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Posts tagged duochrome eye shadow

Vibrant Blue Smoke (Kat von D Shade Shifter in Stockholm)

This is a tutorial on how to bring out the most from your duochrome eye shadows, mixed with a quick overview of one of Kat von D’s Shade Shifter shadows. Duochrome shadows are the ones that seem to change color when you move them around under the light, because they have one base tone, and a different reflective highlight.

There were 3 in the Shade Shifter collection when I was at Sephora; a blue-brown which is a dupe of MAC’s Blue-Brown pigment (get that if you don’t like working with loose powder; it’s more vibrant than MAC Club pressed shadow), a green-gold which is a shinier version of MAC’s Gorgeous Gold, if I don’t recall wrong, and Stockholm, a blue-violet which I got.

It’s actually similar but not a dupe for MAC’s Cornflower pigment as they both share that blue base and violet sheen, but Cornflower is more purple, glittery, and translucent compared to Stockholm.

The tutorial I’m doing is an easy way for you to wear ANY duo-chrome shadow, regardless of color or brand. It’s all in the base, because white and black brings out the different facets of duochrome shades beautifully.

Step 1: I first applied a white pencil (Maybelline Eye Studio Shadow Liner) to the inner corners of my lids and softened it out with my finger. You don’t want to have streaks or patchiness because the shadow can grab in those areas and look uneven later.

Step 2: The rest of the lid is filled in with black pencil. I simply draw a line along the socket (the hollow dip above your eye ball) leaving only the inner corners empty, and then filled in the area below it.

I also ran the pencil along the inner rims of my lash line on both upper and lower lids.

Step 3: When you’re done, use a shadow brush to gently smudge out the edges at the upper lids, so you don’t have any hard lines and edges. It should fade out and be smoky at the borders.

Step 4: This is the simplest and most fun step. Just use a shadow brush to pack on the duochrome color from the white area to the black. It’s important not to go from the dark areas to the light because your brush could pick up some of the black and that would “contaminate” the areas that are supposed to be light.

NOTE: I also did not apply the shadow on the outermost portions of the eye because I wanted to keep that part black for more contrast with the rest of the lids.

You can see from the image that the white brings out the bright cyan-blue base of the shadow, and the black base brings out the violet sheen. You just made it look like you expertly blended 3 shades of shadow (turquoise, violet, black) when all you used was 1 single shade.

This same technique would work with ANY duochrome shadow, so grab what you have and have fun playing!

Coastal Scents Blue-Red Chrome Mica: MAC Cornflower Pigment Dupe?

As you can see from the swatches, not really. BUT if you’ve ever wished that MAC’s Cornflower was a little stronger, finer-grained, and looked as duochrome on the lid as it does in the bottle, then this actually performs better for a whole lot less money. ($1 per sample bag to be exact.)

The only thing you need to watch out for is to wear a good base or primer on your lids, because pure micas don’t stick very well and can fade or dust off quickly. This shade is no different.

Here’s a close-up of the 2 swatches over a clear base. (Both pigments don’t stick all that well.) As you can see, MAC Cornflower goes on blue with just the faintest trace of violet overtone, but once it’s swatched next to Blue-Red Chrome, it looks flat-out periwinkle blue. Blue-Red Chrome on the other hand, shifts very beautifully between blue and a mauve-violet. Over a dark base, the reddened violet tones come out stronger. Over skin tones, the smoky blue is more apparent.

For about $1 a sample baggie which will fill up a 5g jar easily, I would definitely recommend you pick this OVER the MAC pigment any day.


Step 1: I applied a dark blue pencil (MAC Blooz Kohl) along the lash line and diagonally up across the upper lid almost like a wing, but not extending much past the outer corners. This will serve as a dark base, which is ALWAYS a great way to bring out duochrome colors.

Step 2: Use your fingers to just lightly smudge and smoke the outer edges.

Step 3: Using a flat shadow brush so I can minimize fallout, I packed the pigment over the entire lid, from inner to outer corners, up to the socket line. Then I ran the brush along the lower lash line as well.

Step 4: Just curl lashes and apply mascara to finish!

Twilight Fae: Dramatic Colorful Eyes with a touch of Sparkle

For those of you craving some excitement for Summer nights, here’s a colorful and dramatic smoky eye which is actually pretty easy to create. To tone it down for day, just keep the shadow within the socket area instead of blending it out and up as far as I did.

There were 3 main products I used:

  • Black kajal (any very creamy and smudgy black cream shadow or pencil will work)
  • Translucent green sparkle (I used a discontinued mica from TKB called Starlight Green, which has been replaced with Starbright Green. The Body Shop also has a single shadow highlight #08 which is exactly the same thing but in pressed form.)
  • Pink/purple duochrome with blue sheen (I Nuovi Amethyst dust; this is like a loose version of MAC Stars n Rockets shadow.)

And yes, these swatches above look NOTHING like how they appear on my lids, but that’s why it’s so fun working with duochromes and a black base!

Step 1: First apply black kajal or paint very thickly all over the lids, up to the socket line. 

Step 2: Using a synthetic concealer brush (or any synthetic paint brush), softly smoke out the edges so there are no hard lines, and bring the color up and out. 

Step 3: Apply the kajal to the lower lash line and water line as well, and smudge out lightly. The finished look should now be like the above image, which is a typical winged smoky eye shape.

Step 4: From here, we move on to the fun stuff. Lightly dust the translucent green highlight all the way from lower lash line up to the brow, but ONLY ON THE INNER HALVES of the lids.

Step 5: The shade that’s going to make everything look holographic is the pink/violet/blue duochrome on the outer half of the eyes, top and bottom. When you pack it over the black, you will no longer see the pink, but the violet and blue is going to take on a sort of glow which is going to stand apart from the green and give the most interesting effect.

Step 6: This step is optional. I wet a flat brush with a little liner sealant (Ben Nye Liquiset), dabbed it into some aqua green translucent glitter, then pressed it right down the center of the lids. This echoes the green shadow, but adds a “wet” effect and gorgeous sparkle when you blink.

Step 7: To finish the look, I curled my lashes and then applied a strip of wispy lashes. Any type of lashes would work, including plain black mascara.

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