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The Difference Between a Smokey Eye and a Cat Eye

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I’m not sure why I haven’t written a post about the differences between a smokey eye and a cat before now! It’s been a concern of mine for awhile now that most women don’t really understand the difference between these 2 looks.  Imagine asking your bridal makeup artist for a smokey eye and being disappointed because it’s not the look you really want.

First things first.   If you’re an avid YouTuber or Instagram follower of young uneducated makeup artists you need to understand that anything that’s well blended is a smokey eye look in their opinion. Wrong.  Eye makeup should always be well blended no matter what application you’re going for and ESPECIALLY when we’re talking about your wedding day makeup.  Blending is all part of the magic!  So what exactly is a smokey eye then?

Here is a perfect example of a soft smokey eye look that would be suitable for a bride on her wedding day. Notice how the colours all blend together into one sultry look with no sharp or harsh edges.  It looks perfectly ‘imperfect.’  It’s sexy, sultry and round is in shape.  This is what a smokey eye really is.  It’s unstructured, a little smudgy and sexy as all get out!  😛

difference between a smokey eye and cat eye makeup look

image from

Below is another example of a soft smokey eye that includes liner.  This would also look gorgeous on the right bride.  Notice how the liner is smudged softly, again with no harsh lines.  It’s sexy yet soft and pretty.

smokey eye compared to cat eye

image from Top Inspired

Here is an example of a cat eye makeup look.  Notice the feline cat eye shape?  Notice how the liner is the main focus?  This is why it’s called a cat eye.  The shadow is soft and well blended yet it’s not smudgy.  It’s defined.  It means business!  The liner is much more pronounced and the edges are more dramatic than with a smokey eye look.

cat eye vs smokey eyes for brides

Unknown artist

Here is another example of a cat eye makeup application.  Take note of the graduation from light to dark shadow with the darker shade looking more pronounced at the outter corner of the eyelid creating the cat eye feel.  The eye shape is elongated in such a way as you would see with a real cats eye.

cat eye for bridal makeup

image from Mon Cheri Bridals

Both of these applications are gorgeous and would be suitable and adaptable to most women.  I hope this information will help you out!  You now know what to ask for from your bridal makeup artist.

I’d love to know whether you’ll be choosing a smokey eye or a cat eye for your wedding day.   😀  Do share in the comments below.

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About vickimillar
Vicki Millar is a multiple award winning makeup artist and hair stylist based in Toronto, Canada.
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