Lesley Rotchford Feb 8, 2017

Pencil liners are great for drawing soft lines or smudging for a smoky effect. But when you want polished, perfectly-lined eyes, you have to call in the big guns: Liquid liner. “It can accentuate the eyes and give them a lift—and you can achieve so many different looks with it,” says makeup artist Rachel Halsey. We know, liquid liner can be intimidating—it requires a steady hand. But new liners have made application beginner-friendly and virtually effortless. Take NYX Cosmetics Epic Ink Liner, for example. It has a super slender, flexible brush tip that helps you draw precise lines—or you can make fatter, thicker ones simply by pressing down. And the waterproof formula ensures it stays put all day (and night!). Here, Halsey reveals how to create three fast, easy, and incredibly sexy liquid liner looks.

liquid eye liner


Classic Cat-eye

Grab a liquid liner in one hand and pull the skin around the outer corner of your eye taut with the fingers of your other hand. This will help you create a straight, precise line. Beginning at the inner corner of your eye, start drawing a thin line along your top lashes with the tip of the pen. As you move towards the outer corner, gradually begin pressing down to create a thicker line. (Try to sneak some color between your lashes as you go so you aren’t left with any patches of bare skin.) When you land at the outer corner, flick the liner up and out about ¼ of an inch for a winged effect.

The Triangle

“For a more dramatic look, line both the top and bottom of your eye,” says Halsey. Follow directions for the classic cat-eye (above). Then, starting at the inner corner of your lower lid, draw a line along your lower lashes that gradually gets thicker as you move towards the outer corner. At the outer corner, wing the end up so it connects to the endpoint of your top liner. Color in the “triangle” shape at the outer corner of your eye with the liquid liner.

The Double Cat-eye

Follow directions for the classic cat-eye. Then draw another line over the existing liner (going from thinner to thicker), and when you get about ¾ of the way down the lash line, start flicking the liner up and out so the tail is about a centimeter higher than the first one (there should be a sliver of skin between the two winged ends) and about a centimeter longer. For a bold effect, use a different color liquid liner for your second layer, such as purple or blue.

The Mini  

If your eyes are close together, Halsey recommends starting the liner about a quarter of the way in from the inner corner (as opposed to at the very inner corner), which will make your eyes appear more wide set. Taper the liner (moving from thin to thick) on both the top and bottom and connect at the corner. Or to create more of a cat-eye, connect and wing the ends and color in the space, like in The Triangle.

Want more ideas? Check these out. 

Reverse Cat Eye Makeup Tutorial 

How to Wear Graphic Eyeliner




About the Author:Lesley Rotchford is a freelance writer and editor who has been covering beauty, health, fitness, and entertainment for 18 years. She was an executive editor at Women’s Health and prior to that held editorial positions at Self, Cosmopolitan and Allure. Her work has appeared in Women’s Health, Self, Health, Shape, Allure, Cosmopolitan, In Style, Redbook, Seventeen, Fit Pregnancy and Baby, and other magazines. She lives in New Canaan, CT, with her husband and three sons.

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