Try This Trick for Impeccable Eyeliner

Published in: Makeup Tips/How To

laura mercier angeled eye liner brush

My two secret weapons!

In the alternate Marvel makeup comic book universe (because this totally exists), my superhero power is the ability to apply flawless eye liner while I’m walking backwards, hanging upside down or jumping up and down on a trampoline.

(Can you imagine?! I’d be totally doing some weird-@ss YouTube makeup videos, haha!)


But in this universe here, my superhero power is on the opposite end of the eyeliner spectrum. Here I have the ability to mess up my liner almost EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

Seriously, why does the liner on my left eye always end up thicker than my right? And how do I manage to completely mess up perfectly decent liner at the last second? It’s an uncanny gift.

Because imperfectly executed eyeliner is something I experience often — like every day! — I’ve come to rely on a workaround when one line ends up thicker than the other. First, I dampen a thin pointed eyeliner brush with eye makeup remover. Then I run it along the edge of the liner to erase any errant bits, and if the errant liner still won’t lift off, I gently rub a cotton bud along the edge to remove whatever else needs to go.

This works for pencil, liquid and gel liner.

My favorite correcting brush is the one I’m holding here, Laura Mercier’s Angled Eye Liner Brush ($20), because it’s small, stiff and very precise. As for a good makeup remover, Bioderma Sensibio H2O ($12.95) is my current go-to. It doesn’t irritate my sensitive eyes and readily removes all kinds of liner, even long wearing.

And yes, sometimes I use this trick on lids that are already wearing eyeshadow. (Note: I really wanted to write, “I use this trick on lids that have already been eyeshadowed.” LOL! Eyeshadow as a verb… OK, never mind.)

After thinning out the line, I just go back in and touch up any areas of eyeshadow that need it. Most of the time I don’t think the fact that I’ve cleaned up a mistake is too noticeable.


Give it a try! Your liner will look even more purr-fect than your cat’s. πŸ™‚

He woke up like dis!

He woke up like dis!

Speaking of superheroes…


Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 30 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Jenny says:

    Lol! I have the SAME problem, but my left eye always has thicker liner than my right eye. ALWAYS. I try so hard, and it is to no avail. I use this trick sometimes, but most of the time I’m like, “I’ll just wear my glasses again today to mask my horrible liner skilzz.”
    Jenny recently posted … Sunday Share – Sprinkles of Style

  2. Rachel R. says:

    Wait… “Eyeshadow” isn’t a verb?! :0

  3. Ms. Heathen says:

    I did a winged liner the other day that turned out better than most of the times I’ve tried it. My husband looks at me and says “they don’t match”. I said “they say your eyes are sisters, not twins…well mine aren’t even that, they’re just neighbors”.
    My left eye always ends up way thicker than my right eye too. It’s a curse.

  4. Lulle says:

    I usually have a thicker line on my right eye, lol! My eyes are not symmetrical so it’s no surprise that the line is not exactly the same, but sometimes it’s like, hmmm what have I done!! I also for the life of me can’t make a decent looking flick on my left eye… Not without fixing it some way or another. I use a cotton swab dipped in makeup remover usually, but the liner brush is a brilliant idea. So much more precise!
    Lulle recently posted … RegenFX Skincare System: Ultimate Hyaluronic Complex Serum, Age Defying Moisturizer and Total Regeneration Eye Gel reviews

    • Karen says:

      I feel you! My left wing is always my wonky wing. πŸ™‚ When I don’t want to deal with fixing it sometimes I start with surgical tape to map out the angles of my wings. Makes it so much easier!

  5. Omg I suck at liner!! So much that I don’t even bother with it anymore *sadfaceemoji

  6. I’ll definitely try this trick next time I play with liner. I normally use Q-tips, but this sounds much more precise. Thank you for sharing!
    Carol in a Page recently posted … Surviving the Heat Wave: Homemade Popsicles

  7. Kirsten says:

    LOL! I am totally picturing you doing eyeliner parkour.

  8. I can NEVER get my eyeliner to look perfectly even… Stoopid uneven eyes >:-( This is a great tip though, gonna remember it.
    Kiss & Make-up recently posted … Make-up look | Quick, Kiss the Bride before she goes on Honeymoon!

  9. Gauri says:

    That eyeliner trick is great!

  10. Ruchita says:

    This is a great tip. Thanks! My liner always ends up a bit uneven or too thick. I’m gonna try this soon!

  11. Katie says:

    Wowza, Tabs’ eyeliner under his Avengers mask is on point

  12. Fancie says:

    You are a genius! I can’t believe I haven’t thought of this. It seems way more precise/less messy than using q-tips
    Fancie recently posted … New CoverGirl Colorlicious Lipsticks!

  13. Cindy says:

    I love that Laura mercier eyeliner brush – I searched for years for the perfect one and before I found that one I used to screw up my liner all the time! I use this with a dark grey eyeshadow to do a wing everyday and it makes it so much easier.

  14. I would love to be able to shape shift, but applying the perfect liner would be awesome, too.
    LindaLibraLoca recently posted … When you are running out of time – Revlon Eyeshadow Palette 505 “Impressionist”

  15. Pamela Haddad says:

    Hey, that’s my super power! Thanks for the great tip! And the adorable photo of Tabs in that necklace! I should just start posting my kitties photos online. =^..^=

  16. Trude says:

    Great idea! And a good use for the Sonia Kashuk bent liner brush that I never quite got the hang of (much prefer the angled one from It Cosmetics). πŸ™‚ I was using pointed Q-tips but this would probably be way more accurate. I’ve been hearing good things about that remover, did you order it from Beautylish or is there somewhere in CA that carries it?
    Trude recently posted … July Desktop Background

  17. Chelsea says:

    I use Bioderma all the time for this!

    I’m doing a superhero trapeze routine next month, hopefully my game is as good as the Gravy Avenger’s…

  18. Tatiana says:

    I have an easier time doing my right eye (I’m right handed), so I do my left eye first and try to get the right eye to match it. Much easier than trying to make the left eye match the right.
    I still want an eye-liner where I can close my eyes, snap my fingers and my eyeliner is perfectly even and matching on both eyes. Sigh.

  19. Melanie says:

    LOVE that Bioderma make-up remover! It’s amazing! I will definately try this trick with it. πŸ™‚

  20. illcomm says:

    What eyeshadow combination/blusher/lip color are you wearing in this pic?? It’s all so perfectly cool & just perfect

  21. Siobhan says:

    Great tip, Karen, going to have to try that (because I’m just as bad at doing a perfect, thin line on one eye and going a lil’ cray on the other, haha!)! Thanks πŸ™‚

    ps – the Grevy Avenger made my whole day…Oh my, too funny πŸ˜€

  22. Kim says:

    Tricksy! And you have to make that Tabby Superhero Mask happen. To quote James Earl Jones and Malcolm McDowell, it’s cray cray adorbs. πŸ˜‰

  23. Erica says:

    Karen you rock. Although you say you have imperfect liner application, you still try every day. A big shout out for persistence! We are kindred spirits (lol). My right eye has poorer vision and a stigmatism so when my (good) left eye is closed, whoa! My solution is to keep both eyes open, go very slow when applying liner, use very thin liner brushes and the magnifying side of my makeup mirror. Most days it works. Your suggestion is genius but I would probably screw up my eyeshadow lol.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Erica,

      This is a GREAT tip. Thank you for sharing it, because now if someone with a similar issue wants to know about liner I can say, “My buddy Erica taught me this trick…”. πŸ˜€

      So, sometimes when I do this trick the eyeshadow underneath does get disrupted. All I do is go back in and touch up the spots that need it. Or, alternately, you could always do your liner first to perfect the shape, then do your eyeshadow. Once your eyeshadow’s already on, then go back over the liner to deepen it again.

  24. Erica says:

    I’ll practice the liner first trick – it’ll save me lots of time. You’re the best!

    Your buddy Erica.

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