6 Steps How to Apply Eyeshadow Like a Pro

by  Mila M.Cosmetologist

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“Mastering the art of eyeshadow application can feel overwhelming. Did you know that a well-applied eyeshadow, like one done by professional makeup artists, can make your eyes pop and boost its natural color? Our step-by-step guide will equip you with all the necessary techniques to apply eyeshadow like a pro, from understanding different brushes to avoiding common mistakes.

So let’s dive in and unveil the secret to creating stunning eye looks!”.

  • Use the right brushes for professional eyeshadow application, such as a flat shader brush and a blending brush.
  • Apply an eyeshadow primer before your eyeshadow to enhance color and make it last longer.
  • Follow a step-by-step guide, including priming the eyes, building the base color, defining the crease, blending, defining the lash lines, and highlighting strategically.
  • Avoid common mistakes like using too much product or skipping shadow underneath the eyes.

2 Tools for Applying Eyeshadow

To achieve professional eyeshadow application, you will need essential brushes and an eyeshadow primer.

Essential brushes

To achieve a professional eyeshadow look, you need the right set of brushes. Let’s break down some essential brush types for the perfect eyeshadow application:

  1. Flat Shader Brush: This brush helps to evenly distribute eyeshadow across your eyelid and works best with powder or cream formulas.
  2. Blending Brush: As one key to professional-looking eyeshadow is well-blended colors, this brush comes in handy. They can help soften harsh lines and fuse multiple shades together seamlessly.
  3. Crease Brush: For a defined, professional crease line, this brush is indispensable. It can also be used to deepen the crease color for an intense look.
  4. Pencil Brush: This thin, pointed brush lets you add detailed work like highlighting the inner corner of your eyes.
  5. Angled Eyeliner Brush: Perfect for crafting a precise liner line or smudging color along your lash line for a smokey look.
  6. Smudge Brush: Use it to blend eyeliner and eyeshadow along the lash lines, creating a sultry, smokey effect.

Eyeshadow primer

Starting with a fresh base is essential for achieving a professional eyeshadow look. That’s where an eyeshadow primer comes in.

Applying an eyeshadow primer before your eyeshadow not only helps to enhance the natural color of your eyes, but it also creates a long-lasting application.

The primer acts as a barrier between your skin and the eyeshadow, preventing creasing and fading throughout the day.

So, if you want your eyeshadow to stay vibrant and flawless all day long, don’t forget to apply that trusty eyeshadow primer first!

6-Step Guide for Applying Eyeshadow

To apply eyeshadow like a pro, follow these simple steps:

Priming the eyes

One of the first steps in applying eyeshadow like a pro is to start with a fresh and clean base by applying an eyeshadow primer. This essential product helps to create a smooth canvas for your eyeshadow, ensuring that it lasts longer and looks more vibrant throughout the day.

By using an eyeshadow primer, you can also enhance the natural color of your eyes and make your eyeshadow pop. Simply apply a small amount of primer onto your eyelids and blend it in using your fingertip or a brush before moving on to the next step.

It’s a simple yet crucial technique that sets the foundation for professional-looking eye makeup application.

Building the base

Start by creating a smooth and even base for your eyeshadow application. This is an essential step to ensure that your eyeshadow lasts longer and looks more vibrant. Begin with clean eyelids, then apply an eyeshadow primer to help the colors adhere better and prevent creasing.

Use a nude eyeshadow shade as a base all over the lids, sweeping it from lash line to brow bone. This will create a neutral canvas for other shades to blend seamlessly on top. Applying a base shadow also helps intensify the color payoff of your other eyeshadows, giving you a professional-looking finish.

Defining the crease

Defining the crease is a crucial step in achieving professional-looking eyeshadow. The crease refers to the natural fold of your eyelid, and highlighting it adds depth and dimension to your eye makeup.

To define the crease, start by choosing an eyeshadow color that is slightly darker than your skin tone or the shade you used on your lid. Using a small, fluffy brush, apply the eyeshadow directly into the crease area using windshield wiper motions.

This technique helps create a gradient effect and ensures seamless blending with other shades. By defining your crease, you can elevate your eyeshadow game and achieve a polished look that will make others think you had it done by a pro!


Blending is a crucial technique in achieving a seamless and professional eyeshadow look. To blend your eyeshadow colors together, you can use a blending brush or even your fingers.

By gently sweeping and diffusing the shades, you will create a smooth transition between different colors for a flawless finish. Blending helps to eliminate harsh lines and create depth and dimension on the eyes.

Remember to blend with light, circular motions until the colors seamlessly merge together. Mastering the art of blending will elevate your eyeshadow game and give you that polished pro look every time.

Defining the lash lines

Defining the lash lines is an important step in achieving a professional and polished eyeshadow look. To do this, you can use a small angled brush dipped in a dark eyeshadow shade that complements your eye color.

Start at the outer corner of the eye and gently trace along the upper lash line, working your way towards the inner corner. This helps to create definition and makes your lashes appear fuller.

For a more dramatic effect, you can also apply the same technique to the lower lash line. Just make sure to blend it out softly for a seamless finish. Defining the lash lines adds depth and intensity to your overall eye makeup look, giving you that pro-level result you desire.

Highlighting strategically

Highlighting strategically is an important step in achieving a professional eyeshadow look. By applying a light, shimmery shadow or highlighter to certain areas of the eyes, you can create dimension and brightness.

A common technique is to apply a highlighting shade to the inner corner of the eye, which can help make your eyes appear bigger and more awake. You can also add a touch of shimmer on the brow bone to highlight and define the shape of your eyebrows.

Additionally, gently dabbing a bit of highlighter on the center of your eyelids can give them a beautiful pop and make your eyeshadow look more vibrant. Experiment with different shades and placements to find what works best for you and enhances your unique eye shape.

10 Common Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid using too much eyeshadow product, as it can lead to a messy and overdone look. Make sure to use a primer before applying eyeshadow to ensure long-lasting color and prevent creasing.

Don’t apply concealer before eyeshadow, as it can cause the colors to appear dull and less vibrant. Be careful when choosing eyeshadow shades, making sure they complement your skin tone and eye color.

Don’t forget to apply shadow underneath the eyes for a complete eye makeup look.

Using too much product

Using too much eyeshadow can result in a heavy and cakey look that is not flattering. It’s important to remember that a little goes a long way when it comes to eyeshadow application.

Applying small amounts of product at a time allows for better control and blending. Start with just a small dab or swipe of eyeshadow on your brush, then build up the color gradually if needed.

This will help you achieve a more natural and professional-looking result without overwhelming your eyes with too much product.

Not using a primer

Not using a primer when applying eyeshadow can lead to a less vibrant and long-lasting result. Applying an eyeshadow primer before your eyeshadow helps to enhance the natural color of the eyes and create a smooth base for the product.

It also prevents creasing and fading throughout the day, ensuring that your eyeshadow stays in place. By skipping this important step, you may find that your eyeshadow doesn’t appear as pigmented or blend as easily.

So, make sure to include an eyeshadow primer in your makeup routine for a professional-looking finish that lasts all day.

Applying concealer before eyeshadow

Prepping your eyelids with concealer before applying eyeshadow is a pro tip that can make a big difference in your eye makeup look. The concealer acts as a base, evening out any discoloration or redness on the lids and creating a smooth canvas for the eyeshadow.

It also helps to intensify the color payoff of the eyeshadow and makes it last longer throughout the day. Simply apply a thin layer of concealer onto your eyelids using your ring finger or a small brush, then blend it out evenly.

This step will help your eyeshadow look more vibrant and stay in place all day long.

Choosing the wrong shades

Choosing the wrong shades of eyeshadow can make or break your overall look. It’s important to consider your skin tone and eye color when selecting shades. For example, if you have fair skin, light pastel shades like pinks and blues can complement your complexion well.

On the other hand, those with deeper skin tones may find that jewel-toned eyeshadows such as emerald green or sapphire blue really make their eyes pop. Additionally, take into account your eye color – using complementary colors on the color wheel can create a stunning contrast.

For instance, if you have blue eyes, warm copper or bronze shades can bring out the blue hues in your eyes beautifully. By choosing the right shades for your unique features, you’ll be able to enhance and showcase your natural beauty like a pro.

Skipping shadow underneath the eyes

To achieve a professional eyeshadow application, it’s important to avoid skipping shadow underneath the eyes. Applying eyeshadow on the lower lash line helps to enhance and define your eye shape.

It adds depth and dimension to your overall eye makeup look. You can use a small brush or an angled brush to gently apply a complementary shade of eyeshadow along the lower lash line.

This technique will help create balance and give your eyes a finished and polished appearance. Don’t forget this step for a pro-level eyeshadow application!

Limiting eye makeup to traditional eyeshadow

Don’t restrict yourself to just traditional eyeshadow when it comes to eye makeup. Explore other options like cream eyeshadows, pigments, and glitters to add depth and dimension to your look.

These alternative products can give you a more professional and creative finish that will make your eyes stand out. Experiment with different textures and finishes to find what works best for you.

Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone and try something new – the possibilities are endless! So go ahead, have fun, and take your eye makeup game to the next level by expanding beyond traditional eyeshadow.

Applying eye makeup before foundation

Applying eye makeup before foundation is a key step in achieving a flawless and professional look. By starting with the eyes, you can prevent any fallout from ruining your foundation.

It also allows you to correct any mistakes or clean up any smudges without disturbing your base makeup. Additionally, applying eye makeup first helps to create a more cohesive and balanced overall look by allowing you to coordinate the colors on your eyes with the rest of your face.

So remember, always start with your eyes when getting ready and save the foundation for later!

Using only a makeup brush

Using only a makeup brush for eyeshadow application can limit your ability to achieve a professional look. While brushes are essential tools, they should be used in conjunction with other techniques and products for the best results.

By using your fingers or specialized applicators, you can apply eyeshadow more precisely and control the intensity of the color. Additionally, using different tools allows you to blend shades seamlessly and create dimension on your eyelids.

So don’t rely solely on a makeup brush; experiment with other methods to enhance your eyeshadow application skills and achieve that pro-level finish.

Thinking multiple shades are necessary

To achieve a professional eyeshadow look, you may think that using multiple shades is necessary. However, this is not always the case. In fact, keeping it simple with one or two shades can create a stunning and polished look.

By choosing colors that complement each other and your skin tone, you can still achieve depth and dimension in your eye makeup. Don’t feel pressured to use every shade in your palette – instead, focus on blending and strategically placing the colors to enhance your natural beauty.

Remember, less can often be more when it comes to eyeshadow application!

Using black eyeshadow for a smokey eye

To achieve a sultry smokey eye, black eyeshadow is a must-have. It adds depth and intensity to your eye makeup look, creating a dramatic effect. Start by applying an eyeshadow primer to ensure long-lasting wear.

Then, use a small angled brush to apply the black eyeshadow along your upper lash line and into the outer corner of your eye. Blend it outwards towards the crease using small circular motions for a seamless transition.

Apply more black eyeshadow to the outer V area of your lid and blend again for added smokiness. Remember to keep the color darkest at the lash line and gradually fade it as you move upwards for that perfect smokey effect.

4 Tips for a Perfect Eye Makeup Application

Enhance your eye makeup skills with these five tips for a perfect application.

First, always start with a clean canvas by using an eyeshadow primer. This will enhance the natural color of your eyes and ensure that your eyeshadow lasts all day.

Next, pay attention to the inner corner of your eye when applying eye makeup. Adding a highlight shade to this area can help create a professional classic smokey eye look.

Another important tip is to know your eye shape and use techniques that complement it. Different shapes require different approaches, so take the time to understand what works best for you.

Decoding your eyeshadow palette is crucial too. Knowing which shades to use and where will help you achieve a polished and cohesive look.

Lastly, blend, blend, blend! Blending is key in achieving seamless transitions between colors. Use a blending brush or even your fingers to ensure that there are no harsh lines in your eyeshadow application.

By following these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to mastering the art of applying eyeshadow like a pro!


In conclusion, by following the step-by-step guide and avoiding common mistakes, you can apply eyeshadow like a pro. Remember to start with a clean base using an eyeshadow primer and pay attention to your eye shape when applying different techniques.

Blending is key for a seamless look, and don’t forget to use shades that complement your skin tone. With practice and these tips in mind, you’ll be able to achieve stunning eyeshadow looks with confidence.


1. What are the first steps in applying eyeshadow like a pro?

Before you start with eyeshadow application, prep your eyes using eye cream and an eyeshadow primer. Then apply a nude eyeshadow base for a flawless look.

2. What techniques can help with professional eyeshadow application?

Start by adding color to your eyelid, focus on crease definition, create a gradient with the eye shadow colors and highlight the inner corner of your eyes for an optimal look.

3. How do I create a smokey eye makeup look?

Mastering smokey eye makeup involves deepening the crease with darker shades of eyeshadow and blending them well to avoid any harsh lines.

4. Can you suggest any tips for natural-looking eyeshadow application?

For natural-looking eye makeup, choose lighter hues from your recommended eyeshadow palette, add transition shade for smoothness between colors, blend well, and remember every step should be followed carefully as per an eye makeup tutorial.

5. Should different methods be used for applying eyeshadows on various shapes?

Yes! Eyeshadows should be applied differently depending on one’s unique features; it’s all about enhancing eye shape whether it’s almond-shaped or mature skin types.

6 Steps How to Apply Eyeshadow Like a Pro
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Mila, the veteran beauty cosmetics professional and author of this article, while cutting and styling the hair of her client

Hi! I’m Mila M. I share my 44 year-experience as a Cosmetologist & Beauty Professional in this blog. This content is for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. Consult your trusted Beauty Professional for your personal beauty needs.

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