How to apply eyeliner

How to apply eyeliner

Knowing how to apply eyeliner is a simple skill, once you know how. Our makeup tutorial will give you easy tips on how to apply eyeliner correctly. These simple eyeliner tips will give you goth eyes, emo eyes or simple liquid eyeliner eye makeup. Hooray!

Ok. So you’ve drawn a great thick line around your eyes, smacked on some gorgeous lip paint, and have spent hours making your skin look flawless. You look in the mirror before you leave and you look so amazing it’s ridiculous. Your eyes stare back at you, a smouldering sultry sexy tigress raring to go to the party.

You leave the house. You go to this party. You rave for an hour or two. Flirt with some guys, flicking your hair about and twizzling it between your fingers, thinking about how awesome you look, and how much they must want you. You step into the bathroom, go to the toilet, and are absent-mindedly washing your hands when you half glance into the mirror.

And then you freeze in shock. Your eyeliner is half gone, running down your face faster than Kelly Holmes on the track, and you think to yourself, “Why didn’t someone tell me? I must have looked like such an idiot.”

I’ve been there. This is my story. But today is the day it all changes.

We are going to make sure that eyeliner stays on if it kills us. And that’s a promise.

How to apply eyeliner – correctly

1) Well, firstly we have to make sure our skin is perfectly free of oil. It tends to collect on our eyelids so wiping these over first with a cotton pad is a good idea. Also sweeping skin coloured powder over them is usually a great help too, but not too much, you don’t want to look like you have dandruff on your eyelids.

KEY POINT- MAKE SURE YOUR FOUNDATION ISN’T OILY or you’re doomed to fail from the start. If it is oily, and you need it, then make sure it goes nowhere near your lids, just blend around. A good thing to use is an eye primer like Mary Kay, as it creates a base, which is made specially so your eyeliner stays on longer.

2) Try liquid eyeliner if you use kohl. You can get some pretty nice effects by using both in combination. For instance, put blue kohl underneath your eyes and then apply black liquid over the top, but don’t completely cover the blue. It should stay on for a good while, and look pretty!

KEY POINT – ALWAYS USE WATERPROOF eyeliner or it could get messy. It’s a good idea for most of your products to be waterproof. Figures.

3) The quality of your eyeliner makes a difference. Is it really worthy enough to be put on your pretty face? Good stuff like MAC is the way to go. Also add an eyeliner sealer. Fish around, there should be some good stuff on the web.

And to speak the obvious, DON’T rub your eyes, no matter how much that itch is frustrating you.


(And if you still have totally fudged eyes, you could always get it tattooed on…)


Place a mirror on a table in front of you. Sit down and rest your elbow on the table so your hand is nice and steady. Keep your eye half-open so that you can more easily follow the eye’s contours. Try getting your line as close to the lash line as possible by lifting your eyelid from under the arch of your eyebrow instead of tugging the skin off to the side, as is common practice. When you’re just starting out, don’t worry about doing the line all in one go. Draw three fine dashes, one on the inside, middle, and outside corner, and connect them.

For a retro look, keep the line very thin at the inside corner, and thicken it slightly as it curves outward. You can keep extend the line just slightly outside the outer corner and even wing it a bit for cat eyes and a bit of Brigitte Bardot sixties glamour.

Once you’re fully comfortable with liquid liner, you can do all sorts of creative twists on your eye makeup.

Draw on delicate Twiggy-esque bottom lashes, or add several swoops to the outside corner. Be careful when applying liquid eyeliner to the bottom eyelid, as some products can sting a bit if they creep accidentally into your eye.

Many times, a highly pigmented black shadow and moistened skinny pointy eyeliner brush (I love Benefit’s Get Bent brush) can fake the delicate lines almost as well. That takes a bit of practice, too, but the clean up seems to be easier if you’re a touch accident prone while learning.

If you’re really cackhanded at applying eyeliner but determined to keep trying, investigate eyeliner felt pens – they’re just like felt tip pens, but they’re eyeliner! These eyeliner felt pens give you a bit more control if you’ve got wonky eyes or shaky hands…