Everyone’s foray into makeup begins differently, but a common point of fear is always eyeshadow. I remember buying my first palette, thinking it would be easy to achieve a sultry smokey eye, only to end up with a patchy mess that looked like Jackson Pollock threw up all over my eyelids in monochrome.

Even venturing to YouTube to seek divine assistance ended up in failure, as most beauty vloggers aren’t Asian, and our hugely differing bone structures left me prodding furiously to find my crease, as well as wondering why the colours wouldn’t show up when my eyes were open (hooded lid problems, am I right?)

After much trial and a miserable amount of errors, I’ve come up with a handful of foolproof eyeshadow tips for Asian eyes for you to get perfect eye looks every time.

1
Know your eye shape

Fully embrace the fact that you have no deep-set crease. Instead, Asian eyes tend to have a fold, which is the area where your eye folds above your eyelashes, and a contour area, which is the area directly under your browbone, above the fold. This greatly impacts how you’ll approach eyeshadow, so bear this in mind.

Photo credit: Creative Connections

2
Apply colours above the fold

If you have hooded or monolids, colours often get swamped beneath your eye fold, especially if you enjoy lining your eyes. There are two ways around this: you can forgo eyeliner and use a dark eyeshadow smoked out close to your lashline, or apply the coloured eyeshadow above your fold instead of just your lid. This allows the bright colour to pop even when your eyes are open. A seamless way to do this would be to apply a bright, pigmented shadow all over your lid and blend upwards to avoid harsh lines.

Photo credit: NY Mag

3
Get a gradient

With eyeshadow, always try to achieve a subtle gradient from crease to lid. Applying a neutral transition shade in the fold of your eye before starting your look helps immensely. Alternatively, if you have a monolid, apply the darkest eyeshadow close to the lashline, and the lightest above the fold instead of the reverse, which is typically what suits Caucasian lid shapes — this will open up your eyes instead of swamping them.

Photo credit: Pinterest

4
Contour your eyes to widen them

As Asian eyes don’t have defined creases, blending out a dark shade all throughout your contour area would cause your eyes to look narrower. Instead, apply dark shadow at the outer V area of your eyes, and blend it 1/3 of the way in to add depth and enlarge your eyes.

Photo credit: theplace2

5
Use a nude or white liner to brighten your eyes

White or nude eyeliner in your waterline does help to make a difference when it comes to brightening and enlarging your eyes. If you’re not fond of going bright white, try a flesh-toned nude instead.

Photo credit: Pinterest

Beatrice Bowers
Features Editor
Beatrice Bowers writes about beauty, drinks, and other nice things. When not bound to her keyboard, she moonlights as a Niffler for novels and can be found en route to bankruptcy at your nearest bookstore. Don't tell her boss.