Hey all!

Earlier this year, fellow Caribeña, Afro-Latina and model Joan Smalls gave all kinds of face with this look for the Met Gala.

Joan Smalls, Met Gala 2015 via The Zoe Report

I was immediately smitten! Very dramatic and smokey for evening, but quite bright and definitely a great look for warm-weather evening. Joan is a brand ambassador for Estée Lauder, so her makeup artist used all Lauder products, but I used what I had available, mixing and matching when needed. If you love a look, you certainly don’t need to go out and buy the exact makeup to make it work. I also took the opportunity to try out the brand new, 4K/UHD compatible foundation from Make Up For Ever. I will be writing a separate review on this one. I also got some new shadows recently, including my first taste at the Makeup Geek eye shadows. I have been a fan of Marlena for years and I am really happy to see her being so successful with her line. She is very smart and knowledgeable and I love that she has a serious love for makeup and even though she has her own line, she is all about great makeup from any brand.

Anyways…here is what I came up with.

It is actually quite a simple look, just lots and lots of blending to get that swept look. All details of the products used are below and remember to substitute your own products when needed.

Let me know if you liked this look or had any questions!!


First I started with moisturized skin. I applied 1-2 drops of facial oil (personal blend, more on this at a later date!). I massaged this on moist skin to lock in the hydration.

I next applied foundation. I was not looking for a full coverage, flawless look, I just wanted to even out my skintone and because it is summer here in NYC and quite warm, I wanted that barely there makeup look. I used 1 pump of the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation in shade R530 (#180). I mixed it with Ardency Inn Americana Ultra Lightweight Skin Perfecting Primer (1 pump). I applied this to the skin with a duo-fibre brush (M.A.C. # 131) as it applies product in a light layer. I focused on my problem areas (i.e. hyperpigmentation).


I like to keep my brows quite full and just have them cleaned up. Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Dark Brown and Tinted Brown Gel in Espresso.

I used the UDPP on the lids as a base.

As the main colour on the lids, I mixed M.A.C. Hepcat (Disc) for the shimmer and MUFE #58 (Disc), a bright, pigmented fuchsia for the intensity of colour. I applied this using Sigma brush #E25, a blending brush and a light hand and extended the colour towards the tail of the eyebrow. Blend plenty, plenty.

In the crease, I used a mix of M.A.C. Wedge (a skintone matte colour) and Makeup Geek Cocoa Bear (a very warm medium reddish brown). Again using a blending brush to fade out the pink colour into the crease. Used M.A.C. #217 (which is the same as the Sigma E25).

To intensify the lower lashline, I applied a brilliant, bright shimmery red-purple from Makeup Geek called Masquerade Foiled Eyeshadow. I used it dry and it almost has a duochrome quality. I applied all along the lower lashline using a pointed brush like the M.A.C. #226.

For liner, I stuck with black, creamy pencils and lined the entire eye and then smudged it out. Givenchy Magic Kajal Eye Pencil and M.A.C. Feline Kohl Power eye pencil. I applied the Kajal with a thin, slanted brush.

Pür Minerals Big Look with Argan Oil Mascara and MUFE Smoky Extravagant Mascara


I don’t usually contour, but I love a highlight! All about the glow! I used a neutral blush on the cheeks using a fluffy brush and applied highlight with a fan brush. Blush: NARS Almería, Highlight: Bobbi Brown Nectar Shimmer Brick Compact (a peachy shimmery shade).


I kept the lips neutral, as the eyes are so intense. I used a pinky, neutral colour. Pick whatever nude you like.

Smashbox Always Sharp Lip Liner in Nude Dark (chocolate brown liner), NARS Tolede lipstick, Surratt Beauty Lip Lustre in Au Naturelle.

I loved doing this look! And I love the glow from the highlighter and feel of the foundation.

So lemme know what you think!!!

FTC Disclosure: Products were purchased by me Noire Tropical Beauty.  All opinions expressed are 100% honest and my own. I have not been compensated for this review.  For more information, please see my Disclosure Policy.