There couldn’t be an easier way to draw attention to the color of your eyes than with shadows, liners, and lashes. And as far as prom makeup goes, it’s a much safer bet than taking the exact shade of your dress and transferring it onto your eyes with shimmery shadow you’ll hate in just a short time. To get the scoop on all things eye color and how to enhance the hue of the windows to your soul, we caught up with celebrity makeup artist and member of the Color Squad for AIR OPTIX COLORS contact lenses, Scott Barnes, who filled us in on the shadows, liners, and products to grab for specific eye colors. He also gave us some tips on the brand’s color contact lenses and how they can change your look, too.
Check out some of his tips, below.
Try Purple Shadow for Brown and Hazel Eyes
Notice all those purple eyeshadow tutorials popping up everywhere? This color is hot–and there is a way to do it right! “Color is such a big thing for eyes. To do a bold eye, you can use purple eye shadow,” explains Barnes. He tells us that this color looks great with brown eyes, and when used with the brand’s “honey” contact lenses, will make eyes look golden brown.
That’s the thing about eye makeup—it can pick up flecks of color in your eyes and bring out pretty tones. He suggests topping off a purple eye makeup look with lots of lashes, and notes that the popular hue isn’t just for those with darker-colored eyes, as it can complement blue eyes and green eyes, too.
Going for the Eyes? Stay Simple with the Lips
If you’re really going for eye makeup to complement your eye color, Scott says you should keep your lips simplistic. The rule applies in reverse, too. “If you’re going to do a bold eye, play the lip down,” he says. “Maybe do a cat-eye with liner. Keep it simplistic.”
Don’t Compete Blue With Blue
Scott told us that you want people to notice your eye color, not necessarily the shadow you’re wearing, and it’s important not to get competitive with the color you’re choosing. For example, if you have blue eyes, stay away from blue eyeshadow. Yes, it’s pretty, but you don’t want to pick a color that’s going to deter attention from the natural color of your eyes—they’re a lot prettier than your lids, anyway.
His suggestions? Shimmery golds, pearly golds, and browns. “You can go with any of those warm tones—they are going to complement the cooler eye color.” Scott says you can even go for eggplant (hey, another trending purple) if you keep it towards the brown end of the spectrum.
Grey Eyes—Don’t Do Grey Smokey Eyes
If you have grey eyes or want to try out a “gray” contact lenses and are dying to do a smokey eye, Scott says you should go for black shadows or something “a little bit deeper” like navy or charcoal.
Green Eyes—Try Mustards and Golds
Similar to blue eyes and coppers, Scott says that green eyes look amazing with mustard and golds. He reminds us that, while it’s a popular choice for these two hues, there are other choices. “It can be mattes—you don’t always have to be working with metallics,” he says.
Another win for those with green eyes? Purple works, too. Should we just call it the new universally flattering hue?