Gothic eye makeup

pale gothic skin

When most people think of gothic eye makeup they usually imagine thick, black lines around the eye, and panda-like dark eyeshadow. (Er, guilty…) Whilst this is a tried-and-true gothic look, your friendly neighbourhood goths will reveal swirls, glitter, and even – gasp! – colour. Many gothic girls and guys like to get creative with makeup, and ‘dramatic’ is the word to remember. PS – with this makeup, non-goths are also allowed!

Goths and eyeliner – a match made in purgatory

Because thick, dark eyeliner is a Gothic staple, let’s start there. Liquid eyeliner makes a smooth, sharp line, but it can be tricky to work with; a steady hand is a must. (If you really want to use it, remember practice makes perfect. No, really!) For a great smoky look, use a pencil liner dipped in matching eyeshadow. You can also use a dampened small brush and powder eyeshadow. Of course, you can never go wrong with black eyeliner, but purple, green, blue, even red and white can all look great lining the eyes.

If you draw thick lines around the entire eye, your eyes will look smaller (dark colors make things recede). If that’s the look you’re going for, then great. Otherwise, don’t join the lines in the corners, or line only the bottom half of your lower lid. You can also line the top and bottom lids in different colors. White eyeliner on the inside of your bottom lid will make your eyes look bigger and brighter, but be careful doing this if your eyes are sensitive.

Eyeliner tips:

Gothic eye makeup made easy: Eyeline designs

You can also extend the eyeliner past your lids to create designs. This can be as simple as a small “wing” extending past the upper lid (think retro) or a little swirl, or you can get fancy and draw curly-cues, sharp points, and other designs all around the eye. Liquid eyeliner looks better than pencil for these types of gothic eye makeup designs. If you have trouble drawing with liquid, try drawing with pencil first and then going over with liquid. Again, remember that black isn’t the only colour – you can draw, accent, or fill in your designs with any colour!

Complex gothic eye makeup designs

Use your imagination when creating complex designs. Avoid bat wings, spider webs, or anything right out of The Crow – these looks are seriously overdone and you will become a living cliche. Look to others for inspiration (search the Internet for ideas), but be careful not to directly copy others’ looks. The great thing about Gothic makeup is that you have the chance to be as creative and dramatic as you wish to be! Why copy someone else’s look when you have some great ideas of your own?

Colour is just another form of black. Turquoise and fuschia? Yes please, missus

When it comes to eyeshadow, again, don’t be afraid of colour. Yes, black is gothic, but so are all dark, jewel-toned colors, like emerald, plum, and dark red. Some goths like to use bright stripes of color, like bright yellow, turquoise, and fuschia. Layer colors to create coy cat eyes (purples and greens work great for this effect), use a variety of grays and silvers to make your eyes look vampy and smoky, or experiment with whatever dramatic looks you dream up. (For example, red eyeshadow with a black leopard-print effect in liquid eyeliner…)

Eye glitter

Many goths also love glitter. You can lightly sprinkle fine glitter over your gothic eye makeup for a slightly shimmery effect. You can also try dampening a Q-tip (cotton bud), then dip it directly in glitter and apply to your eye. This looks great over eyeshadow. Be careful when applying glitter near your eyes – glitter in the eyes is no fun. Keep your eye shut while applying the glitter to that eye. (Do I have to tell you not to try and apply make-up with BOTH eyes shut? No, I didn’t think so.)

Black and coloured mascara

Don’t forget the mascara! This is another area of gothic eye makeup where you can experiment with colour. You can use coloured mascara over all of your lashes, or try applying black mascara to all of your lashes, then brush a bright color over the tips only. Even if you decide on black mascara only, mascara will make your lashes look longer and more luscious, which is great for a vampy Gothic look.