How Do You Line Your Eyes?

Published in: Eyes, Just For Fun

Clarins Intense Black Crayon Khol

Wearing Clarins’ Crayon Khôl Eye Pencil in Intense Black ($25) on my lash and water lines, and contemplating eyeliner…

Applying eyeliner seems like one of those vastly personal things, ya know? Like fragrances, or buying skinny jeans. I have gal pals who always apply from the same direction, some who draw dots they then smudge, buddies who do both eyes at the same time… There are just so many different ways to go about it.

I was drawing my liner this morning with a new crush, Clarins’ splendidly smooth and dark Crayon Khôl Eye Pencil in Intense Black ($25) when I started thinking about all the different ways we line our eyes.


Clarins Intense Black Crayon Khol

Clarins Intense Black Crayon Khol, $30

Clarins Intense Black Crayon Khol

Clarins Intense Black Crayon Khol on my NC42 skin

I usually apply pencil liner one eye at a time following this approach…

  1. Bottom water line, working from the outside (the side closer to me ear) inward toward my nose
  2. Top water line, working from ear-side to nose
  3. Roots of my upper lashes (gotta get between the base of those hairs!)
  4. Upper lash line, again from ear to nose
  5. Lower lash line, yep, from ear to nose
  6. Then I’ll smudge when I want/feel I need to

It depends a little on the formula. I have a slightly different routine for liquid, gel and cream liners, but generally the steps are the same, except for how I handle my upper lash lines. I’ll line then from the opposite direction, working from the inside out (from nose side to ear). I don’t know why, but for some reason that’s just easier for me with liquid and gel liners.

How about you? How do you line your eyes? Do you have a time-tested technique, and what products have you been loving lately?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 22 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Ester says:

    I just want to say..your hair always looks so full and amazing.

  2. Denise S. says:

    I line from the inner corner out, no matter what formula I use for lining. I brought Nars Veneto black eyeliner based on a review and it does a great job of lasting on the waterline. But so far my favorite is Mac Graphblack technakhol liner for the waterline,last all day.I mostly use pen or gel liners for my top lid.Love glitter and shimmer liners but they have a tendency to irritate my eyes so I wear them well below the water line.

  3. I always start with the upper water line, and then I do my lower waterline. I always go in and out, in and out, in and out a couple times so that the color gets really intense and so that the product really gets between all those lashes. And then I smudge the lower line a bit.

  4. hanna says:

    I always do lower water line, first and from the inner part to the outer.
    hanna recently posted … Annoying things at School for a Freshman

  5. Zinnat says:

    I almost always wear a bold flicked liner, starting from the inner corner and running the liner across the lid into the flick. I’ve been wearing my liner like this (more or less) for the last 10 (ish) years so it doesn’t really take a lot of brain power anymore. I’m not loyal to one brand because I’m always in the mood to try what’s new, but I do love the Eyeko Skinny Liquid liner and Geisha Girl liner since they come in pen form and make things super easy.

  6. diana says:

    I like to start with the upper water line and smudge the lower water line a little. When lining, I always start from the inner corner out.
    diana recently posted … Top Fall 2013 Fashion Trends

  7. Regardless of the formula, I generally start with the middle of the upper lash line moving outward, I then go back in 2-3 times to do the inner half and work on the shape and thickness. After that I do my waterlines – starting from inner -> outer for lower and midway to outer for upper lash line.
    Ankita@corallista recently posted … 5 Runway Beauty Secrets!

  8. Katherine M says:

    I always pull my eyelashes and eyelid down with one finger when I line the upper lashline – this method has always worked to keep my skin taut and the line nice and even. I start at the inner corner for my right eye and the outer for my left when lining the upper lashline. I always line from the inner corners when lining my lower waterlines. I will go over the line again as needed – depending on the eyeliner, I only need one coat or several to make it defined.

  9. Karina says:

    I haven’t been able to find a khol pencil that lasts more than 2 hours on me :C. I have super oily lids and I really want to use this kind of look at the office (blaaack color in my upper and lower lash line pleaseee). Even if I put an eye shadow over, It smudges. Which one would you recommend? I’m desperate. xD

  10. Sushmita says:

    Hiya Karen!

    What are you wearing on your eyelids and cheek? Your cheeks look heavenly! hehe …as in a glow from the inside!

    Please post.

  11. Amy says:

    I tightline the upper lid or draw right along the top of the lashes and smudge. I usually try to angle the line upward slightly for a mini-eye lift. I never do the bottom lashes because it looks far too dramatic on me for everyday wear. And lining the bottom lashes doesn’t really flatter my eye shape. Makes them look droopy. So top lids it is! Simple and quick.

  12. Lucy says:

    This is really weird but I do the same as you both for pencils and gel and liquid! 🙂
    But for gel and liquid I start in the middle of my lash top line then to the ear. If I do a wing I do it afterwards.
    If I want to go right into the inner corner I do that right at the end . I’ve never managed to get the inner corner like a cat eye but I think that’s because of my eyeshape.

  13. Chelsea says:

    My routine can vary quite a bit! Lately it’s been Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Liner in Taupe along the top lid and a tiny bit dotted along the lower lashline. If I’m doing a darker liner (brown – I never do black, it’s just not right on me), I don’t do the bottom lashline – it just looks bad on me. If I do the inner rim (not very often), it’s always in a beige or ivory color to make me look a bit more wide-eyed. I can’t pull off the dark tightlined eyes.

    If I’m dressing up, I like to do a cat eye. I did cat eyes everyday for a long time when I worked at a cosmetics counter.

    I think my next eyeliner purchase will be the LE Chanel Khaki Bronze liner that goes with the LE Le Volume.

  14. Emma says:

    I usually start on the earside and work toward my nose on the top; I always seem to start with tightlining and then sometimes add more if I want a flick or something else!
    Emma recently posted … Speed Racer: How Quickly Can you Pull Together a Polished Nail Look?!

  15. swathi says:

    Your liptstick looks lovely..what are you wearing?

  16. Kim says:

    I always line from nose to ear. First my left, top lash line. Then my right top lash line. Then bottom left, then bottom right. Then a little smudge for all 4. Nothing stays on my water lines so I almost never line them. 🙂

  17. Stephanie says:

    I do my upper lashline from the outside in and then lower lashes from the outside to midway in and then smudge. I don’t bother to do my waterlines although I used to do tightlining, because the liner wants to then migrate onto my contact lenses regardless of what brand or type I use.

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