The not-quite-Chanel FOTD | Gold and black smokey eyes

When I set about to do a look this past Saturday, I had intended to re-create the recent Chanel Fall 2011 couture look – a sexy, glossy, all-black eye.

Needless to say, I was waylaid by a pigment stack I (inadvisably) had sitting out on my desk, and we didn’t really make it to our originally planned destination.

In the end, I put together a basic, black smokey eye with a gold highlight in the center, a look I’ve been quite fond of recently. (Er, having the main highlight being in the center of the lid rather than the inner corner, that is. But to be honest, I don’t wear a lot of black in terms of eyeshadow!)

Even more importantly, though, I’m super excited to get reviewing some of the products I tried out in this look. A few of them were in this bowl, and a few of them weren’t, but there were a couple of new textures that I’ve really been enjoying. We should have a review of the Clinique Lid Smoothie line within the next forty-eight hours, but consider this your “sneak preview” into some of our upcoming reviews!

This look is actually deceptively easy to create, and you really only need two colours to do it! (I used more, of course, but honestly? You could get away with just two.) Start by filling your brows, then prime lids – try either an all-over primer, or a blended black-and-gold base for added depth.

Then, using a small shader brush (think MAC 242), pat a gold pigment onto the center of your lid, the inner 1/3 of your lower lashline, and your inner corner. With a separate brush (I used an Annabelle A-21), apply a matte or sheen-finish black to the inner and outer 1/3s of your lid. Use a clean blending brush to buff out the black edges, then blend the gold into the black with the remnants of colour on your small shader brush.

To finish the eye, use a soft, angled liner brush to “wiggle” a black cream liner into your upper lashline. Then, line your waterlines with black liner, curl lashes, and apply mascara.

I paired this look with a contoured-but-low-key cheek: bold enough to hold its own, but not so bold it makes a statement. To replicate it, contour lightly, blending well at the edges, add just a hint of peach blusher (mine’s technically a face powder; to-may-to, toh-mah-to), and pull it all together with a hint of finely milled peach highlighter on the top of the cheekbone and lightly up the orbital bone.

Choose a natural, slightly peachy lip colour to finish the look – matte or glossy, it’s your call! (I wanted to keep the lips really low-maintenance, so I went with an Ellis Faas Creamy Lips for a really natural lip). Add powder and you’re good to go!

Products used

Eyes – colour: MAC Pigment in Gold Mode (middle of lid; inner corner), Clarins Eye Quartet Mineral Palette in Graphites (black), Clinique Lid Smoothie Eye Colour in Bit O’ Honey (used as a base), Annabelle Smoothie Eyeshadow Pencil in Licoriche (used as a base)

Eyes – other: L’Oreal HiP Cream Eyeliner in Black (upper lashline), La Bella Donna Eye Liner in Black (waterlines), L’Oreal Double Extend Mascara in Black, MAC Matte2 Eye Shadow in Blanc Type (matte brow highlight)

Lips: Ellis Faas Creamy Lips in L108

Cheeks: Hard Candy Blush Crush in Honeymoon (cheek highlight), Smashbox Matte Eye Shadow in Smoke (to contour), Clarins Barocco Face Palette (peachy cheek colour)

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  • Gorgeous! Black never looks that good on me…
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    • Aww, sorry to hear that! Perhaps if you tried using a matte grey, instead? (I'm imagining it now; you would look *amazing* with a matte grey smokey eye & a shimmery hilight in the center – perhaps ivory or an off-white with pink reflects.)

      But then again, you always look amazing, regardless; it's a moot point ;)

  • i adore the soft shimmer of it! very beautiful girly
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  • This is so gorgeous!!! A lovely sophisticated smokey eye!
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  • you. are. so. pretty! this look is so gorgeous on you!
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  • D.Sadie

    WOW! I love how perfect your makeup looks. Your eyebrows look perfect too!

    • Aww, thank you! I have an on-again-off-again relationship with my brows, but we're in alright form for the time being :P

  • Jamilla

    I love this look! And you're the only blogger I know with bigger cheekbones than me – fabulous!!
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    • Haha, thanks! I'm convinced that I don't actually have epic cheekbones (contrary to popular belief); it's just that the ones I do have happen to photograph well :P

  • I love this look Rae! I shall have to try it since we have er… similar sort of eyelids :D
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    • Haha, I hope you like it on yourself, as well! I love finding bloggers with similar lids to my own; there are so many different kinds of monolids that it's a bit of a jungle out there :P

  • Haley

    Rae, you look especially radiant in these photos!

    • Aww, thanks Haley! It's the curtain – when there's a lot of sun, it gives a really glowy effect to whatever you photograph in the "cone of light" ;)

  • You look so beautiful! Love it. =]
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  • I love everything about this look. So impressed how wearable this black smokey eye is. That gold shade is phenomenal for catching the light. :)

    Oh, and your lid space is soooo clean! Is it tweezed or 'shopped? Either way, hats off for the job well done. ;)
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    • Thanks, Arianne! : )

      Bit of both – I try to tweeze away everything possible before doing a look, but some of it's back-end work, too ;)

  • I likey! I may steal this look from you… :D
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  • lyn

    I just need to echo what everyone has said here… this is a really gorgeous look! I may try it out someday soon.
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    • Thanks, Lyn! :) Send me the link if you try it & post it; I'd love to see the results!

  • I like the center highlight. You look very coquette in that middle picture!
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  • Ciambella

    Beautiful, woman! VERY Rae-Chanel! ………Raenel?

    • Lol! I shall call her 'Raenel,' and she shall be mine, and she shall be my Raenel.

      And alright, so I may have just repurposed a quote from Finding Nemo, but shhh! Finding Nemo is always appropriate.

  • makeupmorsels

    Gorgeous FOTD! And I don't blame you at all for being distracted by Gold Mode, the color looks like it's quite hard to ignore :)
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    • Thanks!

      I picked up a pigment stack of MAC neutrals in a blogsale recently, and all I can say is D: Still waiting for *perfect* sunlight to swatch them (though I might give up soon; we're having a weirdly cloudy August), but they're all stunning!!

  • I like this look a lot!
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  • SO PRETTY. Flawless blending and I love how the gold is in the centre. :)
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  • This is such a pretty look. I'm definitely trying this, thanks!
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  • Danielle

    This look is gorg! I am SO going to wear a look like this soon, it's undeniably beautiful!

    • Aww, I'm really glad you liked the look! Hope it works out well for ya ;)

  • LOVE LOVE LOVE this look! Thanks for sharing!! I'm going to try this for tomorrow!!

    • Np! Really glad that you like it – have fun trying it out :)

  • janice

    really love this look, especially the lip! any dupes for the ellis faas lip (i'd never even heard of this brand before reading your blog….where can you get it in canada?)

    • Really glad you like the look, Janice! I can't think of any dupes for the Ellis lipstick at the moment, but I'll try to get some product photos & swatches up next week in case you want to find something similar on your own :) Or, if you wanted this exact one, Ellis ships to Canada at a pretty reasonable rate iirc.

      Hope that helps!

      • janice

        thanks rae :) i always seem to be making you write up posts with my questions!

        • No worries! "Reader request" posts are usually things that I've planned on covering sometime between now & eventually anyways, so it's really just changing up the timeline more than anything else : )

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  • Alison

    This look is SO gorgeous on you, I just love it.

    I found you through temptalia and your makeup is so very much my style. I actually have a very similar look to you, amazingly, except I lean slightly warm in my skin tone! I want to give this a try and hope it works for me.

    • Aww, thank you, Alison! Definitely give this one a go; it's so easy to do – I just love it. Hope to get to know you in the comment threads over the next little while :)

      • Alison

        That would be lovely. :) I've been enjoying reading your blog. Its become one of my regular beauty-blog stops.

        I'm sorry I've been taking so long to reply back – I have CFS and have been particularly unwell lately, unfortunately.

        • Hey, don't worry about it :) I have RA and fibro, so I get it, more or less – there just aren't enough hours in the day to get everything done if you have to sleep for 12 of them, you know?

          • Alison

            Hey, fellow RA sufferer, here! (I'd high five you, but… :P) I was curious to see if you had a condition similar to mine – i was amazed how many quirks we had in common from reading your blog. Scent-sensitivity (Most perfumed products give me migraines), complaints about non-arthritis-friendly packaging (I developed arthritis at 19), obsession with sunblock, etc, etc, etc. That and a love for elegance. Not illness-related, but still worth a mention.

          • Ha! *Pretend high-five* :P

            Sorry to hear you were diagnosed with RA at a young age too, Alison! Will leave a longer reply to your other comment (on the gluten-free post) – talk to you there! ;)

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  • You have perfect skin. I love your contouring skills and eye look here =)