My eyes are small and fairly hooded (likely to become moreso as I age), which gives me limited eyelid space to work with when I apply eyeshadow. In most of my blog photos, I have to tilt my head back a little and raise my eyebrow so that my eyeliner, or whatever I'm featuring, is fully visible. My usual eyeshadow technique is to use just 1-3 shades layered horizontally. That means with three shades I will have one on my mobile lid, one across the crease and in the outer corner, and one on my browbone. There's not a lot of room for blending designs that are more complex than that.
With my eye shape and size, one of the things I struggle with is using bright or bold eyeshadow colors. It's easy to overwhelm my eyes if I use vibrant colors all over my eyelids, and the usual "accent" suggestions tend not to work out the way I want. For instance, lining below my eye with a bold color closes it up and makes it look smaller, along with still overpowering everything else. If I put colors in the crease, they get swallowed up and are only visible if I blink. I can use a bright color as a liner on my top lid, and I do that sometimes, but I'd rather just use a bright eyeliner than to relegate my bright eyeshadows to eyeliner duty.
Recently I've found a way to add a colorful accent to my eyes that is neither invisible nor overwhelming. I apply the bright shade to the inner corner of my mobile lid and blend it about 1/4 to 1/3 of the way toward the middle of my eyelid. I don't know if I've ever seen this technique in an eyeshadow tutorial, though I have seen inner corner accents that are blended both above and below the corner. I really enjoy the subtle effect of just applying the color to part of my upper lid. Depending on the shape of your eye, this may or may not create a look that you like. I know that some people are hesitant to put deeper shades near the inner corners of their eyes, because it can make your eyes look closer together, but that isn't an issue for me. My eyes aren't particularly wide-spaced, but they are rather deep-set, so there is already a natural shadow in that area. If you prefer, you could use the color above the outer corner of your eye instead, but there it tends to hide more in my crease.
For the look in this post, I did my eyeshadow just as I normally would (described above) and then added the teal accent after the other shades. I used this old MUA palette called Dusk Til Dawn (swatched here, expensive from Amazon here, affordable in the UK here), and since it's all shimmers, it's admittedly a little much.
I'm trying to decide whether or not I want to keep this palette (which is why I used it exclusively today). It performs well, and the teal is really beautiful, but the other shades aren't very unique in my hoard. I might try to depot just the teal, but I'm a little nervous that I will destroy it, since the palette is constructed pretty securely.
Does anyone else do bright inner-corner accents? If not, what else do you do with your boldest eyeshadows? You should in no way try to convince me to buy the Urban Decay Electric Palette. Ahem.
(I know we're all sick of the phrase "pop of color," but then you all immediately know what I'm talking about when I use it, so . . . . )