BEAUTY BENDER: An Eye for Romance

By Beauty Bender (February 9, 2012)

Take a glam 1960s approach to makeup this Valentine’s Day


“Everyone usually does a conventional smoky eye in black and a red lip. It’s all predictable,” says celebrity makeup artist Gina Brooke, artistic director of Hourglass Cosmetics, of standard Valentine’s Day date makeup. So why not mix it up a little this year with fresh tones and techniques? Brooke, who’s responsible for Madonna’s seemingly ageless visage, adds, “I think it’s very possible for a woman to use shadow and liner to create this beautiful, sexy 1960s eye that’s a half-slope (almond), enhancing your eye while adding a little graphic touch.” This so-called Sophia Loren eye is the ultimate alternative to that relatively played-out smoky look.

“I think when you have beautiful skin and pretty eyes, this is the strongest look” says Brooke, who recommends getting started with a slanted brush and finely milled eye shadow such as Prism by Hourglass that can be used wet as a liner. “First, start in the inner corner of the eye with the brush along the lash line all the way out to the outer corner. Then start at the outer corner and line in the crease—creating an elongated almond shape—all the way into the inner corner without smudging it.” While she loves this dramatic and romantic look with the bluish-gray metallic Prism, “it could be any color you want—blues, yellows, the aubergine family. It’s the graphic [nature] that really makes it pop and takes it to a different level.”

To complete the look, Brooke suggests adding a few individual lashes along with highlighter in the arch of the brow, continuing down to the center of the cheek and down the bridge of the nose, “so when light reflects off the face you are glowing with a dewy sheen. It’s also a really subtle way to enhance the eye further.” Add a pretty, warm lip color—not necessarily nude—and you’ll be ready to seduce. Just remember Brooke’s advice: “Don’t be afraid to play with color; it comes down to experimenting—just don’t experiment the day of!”


Photo Caption:

  • Gina Brooke’s Valentine’s Day makeup inspirations: Sophia Loren and Madonna (made up by Brooke for Elle UK)