One of my favorite tricks to instantly take my day look to night is to do a smoky eye. The dark eyeshadow adds depth and drama to your eyes, but many people are wary to give it a try. For those of you who are a little color shy – here’s a guide to help you master the smoky eye. Perfect for New Year’s Eve.

Remember, it’s makeup. No commitment required.

Step 1. Apply a light colored, shimmery eye shadow all over your your lid, up to and under your brows.  To look even more “awake” add a little in the inner corners of your eyes.

Step 2. If this is your first smokey eye, you’ll be happy to know that you don’t have to use dark black shadow. In fact you can do this look with just about any tone. Just choose one that suits your eye color.  I love going with gray tones, but purples, browns and even greens also work. Choose a medium-toned shade in your color family of choice and brush over your lid.

Step 3. Take your darkest shade (this should be a color you could almost line your upper lashes with) and apply in the crease.

Step 4. Now, it’s time for liner. I prefer to use a waterproof option, so I know it will stay put all night.  Line the upper lids as close to the lash line as possible. Use short strokes and then blend with a brush to make a smooth line.  Next, line the inner rim of your lower lid. First, dry your lid with a cotton swab, then apply the liner. It might make your eyes water the first couple of times you try and it will take a bit of getting used to but it makes a big impact so stick with it.

Step 5.  Add mascara. For maximum effect, use black mascara (my current faves include CoverGirl LashBlast and DiorShow Iconic mascaras) and curl your lashes before applying. Two coats please.

Also, smoky eyes take the focus away from dark circles. So whether you’ve had a long day at the office or your newborn kept you up all night, this makeup trick will hide hours of sleep deprivation.

If you still need more guidance, Smashbox has a great eyeshadow trio that includes step-by-step instructions on how to apply each shade. It’s makeup. It washes off. Have fun with it!