eyeshadow to fit your unique features. While we’re firm believers that you can, and should, do whatever you choose with your makeup and never let anyone tell you otherwise, that’s not to say that certain eyelid shapes don’t naturally lend themselves to certain makeup styles. “I’m never trying to change someone’s eyes, but rather accentuate our differences!” says Jenna Kristina, a celebrity makeup artist and Maybelline New York US Brand Ambassador.
To master the perfect application for your eye shape, we tapped Kristina for a few tips, ahead. But before we jump into that, you’ll want to arm yourself with a versatile eyeshadow palette, like the Maybelline New York Eyestudio Nudes of New York 16 Pan Eyeshadow Palette.
Eyeshadow for Monolid Eyes
Monolids are characterized as eyelids that don’t have a visible crease or hood. There are a few ways you can go about applying eyeshadow to accentuate your eye shape. “A typical application for this would be to apply like a sunset, using darker shadows at the base and gradually getting lighter,” says Kristina. “If you feel like getting a little more adventurous, this eye shape is great for graphic eyeliner, or any other creative shapes you feel like drawing on the lid.”
If you’re just starting to play with eyeshadow, Kristina also recommends adding a pop of color to your inner eye as a fast and easy alternative.
Eyeshadow for Downturned Eyes
If the outer corners of your eyes point slightly downward, then you have downturned eyes. “For this eye shape, it’s really important to line under the eye and blend a darker shadow on the outer edge of the eye, bringing it up to the crease.” This method of application pulls the eye up and out for a ultra-flattering look.
Eyeshadow for Round Eyes
If you can see the white of your eyes around all sides of your iris then chances are you have round-shape eyes. When it comes to round-shape eyes, Kristina says she loves to line both the top and bottom on the eye. This really helps them stand out. “On the upper lid, smudge the liner on the inner and outer corners, pulling it upwards to create a triangle effect pointing out on your lid,” she explains. “For the center of the lid, apply an eye-catching eyeshadow shade to make it pop, blending into those outer triangles.”
Eyeshadow for Almond Eyes
Almond eyes can be mistaken as round but there’s one key difference between the two: If you can only see the white of your eyes to the left and right of your iris and it touches both your bottom and top lid when you look straight ahead, you have almond eyes. Kristina recommends focusing darker eyeshadow on the outer edge of the eye and blending it out toward your hairline. Towards the inner corner of your eye, blend lighter shades for a gradient effect.
Eyeshadow for Hooded Eyes
Hooded eyelids have a crease to them, but that crease tends to be deeper set and hidden from view when your eyes are open. To bring out that crease, Kristina likes to use a darker shadow above the fold of the eye. “Use that same color on the outer edge of the eye, softly drawing it out towards the hairline.”
Eyeshadow for Upturned Eyes
If the outer corners of your eyes point slightly upward, then you have upturned eyes. “Go with the cat-like effect that this shape naturally has,” says Kristina. “Line the top of the eye, and for the bottom, I only line the outer third, less than halfway.” When it comes to eyeshadow application, drag the shades outwards towards the hairline.