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How to Get the Best Prom Eye Looks

When prom season rolls around it’s always a glamorous time. From the beautiful dresses to the glitter and the makeup.

It used to be that when you went to prom, you wore what was trendy, whether it was the thin black eyeliner of the Seventies or the bright pop colors of Eighties eye shadow.

Today though there’s no limit with what you can do because there are tons of inexpensive beauty products on the market and a whole sea of eye makeup ideas that are always in style, from the classic looks to the bold and daring ones.

Here’s the thing:

It’s best not to overdo things if you’re in a hurry, but a few weeks ahead, you can experiment with different styles and see how they look on you. If you shop online for cosmetics, purchase a couple of months ahead of time so you’ll be able to try on your makeup and get it shipped to your address before prom night.

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Choosing Eyeliner

Another good tip is to pay attention to your eye shape – winged eyeliner for example, which ends in a fine narrow point at the outer edges of both eyelids, goes better with almond-shaped eyes, while round eyes can look great if you line the outer two-thirds of both eyelids on each eye and add some contrasting eyeshadow with it.

There’s no rule of thumb for eyeliner every time, though. You can try all kinds of techniques and practice them before the prom until you have a good idea of the one you like the best.

It might seem odd, but when purchasing eyeliner, there’s no specific best brand to look for. Different people have success with different types and brands. Some people prefer gel eyeliner while other like the kohl pencil liners.

This has little to do with the look though and more to do with how easy you personally find to apply it. When shopping for eyeliner, some great types to keep an eye out for (no pun intended) are Sephora’s Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner and Wet n Wild MegaEyes Crème Eyeliner

Some of these can be pricey depending on where you shop, but your local pharmacy may have a cosmetics counter that can show you similar products in your location and budget.

Glitter Eyeliners

Take a leaf out of Vanessa Hudgens book (she worked this look on the red carpet last year) and try some glitter eyeliner.

Glitter Eyeliners come in a wide variety of colors and much like the red carpet, they will look great on prom night.


Eyeshadow is always fun and these days there are more colors to choose from than ever. You’ll definitely want to start with some basic eyeshadow primer no matter which style you choose. You could start with a product like Thank Me Later Eye Primer.

Eyeshadow primer keeps eye makeup from flaking off, falling onto your face or streaking everywhere through the day, and under hot lights or humid weather, you’ll be glad you had some.

The brand really doesn’t matter, but remember to choose one that promises a long-lasting effect and a waterproof hold, especially if your prom is scheduled for a rainy day.

Which eyeshadow look are you going for? Smoky and seductive, classic and timeless, fun and colorful or sophisticated and alluring? Keep in mind that the more dark eye makeup you wear, especially if you already have black hair to begin with, your skin complexion can take on a very pallid look.

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You can counteract this with some colored eyeliner, a bright lipstick and a dress that isn’t too bright or dark but instead somewhere in between, like a nice gold or teal.

Choose an eyeshadow style that suits your personality, clothing and hair color. The great thing is that there’s really no limit, and you can even combine some styles. There are even eyeshadow kits available with step-by-step instructions for how to create the perfect smoky eye look.

Some eyeshadow kits contain just about every color of the rainbow.

One eye makeup look that always seems to come back into style time and time again, even though its namesake was an icon back in the postwar era of the 1950’s, is the Marilyn Monroe classic look. She never overdid her makeup, opting for a simple black eyeliner and retro pastel turquoise eyeshadow with a light dusting of white above each lid.

If you don’t want to look too bold and you prefer a look that’s more down-to-earth, try a light turquoise eyeshadow like Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Single Turquoise Glass color from its “Perfect Pastels” line and couple this with some rounded black eyeliner.

False Eyelashes

Something else to consider is mascara and false eyelashes – not everyone likes the feeling of false eyelashes, and if incorrectly done they can look fake.

You can go to a professional beauty salon to avoid this, or you can try the age-old trick of cutting them down slightly before applying them to your natural lashes for a more realistic look. Avoid buying false eyelashes with weird wavy patterns on them, which can often fall off without using an excessive amount of glue.

Opt for the most basic lashes possible, and use a metal lash curler if you want to.

Mascara is great because if you have naturally long lashes, you can just apply it and go without the use of false lashes at all, which can save a lot of time and money on your special night.

Even if you don’t have long lashes by nature, sometimes all it takes it a good coat of mascara to give your eyes that extra look you want. Mascara also doesn’t have to just be black, though it is traditional – mascara comes in glittery types and rainbow types and all kinds of other fun styles, too.

For longer, more voluminous lashes, try brands like Acti-Lab’s Skyscraper Mascara and if you’re instead looking for something bright and colorful and fun, try types like Kiko Milano’s Glitter Top Coat Mascara.

Last thoughts on Prom Eye Looks

Just to make sure you love your style before the prom, commemorate the occasion by taking a selfie – this way you’ll be able to see how your makeup looks in different styles and under different lighting.

Also you will have the very first of many amazing, fun-filled prom photos to come so you can look back on how great your own unique fashion is when you’re flipping through your memories many years later.

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