I realised recently that my trademark black eyeliner/red lip look is starting to look a little… tired? Repetitive? Dare I say… boring? I’ve been wearing it for TEN YEARS so it’s probably time for a change. But after doing the same thing for so long and having perfected the art of sweeping an inky line along my lashes, I am honestly quite nervous about stepping so drastically outside my cosy comfort zone.
Still, like a true Brit I declare “in for a penny, in for a pound” and embrace Revlon’s Bright & Bold Eyes Challenge. They sent me a pile of colourful new eyeshadow palettes and two very intriguing "Smoky Shadow Sticks’" and dared me to try them out as part of their Expression Experiment campaign. The new app, which can be accessed through Facebook, encourages women to switch up their make-up routine.
Off we go!
I picked out palette 565 -- "Bombshell" – because it had a beautiful mimosa yellow shade that immediately made me think of the look I saw make-up artist Lisa Eldridge doing at the Osman show a couple of seasons ago when I was lurking backstage. Instead of sweeping the shade across the entire eyelid, she confined it to the inner corner and this immediately made it feel fresh, modern and sporty. The rest of the face was completely bare with a slight dewiness and lips were a soft peachy-nude.
This is a pretty big departure for me because I don’t really wear eyeshadow normally and am stubbornly wedded to black eyeliner -– either kohl pencil or liquid. Anyway, here’s what I did:
I prepped my skin with a primer before putting on foundation. Then I boosted my feeble eyebrows (we seem to have reached a plateau in the growing out phase -– brilliant) with some brow powder -– I’m currently trying this instead of pencil to see if it’s less obvious.
I grabbed the Revlon Colorstay palette like a kid with a paintbox and starting with the white shadow, brushed it across the entire lid with the sponge applicator. I shaded a little in the contour with the silver and gray shadows, but didn’t go overboard as I wanted the look to be quite clean and sparse. Then I dabbed the yellow on the inner corner, top and bottom lids. Putting the white beneath helped boost the colour to maximum sunshiny-ness.
I finished with a coat of black mascara and dabbed a pinky-peach balm on my lips.
Ta-da! What do you think? (Be gentle, this is scary for me!) It felt surprisingly good -- fresh and summery and more appropriate for the mini heatwave we’ve been experiencing in London than my usual sulky black-rimmed eyes. I really like the yellow, especially for sunny days so I think this one’s a keeper.
Next I decided to try Revlon Colorstay palette 570 -– "Luscious" -- because it had some lovely soft mossy greens and I think they look good with hazel eyes.
I followed the instructions on the back of the palette strictly (I love instructions!) and used the lightest shade up to the brow bone, the main shade (olive green) across the lid, then the two darker colours in the outer corner, swept outwards, and in the crease of the lid. Then I blended for ages -– this is probably obviously to those of you practiced in the art of eyeshadow application, but for someone who hasn’t changed her make-up routine for a decade it was strange!
Then I smudged some black kohl along the top and bottom lash lines (oh come on, you couldn’t seriously expect me to resist the lure of the pencil?) and added another coat of mascara.
Lips were done in a fuchsia lipstick and I swept pale pink blush on the apples of my cheeks.
The finished result was less extreme than I expected –- the colours were softer, subtler. I’m going to carry on practicing with this one ‘til I get it perfect.
By this point I’m thinking "might as well be hung for a sheep as a lamb” and have decided to go for full on Liza-Minelli-in-Cabaret jazziness. The Revlon Colorstay Smoky Shadow Stick is essentially a giant crayon that you draw on your face with, in other words even I can’t go (too) wrong with this one.
I use the pale lilac end from lashline to browbone, then switch to the darker end to work into the crease and along the lashes, humming “Mein Herr” as I go.
Oh and obviously I put on some red lipstick because that’s what Liza would do…
Right, I had a go –- now it’s your turn. Revlon’s Expression Experiment app on Facebook has lots of video tutorials and pictures that I found useful when I was fiddling about with the smoky eye. And tell me how it goes -– if stubborn, lazy me can put the kohl down, then seriously anyone can step out of their comfort zone and try something surprising and new.
Sponsored by Revlon. Prove that beauty is anything but routine. Try the Revlon Expression Experiment.