Make-up London Academy - Smoky Eye

Yesterday I went into London with two of my friends, to the Make-Up London Academy in Finsbury Park. We took part in a 3hr Mac make-up masterclass and it was such good fun!

Make-up London Academy - Smoky Eye
Make-up London Academy - Smoky Eye

I would like to think I'm a pro when it comes to make-up. But really I'm just your average joe! Every now and then I fall out with my liquid eyeliner. I buy the wrong foundation colour and have bad make-up days - sound familiar?! So, today I just want to share with you what we learnt and a few tips that the make-up artist shared with us, which you might find helpful.


We had 1.5 hours demonstration, which focused on the perfect base, foundation, smokey eye and false lash application. So I'm going to focus on the smokey eye, as that is what we spent the majority of the time on and what I found the most helpful. In the blogging world there are thousands of how to videos and blogs when it comes to doing the perfect smokey eye, so apologises if you have seen this before, but hopefully there will be something here for everyone.

Here are the steps which I took to get a smoky eye which I attempted to create on my friend Naomi as instructed by the make-up artist.

Make-up London Academy - Smoky Eye

We used 3x colours, a dark midnight blue (darkest shade), magenta (middle shade) and a light cream colour (lightest shade). MAC COSMETICS sell eyeshadow sets and individual shadows. Also  SLEEK MAKEUP have some fantastic palettes which are inexpensive and highly pigmented. 

1. PRIMER - This is so important! Using a primer is so beneficial it will stop your eyeshadow from creasing. It will also keep the eyeshadow in place and really helps bring out the colour of the shadow in its truest form. Apply primer onto both lids, either using a small brush or your finger.

2. LIGHT SHADE ALL OVER THE LID - this is quite simply packing on the lightest shade all over the lid, apply this to the lid only - there is no need to apply up to the brow bone. 

3. DARK COLOUR AS LINER - using a push eyeliner brush, apply the darkest colour as close to the lash line as possible. This honestly is a lot easier than I thought it would be and is the perfect alternative to liquid eyeliner if you struggle with this.

4. USE COLOUR IN CREASE - using the middle shade, using a soft motion start from the outer corner of your eye and apply the colour into the crease. Apply this to around the middle of the crease (see picture). This is used as a guideline for the darker colour. 

5. DARK SHADE ON TOP OF MIDDLE SHADE - again like the previous step but now using the dark shade, use a soft sweeping motion and apply the colour into the crease. 

6. BLEND - Using a blending brush using circular motion, blend the colours along the crease to blend out the hard line. 

7. REAPPLY - Now reapply the darkest colour again (Step 5). 

8. REPEAT 6&7 - Simply repeat step 6&7 until you get the desired depth of colour.

9. CREATE OUTER C SHAPE - This is the part I'm going to struggle to describe but here it goes... taking the darkest colour create a C shape on the outer corner of each eye. The more colour you apply here the smokier effect you will create. 

10. BLEND CREASE WITH MIDDLE SHADE - Apply the middle shade into the crease once again. By blending this into the crease, it will give the effect of the colour getting lighter as it gets closer to the brow bone. 

11. REAPPLY LIGHTER SHADE - After applying such dark colours you may find you lose some of the lighter shade. So just reapply this to the eyelids. 

12. LINER - If you are confident in using liquid liner, line your lash line with liquid liner. If you start from the inner corner of your eye you will find it much easier than starting from the outer corner. If you don't want to use liquid liner, just repeat step 3 (you can always use a black shadow instead to get a fuller look). You can also apply pencil liner to your water line. 

13. MASCARA - Apply your favourite mascara. Apply mascara to your bottom lashes first, because if you apply to the top lashes you may find you get some on the bottom lashes also - which can be a pain when you come to applying mascara to them. Do not pump your mascara to get product onto the brush, as this will dry out the mascara much quicker (as you are pumping air into the mascara), instead swirl it around - this way your mascara will last longer! 

14. COLOUR 1/3 ON LOWER LASH LINE - If you want to go for the full smoky eye look, now apply the darker shade and the magenta to the lower lash liner using a small eyeshadow brush.


This is the first time I have attempted a smoky eye on someone else! I don't think I did too badly, but it could have defiantly have been improved! 

Make-up London Academy - Smoky Eye

Make-up London Academy - Smoky Eye

  • There is no eye shape that it not suited to smoky eyes.
  • Be gentle! Remember soft sweeping motions, you do not need to apply lots of pressure on the brush to get the colour onto the lid - I made this mistake, so be soft! 
  • You dont have to use black, you can achieve smoky eyes with bronze colours, purples, blues, and even shades of green if you want to be daring!
  • If you go wrong just blend it out! 
  • Practice, practice, PRACTICE! 
  • To open up your eyes apply a creamy white eye pencil to your water line.
  • To get a cat eye effect use a black liner on your water line. 
  • If done properly you wont need to touch up the initial application - but we aren't all pros! 
  • By putting translucent powder under the eye it will be easier to clean up the fallout (eye shadow dropping under your eye).
  • If you fancy adding a little more colour just put a bit of colour in the inner corner of your eyelids - metallic colours work really well here! 
  • Smoky eyes do not have to be harsh they can be subtle and very sexy.
If you want to find out more about classes and courses at the Make-Up London Academy click here.

What are your tips for a smoky eye? What do you find difficult about smoky eyes?
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