Beauty Tips from the Pros: Eye Shadow

It is said that Cleopatra used blue-black eye shadow on her upper eyelids, and Nile green on her lower lids. Though it may have worked for the Queen of Egypt, it might be a little too dramatic for a cocktail party in the 21st Century!

The mission of eye shadow is to compliment the beauty of your eyes, not be distracting. One simple rule to follow is that you should never use a shade that overpowers your own eye color -- like blue eye shadow on blue eyes, (More on that at a later date.) It's not that you can¹t use any colored shadows, but in an effort to best enhance your look, we¹re going to first explore neutral eye shadow -- those everyone can wear successfully.

Always start with an eye shadow base, a foundation made for the lids that helps the shadow stay on all day, but also because it makes application a snap. Apply base with your fingertip, and let it dry completely before moving to the actual eye shadow step.

Eyeshadows come in powders and creams, liquids and pencils. Today we will use powders.

A great neutral shadow palette, either those multi-pan packages, or a few individual pans of browns, taupes, greys and blacks can be your best friends.

That's all you really need. The other shades on the market, blue, green, violet, can be fun, but first let's master the basics of neutrals.

Most of us go the quick route, sweeping a silky shadow over the lids with a dry brush -- often the applicator that comes with the shadow. Treat yourself to an eyeshadow brush for the most even, foolproof application. Always remember to blend, blend, blend -- and don¹t over do it with any shade!

Apply eyeshadow with a slightly dampened brush or sponge tip applicator for an easier, more precise yet blendable texture. This will give your color a deeper intensity. The color will last longer, and won't crease.