I may have just committed a click bait crime -- not that my tutorial (if you can call it that) isn't lazy, but I don't know that it is technically a smoky eye. That said, it looks like one and wears like one so we'll call it that.
First up, you'll need the most versatile eye shadow in the world: A cool, matte, mid-tone brown. Every single brand in the world carries one of these, but I've been reaching for Le Metier de Beaute Tamarack. It can simultaneously be applied as a sheer wash all over the lid or built up to a rich, chocolate line. You'll know you have your holy grail neutral shadow when it can act eye contour, eye colour, liner and brow product.
For a classic smoky eye, grab a large, fluffy brush (pictured here: Paula Dorf Sheer Crease) and pick up a little colour. To make sure everything stays even, I like to work the product into the bristles by blending out the colour on the back of my hand.
Sweep the product all over your lid, working into the socket and concentrating the colour on the outer third of your eye. Since my eyes are typically Asian, I do this with my eyes open and build up to the intensity I like -- it's different every day. Next, use your pinky to tap more colour onto the outer corners of your eyes, smudging a little underneath on the lower lash line to give an especially hazy look.
For more drama (and my less lazy peeps), the possibilities are endless. Layer a paint pot underneath for ultra-rich pigment, pop on a bright eyeliner, or even just playing with the shape of the eye shadow can have a huge impact.
That said, I recently broke my right arm. After an unfortunate mascara vs. eye incident, I've decided my left hand is not skilled enough to wield an instrument more complicated than a fluffy blending brush.