Saturday, February 17th, 2007

Silver/gray smokey eyes video tutorial!

For a soft, gray smoky eye, check out this tutorial instead.

The following tutorial is for a very dramatic smokey eye that is basically black. It is considered sultry, sexy, and some might refer to it as the “Victoria Secret Model” look.

You will need the following products: a matte black base (Blacktrack fluidline), a matte black powder eyeshadow (Carbon eyeshadow), a matte highlight that’s similar to your skintone (Performance eyeshadow), another matte highlight that’s similar to your skintone, but darker than the one before (Malt eyeshadow), a black eye kohl (Graphblack technakohl, Blacktrack fluidline) and [optionally] a shimmery silver or black eyeshadow if you want a shimmery look (Silver Ring eyeshadow).

You will need the following tools: a separate brush or sponge-tip applicator to use with the black base (like the 252), a blending brush for the black shadow (cheap Target brush), and a blending brush for the highlight colors (Philosophy blending brush). To clean up fall-out, using a cosmetic remover wipe works best and is easiest to quickly eradicate the black fall out underneath the eyes.

Using a firm, flat brush, pick up just a dab of Blacktrack fluidline. This is all we are going to use for one entire eye, and yes, it will really be enough. A little goes a long way, and it is better to start small and add as required rather than deal with an overabundance of product!

Begin applying Blacktrack fluidline as your base on the inner portion of your lid. You want to place the brush as pictured and pull the color upwards and outwards to begin covering the lower part of your lid. You want to make sure you establish some sort of shape, whatever your preference in. I prefer something similar to the curvature of my natural eye. Do your best to make it fairly curved, but it does not have to be perfect – a few imperfections will disappear through the process.

You have applied most of the product initially on the brush, and you will spend the next few steps spreading it out by pulling the color upward and outward from the middle portion of your lower lid.

Continue covering your lid in Blacktrack fluidline by making sure to color your outer lid as well.

Pulling the color upwards and outwards will cause the color to look faded and streaky. This occurs and is expected, but is easily remedied by simply brushing downwards once you have pulled the color the appropriate height. You can also gently pat the color back into a smoother place.

This is the positioning of your brush when you are patting color into place or if you wanted to pull your brush downwards to ensure a flat surface, rather than a streaky one, as mentioned in the previous step.

This is what your finished product should look like.

Using a separate blending brush, pick up Carbon eyeshadow. You may need to return and pick up more of the black shadow as you work on the look.

In a similar fashion as applying the base, start packing on Carbon eyeshadow all over the black portion of your lid.

You want to make sure you get the shadow on all of your base, because it helps the eyeshadow and the base to set.

You want to go all the way to the edges, and if you go over, that’s perfectly okay!

Keep your brush at this angle as you apply Carbon eyeshadow to the outer edge of the base. This will help you be more precise with application and keep you in the same line as the base itself.

To help soften some of the line, gently swish your brush back and forth over the outer edge.

It will take a few times before you see the edge soften. Do not spend forever doing this, because we will help soften the edge further using our highlights.

Using a separate brush for the highlighter colors, pick up Performance eyeshadow with your brush.

Apply Performance eyeshadow directly underneath your brow onto your browbone. You want to place it towards the inner portion of your brow.

Gently slide your brush over the space beneath your eyebrow as you make your way towards the outer portion of the brow.

You can choose to continue using Performance eyeshadow, or you can use a slightly darker color like Malt eyeshadow. Keeping the brush at the pictured angle, cover the very outermost edge of black with Malt eyeshadow. Do not worry about all the fall out on the black eyeshadow – it is such a cinch to fix.

Gently brush the black shadow into the highlighter colors to help soften the harsh edge of black.

Using the brush you used to apply Carbon eyeshadow, hold it horizontally against your lid, along the outer portion of the black shadow and brush upwards and outwards, to help create a gray area that creates a gradient of black to highlight.

Gently swish the brush along the curve of the outermost edge of the black shadow.

This is what you should have when the eye is closed.

This is what you should have when the eye is open.

I prefer the shadow to go higher, so I am using my brush from applying Carbon to help heighten the black portion of the shadow by repeating the previous steps.

Similarly acting out the steps before, only this time increasing the amount of black space.

Using the brush you used to apply Carbon eyeshadow, pick up a touch of the black shadow and hold your brush horizontally against your outer lower lash line. Gently dab the brush against the outermost portion of your lower lash line and then carefully move it towards the inside of your lash line, but ensure that you stop one third to one half of the way.

This is what it should look like. You can clean up as you go, or you can clean up when you are finished (there is a fairly prominent stray black line underneath the lower lash line that will be cleaned up).

I find that kohl pencil liners are easy to use, but Blacktrack fluidline is fabulous for staying on the waterline. Both Graphblack technakohl and Blacktrack fluidline will give the same dark, black liner, though. I take my technakohl and dip the tip into Blacktrack fluidline, just to get a touch of the fluidline.

I apply the fluidline I had picked up with the technakohl liner by starting in the middle of my lower lash line and moving outwards in both directions, continually sliding back and forth over my lower lash line and lower waterline.

Add mascara of your choice, curl lashes if desired, and your eyes are finished. To complete the look, minimize focus on cheeks and lips by using a light-handed blush like Pearl Sunshine beauty powder and a deeper contouring color to dramatize features. Lips are best if left in either neutral or nude shades, but a slight pink or coral coloring will not destroy the look.

If you wanted a shimmery black shadow look, then read the following four steps.

Using your blending brush, pick up a shimmery black or silver eyeshadow like Black Tied eyeshadow or Silver Ring eyeshadow. Since I do not have Black Tied, I will be using Silver Ring. If you have a shimmery black shadow, you can simply apply that on top and you really do not need to do more.

This is what it looks like after you’ve applied Silver Ring shadow.

Using the brush you used to apply Carbon eyeshadow, pick up more of it and apply all over lid; make sure to cover the silver portions.

This is what it should look like – a bit more shimmery than before. Alternately, you can use a shimmery base and a matte black shadow to achieve the same effect. For my typical shimmery smokey eye, I use Silver pigment as my base, which has plenty of shimmer in it.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

486 thoughts on “Tutorial – Black Smokey Eye

  1. ionie

    thanks,, although i tried this on my little sister and it went teribly rong LOL alothough willl be great with practice :)

  2. Shannon

    Thanks!!! You helped a lot!

  3. Linette

    OMG this is sooo awesomeee and pretty
    i lovee how the eyelineer looks extraaa
    daark i lovee it im gonaa try this tomorrow.!
    i <3 it sooo much.!

  4. brie

    what lipstick is that?

  5. Shaiphali

    This is awesome.
    I tried and It came out very well.

    Thanks Christine.

  6. Danielle

    Nice. Im only 12 and i am having a halloween party. do u think that smoky eyes would look nice with a dark faerie costume?

  7. Abril

    OMG!!! You are so awesome! i loved your site, couldnt be better seriously, i had been looking for ages how to get smokey eyes and this is just a perfect tutorial thank you so much. You rock!
    Greetings from Mexico

  8. sri rahayu

    Very good trick that I learn for smoking eyes. TQ

  9. Tracy

    Hey! I love this and it looks easy to do! Im going to my husbands xmas party tomorrow night and am gonna try this. But I am wondering if I can just use dark eyeshadows rather than a think black liquid color to get a similar effect? Or a dark eye pencil? Let me know please via my email!

  10. Brandy

    Wow, your incredible the way you do makeup…somehow, it just doesnt look the same when I do it LOL. I better keep practicing!

  11. Samantha

    Hi, love the look! do you think its sutiable for me as i have medium blonde hair and blue eyes? x

  12. Brittany, veteran makeup artist

    Whoa there. MAC Blacktrack Fluidline SHOULD NOT be used as a base. You’ll find that the powder based shadow will fade through the night and leave an ugly black block on your eyeled. Try instead to used this product as a failproof, all-night eyeliner. Never use it full lid as in this tutorial.

    • Hi Brittany! I’m not sure what product you’re referring to, but I’ve never had Blacktrack fade or anything. It doesn’t budge and lasts hours upon hours…

  13. Candice

    Where do you find the performance eyshadow at. I looked on MAC’s website and couldnt find it!!!

  14. maria

    cant u just use eyeliner black eye shadow and foundation. I luv the look and the pics but i cant afford this. H}!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Candice

    What brush are you using for the blacktrack, is it a concealer brush or just a regular brush? Just wondering b/c I love the tutorial and I’m planning on doing it for new years…

  16. SuperFly

    As a Black female who ADORES this look, I didn’t know if your instructions would work for my skin tone. I decided to use the black base and a copper tint instead of natural and it looked wonderful!

    Thank you for making this SUPER easy–from someone who hardly wears any eye makeup at all!

    • I’m really glad to hear it worked out for you! I am always excited to get feedback from those with different skin tones — it really helps me out :)

      Thank you!

  17. tasfiya

    ur tutoryl is o-some.thanx.could you tell me from where can i get the smokey eye make-up in dubai?

    • Thanks so much! You should be able to find it at any of the cosmetic counters. I’m not familiar with Dubai enough to let you know a specific place, sorry!

  18. Swati

    hello chris….
    This is the first time i came across your website… just loved the latest one… i hav large eyes and definitely would love to try this smokey eye make up….

  19. Monica Valdez

    Hey Christine! I love your tutorials and have tried a few of them. I love this one but I cannot find the “blacktrack fluidline” anywhere. All my eyeliners rub off of my waterline within an hour or so. Please tell me where I can purchase a black eyeliner for the waterline. Thanks!

  20. Sandi

    BEST tutorial EVER. I finally GET IT. Haha.. and it looks awesome. Thank you! :)

  21. Anne

    Hey, thanks for the tutorial, it’s just what I was after =]

    Might I ask where abouts you got the matte black base (Blacktrack fluidline) from?
    I’ve been having some trouble finding it =/

  22. paula

    WOW!!! i am going to worship you for the rest of my life if i can make my eyes look like that… thanks a lot!!!

  23. hanaa

    very nice ,thanks

  24. Linh

    Hi Christine,
    I love all the look you have showed here and they really help me a lot.Since i know your site i almost only use MAC.My favorite are eye shadows,face and body foundation,eye kohl,brow set,studio fix nc30,skinfinish natural,paints in bare canvas,and all the brushes…
    You look beautiful in all MAC blush and lipstick so i gues i will try tofind a colour that works for me nextweek.I have seen that you show same of Mac look that Mac did for us so we can see what colour they have used on the skiss as Ester Lauder have done the same for werding day look.
    Can you tell me how to find the skiss Mac look for day and night here as now i lonly find the wedding look that Ester LAUDER did.

    Thank you very mych for every thing

  25. Becky

    Just wanna say thanks for making the time to do this!
    I really wanna give this ago, but i have mainly benifit make-up but i’ll give it a shot with what i’ve got. My only question is though, i have really really light eyebrows (its quite hard to see them at all actually as i have dark hair) just wondering whether you think that something this dark would work with this, i’m thinking it may be too blunt and harsh on my face. I’d appriciate your opinions thanks xxx

    • I think you wear this, Becky! If you feel your brows are too light, you can fill them in (not with black though!) with a similar color, just to define them and give them a little more oomph!

  26. christine, love your site! my mom introduced it to me. (:
    for some reason, carbon doesn’t spread for me. ):
    i have to apply a butt load of it to get this look.
    have you had this problem?

  27. spread as in blend i mean, X)

  28. Breanna

    love it!! it even shows u step by step pictures jus so u can have a visual of how it will look if u do thid or do tht.. very specific

  29. Jody

    This is gorgeous Christine!! Best smokey eye tutorial ever, best smokey eye ever. I was wondering what lipstick or gloss your wearing, it looks perfect with the smokey eye.

  30. also, i know you’re wearing cherish in this, but are you also wearing a lip glass? i thought i saw in other comments you mention it but i’m not sure…

  31. Sarah

    Nice, this kind of smokey eye is used so much around here in the part of the world. But i never saw a perfect preformance such as this one, hope i can make it, it will save me alot of money 😉

    thanks 😀

  32. yea there are different ways….luv u selena

  33. Talie

    i lovee this as soon as i saw it i tried it and it looked great ! the first time i did smokey eyes and it didnt even take that long
    thank uu! lol ♥

  34. Ali

    Your tutorial was perfect & I appreciate how much effort you put into this. My eyes look fantastic!

  35. brianna

    I was wondering what that black stuff is that you used at the beginning. I only have BYS black magic eyeliner. Is that good enough?

  36. Aytan

    Thank you for the tutorial Christine. Will give it a try. Could you please tell me what is the lip gloss you are wearing on the pic here? It is sooooo sexy :)

  37. Candi Lee

    How long does it take to achieve this gorgeous look?

  38. Maria

    this is the only website dat gives puics its so helpful

  39. fishystinks

    wow you are soo pretty
    and i love the eyes and love the colour of the lips
    you sould do a video tutorial

  40. Mia

    It’s totally truely amazing, been looking for a setep-by-step guide for AGES!

    THANKS <3

  41. Tarrah

    best tutoring thing ever. It worked and it actually shows how to do it all. thankyou x

  42. emily

    hey ! what brand of makeup do you use ? sorry if this is a dumb question i’v never been one for eye makeup but i think this looks stunning :)

  43. Olivia

    And my homecoming is saved!!!! thanks to you! =]

  44. Louise

    Amazing tutorial, seriously!
    I wanted to try a different method of how to do smokey eyes, and you totally helped.
    Thank you!

  45. Ames

    How would you add a little grayish metallic to that?

  46. Manisha

    hey i realy like this make up, simply awusum

  47. Lindsay

    A link of this was featured on another blog I visit. I think that’s why it’s so popular this week. I’ll try to find it…

  48. Stella

    Thank you a lot of posting this!
    However, I have a question. Almost always, I wear eye contacts, is it safe for me to eyeline the low lash with the fluid eyeliner? Or just use a normal pencil? I am just scared for my contacts…
    Thanks again!

  49. abby

    Wooow! another beautiful look on you. And i love the earrings, so pretty :)

  50. Yasmin

    thanks for the amazing steps i am going to try and do it now :’D

  51. zahara

    simply perfect,,,must try it out soon..

  52. glitter princess


  53. Whitney

    Wow thats so pretty i really need hep doing that

  54. Just curious, what can you use if you don’t have the black liquid color and you only have powders? Can you still get the same effect? Btw, I want ur earrings lol

  55. Lisa Diaz

    I LUV this look!!!!!! Could you do more of them w/other colors?

  56. Wow dude I love your tutorials! You are awesome!!

  57. Suvi

    Thanks SO MUCH!! I have tried smoky eyes so many times before and never succeeded in it. Now I did. Wow! :)

  58. Mackie dude.

    is that a spot of mole on your face? i have one and i hate it, you made it so not noticable. How?

  59. Krutika

    Hey! dis is really awesome!! Dis helped me 2 get a smokey look, whch i wasnt able 2 get it be4…….fanx alod 4 dis video as vel as d steps….. fanx a lods……..Tc 😀

  60. Maria

    thanks! thats exactly what I needed:)

  61. chelsea

    .. that is the best tutoral ive ever seen you did such a great job i just cant seem to fid the carbon eyeshadow for sum odd reason

  62. thank you so much for this!
    Yourr so pretty btw !

  63. kiki

    this is so cute i luv it nd im so gonna try this thanx!! <3

  64. You did a wonderful job on this tutorial and you’re very beautiful.

  65. megan

    I love the tutorial, havent tried it yet, but cant wait to. My biggest problem, especially with black eyeshadow & cosmetic brushes is that it always leaves dusts of color under/around my eye and when I go to clean up it smears like crazy. And when I do finally get it all off it has taken off all of my foundation and concealer from under the eye. When i go to reapply the foundation I always end up smudging my eye makeup and it turns into a HUGE mess to where I don’t even want to attempt to do it unless I have tons of extra time that I know I will need to fix the messups, ha. got any suggestions for me :)

  66. This was such a good tutorial Christine, I’ve never really attempted at going so dark and dramatic, but I can’t wait to try this! Wish me luck:P

  67. Ziva

    Thanks I think I might use this for prom!

  68. Vyki

    Thanks so much!
    I tried it myself and it looks amazing!
    Dramatic but not too overdone, I cant wait to wear it out somewhere
    The step by step with the photos was really helpful, Ive been trying to find out how to do a good smokey eye look, but ive never able to pull it off.
    This tutorial was brilliant, thanks you!!

  69. Anonomous. ? xD

    i think your really pretty & all dear, but the smokey eye youve created looks just black. I’m looking for something more grey + black. If i wanted just black, I’m sure i wouldnt need instruction to do so.
    K thanks. :)

  70. Isha

    hi christine,
    i loved your site, and i especially loved this page and the smokey eyes.. cant wait to try it on myself.
    kudos to you for educating duds like me about make-up!! :)

  71. Isha

    also, if you could suggest me what lipcolor would look nice with a yellow and black saree?..
    thanks :)

  72. thank you for saving my life. <3

  73. AM

    Thanks so much for the tutorial! Great look! So Vogue! I am a total klutz at doing eye makeup, but even I was able to follow your step-by-step directions, and it looks great.

  74. stephany

    aww your so pretty! i love the make up… thanks for the tip will try it tomorrow night!!!

  75. Sianee

    Hey :)
    do you work for mac?
    the smokey eye is really good and worked for me first time, i always had real problems blending!

  76. clare

    it looks really good i love it <3..thank u so much for this tutorial..

  77. clare

    do we have to use those kind of brushes???

  78. sexy girl

    Thanks so much for your tips. I tried the look on a night out for my birthday and it looked fab. Also you are way hot gf!

  79. Megan

    Absolutely Perfect Details and pictures so I could easily see each step. The final result is gorgeous! Thank you for helpin us all out! Now lets get smokey eyes!

  80. Asurey

    oh wow this is so great! it was easy to follow. I’ve tried it yesterday and got a lot of nice comment about it! Thank you so much for sharing this… Oh and I wanna c more of your tutorials if you don’t mind :)

  81. Akira Sayowari

    wow… thanks!! now i know how to apply the right make ups for my smokey eyes… XD///

  82. Andrea

    Very clear, thank you!

  83. Leah Breaux

    This tutorial was awesome. I’ve been through multiple and they’ve all failed. This one’s awesome. Thank you! xoxo

  84. Mischa

    I absolutely LOVED the second picture of your full face. It’s beautiful. I mean, you’re really pretty. Unlike some of the other makeup people out there who use makeup and look horrendously overdone :/

  85. Hina

    Thanxx 4 da awesome tutorial!!

  86. Savanna

    My skin tone is very light, and I discovered a while back, dark (ex:black, dark brown, gray etc) just really doesn’t go with my skin tone…at all! So, if you can suggest some colors that would look magnificent with my skin tone that would be greatly appreciated! Ohh, and I have blue eyes if that helps any?

  87. Tracey

    This is absolutely Beautiful!!! Finally I found someone who walked through getting the smokey eye look perfectly!! Thank you.

  88. Tyla

    Wow I have been looking for a smokey eye that works properly but i was wondering if you can use normal base instead of the black matte base…

  89. Mia

    the make-up looks fantasticcc!…I love itt
    I was wondering if there are any substitutes i can use, other than products from MAC??

  90. Dominique

    wow!!!!!….. it was so easy ti follow this. thanks…. this is really international… south africa

  91. Laura

    WOW! Thats Great! A Fantastic And Easy Tutorial Aswel! Plus It Looks Great On You! You Looked Gorgeous! Im Definatley Going To Try It! By The Way, Does It Look As Good On Slitted Eyes As It Does On Bigger Eyes Because I Have Slitted Eyes And I Find That Eye-Shadows Dont Look To Good On Me x

  92. Mani

    U r so creative with makeup, I have never used blacktrack for anything other than a liner! I am so trying this today.

  93. kirsten

    thanks for sharing this tutorial… been trying to do this several times but can’t do the right thing… hopefully will be able to have it done later….

  94. Hinna

    LOVE this look! I’ve been looking for a very dark, matte smokey eye tutorial so thank you for this! One question though — does blacktrack act as a primer, or should I use a primer underneath the blacktrack base as well?

  95. MrS. Gr00ve

    this was super easy to follow an i think it will look great!!!!

  96. rebeca

    i love this tutorial!!!!

  97. Jl

    OMG u just made it soo easy to do. Am so bookmarking this website. it looks just like in the magazines. LOVE IT.

  98. Vasha@tpaingurl

    Wow looking gorgeous,but good tutorial 😀 ! ‘

  99. Jem

    Fantastic tutorial.. i’ve put smokey makeup on my eyes for years now, but never managed to get it looking as dark or deep as you have. I’ll certainly be trying it out – brilliant! Thank you :)