The Best Eyeshadow Shades for Your Eye Color

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The secret to making your eyes pop: the color wheel. Find the best eyeliner and eye shadow shades to draw attention to brown, blue, green, and hazel eyes.

Create Contrast

Making your eye color stand out goes back to the basics of the color wheel. Using contrasting hues draws attention to eyes and intensifies their color. "Whatever your eye color is, you want choose an eyeshadow on the opposite side of the wheel to intensify your eye color," says New York City makeup artist Michelle Coursey.



Brown Eyes

Brown eyes actually contain shades of orange and red, making blues and greenish golds the best shadow picks. Bright blues are Coursey's first choice, but if you're not up for going bold with cobalt, navy is a more subtle option. Coursey suggests putting dark blue shadow or liner next to the lash line for a hint of color. Subdued green-gold shadow keeps the look from being overly colorful.

Picks for Brown Eyes

Deep navy eyeliner is an easy way to incorporate shades of blue into a look without going too bold.


Try: Retractable Waterproof Eyeliner ($13;


Picks for Brown Eyes

For a more colorful look, opt for highly pigmented blue shadows. This trio comes with application tips for using the three shades together.

Try: Smashbox Photo Op Eye Shadow Trio ($28;

Picks for Brown Eyes

For an everyday neutral, stick with green-gold hues that complement rich blues.

Try: BareMinerals Brown Eyecolor Eye Shadow, Queen Tiffany ($14;

Blue Eyes

Rich, warm colors are the perfect contrast to cool blue eyes. Rich browns and terra-cottas -- all colors with a hint of orange -- are just right for every day. Metallic tones like gold or bronze can help baby blues stand out for evening. Skip black eyeliner -- it tends to look too harsh on lighter skin tones and opt for brown or bronze instead.

Picks for Blue Eyes

Warm shades of orange are perfect for an easy, everyday look.

Try: NARS Duo Eyeshadow ($35;

Picks for Blue Eyes

Hints of metallic help to bring out gold highlights in blue eyes.

Try: Laura Mercier Baked Eye Colour, Wet/Dry ($23;

Picks for Blue Eyes

A shimmery bronze eyeliner is a subtle way to define blue eyes and help them pop.

Try: Tarte Skinny SmolderEYES Amazonian Clay Waterproof Liner, Aztec Gold ($19;

Green Eyes

To provide contrast for green eyes, reach for shades of purple and pink. Keep a daytime look from getting too colorful by using taupe or other neutrals all over the lid and keeping purple hues closer to the lash line. With green eyes, it’s also best to avoid harsh black liner and instead choose charcoal, silver, or deep purple liners.

Picks for Green Eyes

Deep gray eyeliners help green eyes stand out without being overpowering.

Try: Lancome Artliner 24H ($30.50; Lord & Taylor)

Picks for Green Eyes

This soft palette is perfect for adding a subtle hint of purple hues to a daytime look.

Try: Stila Desert Sky Eye Shadow Set, Pink ($35;

Picks for Green Eyes

Go bold at night with deep purples that will make green eyes stand out.

Try: Bobbi Brown Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow ($22;

Hazel Eyes

Autumn colors are ideal for helping hazel eyes stand out. Go for rich browns, golds, and greens if you want to make hazel eyes look more brown. If you’d like to bring out the greens and golds, try bronze or eggplant, Coursey says.

Picks for Hazel Eyes

Dark, eggplant-color liners help the green and gold flecks in hazel eyes pop.

Try: Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil ($20;

Picks for Hazel Eyes

Warm shades of brown are an easy go-to look.

Try: Stila Eye Shadow Trio ($20;

Picks for Hazel Eyes

Sunflower yellow adds a pop of color to a neutral look.

Try: Make Up For Ever Metal Powder ($23;

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