From fighting against patriarchal standards of beauty to the pure ease of it, there are plenty of reasons why we love the "no-makeup makeup" look so much. We're all about playing up our features instead of hiding them—especially the eyes—and no other beauty look seems to achieve that better.
Still, the key to achieving nature eye makeup requires skill and know-how. There's a fine line separating natural-looking eyes (bright and refreshed) from eyes in their natural state (tired and puffy). That's why we called in MUAs Tamah Krinksy and Jamie Dorman to give us some tips and tricks into wearing the natural eye makeup trend. From slight shimmers to even a pink shadow, we rounded up looks that hit that sweet spot of looking natural while wearing defined, albeit subtle, eye makeup.
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Keep scrolling for 15 stunning, celeb-inspired natural eyeshadow looks that will look good on anyone.
The first look to make our list is none other than the trending glossy eye. "This look makes anyone who wears it appear more awake and bright-eyed," says Dorman. She instructs, "Use a super shimmery product like LYS Aim High Pressed Powder Highlighter ($19) all over the lid and up to the brow bone. Make sure your brows are defined to make the shadow pop—I like Wonderskin Wonder Blading Brow Kit ($50)." For high-octane shine, she suggests finishing eyelids with a layer of Minori Lip Gloss ($22) in Dream.
A natural eye shadow makeup look is about sticking to a neutral palette that matches your skin tone. Just look at Jessica Alba as proof. She lets her natural glow shine through with minimal makeup, defining her eyes with long lashes and a little bit of nude shadow. Try it out for yourself with Too Faced Natural Eyes Eyeshadow Palette ($39) and its assortment of nine shimmery and matte shadows to choose from.
Laura Harrier's subtle golden shimmer pairs perfectly with her berry lip. Get the look with Rituel de Fille's Eye Soot ($38) in Golden Age; its sheer finish allows you to layer on the pigment however you'd like. Don't forget to top it off with long, lush lashes à la Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real! Magnet Mascara.
A faint pink eye shadow that matches Margot Robbie's blush creates a natural-looking warmth around the eye area. This can take eyes from tired to bright in an instant. To find what rosy hue works best for you, consider your skin tone. Kaja Beauty Bento Bouncy Eyeshadow Trio ($21) is the perfect palette to get you started.
Krinsky admits she likes to play around with lip and eye looks in the same color family. Here, she used Ritual de Fille Ash and Ember Eye Soot ($38) in Incantation topped with a touch of Surratt Artistique Eyeshadow ($22) in Ma-Peche and Renard Roux, and Nyx Slim Eye Pencil Long-Lasting Eyeliner ($5) in Auburn on English rose Florence Pugh. "Luminescent skin, groomed brows, a soft wash of color on the eyes, the blackest lashes, flushed cheeks, and a bold lip. This combination truly works on everyone," says Krinksy.
"The key to this look is letting the skin breathe. Let your skin show through and keep the color products bold. With a thick base or skin that is overly matte, this would look heavy. It works because there is a balance between the bold lip, the softer but defined eye, and the sheer skin," says Krinsky.
Rose gold eye makeup—like rose gold hair and rose gold nail polish—is trending, and it's not hard to see why. This neutral shade flatters all skin tones and looks super dreamy on our girl crush Zoë Kravitz. You can find all the shades you need to channel this aesthetic in Huda Beauty's Rose Gold Remastered Eyeshadow Palette ($65). And for the ultimate monochrome makeup look, pair it with rose gold lipstick.
Tracee Ellis Ross
Tracee Ellis Ross may look like she's not even wearing any eye shadow, but there's a faint shade of light beige to brighten up the eye area. To complete this look—and up the drama—play up your lashes by coating both top and bottom with your favorite mascara.
When it comes to her everyday beauty style, Jamie Chung likes to highlight one feature at a time. Here, she complements a bold berry lip with a shimmery beige eye shadow like Charlotte Tilbury's Bigger Brighter Eyes Eyeshadow Palette ($53). Not only does it add a little oomph to her natural eye makeup but the subtle glitter undereye can even create a more youthful appearance.
Chrissy Teigen makes a strong case for going nude—at least where her makeup palette is concerned. A glint of shimmer from Dior Backstage Eyeshadow Palette ($49) in Warm Neutrals paired with nude lipstick will have you playing the part of the girl next door to a T.
Kendall Jenner opted for an understated taupe shadow at the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic. The cool-toned neutral tones of ColourPop That's Taupe Eyeshadow Palette ($14) will recreate this look and flatter brown-eyed beauties. Apply a hint along the bottom lash line, too, to create dimension.
Who said the Emmy's red carpet requires a dramatic makeup look? The sultry neutrals on Yara Shahidi are still high-impact because they let her natural beauty shine. The best part? The one-shade smoky eye is universally flattering and a breeze to pull off, comments Dorman. She instructs, "Simply apply a deep, shimmery shade densely around the eye and use a fluffy brush to blend the shade outwards into the crease and fade out as the color gets to the brow bone." Opt for earth tones like those found in Juvia's Place The Warrior Eyeshadow Palette ($20) to bring out the shape of your eye and create more depth.
When applying eyeshadow, begin by sweeping a natural color over your lid followed by a darker tone for your crease. Then, go with a highlighter above the crease and a light shade in the corner of your eye to round out your look. For deeper skin tones like the lovely LupitaNyong'o here, we love Morphe 35OM Nature Glow Matte Eyeshadow Palette ($49).
Gigi Hadid wears one of the prettiest light shimmers around her eyes. The warm neutral shadow, which you can find in Lorac Unzipped Eye Shadow Palette ($18), perfectly complements her cool blue eye color. And since it's all about monochrome makeup these days, finish this look with a matching nude lip.
Ruth Negga channels Old Hollywood with her vintage eye makeup. "This eyeshadow looks best on people who want their eyes to look bigger and a bit dreamy," comments Dorman. To nail Negga's Old Hollywood "bedroom eyes" she recommends using Westmore Beauty Bette Davis Palette ($32). Then "With a small, tapered crease brush, use a gray-toned shade to draw a crease that emphasizes the inner part of the eye and pull the line downward as you go towards the outer edge of the eye. Use a light color on the lid to emphasize the contrast between the lid and the crease. WIth small tapered brush, put a taupey shade under the eye, dragging it out and downward slightly toward the outer edge of the eye," instructs Dorman.
If you have a visible crease you can use it as a guide; if you don't you can draw it on in the desired place, notes Dorman.
Natural beauty Olivia Wilde looks pretty in pink with her simple, yet stunning eye makeup. To replicate her style, we love Fenty Beauty's Snap Shadows Mix & Match Eyeshadow Palette ($25) in Cool Neutral. Wear it to the office and then out to after-work drinks. It's a versatile look that transitions well from day to night.