Posts Tagged ‘drama’


Post + Photography by Amy Nadine, Graphic Design by Eunice Chun

Have you ever wondered if there’s truly a difference when you wear matte or shimmer shadows? A lot of us have strong opinions as to which one we prefer, so I decided to do a little case study with these constants:

  • Same eye
  • Same 4 shades
  • Same application

The matte shadows are from my all-time favorite Stila’s In The Know Palette. They are the perfect 8 matte shades and don’t get muddy when you apply them (you don’t need to use an eye primer first). The shimmer shadows are my all-time favorite shimmer shadows, The Body Shop’s Shimmer Cubes #6. I discovered them when I had a long layover at an airport in 2003 and have used them on every single one of my clients on one occasion or another since. The secret to them is wetting the brush first so they’re really intense and last longer.

So now that you can see both finishes in a way that you can really compare them, what do you think? The difference isn’t as dramatic as I thought it would be, I have to say! It’s interesting the way the shimmer shadow highlights any small wrinkles on the lid, but only visible to someone standing really close. But in return, the shimmer really does electrify the eye and bring it to life. The matte eye adds a little more drama and is a little moodier. Anyway, we’d love to know your thoughts too so please take a second to vote below!


Post + Photography by Amy Nadine, Graphic Design by Eunice Chun

I can’t stress this quick tip enough. Do not blend with the same brushes that you used to apply the shadow! Don’t do it! Hear my voice in your head and put the brush down, grab a clean unused one and blend with that one.

Why? Because when you create a smoky eye, you’re depositing a lot of product onto the lid, so how can you truly blend the shadow you’ve precisely placed if there’s still product on the brush? You’re just applying more, not blending. And smoky eyes are all about blending. Furthermore, you typically use more than one shade when creating a smoky eye (lighter on the lid and darker in the crease or The Reverse Smoky Smoke with the darker on the lid and the lighter in crease), so if you blend with the brush that you applied one of the colors with, the remaining product on the brush will spread over the entire area and create a sloppy and muddy look. What’s the point of taking the time to do something pretty to only undo it or not finish it properly?



  1. After you’ve finished your smoky eye, grab a clean, unused brush and blend all over by sweeping the brush back and forth in a windshield wiping motion then in smaller swirling motions, then again with bigger motions.
  2. Continue until there are no harsh edges.

If you don’t have a clean brush in your arsenal (you know who you are!), no worries, just put your laptop down and take a trip into your makeup bag and clean them so I can sleep tonight knowing our TBD readers clean their brushes regularly! Revisit my Brush Cleaning Tutorial if you need a refresher. Thank you!



photos + post by amy nadine, graphic design by eunice chun

Here at TBD, we’re always trying to simplify things for you so you see how easy it is to re-create our favorite red carpet looks. Yes there are 8 steps above but they’re not hard and if you remember to blend blend blend, there’s really no way to mess it up! We love this look because it’s a strong statement for when you want to bring out your alter ego, but not in a “whoa she’s got a lot going on with her makeup” way. Here’s exactly what I used on my dear assistant Carissa above: (more…)


photos: designed by eunice chun

Yes, this is intense. But every now and then, you just gotta bring it! A black smoky eye is the most extreme way to frame your eyes and make a statement. It’s not something you want to do every day (please don’t unless you want to look like you’re hiding behind your makeup!), but it’s super fun to do once in awhile when you’re feeling a little rocker chic. Here are some tips to pull it off:

1. Do your eye makeup first so you can use a baby wipe to clean up any black shadow that may have dropped before you apply foundation and concealer.

2. To decrease the amount of shadow droppings, give your eye shadow brush at least two taps against your counter each time you load it up.

3. For extra drama, choose a black shadow that has a hint of shimmer for the lid + bottom lashline, and a matte finish for the crease. Follow with a long-wear black liner along the top and bottom lash lines, then a black kajal/kohl liner on the inner water line.

4. DO NOT LEAVE ANY BLANK SPACES BETWEEN THE LASHES AND WATER LINE! Take a moment to scan for any blank spaces peeking through then go back with the liner and fill them in.

5. After applying mascara, add false lashes if you really want to go for it. Watch our Lesson in Lashes video tutorial for a refresher.

6. Pair this heavy eye with a nude lip. At the very most, a light pink or peach, but not darker, as a bold lip will take this look from chic to cheap…

7. The brows are a case-by-case judgement call. You can leave them bare or give them a little definition (since brows are part of the eye area, it won’t become makeup overkill).

8. Please don’t highlight your brow bone with white or shimmer. The contrast between the black shadow and your skin is enough.

9. Be confident! If you aren’t sure of yourself and walk into the room with your shoulders shrugged up, then the makeup is wearing you, you’re not wearing it. So with your head held high, own the look and have fun!

XO, Amy Nadine