Gunmetal Eye Tutorial: How to Take Your Eyes to Smoking Hot Heights
In this tutorial, Birchboxer Alina (our software engineer and fellow makeup addict), shows us how to master gunmetal eyes with the Coastal Scents Revealed Palette. Watch the video to see how she uses shades (black! silver!) that we normally avoid, to achieve the perfect winter weather look.
Find this palette and more great Coastal Scents palettes in the Birchbox Shop.
Love the look of faux eyelashes but too intimidated to give them a try? Our French colleagues recently created this delightful instructional video to help you face your false-y fears. The results: A subtle pop of pizzazz (just in time for New Year’s Eve). Go ahead, bat those lashes!
As an Asian woman, I find it impossible to follow the instructions in conventional smoky eye tutorials. My attempts to fill in my crease always end in a string of expletives. And it’s not because I don’t have a crease; my eyelids actually have multiple creases. This is pretty common among people of Chinese heritage—they’re traditionally known as “double eyelids,” though the term is now used interchangeably for surgically altered eyes. I’ve always embraced my natural eye shape, but for years I stuck to liner because eyeshadow was just too confusing.
After watching editor Candice’s Asian eye makeup video, I was inspired to experiment more with eyeshadows. Read on for a five-step gradient smoky-eyed tutorial for Asian multi-crease eyes. I devised this look through tons of trial and error—it’s subtle enough to wear to work and requires a minimal amount of time.
One of the more novel beauty trends we saw emerge from the spring 2013 runways in New York was blue eye shadow. Sure, it’s been done before (we’re children of the ’80s so we know this shade well), but it hasn’t been mainstream for a long time. Plus, this modern incarnation is extremely wearable.
If you’re as excited as we are about the revival of pretty blues, you’ll be psyched to know it’s a shade that works year-round. We asked our web producer, Alicia, to give it a try (she’s a makeup junkie if ever there were one) in a way that’s very fall appropriate. Click through for her best tips and remember: when you’re rocking an unusual color on your lids, keep the rest of your makeup minimal!
Left: Blue eye shadow look from Tibi’s spring 2013 show. Right: Web producer, Alicia. (Photos: Birchbox)
1) Prime your eyes. This will increase the staying power of your look and prevent any unnecessary smudging.
2) Begin with a medium matte blue eyeshadow. I used MAC’s Blue Spill. Using a flat dense synthetic brush, lightly swipe color onto your lids. The trick is to avoid being heavy-handed—you want just a light wash of blue shadow, nothing intense or dramatic.
3) Now use fluffy shading brush to pick up a lighter blue shade, Bobbi Brown’s Electric Eel. Tap off any excess and then use windshield wiper motions to blend in the color including in the crease. Repeat until completely blended.
4) To add some dimension and open up the eyes, I added a Bobbi Brown’s Cornflower Blue (pale sky blue) eyeshadow to the inner corners of my eyes.
4) This look focuses on the blue eye shadow so only use a very sharp eyeliner pencil just to fill in any gaps between your lashes. Make small dashes directly into your lash line. You do not want visible liner. Add a small amount of mascara to just coat lashes.
5) Finish the eyes by filling in and setting your brows with Benefit’s Brow Zings.
6) End with a swipe of neutral lip color. I used Bobbi Brown’s Rosy.
Would you ever wear blue shadow?
If you’re not ready to experiment with your shadow, try a colored liner.
Haute couture has been showing in Paris this week, and we noticed a sexy new beauty look that popped up at Versace: an extra-bold, smoky cat eye with metallic accents.
Unlike the standard smoky look that finishes within the hollow of the eye, Versace’s version pushed the color out beyond the socket to the end of the brow. We loved that the primary color was an extra dark charcoal shade, but our favorite part was the shimmery gold highlight on the inner corner of the models’ eyes. It was such an unexpected pop of bright on an otherwise intensely monochromatic look.
A little while ago while doing research for a story about easy ways to make your lifestyle more environmentally friendly, we came across a site we love: Practically Green (@practicallygrn). Dedicated to helping people take smart healthy actions in their daily lives, the site is a plethora of information—including lots about skin-care and cosmetics (follow them on Facebook, too). We asked the ladies of Practically Green, Rebecca, Sarah, and Kristen, to divulge their fave products and over the next few days, we’ll hear from each of them about what their individual recommendations are for lips, face, eyes, and body.
RMS Beauty Cream Eyeshadow, Acure Line Eraser Balm, Jane Iredale Longest Lash Thickening & Lengthening Mascara, Erbaviva SPF 15, Mad Hippie Eye Cream
Rebecca: When choosing mascara, it’s best to avoid nasty stuff like parabens, phthalates, petrolatum, diazolidinyl urea, which have been linked to cancer, reproductive toxicity, and allergies. That’s why I reach for eco-friendly mascaras like Jane Iredale’s Longest Lash Thickening and Lengthening Mascara. It maximizes lashes using safe ingredients like cellulose fibers and sea minerals.
Sarah: I like to use baby sunscreen near my eyes (but not too close!) and am enjoying Erbaviva’s SPF 15 this season. ’m also devoted to Acure’s Line Eraser Balm and RMS Beauty’s shimmery eyeshadows, which are just right for the summer because they are moist and stay on even in all this heat.
Kristen: I’ve started using Mad Hippie Eye Cream with 17 actives, which I know is meant to reduce wrinkles (and I don’t have them yet because I am still in college), but it feels so soothing and light on my skin. Given that my life is full of a lot of late nights and test cramming, I’ve got to have a way to get rid of puffy bags under my eyes, and this product definitely helps. Plus, I’m sure my skin will thank me later.
Give your eyes a treat with more products from our Birchbox Shop.
Move over Backstreet Boys because your pop hit may have ruled the ’90s, but there’s a different Larger Than Life taking over this decade. As of August 1, you’ll be able to score NARS’ brand new Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliners, a collection of nine soft pencils that will retail at $23 a piece and come equipped with a built-in sharpener.
Anything with a Beatles-related name always puts me in a frenzy, so accordingly, I’m anxious to try out the Abbey Road pencil; it’s even in my favorite color, a turquoise-y blue. The other members of the collection are all named after other famous streets as well. There’s Rue de Rivoli, a metallic forest green; Via Veneto, a deep black; Santa Monica Blvd, a classic white; Via Appia, a sultry red; Rue Bonaparte, a creamy beige; Madison Ave, a trendy gray; Rue Saint-Honore, a deep navy, and Bourbon Street, a bold purple. Now, come fall when your eyes are hankering for some color, NARS has you covered.
While you wait, surf through other eye poppers in our Birchbox Shop.
Sure, it was a bittersweet closing to an illustrious series, but the New York premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 was still magical — right down to Emma Watson’s look. We were spellbound by her dark gold-accented eyes, but what was even more impressive was her slicked back pixie ‘do. We haven’t seen it done well since the ’90s — Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct, obvi.
We’ve selected a few essentials to help you get the style without a single hair out of place (despite Manhattan’s oppressive humidity). While the starlet definitely used gel or mousse to get this super-sleek style, you can go frizz-free by using a few drops of Oscar Blandi’s Olio di Jasmine Hair Serum. Pull hair back and smooth any flyaways, then add the finishing touch: Redken Shine Flash 02 Glistening Mist, our newest favorite carry-with-you-everywhere product. It’ll will give you a boost of shine in seconds, whether you’re strutting down the red carpet or making the street your own personal runway.
For bold eyes of your own, pick up some products from our Birchbox Shop.
A Tarte look from Fall 2010 Fashion Week
A beauty-savvy friend recently sent me an urgent string of missives praising her latest obsession: Tarte Aqua-Gel Eyeliner. Here’s how it went down:
Email 1 (Initial discovery): "The old Tarte eyeliner was gone after about 30 minutes, but this new gel stuff stays for hours. And I love the cooling feeling as you apply!"
Email 2 (Additional selling point): “Also, yay! Fun colors! the only other natural eye liner I found that stayed was the Dr. Haushka liquid eyeliner, but it only came in boring colors, brown and black. Finally, a natural liner that comes in pretty colors! I bought brown and purple.
Email 3 (On application): “It’s more like a pen, actually. You can’t press too hard - treat it more like a liquid liner. But it stays forever!”
If that’s not a great pitch, I don’t know what is. Keep the tips coming!