Queen Bee Smoky Eye

Today’s the day! My first makeup tutorial blog post! I thought the best way to kick the blog off would be with one of my favorite makeup looks, Queen Bee Smokey Eye. This is a look I’ve used for some time now in various forms, from a soft daytime look to the dramatic nighttime look you’ll see here. A great thing about this look is that you can use so many different products to create it, as long as you have a metallic gold shadow or pigment, matte black shadow and suitable transition shade, you’re good to go! At the end of the post I’ll go over some alternative products you can use from high-end to drugstore,

Okay, let’s get started. I began by applying Ole Henriksen’s Sheer Transforming Face Creme. The moisturizer will have plenty of time to soak in because I’ll be doing  brows and eyes first before foundation. Sense I’ll be working with very pigmented and dark shades I’ll need to be able to properly remove any fall out. You can always use Shadow Shields or a tissue to catch the fall out but for me I find it easier just to do foundation afterward.

Starting on eyes, I applied a primer from lid to brow bone and into my brow area to help my makeup last and prevent creasing. This is an important step for me for a few reason, one being I have hooded eyes and if I don’t prime I tend to get some creasing in the hooded area. Also I live in Louisiana, and the weather here is extremely humid and damp even in the winter the air feels heavy and wet. It can do a number to one’s makeup and hair. Currently my favorite eye primer is the Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Primer. It does exactly what it says without being to drying on the lids. The  Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Primer is definitely one of the best eye primers I’ve tried.

Once my eye area is fully primed I go ahead and fill in my brows in my usual routine. Doing brows before eyeshadow is also a good technique because it can be used as a guide for your eye makeup. Brows are extremely important, they create the frame of your face and can completely alter your face shape. I’ll be posting an in-depth blog on brows soon, including my current brow routine and alternate ways I fill them for different looks,

Now to the main attraction, the eye shadow.

First I went in with Laetus from the Kat Von D Shade and Light Eye Contour Palette from my lid to brow bone using a large fluffy eye shadow brush. Laetus is a creamy shade close to skin tone and makes a great base shade with this look since it has a slightly warm almost yellow undertone.

Once Laetus is applied I moved on to adding a blending shade for a smooth transition, for this I used Ludwin and a blending brush. Ludwin is a warm peachy camel shade perfect for blending on my skin tone.

To define my crease more and add some smokey drama I went in with a combination of Samuel, a neutral brown  and Succubus, a warm reddish-brown on a tapered blending brush. The Real Techniques Base Shadow Brush works great for this, I blended this eye shadow combination outward toward to tail of my brow for an elongated cat eye effect.

When I was happy with the blend I moved on to mobile part of the lid. With a flat shader brush I packed Strike from The Urban Decay Vice 2 palette all over the lid to the crease. Strike is an extremely pigmented, metallic gold. If you don’t have The Vice 2 palette since it was a limited edition palette from 2 years ago I’ll link some great alternatives at the end of this post.  I chose to use Strike for its high pigmentation and shine. For even more of a metallic shine you could foil it using something like Mac Fix + on your shader brush.

After I had the gold laid down I began darkening the outer V with Shax from the Kat Von D Shade and Light Palette. For this I used a pencil brush and the base shadow brush from Real Techniques. I started at the outer V, pulling the black inward very carefully creating a gradient with the gold, Only using small amounts and slowly building up the shadow while keeping the more concentration of black on the outer most corner of the eye, Occasionally going back in with the gold to keep it bright, I wanted the gold to really stand out. It’s a layering process and will take some time to get the smooth gradient. I also pulled the black outward forming a cat eye shape following what I did earlier with the brown combination.but not as blown out. Keep in mind to use the tail of your brow as a guide to how far you’ll want to pull the shadow out. Of Course that’s just a guideline, you do you!

For my brow one highlight I used Lucius from The Kat Von D Shade and Light Palette and a Baked Highlighter from E.L.F. in the shade Moonlight Pearls, a light champagne shade for a bit of shine, I also put the E.L.F. highlighter on my inner corners to open the eye up.

Moving on to eyeliner I used Physicians Formula Eye Booster in Ultra Black to map out my wing and create a clean line. Then I went back in with Shax from the Kat Von D Shade and Light palette and an angled liner brush  to smoke out the liner and make a strong wing that blends upward into the eye shadow.

On the bottom lid I mimicked what I did on the top lid. Placing the gold in the center then adding the black to the outer portion and blending inward. Then joining the black up with the wing and filling in any gaps,

I cleaned up all the fall out from the shadows with a make up wipe and a Q-Tip to create a crisp line around the wing. I want every thing to blend upward so anything that came down to low I cleared away.

Now, on to skin. I primed my skin using the Smashbox Photo Finish Face Primer to create a smooth surface and fill in pores, For foundation I used the Nars All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation, applied with a Real Techniques blending sponge. My shade is Light 2 Monte Blanc. To brighten and conceal I used the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Chantilly. Then set my face with the Nars Light Reflecting Setting Powder in Translucent Crystal.

For cheeks I kept it subdued and neutral so that the blush wouldn’t compete with the eyes and bold lips. I chose to contour with this look because I felt with such a dramatic eye the face should also have structure to compliment the bold lines of the eyes. For a contour I used a new find, the Wet N Wild Color Icon Contouring Palette in Caramel Toffee. It’s an excellent shade for the pale gal. I’ll have a full review coming soon. For my highlight I used the same E.L.F. highlighter I used on the inner corner, I applied it to all the usual places, cheek bones, cupids bow, and down the center of the nose. After highlighter I applied blush, I think it gives a more natural look if you apply the blush after highlighter. The blush I used is a Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush in Memorable. It’s a hard color to describe to me, its rosy, almost plummy cool tone but very subdued and natural,

Finally lips! The lipstick I chose was a super dark vampy shade from Kat Von D. It’s the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lips in Vampira. Of Course this look would be amazing with a lighter shade of red or a nude. Even a berry shade,

Lastly, finishing off with mascara, I used Hypnose Drama from Lancome. You could add false lashes for even more drama. Then set my face with Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray.

I hope you enjoyed this walk-through. Keep in mind this is my first attempt and will be improving my posts as I get the hang of it. Any helpful advice and feedback is welcome. Thank you for taking the time to read this post.

– Anna Bankester

Products Used:

  • Kat von D Shade and Light Eye Palette
  • Vice 2 Palette by Urban Decay
  • Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Chantilly
  • Nars All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation in Mont Blanc
  • Nars Light Reflecting Setting Powder in Translucent Crystal.
  • Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush in Memorable
  • Wed N Wild Color Icon Contouring Palette in Caramel Toffee
  • E.L.F Baked Highlighter in the shade Moonlight Pearls
  • Physicians Formula Eye Booster in Ultra Black
  • Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray
  • Lancome Hypnose Drama Mascara
  • Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lips in Vampira
  • Smashbox Photo Finish Face Primer
  • Real Techniques brushes and blender sponge
  • Sonia Kashuk brushes
  • Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Primer
  • Ole Henriksen’s Sheer Transforming Face Creme

Some alternates for the gold eye shadow:

  • Mac : Goldmine, Gorgeous Gold
  • Urban Decay: Half-baked,
  • Urban Decay Moondust Shadows: Intersteller
  • Sugarpill: Goldilux loose pigment
  • Makeup Geek: Gold Digger,  Liquid Gold pigment
  • E.L.F: essentials custom eye refill pan in Golden Glow
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