Yara Shahidi Wears a Fresh Spin on the Smoky Eye at MTV VMAs

Yara Shahidi attends the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards - Beauty-H 2017
Steve Granitz/WireImage

Consider us green with envy.

As Emily Cheng puts it, "Yara [Shahidi] is a makeup artist's dream." And nowhere was that more apparent than at the VMAs on Sunday night, when the Black-ish star hit the red carpet in a gold-toned Zimmerman gown that informed her smoky green eye, envisioned by Cheng.

"The incredibly beautiful color of her dress definitely had a huge part in planning her makeup look," says Cheng, who first used a green liner on Shahidi earlier this year for an editorial shoot, and decided to revisit the stunning effect for the red carpet.

To create Shahidi's look, Cheng turned to the Chanel Le Crayon Yeux Precision Eye Definer in Khaki Dore to not only outline the shape but also to cover the lids and smudge into the lower lashes. Next, she dabbed the top left green shade from Chanel Les 4 Ombres Multi-EffectQuadra Eyeshadow in Tisse d'Automne onto the liner, then filled in outer corners using a darker green shade, found in the bottom right of the makeup quadrant.

To coax out the golden flecks in the shades, Cheng layered Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Powder Eyeshadow in Poudre d'Or on the center of the eyelid and the inner corner for highlight. "I pressed the eyeshadows over top to ensure that the green khaki really stood out," she says. "As always, clean up shadow fall-out at the end."

For the final flourishes, Cheng worked on the lashline with smudges of Calligraphie de Chanel Longwear Intense Cream before defining Shahidi's lashes with Chanel Le Volume De Chanel Waterproof Mascara in Noir.

"When she finally came out in her dress and I saw the color of her eyeshadow literally reflect off of it, I was squealing with joy," says Cheng.