A trend we’ve been seeing a lot recently is what is called either “halo” or “spotlight” eyes. This technique uses strategic shadow placement in order to fake the appearance of larger, rounder eyes. Basically, what you want to do is “sandwich” a very light color with a darker color on both the upper and lower lids. This brings light to the center of the eyes, making them pop and appear wider. The best part? It can be done with any color scheme, shadow finish, or intensity, so you can rock this look anywhere.
1. Prime your eyes.
This step goes without saying. If you want your eyeshadow to be vibrant and last all day, priming is a crucial step. Apply a little bit of product, like Urban Decay’s Eyeshadow Primer Potion, and blend it from the lid up to the brow.
2. Apply a transition color to the crease.
A transition is usually a light to mid-toned neutral color applied to the crease to help blend out shadows. In the case of a spotlight/halo eye, you want to keep it relatively light, since the main focus will be on the lids and outer corners. For a perfect transition color that pretty much works with any other shade, check out Makeup Geek’s Peach Smoothie.
3. Apply a mid-toned color to the inner and outer thirds.
Whatever color scheme you decide to go with, choose a medium shade of it. With a fluffy, more tapered brush, like the Sigma E25 Blending Brush, apply it to the inner and outer thirds of the eye and blend it slightly into their respective crease areas. Make sure to keep the center of the lid and crease completely free of product.
4. Darken the inner and outer thirds.
With a smaller, more tapered blending brush, like the Sigma E45 Small Tapered Blending Brush, take either a black or a darker shade of the same color and apply this in a more concentrated area of the inner and outer lids. Make sure you go back in with the fluffy brush from the mid-toned color to blend the two together seamlessly.
5. Apply a light color to the center of the lid.
The focal point of this whole look is the pop of light on the center of the lid. This color can be any finish (shimmers and metallics look especially pretty) or even just white. To make it stand out even more, you can lay down a white base first, like NYX’s Jumbo Eyeshadow Pencil in Milk. Make sure that once the color is applied, you blend it seamlessly into the inner and outer corners.
6. Repeat the process on the lower lash line.
Once you’ve finished placing the shadows on the upper lids, repeat the same exact process on the lower lash line, using a pencil brush like Sigma’s E30 Pencil Brush. For the waterline, you could keep with the same “sandwiched” color theme, use black for a more smokey look, or a nude for an even more wide-eyed look.
7. Highlight the inner corner.
Although the main highlight focus is the center of the lid, adding light to the inner corners of the eyes really brightens them and opens them up. You can apply the same lid shade, or a shimmery one with a small brush.
8. Liner and lashes.
For a more polished look, add liner and lashes. We suggest avoiding winged liner and flared out lashes, as you want to keep the shape of the eye quite round. You can even rock no liner and just a few coats of mascara!
Tip: This same “sandwiching” technique can also be used on the lips to create a fuller appearance!