OK, straight up, by “easy winged eyeliner,” I mean easy in reference to being able to successfully draw the shape and angle you want, and not easy in terms of being able to do the whole thing in 30 seconds (it will probably take longer than that). This method here involves four steps, but they really are easy, and at the end of them you’ll have perfectly placed wings.
Now, we all know someone who can perfectly apply winged eyeliner in a single glorious swoop, but I’m totally not that girl. To get my winged liner the way I like it, I have to apply it in layers and steps.
It’s all about the layers. 😉
If you’ve ever struggled to draw your wings just right, or if you can only do it with an obscene amount of Herculean effort and concentration, this method of layering will help you place your lines and wings exactly where you want ’em. Pretty soon you’ll have winged liner like a BOSS!
What you’ll need…
- A black pencil eyeliner
- An angled eyeshadow brush
- A black powder eyeshadow
- A gel or liquid eyeliner
1. Line your upper lash line (you can also do your water line, but it’s optional)
I tightlined my eyes first, because I always tightline, but it’s completely optional. What we’re gonna do now is line our upper lash line, so grab a black pencil eyeliner with a sharp tip (or sharpen a dull one), and line the upper lash line on one of your eyes with it. The sharp tip just makes it easier to be precise than a dull or blunt tip does.
Try to keep your line as thin and as close to your lash line as possible. Don’t worry at this stage if your line isn’t as thick and voluminous as you’d like, or if the edge is a little wonky or jagged, because we’ll rectify that sitch in a second. Repeat on your other eye.
2. Smooth the edge of the line and start building the shape of your wing
To smooth the edge of the line and start building the shape of your wing, take a clean angled eyeshadow brush, and run it gently along the edge of the line you drew in step one (note: I do each step on each eye along the way to keep them symmetrical). Start at the inner corner and move out. When you get to the outer corner, drag the brush out a bit to create a faint outline of a wing using the remaining product on your brush.
To get both eyes symmetrical, it helps me to look straight into a mirror with both eyes open while I’m working.
If you find that your wings aren’t even, don’t panic! Use a Q-tip to tweak and adjust them.
As for the angle of your wings, it’s up to you, but I think it helps to visualize an invisible line that extends up and out from the outer corner of your lower lash line. Just follow the angle of your lower lash line up and out.
Totally optional and up to your own personal preference, though. I usually like to flatten my wings out a bit (so not as steep), because it appears to elongate the eye, and I like that effect. Play around a bit until you find an angle that works for you.
3. Thicken the line and wing
OK, so now it’s time to build up the shape of our line and wing even more, so let’s take our same angled brush (doesn’t matter if there’s leftover eyeliner on it), dip it into a pan of black powder eyeshadow, tap off the excess, and press the brush directly on top of the pencil eyeliner we applied on our upper lash line a moment ago. Drag it along the edge to smooth and thicken the line.
How thick you want your line is up to you, but the general idea is to have it go from being thicker at the outer corner of the eye to thinner at the inner corner. The tapering gives a little “lift” to the eye, but it’s totally up to you.
For most looks, I keep my lines fairly thin because I don’t have a lot of mobile lid space (which is the part of the upper lid the moves when you blink). When I do a very thick line, it ends up covering most of my lid, which then makes my eyes look smaller (not what I want).
But again, it’s just personal preference. I break that rule all the time, haha!
(Oh! — you may need to draw the line on one eye thinner or thicker than the other if your eyes aren’t symmetrical.)
4. Intensify the effect with a gel or liquid liner
For a soft winged liner look, you can stop here, but I want more drama for ya mama! 🙂 So let’s layer either a liquid liner or a potted gel eyeliner on top of the powder we just applied to deepen the look. If you want a shiny finish, go for liquid; if you want a matte finish, opt for gel.
Liquid liners usually come in a felt-tip pen. I like ones with flexible tips instead of rigid tips because they’re easier to drag along my skin.
If you decide to go with a gel liner, use your angled eyeshadow brush to apply it. Just wipe it off with a dry paper towel before dipping it into the pot. That way the brush head is (mostly) clean, and the bristles can pick up enough product and deposit it smoothly onto your skin.
5. Admire your handiwork!
Bravo! You’re done. Now spread your wings and fly. 🙂
Products I used
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,