Party Eyes

Make your eyes extra-special with these tips from celebrity makeup artist Katelyn Simkins.

Authored by Martha Brinkman

Photo by Rebecca Grant; Model, Sydney Beiber, Wilhelmina Denver; Hair by Ansley Bird; Makeup by Katelyn Simkins

Photo by Rebecca GrantYou’re invited to a holiday gala and you’ve picked out the perfect outfit, but now you’re searching for makeup inspiration. We turned to Denver-based celebrity makeup artist Katelyn Simkins for trends, tips, and takeaways for this season’s parties. Her first commandment: “Party eyes should be fun and extra-special.”

Bold is best

“The biggest trend that I’m seeing with eye makeup is inspired by the HBO television show Euphoria,” Simkins says. “I think that a lot of people like the idea of doing something unique. I’m seeing a lot more play with color, glitter, and shape.” Simkins proposes using a graphic liner or even a colored mascara to create the look. But, that’s not all: Monochrome is the keyword, she says, so choose one dominant color to stand out and look striking.

Balance the look

If you’re going for bold party eyes, Simkins advises balancing the rest of your makeup. When you do a creative eye, lessen the amount of makeup you use for your lips or face. Go more minimal and selective. For example, keep your glamorous party eyes, but play around with no foundation, contour, or lip color for a look she describes as “edgy” and on trend.

Know your audience

Many invitations specify appropriate attire, and Simkins suggests using this as your guide. For example, for a release party for the new Quinton Tarantino movie, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, she noticed “a ‘60s theme to the whole thing,” and styled her eyes accordingly, with a “Twiggy-meets-Edie Sedgwick black line” in the crease of her eye.

Less to more

For the perfect party eye look, Simkins advises using less at first and adding more if needed. It’s pretty much impossible to remove the one layer too many we’ve put on without taking everything else off, right?

Just express yourself

Above all, Simkins declares that makeup should be about expressing your individuality, not covering yourself up. She says, “Makeup should be about gilding the lily where we already feel confident and beautiful.” When you’re deciding how to style your eyes for an event, just remember to do what makes you feel your best. Emulate Miss Fame of RuPaul’s Drag Race, who Simkins says “goes by the beat of her own drum.” Whether your look is minimal, glamorous, classic, or bold, you can create a party eye that fits your style…and you should!

Katelyn Simkins
Makeup artist