How to Pull Off a Sophisticated Smoky Eye Worthy of a Red Carpet

For your next girls' night out — or any regular ol' night out, really.
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Maura Brannigan
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For your next girls' night out — or any regular ol' night out, really.

Beauty tutorials are big on YouTube — a search for “makeup tutorial” and “hair tutorial” yields more than 5 million videos. In this weekly series, we put a mix of popular and under-the-radar tutorials to the test and show you what’s best.

While I’ve never thought of myself as a big “makeup person,” I’ve always dreamt of executing the perfect inky smoky eye. I’m not alone in this, I sense: The technique is at once timeless and of the moment, tutorials on the latest iteration pouring in after each fashion week and major awards show.

And yet, for a style so ubiquitous, the well-established smoky eye isn’t so simple to pull off. At times, I’ve layered dark eyeshadow so aggressively that I look more like Sally Bowles at the Kit Kat Klub than Jennifer Lawrence at the Oscars. Or, conversely, I’ve not used enough, my own masterpiece dissolving into streaks an hour after I’ve left my apartment.

As one does, I recently gave up on my smoky eye fantasies altogether — but this particular video might’ve just changed that. With the help of veteran YouTuber EasyNeon, we get a zoomed-in, narration-free tutorial viewers can actually follow along at home. She begins by slathering a milky-colored ("ochre," actually) cream across her enter eyelid, then toning it down with a layer of a more neutral shade. Some casual eyeshadow sorcery follows, using three separate shadows in three different places. She tops it off with fake lashes, a messily applied eye pencil and a slick of mauve lipgloss.

The most important components here, it seems, are the three eyeshadows, as I suspect it may be difficult to replicate her look with just one color. You can see the full list of products EasyNeon uses here.

Here’s to yet another, albeit more successful attempt at the smoky eye — for all of us.

Homepage photo: Mireya Acierto/Getty Images