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An Easy Smokey Eye Tutorial With a Surprising Twist

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Date-night makeup can have an expectation attached for needing to go above and beyond your normal daily makeup routine to create a little extra dazzle. The good news is that these amped-up looks don't have to take much more time than you would ordinarily spend doing your everyday look. Here, I'm showing you how to streamline your classic smokey eye with a Valentine's Day twist: use pink eyeshadow instead of brown or black. With this easy substitution -- pastel palettes are everywhere right now -- not only do you get that coveted date-night smolder, but you also get a brightening effect thanks to the soft, shimmer pink hue (similar to using blush on the go to make your eyes pop). Scroll below to learn the five simple steps to achieve this romantic look in five minutes flat.


Prep: Flawless Face + Chocolate Lip

Apply your base makeup following this flawless face tutorial. Add a soft pale pink blush like Narsissist Cheek Studio Palette in Fleshy Pink ($65) onto the apples of your cheeks and highlight above your cheekbones with a bright matte powder like Cream Bisque from the same NARS palette. Pair with a deep neutral lip color that will allow your eyes to be the main feature while still having a little punch of drama. I'm wearing Too Faced Melted Chocolate in Chocolate Honey ($21) -- totally kissable, BTW!

Step 1: Matte Highlight

I chose to go with a matte highlighter on my brow bone and inside corners of my eyes to keep this look overall on the matte side of the fence. I am using the Cream Bisque color from the NARS palette in the last step.

Step 2: Sweep of Pale Pink

Using a flat brush or even your finger, apply a soft pink from the inside corners of your eyes slightly over the cream shadow that you applied in the last step, across your eyelids and into your creases. Switch to a flat brush and apply the same pink to your lower lash line. I'm using Shimmering Rose Peach from the same NARS palette.

Step 3: Smoke It Out

This step is best if you use a smaller, slightly firm shadow brush for precision and a slightly smudgy effect. Apply a deep brown eyeshadow like Darkhorse from the Urban Decay Naked Palette ($54) to the outside corners of your eyes, pulling the shadow slightly below your lower lash line and into the outer creases of your eyelids. You could use black eyeshadow if you really want to have a smoldering drama, but I like brown to keep it soft and romantic.

Step 4: Pink Shimmer

Now it's time to apply one little touch of shimmer directly to the center of your eyelids to catch the light and create a dreamy subtle shimmer that will have your lover locked into your gaze! I am using NYX Cosmetics Roll on Shimmer in Mauve Pink ($4) that I apply with a flat shadow brush instead of rolling on for a more natural lighter finish.

Step 5: Deep Gray Liner

Instead of using a true black eyeliner, grab a deep charcoal or gray eyeliner like Buxom Hold the Line Waterproof Eyeliner in Sparkling Gunmetal Gray ($17) that will be contrasty enough up against the soft pink without overpowering the overall finish of the look. For that smudgy effect, apply on the outside corners of your eyes, along your upper lash line and on the outside portion of your lower lash line. You can use a cotton swab or brush to blend over the liner to make it a little softer and smudged out.

Finishing Touches: Fluttering Soft Mascara

For your mascara, keep it lighter by using a soft brown like my current go-to Benefit Cosmetics They're Real Tinted Primer ($24). This is going to finish off those soft smoldering pink eyes without being too stark!

Now I ponder... he loves me, he loves me not!

Who cares? I feel pretty! :)

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