The Art of The Smoky Eye



Hello ABL readers.. Its been such a hectic season for me but I have not forgotten about you all. I hope your enjoying the blog!! 

When you think ART do you think Makeup?? Most people think painting, drawing or sculpture but what about your makeup!!! I always tell my clients “Makeup is an Art” , once you master it your makeup will look flawless. Smoky eyes are an art and is a great way to dress up your day or night. Green is the season too!!

(Before I go on, Smoky can also be spelled smokey..just thought I’d share that)


What is a smoky eye?

Smoky Eye makeup = A clouded effect with darkest color at lash line and getting lighter as you work up toward brow bone, each layer well blended and disappearing into the next.

Smoky eye can be done with any color you wish. Green shown in above photo since its the color of the season and looks good with any eye color(I love an emerald or an olive green).

Without the use of key techniques a smoky eye can go horribly wrong. Techniques such as using the right color palette, Using the correct brushes, how you place the shadow and how you blend. (please do not use q tips for blending, invest in a good set of brushes)




  1. Take your darkest shadow and gently place it over your eyelid. (no further up than your eye crease). Brush: Flat hair brush will lay the color down nicely.
  2. Take a pointed brush/pony tail style and gently take your second color into the crease (windshield wipe motion). A light taupe was used to blend in with the green. The idea is you want to create dimension with the use of color and shading. Remember your colors should compliment each other.
  3. Take a smudge-able black eyeliner pencil and tightly apply it to your upper lash line. (black is the best for definition) Using small short strokes from outer corner to inner corner. This will prevent any gaps or sloppy eyeliner. Use a smudge brush to blend it into the eye.
  4. Take your lightest color and gently place into brow bone.
  5. Now its time for under the eye. Take your black liner that you just used for the top lids and add it into rim “waterline”(If you do not want to place it into your water line that’s ok) Take your darkest green and smudge it under the eye..going from out eye to inner eye. Brush: smudge brush with short hairs.
  6. For added highlight in the tear duct area.. add a gold its very flattering and will create more dimension. Top and bottom!( see photo)
  7. Add some mascara. For a more dramatic look add lashes.!

A good tip: whenever you are working with a dark smoky eye makeup, I find its better to do your foundation last this way all the fall-age from the shadow won’t ruin your face makeup.

This diagram should help you with your shadow placement. The smoky eye photo here is a subtle smoky eye.. you can definitely punch it up just by adding more and deepening the colors. Sometimes dampening the brush will make the pigment pop even more.


* Not every step shown in eye makeup photo.


Happy Smoky eyes!!!  Try it for St patty days..!!


Author: Danielle Minnella

Products of the Week 3.9.13


faves 3-9-13

When compiling my group of products this week, I wanted to get outside the box a bit. We’ve covered eye creams, concealers, etc and they are fantastic, but today I want to show you some products that aren’t at your standard department store counter.




1. Make Up For Ever Aquarelle ($21 at

This product is incredibly versatile. It is a liquid that can be used in a plethora of ways. I use it in my airbrush gun (for those fellow MUAs), I have used it straight out of the bottle with a liner brush, it can be used as eye shadow, etc. My recommendation: chose one of the lighter (or brighter!) colors and using your ring finger, dip your finger on the lid of the bottle and pat the color all over your lid, blending well. (Note: a LITTLE goes a LONG way, so start with a tiny amount). Then, using a liner brush, apply the black along the lash line to create a perfect winged cat eye. The color will last all day without touch ups!



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2. Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream in # 13- Warm Beige ($23 at

The Aqua Creams from MUFE are one of the longest lasting products I have found to date. I keep this shade (#13) in my kit and use it as a highlighter for the entire face. My recommendation: Dip your ring finger into the cream and apply it to the top of your cheekbones, your inner corners of your eyes, brow bones, cupids peek (the top, middle of your top lip), and collar bones. The effect cannot be seen when looking straight at the face when close up, but when the light hits those places, it bounces off and you have the appearance of glowing skin. I use this on ALL my brides and often in photo shoots. The glow that is created is simply gorgeous.



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3. MAC #217 Blending Brush ($23 at

When applying eye shadow the the crease, it is so important to blend blend blend. If you do no blend properly, you have a dark, crisp line just above your brow bone that looks messy. The solution? This brush! I do not use a lot of MAC products and tend to favor Make Up For Ever products, but when browsing my local MAC store, I cam across this brush and could not pass it up. My recommendation: Apply you contoured eye look as usual (lighter color on the lids, darker color in the crease, etc). When you have applied all your colors, use this brush (clean, with no product on it) and using a firm hand, blend all the lines until they are buffed to perfection. You will find many uses for this brush, but this is my favorite!




4. Ellis Faas Skin Veil Foundation SPF 15 ($65 at

I am completely in love with the entire Ellis Faas line- the performance, the pigmentation, the presentation, the storage, etc. I love it! One product I absolutely cannot live without is the foundation pen. Now let me preface with $65 is quite a bit of money for foundation, but you do get a refill with it. So it ends up being twice as much as the pen can hold. Being that I only use the pen for under eye concealer, I have found it lasts me a very long time- months. I have used their concealer as well and I love it for blemishes and such, but there is just something about the Skin Veil Foundation that gives me the perfect coverage for my under eyes. My recommendation: pump once every two days (or two applications), drag the brush back and forth under your eyes to spread the product and then with your ring finger, blend. It melts into your skin beautifully and covers any hyper pigmentation under the eyes.


I hope you love these products as mush as I do! If you try them, please let us know your thoughts :)


The New Nail Length and Shape That Anyone Can Wear


La Perla Butter London Fall 2013


Despite the heartburn, headaches, leg cramps, and the accidental sneeze/pee combo, pregnancy does have some positive benefits on me physically. My hair has gotten thicker and my nails grow at a rapid rate.

I figured I’d take advantage of my longer nails and try a new shape and length. Usually they are really short and round-square shape. Practical, clean, and modern.

But I’m feeling sassy in this last trimester of pregnancy and while I’m scared of the Rihanna stilleto nail, there’s a modified  more wearable version that’s been seen on the Fall 2013 runways.

Here is some my inspiration photos.

Fall 2013 Nails




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photos courtesy of: Butter London and OPI

I Spy a New NARS Concealer For My Dark Under Eyes


NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer


I’ve really fallen in love with NARS in the past year. I love the range of colors–especially for the olive, tan and darker skinned beauties.  My daily makeup routine includes the NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer (in Annapurna). I’ve also converted one of my besties and sister to it.

So of course I had to try their new Radiant Creamy Concealer (in Custard). I’m happy to report I was not disappointed. It covers beautifully and really does illuminate the under eye area.


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