For most people, orange is one of those shades in your favorite palette that never hits the pan. But After seeing endless orange eyeshadow looks splashed across red carpets recently, we're convinced it's one of the most universally complementing shades, making all skin tones and eye colors pop.
And while I initially thought it’d be a difficult look to pull off, I found myself inspired by the spectrum of different ways you can wear it—from subtle to hyper-pigmented. Whether it’s a saturated, neon-orange cream shadow or a simple, burnt-sienna bronze, you can completely make it your own (with products you might already have in your vanity, no less) and you’re guaranteed to look daring and cool.
Ahead, our favorite ways celebrities have demonstrated how to pull off the orange eyeshadow trend.
Wear the trend like Cara Delevingne by doing something unexpected with orange shadow. Here, her makeup artist used orange shadow to create a wing—note how it goes all the way to the tail of her brow—with a stain of contrasting pink shadow around her tear ducts to make it pop. We truly appreciate a good unexpected color combination.
Neon Orange Shadow
Winnie Harlow’s runway look certainly isn’t for the faint of heart, but if you’re feeling bold, choose a high-pigment liquid shadow that dries matte, and keep the rest of your look relatively simple (we love how all she needed was blush, mascara, and lip-gloss). Proof that adventurous makeup looks definitely don’t have to be time-consuming.
Burnt Orange Smoky Eye
Saoirse Ronan shows us how it’s done with a subtle, burnt orange smoky eye. Achieve the look with a simple, copper-hued shadow on the creases and highlight your lid and inner eye area with a lighter shadow, and finish it off with charcoal eyeliner and mascara.
This look offers something simple that anyone could re-create in under 3 minutes. To replicate the look, simply swipe a single hue all over the lids, using your finger (we love Tower 28's lip, cheek, and eye balm, below). That's all. A simple swipe of color on the lids with a glossy finish is the easiest way to way orange and anyone can do it, I promise. Lightly tap the color onto the eyelids until you have the result you want. Want to take it a step further? Apply the product to cheeks and lips for a soft,
monochromatic makeup look.
All Over Lids
Marion Cotillard makes the case for all-coral-everything with coral-pink and coral-orange eyeshadow. Try it on your own by extending your shadow above the eye crease and finishing it off with white liner on your lower lash line and black mascara.
A good monochromatic look is universally complimentary, and Charlize Theron pulls it off perfectly here by employing peachy-hued eyeshadow, lipstick, and blush all for one look. Finish it off with a swipe of black mascara and voilà—monochromatic perfection.
To create a monochromatic beauty look, use multi-sticks to get the exact same shade (be it orange or another hue) on the lips, cheeks, and lids.
Selena Gomez is proof that all you really need to pull off the orange-eyeshadow look is glowy skin. Besides her out-to-there lashes, the rest of her beauty look is simple, pretty, and wearable for every day. BRB, running out to buy an orange dress I can match my eyeshadow to.
Barbara Palvin somehow makes her bright-orange eyeshadow look relatively subtle and wearable by toning down the rest of the components of her look. Use a saturated orange shadow, like MAC Pigment ($23) in Genuine Orange to apply all the way to your brow bone (like Barbara), and complement it with a metallic shadow or liner under your lower lash line.
Lee Rodriguez gives us a masterclass in subtlety here. A simple orange shadow is sometimes all you need—sweep it across your lids and accentuate it with a darker, brown shadow on your eye crease. It’s as easy as that—and super chic.
Back again with the unexpected color combination, this time featuring Sofia Sanchez Barrenechea. Here, Barrenechea pairs her orange eyeshadow with a green and black contrasting cat-eye (likely inspired by her intricate earrings). The beauty look perfectly complements her bright orange dress.
We're calling this look Sunset Eyes. Note how Shailene Woodley’s saturated orange shadow is more concentrated on the eyelid, then becomes softer at the wings (with what appears to be an equally pigmented-pink hue on her inner eyelids).
British actress Eleanor Tomlinson shows us the subtlest, chicest way yet to wear orange eyeshadow if you're fair-complected. Pick a peachy hue that's similar to your skin tone, and blend it so that it's barely there but still statement-making. Pair it with a flushed face and a pinky-nude lip color, and there you have it: glowy, gorgeous perfection.
The inner corners of your eyes are great to apply color to when you're not wanting to create a look all-over eyelids or are short on time. For this look, apply a shadow to the inner corners of the eyes with an eyeshadow brush and apply a softer color to the eyelids. Finish with a few coats of volumizing mascara and eyeliner if you feel like it.
Orange eyeshadow applied on the top and bottom of the eyes is a slightly dressier way to wear the trend and frames the shape of the eyes while enhancing their color. We like Lancôme's eyeshadow palette in "Terre de Sienne" to create this look, or just use a pumpkin-hued color on the top lid while creating a nice under-smoke with a more coppery color on the bottom lashline. This specific palette comes with two applicator sponges, so if you don't have any brushes that's not a problem. If you need to trace this out first before applying eyeshadow, use eyeliner and apply to the top and bottom lashline. This way, you'll know exactly where to place the shadow next with no mistakes.
Nothing is better than glitter, but sometimes it can be tricky to apply.
If you love the look of glitter, then you're in luck—a glittery orange
eyeshadow look can be created using a shimmering eyeshadow applied with the finger—dead serious. Just press the shadow of your choice onto the eyelid until you're satisfied with the level of sparkle. You can also use an eyeshadow brush to apply this, lightly tapping the color onto the lid and building the pigment as you go.
Smoky eyes come in a myriad of color palettes, and orange fits right in
with this trend and the results are pretty spicy. The key to building a
smoky eye is picking your colors out beforehand, and knowing which color
goes where for best results. For this orange smoky eyeshadow look, first apply a base to ensure that nothing will smudge or run. This is ideal when using more than one eyeshadow color. Second, apply a more colorful shade all over the lids as a nice neutralizer. To bring in the smoke, blend a darker shade into the crease until it is deep and dark. Next, apply a long-lasting black eyeliner pencil to the top and bottom lash line and blend more of the shadow on top of the liner. Finish with a jet black mascara or false eyelashes is key to tie it all together—we like Grande Cosmetics GrandeDRAMA Intense Thickening Mascara ($25).