“I just can’t figure out eyeliner.” I hear it all the time from friends and followers. As a makeup beginner, eyeliner can definitely be daunting. There are so many options, and once you choose one there’s still the task of how to actually use it. But once you add it into your regular makeup routine, there’s no looking back! Eyeliner really helps add definition and style to your look, and is easier to master than you may think.
Keep reading to discover the different types of eyeliners you can find (plus my recommendations), and a quick tutorial to help you learn the popular winged eyeliner look.
Types of Eyeliner
I prefer liquid eyeliner because I love how it allows you to create very precise, crisp lines. Liquid liner can be found with two common types of applicators.
Felt tip liners are a good place to start for beginners, as they tend to have more forgiveness for shaky hands. You can get a bold, thick line or use the tip for detailing. The downside to felt tips is that they start to fray after regular use, which diminishes the precision during application. You also have to find the right flexibility in a felt tip– too much bend can lessen your control, while too stiff of a felt tip can tug and skip on the skin. One of the only liners with a felt tip that I like to use is the Wet n Wild Megaliner.
Brush tip liners are for moderate to advanced liquid eyeliner users, but are my favorite to use. I find brush tips to glide across the skin more easily than a felt tip, but they will also pick up every small movement so you need a steady hand for a smooth line. My all time favorite liquid eyeliner with a brush tip: NYX Liquid Liner.
Pencil style liners are another good option for beginners, though are a bit limiting. A very common use for pencil or crayon liners is to create a smokey effect by smudging it on your lash line. You can also use a waterproof pencil or crayon to tightline your waterline. My favorite long lasting crayon liner is the Covergirl Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner. It’s twist-up, so you don’t have to worry about sharpening it.
Gel liners are usually long-wearing and dramatic. You’ll need a liner brush to apply them. They are typically a thick, creamy consistency, and the most versatile as they can help you achieve pretty much any look. One problem I come across with many gel liners is that they dry out before I can finish them. My current favorite is the AOA Buttercream Gel Liner & Shadow.
How to do Winged Eyeliner for Beginners
Winged liner is a signature look of mine, and one of the makeup techniques I get asked about most. Here’s an easy guide on how to do winged eyeliner for beginners.
As an optional step, I start out by tightlining my waterline for a neater appearance.
- Starting slightly inward from the tear duct, create a line moving toward your outer corner. Leave the outermost part of the lash line bare.
- Next, create your wing starting from the outer corner of your eye, gliding upwards at an angle. The most flattering winged liner for your eye shape will follow the natural direction of your lower lash line.
- From slightly below the point of your wing, swoop the liner back down to the first line you created.
- Fill in the empty space.
If you can’t seem to steady your hand, working in small strokes can help you master winged liner. As always, practice makes perfect.