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When you want to make a statement with your eye makeup, you’d be hard pressed to come up with a better makeup look than a smoky cat eye. The combination of deep, smoked out eye shadows, dramatic winged eyeliner, and lush lashes instantly draws attention to your eyes. So, if you have a night out on the town in your near future, and want to look your best, give a smoky cat eye a try. Don’t worry if this isn’t a look you’ve mastered just yet—below, we’re sharing 10 steps to create a perfect smoky cat eye.
If you’re going to be wearing a lot of eye makeup—as you will be with a smoky cat eye—eye primer is an absolute necessity. Otherwise, your eye shadows and eyeliner are likely to wear off throughout the day. So, before you start laying down the rest of your eye makeup, apply a thin layer of primer to your lids.
Not confident in your ability to create a cat eye shape? Well, there’s no need to fret, all you’ll need is a little tape to get it right. Place a piece of tape diagonally, with one end at the outer corner of your eye and the other at the tail of your eyebrow. The tape will serve as a stencil of sorts, helping to keep your eye makeup in the desired shape.
It’s time to move along to eye shadow application, but don’t jump straight to applying dark colors to your lids. Instead, use a matte, flesh-toned eye shadow as a base. This will help the rest of your eye shadows blend better, making the extra step well worth it. Choose the shade that most closely matches your skin tone from the L’Oréal Paris Paradise Enchanted Scented Eyeshadow Palette and apply it from your lid up to your eyebrow bone.
Here’s where the smoky part starts to come into play. You’ll need two gray eye shadows, one darker than the other, to create a subtle gradient. Try the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Monos Eyeshadow in Meet Me in Paris and L’Oréal Paris Infallible 24 HR Eye Shadow in Sultry Smoke. Place your lighter gray on the inner half of your eyelids, and the darker gray on the outer half, being sure to blend them together in the middle. When you’re satisfied with the way they fade into one another, don’t put your blending brush down just yet. Blend your eye shadows at the crease too for a smoky effect.
A true smoky cat eye needs black eye shadow, too! Deepen your look by placing the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Monos Eyeshadow in Noir Cest Noir in the outer corner. Then, blend out, going directly over the piece of tape.
You can’t leave your lower lash line totally bare. Bring the black eye shadow down, smudging it against your lower lashes.
Wearing dark colors can make your eyes look smaller. For an eye-opening effect, you’ll want to highlight the inner corners of your eyes. Rather than reach for a standard highlighter, use a silver eye shadow, like the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Paints Metallics Eye Shadow in Aluminum Foil.
Now, you can push all your shadows aside and pick up the L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Lash Paradise Liquid Eyeliner in Black. Line along your upper lash line, then add a wing. Once again, you can use the tape as a guide to ensure your cat eye stays sharp.
Your look won’t be complete without a coat or two of mascara. Curl your eyelashes, then sweep on a couple of coats of the L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Lash Paradise Mascara in Mystic Black for lashes with lots of length and body.
One side effect of applying a bunch of eye shadows is fall out. At this point you may look like a raccoon, with dark eye shadow dusted all around your under-eye area. Thankfully, there’s an easy fix. Saturate a cotton pad with the L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof – All Skin Types and wipe off any eye shadow fall out. Once your under-eye area is clean, follow up the L’Oréal Paris True Match™ Super-Blendable Multi-Use Concealer to cover up any imperfections.
Need more idea makeup ideas? Check out these 3 Eye Makeup Looks That Are Even Better with Burgandy Mascara.