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How I apply my eyeshadow for a natural look (video tutorial)

See how I apply my makeup with a focus on a natural eyeshadow tutorial in this video. If I can learn to do it, anyone can!

One of the most frequently asked questions I get on instagram and in my Beautycounter Facebook group is, “Can you do an eyeshadow tutorial?” To be totally honest, I was never really taught how to do it; I have 5 older brother so they were no help, and my mom doesn’t wear eye shadow. So the way I do it now is basically what I’ve figured out over the years of experimenting.

For years, I always felt like eyeshadow looked weird on me, but since I tried Beautycounter’s eyeshadows, I’ve been hooked. The colors are so flattering, they blend easily and they look really natural – which is exactly what I want. And today, I’m sharing a natural eyeshadow tutorial!

If you want a dramatic or bolder eyeshadow look, this probably isn’t the tutorial for you. But, if you want a quick and natural look, I hope this helps you feel like it’s more approachable! Maizey gives it a thumbs up.

Watch my makeup and natural eyeshadow tutorial

You’re welcome for that awkward freeze frame picture. 😉 UPDATE: I say in this video that the eyeshadow palette is no longer available, but Beautycounter brought it back!! Get it here.

Products shown:

*Even though my specific palette is sold out (it’s back in stock now!), the tips apply to any eyeshadow you use. You can see all the Beautycounter eyeshadow duos here and more beautiful palettes here.

Since videos can be long to watch and sometimes you’re just not in a good spot to watch a video and listen to audio, I included some written tutorial notes below too!

Natural Eyeshadow Tutorial + Tips

My #1 tip is to BLEND BLEND BLEND. I use a looser brush, tapped in mattifying powder, to blend the eyeshadow so it looks more natural. More on that and when I do that below.

Foundation: I put a small amount on the back of my hand and dab my foundation brush in it (You can also put it on directly on the brush.) I use this foundation brush to apply, and blend it onto my skin using a circular motion. Some people say to apply foundation at the end, so you can first clean up any eyeshadow around your eyes. I like to have my face “done” first since it helps me more easily gauge how much eyeshadow to apply. Experiment and see what works for you!

Eyeshadow: If you have the Ultimate Nudes palette, here’s how I approach it: I typically start with the bottom row and use one of those colors all over my lid. Then I go to the middle row and use that on my crease (I usually use two colors on my crease). Finally, I use the top row as my liner. If you’re using a different palette or other eye shadows, you’ll want to start with a light color all over, then layer a little darker in your crease, then another even darker color on top of that if you want something more dramatic, and then line with the darkest color. Then blend, blend, blend! (You can use the same approach with the Necessary Neutrals palette. Light all over, medium color on lid, darker in crease!)

Let’s talk brushes: For my all over color, I use a flat eyeshadow brush. Then I use a crease brush that’s a bit pointier and more compact designed to go in your crease. After I apply my crease colors, I blend them with a brush that’s a little bigger and flufflier, and then apply eyeliner with a very thin, pointed brush. So, yes, lots of brushes, but they’ll last you for years and they help a lot. This is similar to the blending brush I use. (Beautycounter doesn’t have one.)

Eyeliner: Like I said above, use a very thin brush. I find using eyeshadow for a liner vs. a traditional eye liner gives a more natural look and it’s stays on me better. (Plus, it’s a little more forgiving if you don’t do a perfectly straight line!) You can use the eyeshadow dry, or you can wet your brush for a darker liner. Pull your eyelid tightly out to the side to create a flat surface for your brush to line. I line both my top and lower lash lines, focusing on the outer portions of my eye and apply less to the inner eye since this helps eyes appear bigger.

Brow bone: Lastly, I use the lightest color eyeshadow and apply along my brow bone to brighten my whole eye. (You could also tap that light color in the inner corner of your eyes to make them pop!)

Blush: Whether I’m using a cream blush or powder blush, I essentially follow the same steps. I make a little smile to make my cheekbones stand out, apply the blush on my cheeks and gradually blend up my cheekbones. (I use my fingers for a cream blush, and a blush brush for powder.) You can follow up with bronzer over the blush, slightly underneath your cheekbones for a little contouring. Be sure to blend well so you don’t get a weird line! (Wipe your blush brush off so it’s cleaner for blending.)

Mascara: Once my eyeliner is dry, I curl my lashes and then typically layer two mascaras – the Beautycounter Lengthening mascara, which is clay based, and the Trish McEvoy mascara which I find helps prevent smudging. (Tip for clay-based mascaras: For easier application, rub it in between your hands like you’re trying to warm your hands for 15-30 seconds.)

Eyebrows: Filling in my eyebrows has been a GAME CHANGER. I feel so much more polished and my eye makeup actually looks more natural when I fill them in vs. leaving them bare since it helps my face “match” if that makes sense. I use short little strokes to fill in the sparse areas. Then I use the brush on the end to comb it through.

Concealer: I pat this under my eyes after my eye makeup is done, and I set it with the mattifying powder to prevent any creasing.

Finishing touches: I use a face mist to set everything and apply lip gloss and I’m reading to go!

Let me know if you have any questions! I hope this helps :)! It does take practice to get a feel for it and to get comfortable with the look if you’re new to eyeshadow so keep trying!


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  • marisa

    That was so so helpful Teri! Thank you for taking the time to do that, I love your tip about using the bronzer over the blush to tone it down a little – I hadn’t thought to do that! I do have quick question, can you link to the spray that you said you usually use to set everything at the end?

  • Hillary

    Totally intrigued by the Cosmedix SPF spray. I use their face wash and serum.

    Do you apply this after or before make-up?

    • Teri [a foodie stays fit]

      Oh interesting! I used to use their face wash and serum and had a HORRIBLE reaction but the SPF works great! (Although I really hope Beautycounter comes out with something similar!!)

      I apply it before my makeup, right after applying my moisturizer!

  • Tracy

    This is random but since we’re talking about eyes…. Are you still planning to post your thoughts on eyelash extensions?

    • Teri [a foodie stays fit]

      Yes! I have it on my to-blog list! I just have’t gotten to it yet! Let me know if you have any specific questions and I’ll add them to my draft post I have going!!

  • Sara S.

    Teri – this tutorial isn’t great! I used this off of Facebook live before dinner last week and it was a simple to follow and looked way better than how I was doing eye shadow! I want to give beauty counter a try since I have heard great things! I’d like to try the blush but I noticed there were only 3 colors available. DO you think hibiscus would work on a slightly tanner complexion? Thanks!

    • Teri [a foodie stays fit]

      I’m so glad it was helpful! (I think you were saying it is great, not isn’t? ha!) Hibiscus is gorgeous on tanner complexions – all of their colors are designed to work on all skin tones. You may also really like caramel!

      • Sara S.

        Yes – indeed! It *is great! Thank you! I will be trying the blush for sure.

  • mary

    Hi Terry, I would love to hear your thoughts on eyelash extensions and where you would recommend getting them in Winston Salem. Also, I am wondering if you know of a good place to get my eyebrows dyed? I have just moved to the area so I am not familiar with much yet?! We live in Clemmons but happy to go to Winston to get them done.

    I have really enjoyed reading your blog!

    Thank you!

    • Teri [a foodie stays fit]

      hi! I LOVED eyelash extensions but they are expensive and time-intensive to keep up. I also started to worry they were damaging my natural lashes. I have a post in the works on them! I went to a girl in Greensboro but I know Camel City Beauty Co does them in Winston.

      For eyebrow tinting (and eyebrow threading and waxing), I go to Kavita at Kaya Spa in Winston. She is INCREDIBLE. I’ve been going to her for 9 years and even drove up from Charlotte when I lived there because I won’t let anyone else touch my brows now. I keep hoping she’ll do eyelash extensions! You can book her online – Tell her I sent you!!

  • mary

    Teri – So sorry I spelt your name wrong on my previous post.