Sometime over the age of 40, most of us will begin to experience the dreaded “hooded eyes”. This is where, as your skin loses it’s elasticity, the upper part of your eye, begins to droop forward onto the mobile part of your lid. Among other things, it makes your eyes look puffy all the time and makes doing eye makeup significantly challenging. You will notice that the way you’ve always done your eye makeup, no longer works for you and it can be incredibly frustrating.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes

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I want to talk about some tips and tricks to apply your eye makeup and give you some help in dealing with your hooded eyes.

Here is a “before” photo, sans make-up. (Stifle that scream, please.)  I wasn’t even trying to make this look extra bad y’all.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

You can see that I definitely have the dreaded hood. The skin from the upper part of my eye is beginning to droop onto my mobile lid.

And here is the “after” photo, with a natural-look makeup.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

My eyes still look mature- because they ARE mature – BUT the difference is quite amazing considering it’s all just using color to play with the light and make my eyes appear less hooded, brighter and generally just more AWAKE!

Makeup Tips for Hooded Eyes

** Scroll to the bottom of this post for links to the products I recommend for fixing our hooded eyes.**

The Overall Concept:

Place darker colors on the places you would like to hide or make less noticeable…..creating a shadow. Place lighter colors on the areas that you would like to “bring forward” or accentuate…….creating a highlight.

1. Choose a makeup palette

(I am using one, inexpensive and easy to find palette that I picked up at Walgreens. It’s by NYX and it’s called the “Dream Catcher Palette”. I’m showing you the brushes and the colors that I personally used today going from left to right.) You can get it HERE, but it’ this can be done with any color palette. I particularly like this palette from BH Cosmetics, it has all the mattes you could ever need and the colors are pigmented and creamy and it’s super cheap! This is my dream palette from Two Faced. Its called “Chocolate Bar” and it comes with 16 perfect shades.

2. Assemble a few brushes

I use these brushes and still highly recommend them if you are looking for a basic brush set that is inexpensive but still good quality. They do the job and there’s no fallout from them.  And they’re gorgeous! You can read my review of these brushes HERE.  These are a steal at only $17.50! –> Metal Rose – 11 Piece Brush Set With Cosmetic Bag

hooded eyes

3. Use an eyeshadow primer

This is a MUST if you are wearing anything at all on your lids. Now that the skin on our lids is looser, anything that touches them will end up settling into the crease which instantly screams “OLD”. The only one that works for me is “Shadow Insurance” by Too Faced. I have tried other, cheaper brands but they just haven’t worked for me. This holds everything on my lids right where I put it and it lasts all day. (and because you use so little, a tube lasts forever!) I highly recommend it. You can get it HERE.

4. Neutral shade first.

Find a flesh toned nuetral, matte shade and sweep from the lash line to the brow bone to give you an even, all over matte canvas to begin. This will even out any discolorations on the lids as well. I used the third one over from the top with the #9 oval shadow brush.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

**If you have very loose or crepe’ skin use your make up brush in a top to bottom motion using small strokes. This will prevent that “skipping” effect over loose skin. If the skin on your hooded eyes is quite loose, reach over with the other hand and lift the skin while applying shadow, to create a smooth lid.

5. Medium matte shade ABOVE crease= magic

A medium matte shade will be your new best friend. It can be any color, but it needs to be matte. This is the color that you will use to create an illusion, and cause your hood to appear receded. It takes some practice but looking straight into the mirror and using a crease brush, place this color above your ACTUAL crease and sweep along the natural shape of your eye. This will probably seem quite high on your eye the first time you do it. This color MUST be VISIBLE when you look straight into the mirror. If it isn’t you need to place it higher. Try doing one eye and look at the effect created, compared to the other eye. It is quite dramatic in the way that this shadow appears to push the hood back. I used the 4th color over from the top with the #4 pointed crease brush.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

5. Blend, blend, blend

Use a soft blending brush to blend and blur the line, using an upward motion. I used the #5 blending brush.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

6. Make it pop!

To further enhance the look, use a very light catching matte or shimmery shade on the center of the mobile part of your lid. You want this color to be light and bright to draw attention to the mobile lid and make it pop out more. You can use a brush, but I find that this color placement goes on best just using my finger. I used the first one on the top. Bring it all the way to the lash line, using up every single bit of precious mobile lid (the part of your eyelid that actually moves) space.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

7. Highlight the brow bone

Use a light highlighting shade and a very small, stiffer brush. Only place brow highlighter just below the arch of the brow in a thin line. It should give a nice effect when it catches the light, but don’t bring it down any further, to avoid highlighting a puffy, upper lid. This highlighter can also be placed on the inner corner of the eyes to make the eye appear wider and brighter. I used the first one on the bottom with the #10 brow/liner brush.

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

8. Final Touches

  •  Eyeliner is a personal preference. When using eyeliner on hooded eyes, keep it extremely tight. You don’t want to take up any of that precious lid space. Use an eyeliner with a tip that is very fine and gives you great control. Depending on your own eye shape, play with the looks that look the best on you. But for MOST mature eyes, when it comes to liner- less is more and placement is everything. Today I used Wet n’ Wild megaliner in Electric Purple which helps to accentuate my hazel eye color.
  • Curling your lashes and adding mascara will really make them pop. You can add the magnetic lashes or any other false lash to make them even more dramatic.
  • Do your brows. Your eyebrows are the frame for your face. There are many brow kits out there now. The one I’m using is from Ulta and is quite easy to use. Here is one that is almost exactly the same. You don’t have to do anything dramatic. Just pluck any major strays and use the brush to lightly fill in where your brows are sparse using a shade thats closest to your brow color. A brow shape that is straight across will accentuate your hooded eyes, whereas a lifted arch will automatically give the eye a more “lifted” appearance.

If you are bothered or frustrated with your hooded eyes, don’t be afraid to play and experiment with eye makeup. It takes some practice, but it’s fun and when you find the right shades and colors, you can actually love the way your eyes look! None of these are meant to be hard fast rules. Makeup is art, so do what you want and what makes YOU happy. But the above tips will work for anyone who is looking to help reduce the look of hooded eyes.

A quick list of what is needed to create my look:

  1. Lid Primer
  2. Makeup Brushes
  3. Too Faced Chocolate Bar Eyeshadow Palette
  4. Eyeliner
  5. Benefit Soft & Natural Brows Kit – 03 Medium
  6.  It Cosmetics Superhero Mascara

How to apply makeup to mature, hooded eyes.

Do your older eyes give you trouble? I’d love to hear any of your eye makeup tips that work for your more mature eyes.

Please consider following me on Instagram where I over-share on my IG “Stories” on a daily basis. 

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You may also like to read my post on how to wear Over the Knee Boots.

You can read more about makeup brushes here.

Until next time lovelies!

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