When we think of makeup, we most often think of eye makeup. Perhaps it’s because it’s the most eye-catching, or maybe it’s because it’s the most masterful. Applied right, it can be transformative, but if you get it wrong, it can have the opposite effect. We’ve all had to learn how to do eye makeup at some point in your lives, so there’s no reason to feel inadequate if you haven’t mastered it yet. It’s an art form in more ways than one, so you need to practice, practice and off course practice! Here are some tips on how to tackle some of the staples of eye makeup.
1. The Winged Eyeliner
What is it about winged liner that is so challenging? Well, a number of things, including a texture that’s hard to control and getting the wings even. However, with a couple of smart tips, and lots of practice, anyone can become proficient in cat-eye drawing!
- Try a gel or a pen – Traditional liquid liner can be hard to use for beginners, because the liquid formula can have a mind of its own. A gel liner with an angled brush will give you much more control because the formula is more malleable, so you’re shaping it the way you want, not the other way around. A liquid liner pen or marker is similarly easy to control and you never run into the issue of dispensing too much product.
- Follow your lower lash line – It’s going to take years of practice until you can free-hand your wings and get them even and at a flattering angle. Until then, fortunately, there’s a shortcut you can take. Look at your lower lash line and follow its curvature. Imagine you’re extending it further, where it would naturally go and keep drawing an ascending line. Then, line your upper lash line and connect it to the wing. Voila!
- Create sharp angles with tape – Cat eye connoisseurs talk about wings so sharp they could kill a man. Now, that can be difficult to draw, but not if you cheat and use some tape. Make sure to stick it to the back of your hand, first, to remove some of the stickiness, then simply apply your pieces of tape at an angle, following your lower lash line, as I mentioned earlier. Now, simply remove the tape and you’re left with even, razor sharp wings.
2. The Cut Crease
While cut creases can be tricky even for makeup artists, anyone can learn how to do them, with a bit of help and some clear instructions. The effect is definitely worth the effort.
- Base – The first thing you need to is set down a base for your look. This means eye primer or a cream eyeshadow, as well as whatever eyeshadow you are planning to use on your lid. Remember that everything needs to be crisp and perfect, so a wash of colour is best. Attempting colour combinations and complicated looks will take away from the dramatic cut crease.
- Location, location, location – Placement is one of the most important aspects of this makeup look. You want it to be high enough to be visible, but not so high, that it touches your eyebrow or looks awkward. If you don’t have a lot of lid space, the trick is to feel your eyebrow bone with your fingers and start drawing directly underneath it. If you were blessed with a high brow bone and plenty of lid space, then you can afford to draw it a bit lower, a bit higher than your actual crease.
- Blend thoroughly – Once you have your line drawn where you want it, it’s time to blend it until it doesn’t look harsh anymore. That works for editorial looks, but not in real life. So, take a shading brush and start going over the line back and forth, with windshield wiper motions. Don’t use a fluffy blending brush, because you will end up blending it too far and ruin the effect.
3. The Halo Eye
The halo eyeshadow look is very popular right now, and it seems like every makeup artist and YouTuber is picking it up. It looks complicated, but in reality, it’s pretty easy to replicate.
- Start with the wash of colour – Because we’re working in layers, you need to start with the base colour. Apply a wash of the colour you want to be on most of your lid. You don’t need to insist with the pigment, you’re going to come back and intensify this later.
- Work from light to dark – Now you can start working on your inner and outer corners, which should both be the same colour, and significantly darker than your base colour. You want to work from lighter colours to darker ones, because it’s much more difficult to blend out purple, in order to layer a copper over it.
- Don’t use very light or very dark colours in the inner corners – While the inner and outer corners do need to be darker than the main lid colour, or at least different enough to achieve a contrast, a very light colour, like yellow, or a dark one, like black, will be too stark and unflattering.
4. The Fluttery Lashes
Mascara seems self-explanatory, which is why it’s usually the first makeup item beginners try their hand at. But there’s a difference between fluttery lashes and spider legs, so let’s look at how you can achieve the former.
- Choose a thinner formula – We’re all after length and volume, but mascaras that promise both of these effects typically have thick formulas that tend to produce clumps. Volumising mascaras are notorious for this. Instead, opt for a mascara that offers a more natural effect and that can be built-up with no worries.
- Wipe the excess product off the wand – Sometimes, the only thing that stands in between you and beautiful lashes is the excess product you pick up on the mascara wand. Take the time to wipe some off with a tissue and then brush through your lashes, as usual. The difference this makes will wow you.
- Use a lash comb – No matter how hard we try, clumpy lashes will happen at some point. That doesn’t mean all is lost, we can undo this. All you need to do is take a lash comb, or even a clean mascara wand and comb it through your lashes, making sure to wiggle it at the roots to separate them and stop them from sticking together in an unflattering way. Crisis averted!
5. The Faux Eyelashes
The bane of every woman’s existence, fake eyelash application is one task that requires maximum concentration, skill, and a bit of wizardry. But not if you can find a way around it! There are always things you can try to make your experience more enjoyable.
- Cut the strips – Lashes usually come in strips, and we are to logically assume that’s how we’re meant to apply them. But no one says you can’t fragment them to make application easier! We suggest cutting them into 2 or 3 pieces and applying them next to each other; that way, you don’t need to worry about the strip sticking to one corner, but coming undone at another one.
- Apply individuals – Similar to my previous point, individuals are just easier, all around. You can apply as many as you want, so you control the final effect, and you only have one dot of glue to worry about sticking, as opposed to an entire strip you need to manage and stick at once.
- Use a tool – I can’t tell you what a difference an application tool makes, or even a pair of tweezers. Your placement and application will become so much more precise and your vision will no longer be obstructed by the fingers that get in the way.