Why is everyone just now “re”-discovering gray eyeshadow and liner? It’s always been terribly chic and beautiful, infinitely wearable on most eye colors both day and night. The benefit of everyone liking it now is that most of the makeup lines are producing their own versions of grey, be it gunmetal, silver, pewter or platinum. Still, some are better than others…
If you’re just joining the grey brigade, I recommend doing one of two things: 1) try Givenchy’s Le Prisme Mono Eyeshadow in Hip Grey ($29) because, for your money, you get essentially four different shades of grey, from matte to shimmer, that you can blend to varying effect; or 2) choose one of Sephora’s many takes on grey and silver from their Colorful Mono Eyeshadow Collection. At $12 a pop, you can afford to make a mistake, try several at a time or mix a couple together.
If you want to commit to one grey to start, you can’t go wrong with Laura Mercier’s Celestial ($22). Just voted one of Allure’s Best of Beauty eyeshadows, I agree it’s lovely, but if you’re looking at Laura Mercier’s shadows you should also check out Black Ice, which is advertised as black but reads as gray and has more depth than Celestial. A little further along the shimmer spectrum but totally wearable is NARS Night Life. The name notwithstanding, I wear this color day or night. It has some shimmer, but not so much that it’s overpowering. Sweep it lightly all over – by itself or over a matte neutral color – or build it up on its own.
For the grey neophyte who wants a true smoky eye, Smashbox has you covered. With its new Smoky Eye Kit, a holiday three-piece set containing Gunmetal platinum shadow, Obsidian shadow and Caviar cream liner, plus a step-by-step guide, you can’t go wrong (plus the price is half what the three products would be on their own).
If you’re feeling brave and you have some holiday parties coming up, there are two must-have greys/silvers, but they are real statement-makers, so don’t use them unless you mean it. First up is Urban Decay Stardust in Void. Not for the faint of heart, this shadow goes beyond shimmer and provides all-out sparkly irredescence (if you’re not quite ready for this commitment but you like the shade, try Urban Decay’s Heavy Metal Glitter Liner instead).
At the maximum saturation point on the spectrum, which I save for really special occasions, is Illamasqua Liquid Metal. The greys in this extraordinary British cosmetics line are Phenomena (Molten Silver) and Surge (Molten Pewter). My only advice when working with the Liquid Metal line is to practice with them when you have some free time…don’t wait until 15 minutes before you have to leave for a party or you’ll be cursing, making a mess and starting all over (trust me…this advice comes from experience). They go on easily but they do migrate and then they dry and stay put, including on your fingers, so be prepared to use some eye makeup remover on your hands. If you choose to use eyliner, use it on top of these after they dry.
So there you have it. Be chic and beautiful with your grey eyes and don’t let anyone tell you they are ever out of fashion.
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