Thursday, March 28, 2013

Fix Your Face: How to experiment with winged liner without buying new eyeliner (with photos)

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
Some people like the way winged/cat-eye liner looks on them, and some people don't. Depending on your eye size and shape, and your general style, you may think it is the absolute shit, or you may think it is absolute shit. You don't know until you try.

I understand, however, that people who are not makeup hoarders like me might be loathe to shell out the extra cash for a gel/cream/liquid eyeliner, in case they decide they are never going to do it. There are cheap options, but you might have everything you need to figure out if this is the right look for you at home.

Here's what you need:

1. fairly soft/blendable eyeliner pencil OR dark eyeshadow
2. a small, flat, narrow brush

If you already have one of the first two, it might be worth just picking up the brush, since that's something you could use for eyeshadow or even lipstick if you end up not being into this eyeliner style. I used this brush ($1) for the liner pictured below. Just so long as you have a thin edge to work with.

I'll start with the method for using an eyebrow pencil, and then I'll talk about the eyeshadow version. In the photos below, I lined my eyes with dark eyeliner (this one in blackened teal, also used in this look). I wasn't too worried about doing it neatly - I just tried to stay as close as possible to the lash line while also making the line semi-thick. Then I took my brush and held it parallel to the lash line, or horizontally, so that the I would be using the thin edge. I lightly ran the brush along the upper edge of the eyeliner and winged it up at the corner of my eye. You can go over it a couple of times to make it neater, though  too many times and you'll start to get fading in the liner. You can always add more if necessary. It might take a few tried to get the hang of it, but it's not too tricky. You can also pull the outside corner of your eye out a bit with a finger from your free hang if you want to keep your lid more still while doing this. Here's a tutorial that might help if you are having a hard time getting the shape right. Once you get used to creating the right shape, you can do it with any tool or product the same way.

Here's how mine turned out:

If you feel like the look is a little bold for you at first, you can always apply eyeshadow over it to soften it. If you do the shadow first and then then liner, the liner will be more prominent. If you do the liner first and then the shadow, the liner will be softened.

Here's is how mine turned out with shadow over liner. Note that I did not apply my shadow directly over the liner. I tried to avoid it as much as possible to keep my line intact. Just having the slight overlap that is difficult to avoid is enough to soften everything a bit.

The eyeliner still wings out on the edge, but it's not so dramatic.
The other technique I suggested is to use a dark (especially black or dark brown) eyeshadow. In this version, you just wet your brush with water and pick up some shadow with the wet brush. You might want to go over it a few times in the pan to make sure you have good coverage on the brush, but if it starts to get powdery, you've got too much. Then draw your line with the brush that way. Start with a basic line next to your lash line, and then go over it to smooth the upper edge and create your wing. This method is basically the same as the above; you're just applying it all with your brush. You might need to re-wet the brush partway through.

Then once you get the hang of it, you can start collecting new eyeliners to play with, if you like, though really these tools will serve you just as well. Pretty fucking easy.

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