Equinox-Inspired Eyes (The Vernal Equinox, Not The Gym)

To celebrate the return of the sun, I'm trying out a coppery smoky eye.
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To celebrate the return of the sun, I'm trying out a coppery smoky eye.

It’s not your imagination: the days are getting longer. Little by little, as we accelerate away from the winter solstice, we’re moving closer to the vernal equinox. On March 20th, day and night will be equal all over the globe.

Perfect equanimity! Get it while it’s hot, folks. 

Spring has sprung here in Alaska. Moose are lumbering around like leftover people the morning after a house party, giant icicles threaten death from above, and people are going jacket-less the moment the mercury noses above 30°F. 

But mostly, the return of the sun is getting me pumped about being outside for longer than it takes to run to the outhouse. 

To celebrate the return of the sun, I wanted to use this really bitchin’ copper mineral shadow that I picked up: Java 3 by Color Revolution. 

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After lusting after Urban Decay’s Half Baked palette, I realized it’s a pretty good dupe of their Baked shade--a vibrant copper with good coverage that packs a foil shimmer. I’ve worn it a few times, usually with a smoky eye, but I wanted to do something more subtle for daytime. 

Copper swatch.jpg

For this look, I wanted a warmer smoky eye--metallics can easily look too harsh with black liners. I chose a rosy-brown Lancôme eyeshadow; it contrasted nicely with the copper, but not so much that it looked cold. To blend, I chose a lighter, warmer brown, and used an almost-black shadow under the chocolate shade to give some depth.

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First, I primed my lids; then, using a dense shadow brush, I  started by lining just the outer three-quarters of my upper lid with an opaque black. I then dipped the brush in water and patted it dry. 

Using the rosy-brown shade, I brought the colour along my lid and about half of the way along my lower lash line, careful to avoid my waterline. The damp brush picks up and deposits a thicker layer of shadow, giving it a deeper colour and better coverage, and that’s what I’m going for.

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With a clean, dry brush, I blended in the lighter colour. I tried to be careful not to muddy the darker shadow and to keep the colour well below the brow bone.

Copper Dark Shadow.jpg

Using a very tiny art brush (I use a 002), I wet it, dipped it in Java 3, and applied it to my lower waterline. Mineral shadows can be tricky to use because they don’t contain any fixatives like traditional shadows, but it does make them more dynamic. If I was using the shadow on my lash line or as shadow, I’d mix it with aloe juice, which is a nice alternative to the propylene-glycol-based fixatives that are popular in mineral shadow lines.

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Copper Detail.jpg

After adding a coat of 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Mascara in Black Tea, I’m ready to party. 

Copper Done Face.jpg

The brown smoky eye is a new favourite, and I love the little flash of intense copper--it’s not overly dramatic, but it still brings out the green in my eyes. 

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Do you celebrate solstice or equinox? Are you a fan of mineral shadows? I like them because they are ridiculously dynamic--you can add mineral powders to nail polish, dust it onto your hair, skin, and it blends really well.