The Reverse Smoky Eye Is The Easiest Way To Switch Up A Classic

No wonder it’s going viral.


Whether it’s neutral or colorful, the reverse smoky eye is a modern twist on a classic makeup style. Unlike a traditional smoky eye, this version uses the lightest shade to highlight the crease and keeps the darker colors on the lid. To get you inspired, here are eight stunning takes perfect for the warmer months ahead.

Thinly Lined

Although cat eyes are usually dramatic and exaggerated, a thinly lined variation it can have that same “wow” effect when married with a reverse smoky eye. Using just the tip of a brush, draw a pencil thin line flicked outward before smudging the lower lash line with a soft brown shadow.

Highlighted Crease

To really flip things around, use a highlight shade to fill in the crease and a darker shadow to accentuate the brow bone drawing the focus to the upper lid. This bold look would make a statement on a fun girls’ night out.

Full Lashes

This sultry look is ideal for date night or special occasions. The key is to choose a nude color for both the lid and crease in order to let the top and bottom lash lines shine. Top it off with a swipe of your favorite mascara and a set of false lashes.

Negative Space

A bold swipe of color at the brow bone creates the illusion of negative space and makes this smoldering reverse smoky eye feel edgy and graphic. To get the full effect, keep lighter colors on the lid using the darkest shade just under the brow.

Pale Pink

This subtle, singe-shade eye look was made for those who prefer a minimalist approach to makeup. Simply sweep a pastel pink shadow from the inner corners to the middle of the lid and leave the outer corners bare.

Cut Crease

If your makeup mantra is more maximal, then you’ll love this dramatic style. With a skin-nude shadow in the crease and defining swipe of dark brown underneath the brow bone, the final look is anything but understated.


Iridescent shadows can deliver a smoky effect that feels illuminating and ethereal. To recreate, apply highlight shades in the inner crease and to define the lower lash line.


This full glam look uses the same shades as the classic smoky eye, but shifts the intensity of the smudged black shade on the lower lash line. To get the full smoky effect, use a pigmented shadow to lightly shape a wing.


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