If you’ve never attempted a winged eyeliner before, it can seem pretty scary and overly ambitious. But it doesn’t have to be that way, getting that perfect liner is actually quite simple! So we thought we’d put together a guide featuring all the tips and tricks we’ve learned on how to do winged eyeliner - plus our favourite makeup products to achieve the look.
Cat eyes, feline flick, whatever you want to call it - a winged eyeliner can really transform and complete a makeup look. Which is why we love it so much! Depending on the products you end up using - and the colour choice too - a good winged eyeliner can elevate your makeup to next level glam or just add a nice pop to your everyday look.
So whether you’ve been watching from afar and now you’re looking to take a step into the world of winged eyeliner or maybe you just want some handy tips and tricks to elevate your own liner routine, keep reading to find out how to do winged eyeliner.
- Step 1: Draw a short line from the outer corner of your eye
- Step 2: Draw a thin line from your tear duct to the outer corner of your eye
- Step 3: Fill in the gaps between the lines
- Step 4: Use a waterproof eyeliner pencil to tight line your eyes
- Step 5: Apply mascara
- Winged eyeliner hacks & tips
How To Do Winged Eyeliner in 5 Steps
Everyone will have a slightly different way of doing a winged liner - especially the veterans and makeup artists who have their own tricks of the trade. However, consider the below an easy step by step guide for beginners. Ready to learn how to do winged eyeliner? Let’s go!
Using a liquid liner, draw a short line from the outer corner of your eye to where you want your liner to end. Draw the line as though you’re following the curve of your lower lash line.
Our favourite is the Liquid Define Liner by Eye of Horus, our go-to for cruelty-free eye makeup. It has a precision felt tip that minimises the chance of mistakes and delivers jet black pigment every time. Plus it’s smudge proof, long lasting and dries instantly.
Starting from the tear duct, draw a thin line along your upper lash line, keeping as close to the root of your eyelashes as possible, and end it at the outer edge of the lower line from Step 1. You should now have the basic outline of a cat eye liner.
Tip: pulling your eye gently from the corner will flatten the skin and help the liner go on smoothly.
Using the liquid liner, fill in the gaps between the lines. Ensure that there are no gaps showing.
Use a waterproof eyeliner pencil on your upper lash line and to tight line your eyes to ensure that the winged liner looks perfect.
The Eye of Horus Goddess Smokey Eye Pencil in Black is the perfect partner to the Liquid Define Liner. Made from organic moringa oil, beeswax, carnuba and candelilla wax, its creamy rich formula is easy to use and great for sensitive eyes too.
Apply a coat of black mascara to your upper lashes - and bottom lashes if you want - to finish the look.
We couldn’t go on without recommending the award-winning Eye of Horus Goddess Mascara that features the same naturally-derived ingredient list as their other products and creates perfectly volumised, long lashes.
6 tips & tricks on how to perfect a winged liner
1. Prime your eyes
We’re assuming that you’ll want to apply some fun eyeshadow with your winged liner so you’ll need a good eyelid primer. Just like your face, your eyes also need a good base to help prevent creasing and help your eye makeup last longer. We love the Napoleon Perdis Auto Pilot Long-Wear Eye Primer to help keep that winged liner going all day!
2. Tape hack
Understandably, practice makes perfect when it comes to doing a winged eyeliner. So if you need a physical guide the first few times, the internet swears by the tape hack.
Simply grab some scotch tape (stick it to the back of your hand first to lessen its adhesive power so it doesn’t completely rip your skin), and place it diagonally at the outer corner of your eye and angle it towards the end of your eyebrow. Then simply follow the above steps but now you can use the tap as a ruler to continue drawing your line along. Make sure the liner gets thinner as you sketch out the line. Then gently peel it off once you’re done.
3. Cotton bud hack
Similar to the tape hack, you can use a cotton bud or eyeliner brush to create a diagonal angle between the end of your eyebrow and the outer corner, then mark where you want your eyeliner to end. Hold the cotton bud on that angle as a stencil to keep your lines straight and even.
4. How to do a winged liner… for work
If you’re not usually a full glam kind of gal but still want to try an easy liner, a simple way of trying the look is a brushed out winged liner. Simply grab an eyeliner pencil or crayon (we’re loving Mellow Cosmetics Auto-Twist Mineral Eyeliner at the moment), draw a line along your lash line (like Step 2 above), then use a small blending brush to gently buff out the eyeliner into a winged shape.
Tip: replace the black with a brown eyeliner pencil - try the Goddess Pencil in Nubian Brown - for a subtle daytime, work-appropriate look.
5. Try different formulas
Alternatively, you can also use a gel liner like Mellow Cosmetics Gel Eyeliner to follow the steps above. Have a play around and decide which formula you like. We prefer a liquid liner but you might end up going with gel liners or an eyeliner pencil. It all comes down to personal preference!
6. If you need to fix your liner
When it comes to how to do winged eyeliner - practice really does make perfect. It’s taken years but this writer can do a winged liner with her eyes closed - but there are still those off days. So if you need to fix a mistake or just clean up your liner, a cotton bud and some micellar water is the perfect clean eye combo! Wet the bud with Bioderma Sensibio H2O, place the tip where you want to clean then twist! This is the best way to remove or clean up a liner without smudging it.
Now you know how to do winged eyeliner…
Get to it! If you haven’t tried it before, start with the subtle brushed out liner and go from there. But we think you should just dive right in and go for gold. You’ll be a winged eyeliner professional - and addict - in no time.
Shop eyeliner, eyeshadows and the rest of the makeup products to complete your next glam look on Oz Hair & Beauty with Afterpay or Zippay today.
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How to remove makeup
To remove makeup, we’re big fans of micellar water. Soak a cotton pad with some micellar water, gently wipe it over your face and watch all the makeup come off! Alternatively, you can opt for an oil based cleanser and do a double cleanse.
When it comes to doing easy smokey eye makeup, keep it simple. Stick to no more than 3 eyeshadows, don’t forget that blending is your friend and always remember to keep the darkest point on the lash line.
(Header image via @emmachenartistry)