Do This Don't: Match Your Eye Shadow To Your Eye Color

Because you CAN!
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Because you CAN!

By now that we’ve established that some beauty “rules” are meant to be broken. In some of my recent tutorials, though, a few of you mentioned not wearing eye shadow shades that matched your eye color, and I realized that I fell into following that “rule” myself. While I think that contrasting colors can often make your eyes stand out in a very bold way, I also think that you can complement your eyes beautifully using the same shade family your eye color falls into.


Try gray shades with a hint of brown or purple to them. If you have gray eyes, chances are they change depending on the lighting, what you’re wearing, etc. and they can pull a bit blue at times. When you pair gray eyes with cool grays or grays that lean more taupe, it brings out that beautiful true gray shade.

Gray makeup for gray eyes

Here’s my friend Lizzie wearing MAC Eye Shadow in Satin Taupe with Cool Gray from the LORAC Pro 2 Palette in the crease. 


Try neutral/olive toned greens to make your shade stand out. The golden/warm undertones in these shades contrast beautifully with green eyes, making them stand out in a way that is unexpected. My friend Dylan (pictured below) remarked that she thought these tones made her green eyes look more pale, and the look was pretty striking.

Green Makeup For Green Eyes

On the lid: Jade from the LORAC Pro 2 Palette. Liner: Jordana 12HR Made to Last Liquid Eyeliner Pencil in Espresso Last smudged with that same jade shade.


If you’re feeling timid about rocking blue on blue, you can start small by adding a shade like navy blue to a color you know makes your eyes pop (like gold). I like it not only lining the lid, but also as an accent color in the crease.

Blue makeup for blue eyes

On Aubrie I used the L'Oréal Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H in Navy and gave her a slight wash of pale gold on the lid with a navy shadow as the accent color.

If you’re feeling more adventurous, try a look that uses multiple shades of blue with neon accents. This look is more unexpected and fun, and even though you’re using all blue shades, you can still use darker and lighter shades to stand out against your natural eye color.

Blue makeup for blue eyes bold

For Briana, we used the Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Crayon Eyeliner in (wave)length to rim her eyes and then went over it with the shade Chaos from the Urban Decay Electric Palette. On the lid: Freeze. In the crease: Heroine. Both are from the Urban Decay Vice 3 Palette


As a brown-eyed girl myself, I never shy away from colors that make my eyes pop. Even still, there are ways to make brown hues work for your benefit. I like to work with metallic or shimmery brown shades on the lids because the sheen of those types of shadows make the color of my eyes look richer. I also like to use warm reddish brown tones because I think it just adds a really nice dimension to the eyes. 

Brown makeup for brown eyes

On the lid: Milani Bella Bronze. Crease: Reign from the UD Vice 3 palette, smudged out with Cocoa Bear from Makeup Geek.

  • Do you shy away from wearing eye shadow shades in the same color family as your eyes? 
  • How do you like to play up your eyes?