If you’re unfortunate enough to live in the frozen wasteland that we know as “The North,” you’ll know by now that autumn is on its way. The air is chilling, the trees are changing, and people are beginning to bust out their warm-toned orange, yellow and gold sweaters to reflect the season around them. Often missing, however, is the best fall color of all: eggplant.
Think of a color wheel: opposite of the oranges and yellows of autumn fall deep plums, purples and eggplants, which means that they’ll naturally compliment the average marigold and orange perfectly. Despite this, very few people seem brave enough to rock an eggplant eye in the fall like nature intended, which I think is due to the sad fact that it’s incredibly easy to make yourself look like you recently got punched in the face.
Don’t get me wrong: it’s not necessarily a bad thing for your makeup to look like you just stepped out of a boxing ring. Nothing strikes the fear of god into street harassers and annoyingly chatty coworkers like a woman who looks like she moonlights as an MMA championship fighter.
For those of us who don’t want to look quite that perpetually badass, though, there are a few methods to avoid looking like we just went a few rounds with Laila Ali.
Conceal, conceal, conceal!
Few things say “Oh my god, what happened to your eye?” like really dark bottom lids, so the first step in avoiding the Fight Club look is to make them less noticeable.
I use Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick in Warm Walnut, because Bobbi Brown’s products are perfect and everything she touches is gold. They’re a bit of an investment, but they’re worth it.
Shape the smoky eye to make the shade look intentional.
This technique is pretty simple, and results in a lovely gradient cat eye.
First, take normal scotch tape, and angle it on your eyes at the degree you’d like your cat eye to show up. You’ll look extra sexy for this step, so make sure no one you have a crush on is around. They’ll immediately jump your sexy, taped up bones.
From there, shade from the tape inward, from the bottom up, to give the smoky gradient effect. I’m using the NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Eurydice.
Remove the tape, and prepare yourself for how cute and not-punched your eyes will look.
Line the eye with another fall color.
Another way to look mostly presentable while wearing the exact shade of bruised flesh is to offset it with another tone. I applied the NARS shadow, and lined it with Sephora Contour Eye Pencil in Girls Night Out (aka: gold).
I slightly over-applied the liner, and then blended it back down with shadow to give a subtle gradient effect.
Finish the look with They’re Real! Mascara from Benefit.
Ignore all of that and let yourself look like you got punched in the eye anyway.
Because eff the police.
Say you read those last tips and scoffed. Nobody will tell you what to do! Why mess around with subtle eye shades when you can just straight up frighten people out of interacting with you? You’re a person after my own heart, hypothetical reader out there thinking this.
To begin your Look-Exactly-Like-Post-Laila-Ali-Match look, take a generous helping of Smashbox Limitless 15-Hour Wear Cream Shadow in Neptune and apply it to your bottom lid, radiating out from the corner or your eye. The cream eyeshadow has a really lovely, holographic sheen that pairs beautifully with the purple and black of the NARS palette.
From there, take the black half of the NARS palette and color the inside of your eye socket, shading the corner of your upper lid.
Then take the eggplant half of the NARS palette and use it to shade the rest of your upper and bottom lids, blending with the other two colors.
For added “This woman will unmake me if I so much as look at her the wrong way” affect, accentuate the brow with a dark pencil, use a dark, bold lip (like NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Train Bleu that I have here).
Then line the top and bottom lids of your eyes with a black liner of choice.
You are now kind of terrifying. Should anyone make the mistake of annoying you with chatter about your face, look them dead in the eye and say, “You should see the other guy,” in the most gravely voice you can manage. This should then be followed up with either a long, hard draw from a cigarette, spitting out a tooth, or both.
How do you feel about eggplant eyeshadows?