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Every makeup lover knows the struggle: you want to apply a crisp, fashionable cat eye using your liquid eyeliner. You do one eye and it looks acceptable. You attempt the other and it's a disaster.
They don't match, one is way thicker than the other, or one is angled totally differently. You have to remove one of them, over and over again, trying to get them to match. It's a huge mess and super frustrating!
Does this sound familiar to you? Do you feel like you always mess up when you try to apply liquid eyeliner? Keep reading to learn how to apply liquid eyeliner like a pro, and cut down on the mess, your annoyance, and the time your makeup takes!
The most important part of applying professional-looking eyeliner is using the right kind! You may think you're bad at applying it, but the problem may just be the type you're using.
Liquid eyeliners come in pens with different types of tips. Look for a fine tip that'll give you a sharp, crisp edge.
This liquid eyeliner by the Balm is a great example. Its felt tip is fine and tapered. It promised not to smudge, so you don't have to worry about a mess happening on your eyes throughout the day.
Look for waterproof, smudge-proof, flake-proof products. Most people's eyelids get oily during the day, so don't underestimate the importance of your liquid eyeliner being waterproof.
Some liquid eyeliners are too watery, so they run after you put them on. Some are too dry, so you can't get the shape or depth you want. Don't hesitate to experiment with different liners to find the ones that work perfectly for you!
Have you ever seen those tutorials or pictures of people using tape to get perfectly-shaped liner? This is by no means necessary, but this technique can make all the difference for you if you're learning!
Take a small piece of face tape (or normal tape, just be careful when removing it!) and place it at your desired angle alongside your eye. Do the same with another piece of tape by your other eye.
This technique is valuable because you can position and re-position the tape as many times as necessary to make them match before you start applying liner.
That way you know your lines and wings will be even. And you avoid the usual mess!
This technique doesn't negate the purpose of the other tips in this article, though. Face tape--when used properly--just helps you get even, matching wings when you're shaky doing it freehand. You'll still need the other tips to get the most out of your liner application!
Do you have hooded or Asian eyes? What about uneven eyelids? If so, your liner problem might be that you're applying it with your eye closed or partially closed.
Keep your eye fully open when applying your liquid liner. Look straight ahead into the mirror after each swipe so you can see exactly what it'll look like when you're looking straight at people.
Oftentimes, you'll apply your liner with your eye closed and the shape looks perfect. But all of our eyelids fold and crease differently.
You must take your individual folds into account. Otherwise, when you open your eyes, your wing will be all over the place.
Don't believe us? Apply liquid eyeliner to both your eyes, one at a time. Do so with the eye closed.
Then take a step back and look straight ahead into your mirror with your eyes fully open. You'll be surprised how wonky they look!
Don't know your eye shape? Check out this article that will teach you how to know if you have hooded eyes. Knowing and understanding your eye shape is essential to doing your makeup beautifully!
If you look up into your mirror during application and stand super close the whole time, the liner usually ends up uneven or much more dramatic than you wanted. Use a desk mirror for your convenience and look down into it as you draw your line. This will help you see your shape more accurately.
As you apply, keep stepping back from the mirror to see your work from a normal distance. If you do everything up close, your view is distorted because your one line is all you're looking at.
If you don't keep stepping back, you'll step back when you're done and find that your wings are totally different from each other. Or that they individually look wider than, thinner than, or a different shape than you were going for.
The best possible advice for mess-free, professional-looking liquid liner application is to continually stop to check your work. Don't rush, just pause and take a step back.
If you do make a mistake (which is inevitable sometimes, even as a pro!), a cotton bud with a little bit of makeup remover on it is your best friend. Place the cotton bud directly onto the flawed wing and twirl it in place.
Twirling it in place will help you avoid making an even bigger mess. You won't drag the liquid liner, spreading it around your eyes.
You can also use it to sweep beneath (or above) your line to even it out, drag it upwards a little bit, make it a bit more crisp, or slightly change the shape. The fineness of the cotton bud allows you to make slight corrections without taking everything off and starting over!
If you've never used an extra small or "precise" cotton bud, now is the time! They're even more fine and accurate than normal ones so they're perfect for makeup application and removal. Plus, there are many other uses for cotton buds/swabs so you'll never waste them.
If you tend to make a mess with your liquid eyeliner right now, don't worry! This doesn't have to be the case forever. You can learn how to apply liquid eyeliner like a seasoned, confident professional.
Check out our many other products that will help you apply your makeup beautifully, like this concealer.