Reader Request Week: Easy Brown Smokey Eye Using 1 Drugstore Shadow

I had a lot of requests for this one! A smokey eye is just...sexy. I adore wearing this for a night out, and I seem to wear it a lot during summer. I love how it's brown, making it a little more wearable; uses one shadow that's $3; and it's easy. It is! Here we go:

is it summer yet?

Ok, the trick to a smokey eye is to create an ombre effect--you want it lightest at the crease and darkest at the lash line. While I'm doing my eyes lightest to darkest, feel free to work in reverse. I'm using the $3 Wet N Wild shadow trio in On Cloud Nine. I'm using only the matte brown shade. Seriously, pick this up!

Mega Length mascara $3, shadow trio $3, lipstick $3

1. Apply eyelid primer on the lid and underneath your bottom lashes to make sure your shadow stays.

2. Using a fluffy brush, sweep a very light layer of brown from upper lash line to crease.

3. Dip a flat shader brush into the brown and pat the color onto the lid only--not the crease.

4. With the fluffy brush, and using small circular motions, blend the light brown crease and the dark brown together at the crease. The blend up a little past the crease. Again, it should be lightest at the top.

5. Add a drop of water or saline solution to your flat brush and dip into the brown. This intensified dark brown shade will be applied in the outer corner and slighted dragged onto the upper lash line. Use the fluffy brush to softly blend out any harsh lines.

6. Use a pencil brush and smudge the brown along the lower lash line.

7. Add a brown or black liner to the water and tight lines. 

8. Add several coats of mascara after curling lashes.

9. Finish with a pink-nude lipstick/gloss. 

  • To make this a black smokey eye, use black on the lid and brown (or a coppery brown) in the crease.
  • Instead of using the wet brown shadow, feel free to use a matte black instead.
  • I added a little of my DIY Lip Butter onto my lips and lids for extra shine.
  • For that summer glow, add bronzer and highlighter.


  1. This really makes your eyes pop, real pretty!

  2. Oh my WORD. You look so beautiful! I am pinning this and running out to buy that shadow so I can make my eyes look just as pretty.

  3. Did you self tan!? You look great!

  4. You looks so gorge with these look:) I love smokey eyes myself.

  5. Looks beautiful!! I just figured out this year how to do the one shadow looks and I love it!!

  6. Sexy is right! You look ready for a night out on the town :)

  7. Great smokey eye! I love this look.

  8. awesome tutorial - I always want to do a smoky eye but am too intimidated. But I can definitely splurge on a $3 shadow!

  9. I love a brown smokey eye! I do brown with a little bit of pink all the time... sometimes black can just look too harsh on me.

  10. Cute! I've been experimenting more with smokey eyes...still working on the technique for my asian eyes.

  11. Woah girl!!!! That is one sexy picture of you. You look amazing. Love you,


    Look for an email from me. xoxoxo

  12. You look stunning in those photos, smoky eyes are very sexy indeed. Going to try this one myself, thanks for sharing xx

  13. Excellent tutorial, I think I much prefer a brown smokey eye seeing this, its less intense and more wearable!

  14. I love the smoky eye look! Thanks for sharing your tips.

  15. kathy @ vodka and sodaApril 18, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    pretty! i have never done a smokey eye before..come to think of it, i never wear shadow but the colors you use are so pretty.

  16. Hot mama! This look literally smolders on you, doll. :)


  17. Ok, so you're saying my one brush, one shade won't do the trick? You are a great makeup artist, I am not sure I could do it but I'll try.

  18. yay smokey eyes! you look amazing! :)

  19. Thanks for leaving such a darling comment on my blog!
    I love a good smokey eye!

    Have the best day ever,

  20. Nicely done! Maybe even I can manage this one...

  21. Amazing - off to the drug store.

  22. I've often wondered how people get this look! I love it :)

  23. I've definitely been applying more primer these days. Sweat makes eyeshadow go all over the place!

    7% Solution​


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