It's admittedly difficult to know where to take such a rich archetype as Scorpio without oversimplifying things or taking a clichéd stereotypical view of this particular sign. After all, Scorpio is a sign well known for it's attributes of mystery and intense emotion with natives stereotyped as lusty but dangerous femme fatales and power-hungry tyrants alike. All of these aspects are true of the Scorpio archetype but I prefer to think of this sign as a deeply secretive and loyal archetype-- the true embodiment of the "I'm not bad... I'm just drawn that way." line from Jessica Rabbit in Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
It is unsurprising that the sensual aspects of Scorpio are often played up in media; after all, it is far easier to cover the sensuality of this sign than to dig deeper into the core aspects of the sign's ruler, Pluto (N.B. Pluto is the modern ruler of Scorpio with Mars as the ancient ruler). Aptly named 'Pluto' after the Roman god of the underworld, this planetary ruler bestows the other half of the Scorpio archetype which is all about death, birth, and transformation.
The famous Scorpio magnetism is focused on the eyes and the sultry gaze. Whether the intense gaze is framed in a bold and striking eye look or a very natural look, it is easy to incorporate this intense and moody energy with a smokey eye ranging in tone from nude to deep. Like any true film noir Betty or harem enchantress, a smokey eye is key to creating smoldering intensity with the eyes. I recommend sticking to neutral shades in satin or matte finishes to focus the look on the contours of the smokey eye. A few of my top picks for eyeshadow palettes with all of the go-to smokey eye shades are listed below (click on image for product information).
As with any look focusing on the eyes and potential for product fallout, apply the eye makeup first and then move on to prep skin, cheeks, and lips. Pro tip: after applying shadow, liner (if desired), and mascara/lashes, clean up the shape of the smokey eye with a concealer brush and any concealer of your choice. I prefer to use a Real Techniques Pointed Foundation brush with MAC Pro Longwear Concealer.
A smokey eye is beautifully finished with liner (shown below in a liquid liner) and false lashes. For this look the denser and more seductive the lashes, the better. One alternative to consider is a playful take on the sign by using false lashes that literally resemble a scorpion. Stingers up!
The conventional wisdom about makeup is that all other features should be muted save for the feature of the face being emphasized. This can be done using texture, tone, and basic color theory. Traditionally, a smokey eye is paired with a nude lip to keep the focus on the eyes but also to maintain balance with the overall look. However, experimentation is always fun so I encourage a full-on dark lip to complete a smokey eye, if the mood fits. A few key products meeting the femme fatale criteria are listed below.
Finally, here are a few looks that incorporate the aforementioned elements to create a sultry, come-hither look worthy of the Scorpio archetype.