Katy Perry's VMAs eye-color brightening trick is freaking brilliant

Dana Oliver
Beauty Director

Before Sunday night, we placed a few bets that Katy Perry‘s MTV Video Music Awards look would be one of the most outrageous. But the host left us shook (and a few dollars short) when she stepped out wearing a plum smokey eye that wasn’t as over the top like the makeup we’re used to seeing on the VMAs red carpet.

Katy’s makeup artist, Hung Vanngo, used a metallic mauve shadow to balance the pop singer’s heavy liner and false eyelashes. The purple hue and frosty highlighter atop her brow bone also made her eyes appear even brighter. Like a true expert, Vanngo followed rules of the color wheel by choosing an opposite shade (in this case, plum) to bring out the golden flecks in Katy’s gorgeous blue-green eyes.

Inspired to do a wearable version of Katy’s plum smokey eye at the VMAs, Yahoo Beauty tapped makeup artist Tedrick LaMar of the Butterfly Studio Salon to put his own spin on the look. Watch the video, follow along, and read below for more tips on how to copy Katy’s eye-brightening makeup.

Step-by-step instructions:

1. Using Urban Decay’s Vice palette, apply Freebird (metallic medium pink) as a base onto eyelids.

2. Intensify the crease with Rapture (mauve plum-purple), blending it out for a winged effect. Then use Jagged (shimmering bronze) on top to deepen.

3. Highlight the brow bone and center of lids with Echo Beach (luminous vanilla).

4. Once brows are brushed and trim to shape, fill in with a rich brow powder.

5. Outline the waterline (inner rims of eyelids) with a black pencil like Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil.

6. Draw on a thick winged liner using Urban Decay 24/7 Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner.

7. For an even more eye-opening effect, use Kiss Lash Couture Faux Mink Midnight false eyelashes. Pro tip: Trim lashes, starting from the outside, to custom fit strip to your eye shape.

8. Bind falsies to natural lashes with a few coats of Urban Decay Perversion Mascara.

9. Bring warmth to complexion by sweeping on a coral blush. Tedrick’s go-to: Tom Ford Soleil Eye and Cheek Palette.

10. Trace and fill in lips with NARS Precision Lip Liner in Vence (neutral cinnamon). Add Marc Jacobs Beauty Enamored Hi-Shine Gloss Lip Lacquer 316 in French Tickler on top.

Hair details: Hairstylist and makeup artist Brenna D blow-dried the crown area to smooth strands and create a swoop bangs. Next, she flattened slicked back the sides with Bumble and Bumble Sumowax to mimic the shape of Katy’s undercut. Brenna D then spritzed with Oribe Free Styler Working Hair Spray before gathering hair into a low bun and pinning into place. For added “texture,” she used her fingertips to rough up the front.

Watch more #CopyThat beauty tutorials from Yahoo Beauty:

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