Diary / Beauty / Oct 20, 2023

10 Eyeshadow Makeup Ideas Anyone Can Try

Written by: Piper Gray

Photography by: Ben Ritter

A woman holding Just A Sec by Jones Road Beauty

Eye makeup provides impact to an otherwise simple look like no other product or tool can. It adds a wash of color to energize the face, adds dimension to your complexion, and provides definition, drawing the focus upwards.  

Whether you're a total novice or a seasoned makeup enthusiast, eyeshadows offer the opportunity to play, experiment, and elevate your appearance. 

Read on for tips and tricks to inspire your next look.

Above, Arnelle is wearing:

The Basics of Eyeshadow Application

Learning how to apply and layer eyeshadow—there’s really not much to it, so don’t feel daunted. And like any new skill, mastering eye makeup looks takes time to perfect. Don't get discouraged if your smokey eye is muddy or cloudy the first time. Each application is a learning experience.

While eyeshadow is a fun playground for creativity, certain tricks can help achieve a flawless application every time. Let’s go through a few tips to get started.

Tools are Key

The right brush makes all the difference. While your fingers are great for a quick application, brushes provide precision. Consider investing in a fluffy brush for all-over application, one specifically for blending, and a detail brush to control the intensity of color.

Preparation is Key, Too 

Priming your lids prevents creasing and smearing, and can make your colors last longer. Simply sweep a bit of Tinted Face Powder in Untinted across the lids (and lashes too—that can help your mascara stay put, if you have oily skin or are worried about heat, moisture, or sweat).

What Colors Make You Comfortable? 

Whether you go with a matte or a shimmer, or you’re preparing for a day at the office or a night out, your color and formula preferences will vary. So pay attention to what makes you feel confident, and get comfortable improvising. (Have fun, is what we’re getting at.)

Embrace Smudging 

Use a small, dense brush, like our Eye Blending Brush, or even your fingertip to smudge your eyeshadow, especially along the lower lash line, for a sultry, smokey eye. This softens the look and gives it a professional finish.

Pair With Eyeliner

Eyeliner is not a must, and to newcomers, it may feel daunting to use—but a pencil eyeliner can be tremendously impactful and is quite easy to use. Smudge it for a soft line, or keep it pristine and sharp for thin but dramatic application.

10 Looks to Inspire Your Next Eyeshadow Moment

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

1. An Easy Smokey Eye

A smokey eye comes down to layering and blending your chosen eye colors in an array of dark neutrals. After applying eyeshadow, you can add in a pigmented eyeliner, pressing it on thickly—don’t worry about staying too pristine; you can tidy up with some makeup remover if it’s too imprecise for your liking—to up the intensity.

This smokey eye is especially impactful as it’s paired with a bare, natural-looking complexion. Simply touch up blemishes, even out discoloration, and then pair with a neutral, if not totally naked, lip. 

Adelina is wearing:

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

2. Spotlight on Eyeliner 

A simple black eyeliner transcends trends and time—it’s always in season, and always stylish. Here it’s balanced with an ultra-pale eyeshadow to maximize the drama of a crisp line. 

A slight layer of shimmer on top keeps the liner from looking severe and instead utterly classic and contemporary. 

Shona is wearing:

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

3. A Highlighted Brow

This is perfect for date night, but really, adding glow just above the eyes below the brow is a look for all occasions. 

Our Just A Sec shadow brightens the eyes with multidimensional shimmer, doubling the drama when topped with a liquid glitter eyeshadow. It’s just enough brightness—youthful but not juvenile.

When paired with a glowy cheek and a lit-up lip, the impact is enormous but suitable for everyday.

Nancy is wearing:

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

4. Keep it nude and matte

This is simple and impactful, thanks to a combination of nude, matte eyeshadows and a complementary lip color. Both the eyes and lips share the spotlight, neither overpowering the other. 

(You’ll notice the eyeshadow application is a little softer and pulled-back than a smokey eye. For a true smokey eye, keep adding and blending as you see fit.)

Saraya is wearing:

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

5. Rosy, Pinky Lids 

Pink makeup is incredibly versatile—you just have to figure out the colors that work for you.

It’s innately youthful, especially on the eyes. Bobbi’s number-one tip for picking out your pink (for the eyes)? Stick to lighter shades. Anything too intense may make you look tired or hungover, so cover up any redness first and then apply your color.

Top off with mascara (like always); this step is especially important to give your eyes definition and dimension.

Anna is wearing 

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

6. Bronzey & Shimmery

A neutral shimmer in a metal casts delicate but impactful glow. Add a dark liner to ground the ethereal look. 

Warming up the cheeks and lips in shades complementary to your skin tones casts an all-over vitality but keeps the focus up top.  

Fitz is wearing

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

7. A Statement Liner

If you don’t think you can pull off colorful eyeliner, you’re hardly the only one. Going with something too bright or bold, especially if you’re a newcomer to the world of a statement eye, isn’t the best place to start. Look for a shade that compliments your eye color, and start soft.

Here, we opted for Ivy, a green eyeliner with a touch of black. (Bobbi loves using it on people with green or brown eyes.) It’s not overt to begin with, and because it’s paired with a pale shimmer on the lids, it’s even more intriguing in its subtlety.

Haejin is wearing:

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

8. Highlight the inner corners 

When you think of eyeshadow, you’re probably picturing a powder in a pot

But let’s expand what that means—our liquid glitter eyeshadow, Sparkle Wash, goes on with a doe-foot applicator so you can target the intensity of the shimmer without overdoing it.

And if the idea of glitter or shimmer is scaring you off, don’t let it. Anyone—any age, any skin tone—can pull it off. Feel free to use your fingers to apply the sparkle, to diffuse the color and shimmer for subtlety. 

Here, we embraced the intensity and added more, but not too much, shimmer to the face—in the form of Miracle Balm—for an all-over glow. (Notice the lips are simply glossy, no other color added.)

Abuk is wearing:

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

9. When in Doubt, Go With Ash

The Best Eyeshadow in Ash is a universal favorite across all skin types and tones. With good reason, too: it’s the picture of versatility. 

Ash is a medium grey taupe that can easily stay soft as an everyday neutral look or intensified for a rich smokey eye.

Defined, filled-in brows balance the eyes so the eyeshadow doesn’t look cloudy or heavy. The overall effect is easygoing but controlled.

Mollye is wearing

A woman wearing Jones Road Beauty

10. Using Eyeshadow as a Liner

This is a look that even the most eyeliner-skittish can get the hang of pretty quickly. Using eyeshadow as a liner imparts precision and definition, but using The Eyeliner Brush softens the lines for a diffused, velvety look. 

To take it a step further, and add understated definition, consider tightlining. This is a technique in which you apply liner directly on your top line, below and in between the lashes for a completely seamless, elegant look.  

Charlotte is wearing:

The Bottom Line

At Jones Road, we celebrate the endless possibilities that eyeshadows bring to the world of makeup artistry. Eyeshadows are a testament to personal expression and creativity. 

Whether you're looking for subtlety or wanting to make a bold statement, get comfortable experimenting and have fun. Start with the rules, and if they don’t work for you, then don’t follow them.

Shop the article:


The Mascara

The Best Eyeshadow

The Best Pencil

The Eyeliner Brush

Diary / Beauty / Oct 20, 2023

More on justBobbi