Three of the coolest and easiest new summer eyeshadow looks rely on the basics, but this season, the basics are getting some unique twists that are (yes!) easy to pull off yourself. Neutrals go for a mix of romance and drama with shadow stretching from lashes to brow. The classic smoky style gets brushed to the edges, and seasonal brights are precise, but still play up their wild side. To help rev you into major summer mode, here are the quintessential-yet-updated eyeshadow looks we can't wait to sweep on.
An Eyeful of Neutrals—The best way to wear neutrals this summer is all the way to the brow. The look keeps nudes lively and gives a flushed, ethereal feel by going beyond the lid, reaching all the way to the eyebrows. Take cues from Prada, J. Mendel, and Shakuhachi fall '11 and brush pale colors across the entire lid and brow bone, but keep the shadow out of the inner corners, and don't go too far beyond the eyebrow or outer corners of the eye.
Above, from left: Prada fall '11 image courtesy of Redken; Esteé Lauder Limited Edition Bronze Goddess Island Oasis Eyeshadow Palette, $42, available at Esteé Lauder; CoverGirl Brow & Eye Makers, $3.99, available at CVS; Dior 5-Colour Eyeshadow in Rosy Nude, $58, available at Dior; Shakuhachi fall '11 image courtesy of Napoleon Perdis; J. Mendel fall '11 image courtesy of Redken.
The Abbreviated Smoky Eye—The iconic, black smoky eye at Lanvin's fall '11 show took a subtle, yet still sexy turn, thanks to makeup artist Pat McGrath. Starting in the center of the eye, she traced a black eyeshadow along the upper lash line and straight past the outer corner of the eye—just a bit—and then blended, making the edges thick and square instead of angled. To add an iridescent feel to the look, layer a light, shimmering shadow on top of the black.
Above, from left: NARS Limited Edition Eyeshadow Duo in Dogon, $33, available at NARS; Sue Devitt Luxury Lash Mascara in Black Widow, $22, available at Sue Devitt; CoverGirl Smoky ShadowBlast in Onyx Smoke, $7.99, available at Ulta; Fresh Supernova Mascara, $25, available at Fresh; Lanvin fall '11 images courtesy of Redken.
The Bright Brigade—Vivid shades freshen up the classic retro shapes seen at Peter Som, Derek Lam, and Dior's spring '11 shows. Pull the look off by keeping your colors monochromatic, and by creating lines that hug the lashes or by depositing color onto the lids only.
Above, from left: MAC Surf, Baby! Eye Shadows in Saffron and Surf USA, $15.50 each, available May 26 at MAC; Derek Lam spring '11 image courtesy of Esteé Lauder; Peter Som spring '11 image by Luca Cannonieri; Givenchy Le Prismissime 9-Colors Eyeshadow Palette in Acid Lights, $62, available at Sephora.