how to apply a cat eye

Grab the eyeliner weapon of your choice–gel, cream, liquid or pencil–celebrity makeup artist Elle Leary has devised a method for applying a cat eye that anyone can do (even those of us not blessed with the steadiest hands). Beginners and pros take note: to achieve a flawless flick at the wing, you’ll need an angled eyeliner brush, your chosen liner, and a business card.

The technique stays the same; it’s the thickness of line and the length of the wing that change depending on your eye shape.

1. To begin, take your business card (a piece of tape will work too) and align the edge with the bottom of your upper lash line. Card placement is key; make sure you’re holding the card at an angle where the wing is going up–not down.

2. Using the eyeliner of your choice, draw a line along the edge of the card. “The line should start as a continuation of your last lash, going up and out towards your eyebrow.”

3. Then go back and line the rest of the eye, staying as close to the lash line as possible.

4. Now that the foundation is in place find your eye shape below to figure out where and how much to build out the shape!

Hooded Eye Shape

how to apply a cat eye for your eye shape

Long, thick and waterproof are Leary’s liner suggests for hooded eyes. “Since the lid is hooded if you do a small line you will never see it when you open your eyes, so the thicker the better.” Leary used Lancôme Liner Design and an angled brush to perfect this cat eye. For hooded and small eyes, Leary also suggests forgoing eyeliner on the bottom lash line, as it tends to make the eyes look smaller.

 

Almond Eye Shape

how to apply a cat eye

To accentuate an almond shape, creating the look of bigger, longer, more seductive eyes, Leary says, “Keep the line thin on the inside of the eye and all the way to out to 2/3rds of the eye. At that point, grow the line in thickness, and finish with a semi dramatic wing at the end.” For this shape, Leary also recommends bringing the liner (we used L’Oréal Colour Riche Eyeliner) onto the bottom lash line to really drive home the shape.

 

Monolid Eye Shape

how to apply a cat eye for any eye shape

With this eye shape, first keep the liner as close to the lash line as possible, and then go for a thick, elongated wing. “It really helps to give the eye some definition, shape and length.” To create a precise line Leary went over the pencil eyeliner with a liquid formula, Merle Norman Pro Pen Eyeliner.

 

No matter what your eye shape, if you want your eyes to look more doll-like or rounder Leary suggests you, “Keep the liner thicker in the middle of the eye and shorter at the wing. This will create the illusion of an eye that is more curved.”

Will you try this technique? Let us know how your cat eye turns outs!

Photos: Dan Wolner for Makeup.com