The 10 Best Brown Eyeliner Looks to Try in 2023

November 03, 2023
Alexis Gaskin
By: Alexis Gaskin | by L'Oréal
A closeup of someone applying brown eyeliner for a brown eyeliner look

No matter the makeup look, one staple product almost always makes its way onto our faces. While mascara and lipstick of some form are a constant in every look, we’re talking about the tried-and-true brown eyeliner. Some looks like the sultry siren eye and revenge makeup require a lot of eyeliner, while simple beauty moments like the flushed strawberry girl trend or minimal makeup look call for only a subtle line. 

Regardless, almost all makeup wearers have the item somewhere in their makeup bag. Brown eyeliner softens any makeup look while adding definition to your eyes. Below, explore 10 brown eyeliner looks that bring new relevance to the neutral eyeliner choice. 

10 Best Brown Eyeliner Looks

Here, grab inspiration for your next makeup moment with these 10 brown eyeliner looks, featuring editor-recommended eyeliners to create them.

1. Transparent Brown Eyeliner

Negative space liner is a cool way to make your eye makeup the center of your look without having to use a lot of products. This brown eyeliner look may seem difficult, but with the right tools, it’s easy to accomplish, regardless of skill level. The trick is to use a creamy eye pencil that will easily blend and smudge into shape without getting patchy. 

Try the Lancôme Paris Le Style Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil in Chocolat, which seamlessly glides onto skin with a gel-like formula that is easy to manipulate. Create the negative space aspect by cleaning up any uneven lines with a concealer that matches your eyelid color. Use a full-coverage formula like the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Full Wear Waterproof Concealer, which completely covers before settling into a crease-free, waterproof finish.   

2. Simple Winged Brown Eyeliner

When in doubt, opt for a simple makeup look of fresh skin, long lashes, glossy lips and a brown winged eyeliner. Before applying your mascara, create your winged liner with a product that won’t melt away after long wear, and applies like silk for a flawless wing. We recommend the IT Cosmetics Superhero No-Tug Retractable Eyeliner in Brown as a gel option. If you prefer liquid eyeliner, try the espressoh Hi_liner in Moka which doesn’t bleed and layers well if needed. 

3. Graphic Brown Eyeliner

Graphic eyeliner is the perfect way to get creative with your eye makeup. It’s easy to create fun shapes, lines and designs with the right eyeliner that stays put no matter what. That’s why we love the Maybelline New York Tattoo Studio Sharpenable Gel Pencil in Smooth WalnutThe formula is pigmented with an opaque finish that doesn’t go streaky no matter how light or hard you press. 

You can use it on your upper lash line and waterline for a no-budge finish that stays put. Go as simple or bold as you want with a graphic liner; just make sure you’re using a brown eyeliner that can hold up to your ideas.

4. Cinnamon Girl Brown Eyeliner

Yes, the latte makeup trend is still on our minds, but we love the warmer spin the cinnamon girl look brings. Both looks embrace brown shades, but the cinnamon girl makeup trend keeps everything neutral with brown eyeshadow, brown mascara and (of course) brown eyeliner. The base of this look is a simple brown smoky eye with winged brown eyeliner and an intense brown waterline.

 For the eyeliner portion, draw a thin line of brown on your waterline and upper lash line using the L'Oréal Paris Infallible Grip Mechanical Gel Eyeliner in Brown Denim. This eye pencil offers up to 36 hours of wear without smearing away or drying out the eyes. Your lines will stay sharp thanks to the thin, retractable tip, but the pencil also features a smudger for an intentionally messy, blurred-out eye. 

5. Avant-Garde Brown Eyeliner

Who says you can only use eyeliner on your eyes? Extend your brown eyeliner to your entire face with artistically placed lines and shapes for an intergalactic, avant-garde look.

Use a liquid liner like the  L'Oréal Paris Grip Precision Felt Waterproof Eyeliner in Brown, which makes it easy to create detailed lines without smudging or smearing. This felt tip liquid liner dries fast and is perfect for creating thick or thin lines that stay pigmented without patchiness. 

6. Brown and Orange Eyeliner

Add some color to your brown eyeliner look with a fiery pumpkin spice shade. Brown and orange make a powerful pair that emphasizes the chocolate tones of brown eyeliner. 

Create a dramatic brown winged liner with the YSL Beauty Crushliner in Brun Universel, which offers a pigmented brown color that will last all day. Add color to your waterline and the inner corners of your eyes with the Kulfi Beauty Underlined Kajal Eyeliner in Tiger Queen, a terracotta color that’s smudge-proof and waterproof perfect for those with watery eyes

7. Outlined Brown Eyeliner

Similar to a transparent brown eyeliner look, outlined eyeliner embraces negative space in the center but with more controlled lines. You’ll keep all of your eyelids clean of makeup besides the outlined flick of liner that starts from the outer corner of the upper lash line before going up and slightly below the brow line.

Create your outlined shape with bronzed brown eyeliner like the NYX Professional Makeup Jumbo Eye Pencil in French Fries. This multi-use crayon appears vibrant against all skin tones, keeping its metallic hue against all complexions and undertones. It’s easy to use and perfect for drawing thick or thin lines, depending on how you use the eye pencil.  

8. Denim Eyeliner

Brown and blue are another iconic color combination that reminds us of a brand-new pair of light-wash jeans with light brown seams. Get inspiration from your blue jeans with a blue and brown eyeliner look for a simple fun eye moment. For a subtle graphic eyeliner, add lines of brown and blue liner along your eye, outlining the outer and inner corners. 

Opt for a liquid liner that has a sharp tip like the NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Brown for a long-lasting, defined look that’s smudge-proof. Underneath the brown liner, replicate the shape in blue with the NYX Professional Makeup Vivid Brights Colored Liquid Eyeliner in Blue Thang. Add more dots or shapes to really personalize this look, and give it some sparkle with a swipe of glitter using the about-face Fractal Glitter Eye Paint in Refract.

9. Brown Smoky Eye

You can never go wrong with a brown smoky eye that replaces traditional black and gray shadows for neutral hues of brown, beige and champagne. Perfect your smoky eye with an eyeshadow palette like the Valentino Beauty Color Flip Eyeshadow Palette, which has all the colors you need to create this soft glam eyeshadow look. Use the light brown color to add color to your entire eyelid and then build definition in the crease with the medium brown shade. 

The pigmented powder shadows blend beautifully on the eyelids with minimal fallout and a crease-free finish. Darken your lash line for added drama with the Giorgio Armani Beauty Smooth Silk Eye Pencil in 12, which applies smoothly and blends easily for a smoky finish.

10. Shimmery Brown Eyeliner

Keep your eyeshadow simple with a dusting of Urban Decay 24/7 Moondust Glitter Eyeshadow in a light color that doesn’t take away from the eyeliner. Draw your top liner with a creamy pencil like the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil in Corrupt, which glides on as a powerful pigment that’s easy to blend when first applied. 

Gently smudge the liner out to extend your wing as far as desired before applying and smudging more liner to the waterline. Complete your shimmery brown eyeliner look with a touch of blue in the inner corners of the eye. We recommend the glitzy and long-wearing Violette_FR Yeux Paint in Twinkling Bleu de Minuit.

Photographer: Chaunte Vaughn

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