How To: Wear Red Eyeshadow

First, Francois Nars created a matte brick red color dubbed Grenadines for the NARS Spring 2009 collection. Now, red is splattered all over the A/W 2010 runways. The popularity of red eyeshadow is on the rise and can no longer be ignored! So read on to learn how you too can become a master of the trend!

NARS Spring 2009
NARS Spring 2009 collection

Cushnie et Ochs Fall 2010Altuzarra Fall 2010
Cushnie et Ochs and Altuzarra A/W 2010 shows

* Pick the right red. This is key in making the look work. Pale skin can pull off brighter reds while darker skin tones look best in deeper reds like burgundy and maroon.

* Pair it with another color. Throwing in a darker color like black, charcoal, brown and plum can make the look more wearable. Alternatively, adding a dash of shimmer in the inner corners like I did below also helps.

* Go heavy with eyeliner and mascara. This is a must to avoid a bruised/swollen look.

* Wear it as an eyeliner. If you are not quite ready to wear red all over, try lining your eyes with red like I did below.

Red Eyeshadow Makeup Look

* Red eyeshadow tends to intensify any redness in your eyes so if your eyes are tired, save it for another time.

* The dye used to make red eyeshadows can potentially trigger off a bad reaction on certain people. Please use with precaution, especially if you have sensitive skin.

Been rocking red eyeshadow all along? Share your tips!

Phyllis Li is the Founder and Editor-in-chief of Makeup For Life, one of the top 50 beauty blogs that focuses on celebrity makeup breakdowns, product reviews, makeup tutorials and all things beauty. Having lived and traveled in North America, Europe and Asia, she was exposed to different techniques and products at an early age and hopes to put a global perspective towards beauty. Phyllis won the Best Content Award by Total Beauty in 2008 and has been featured in various publications and websites including ELLE,, Yahoo Shine!, AOL Stylelist, Nylon Korea, VOGUE China, Ming Pao Daily (Canada) and Shanghai Weekly. In 2010, she was appointed one of the nine Real Women Ambassadors in the United States to take part in the Latisse® Wishes Challenge, working with Hollywood celebrity Kathy Ireland and raised over $400,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation to grant wishes for approximately 54 children. In 2012, she teamed up with luxury skincare brand TATCHA and released a limited-edition 3-Piece Set of her favorite beauty products. Phyllis currently lives in Chicago, US. She is a regular contributor to Shanghai Daily's StyleHai Magazine and a member of the Glam Beauty Network.


  1. Thanks for the post !

    I use my Nars blush in Exibit A like a shadow and I wear it as an eyeliner with an angled brush.

  2. Thanks, this post gave me some new ideas on how to wear red eyeshadow! I don’t own any red eyeshadow because I’ve never figured out how to make it wearable, but have always wanted to to try it out! Another color I find hard to wear on the eyes but have wanted to try is hot pink. Do you have suggestions on how to wear that color?

    • Hot pink is a tough colour, so you have to play it up. You can either use it as a base colour and then layer on some degrees of purple (plums and violet with a shimmer for a night out, or light purples for a fresh look), or rock the look with some neon or black clothing and heavier eyeliner for a look to take to the club.

  3. Definitely I’ve been loving red eye makeup lately! Red liquid liner, red eye shadows paired with golds and blacks are really pretty and bold.

  4. Isn’t the WWW amazing – you need to find out about how to wear red eye makeup and you can find the very thing! You have given gorgeous photos as examples, but not sure I could pull it off. I was a little concerned to read that the red dye could cause allergy as I have very sensitive eyes.

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