Applying Makeup in Photoshop using Brushes

Thank you to Stephanie Gill of TinyTot Snapshot Photography for this fantastic tutorial on using brushes to apply digital make up in Photoshop.

Today’s brush tutorial will teach you different methods for digitally adding makeup and how to clone with different brushes.

Many of you left comments asking how to add eye shadow and use the eyelash brushes and I have to tell you that at first they are tricky…  I don’t know what’s harder actually putting fake eyelashes on in real life or photoshopping them in…  I think its a tie for me.


Just like real life, there are two different methods to adding lashes. You can add them individually or as a whole set. They also make brushes just for eye shadow. Personally I think these are unnecessary because they already have a set shape to them and it can be hard to match that to the shape of a persons eye. Its far easier and more realistic to use other brushes with a textured effect.

Make up Example

Step 1: I used skin brushes from to clone the stray hairs off her forehead. I set the opacity at 100% for the middle of her forehead. Once I got to her hairline I made the brush smaller and adjusted the opacity to 86%.

Step 2: Ran MCP Magic Skin Action and set the opacity at 73%.

Step 3: I chose to use the skin brushes to clone out stray hairs on the yellow background because they don’t have hard edges and a very natural effect. I keep the opacity at 100% and switched between brushes as I got closer to her head.

Step 4: I used the eyedropper tool on her eye shadow to get the correct shade. Then I used the brushes shown below that came with Photoshop as my brush. I kept the opacity at 30% and then dropped it to 15% for the corners of her eyes. Its best to use brushes without hard edges to get a realistic look.

Eyeshadow Brush Example

Step 5: For this example I used individual lash brushes from . I used the eyedropper tool on her natural lashes to get a correct match. I started off with the double lashes and added single ones in between. I kept the opacity at 100% for all the lashes. The tricky part about applying lashes it to get the angle correct. You need to open your brush presets and adjust the brush so they look as if they naturally grew in the correct direction. You will need to adjust/flip/and or rotate the brush as you move along the eye.


Step 6: I choose a circle brush with a hard edge and adjusted the size to match the other beads on her necklace. Then I cloned one of the beads and added it to the empty space on her necklace.
Below are 3 examples of different looks you can get with single lashes or a lash set.

Jodi Friedman, MCP Actions

Jodi Friedman is the founder of MCP Actions. She designs popular Photoshop actions and Lightroom presets that make editing faster, easier and more fun.

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  1. 2

    Kristen Soderquist says

    Wow, how cool is that!!! I will have to try it out. Crazy what you can do!!!! Love Photoshop!!!

  2. 4

    Heather Price........vanilla moon says

    WOW im going to try this,i could be very glamourous by the weekend with lashes to die for! lol


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