HOW TO WEAR BROWN EYESHADOW STEP 1: SHADE IN LID
Start by applying a light tan eyeshadow shade over the entire eyelid. Meghan uses shade “Creator” from the Nudes of New York Eyeshadow Palette.
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Love the smokey eye look but wish it was a little subtler? Think brown. The brown smokey eye is the toned-down cousin to the black smokey eye, just as cool, but not as dramatic and more suited for daytime. Gorgeous on anyone, but truly smoking on those with brown eyes, this look is super-easy to create with the help of makeup artist Meghan Nguy, who breaks down the steps for you below.
Complete the look by further defining the eye with a pop of red color. Simply apply a red-brown eyeshadow shade directly over your eyeliner line and blend out. Meghan uses "Globetrotter" in our Nudes of New York Palette for this.
So here's why it's great: it complements every skin tone, every eye color, and every eyeshadow. Plus, it has the ability to be both smoldering and sultry OR natural and subtle. There's something about brown eyeshadow that can do it all in a way that other shades—even the other neutrals—just can't.
Now of course, there is no such thing as "a brown eyeshadow". There are millions of different shade variations, and multiple textures available. Toast, chocolate, latte, nutmeg. Creamy, matte, sheer, shimmer. And we love them all! There's a reason why our Nudes of New York Eyeshadow Palette is an iconic bestseller: it brims with all kinds of browns, and can create any kind of look.
If you're new to makeup and need a crash course, invest in a small palette of browns, like our City Mini Palette in Rooftop Bronzes or Brooklyn Nudes. These will give you options without overwhelming you. Start by applying a sheer layer or two of medium-toned brown on lids, concentrating color at the lash line, and fading color as you go up to the crease. Add a few coats of mascara to top lashes, and you've got a basic, flattering, eye-defining look.
For a little more oomph, create a smoky eye by lining the lower lashline with the same shade of brown, and maybe adding a dusting of a metallic, shimmery brown into the center of the eyelid for depth and dimension. If it looks too much, take a clean eyeshadow brush and just blend the color until it fades and softens. That's it!
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