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How to apply eyeliner
How to apply eyeliner

Are you a liquid or pencil eyeliner girl?

Most of us tend to be one or the other.

Knowing which to use depends on which you are more comfortable with. Let me be honest and tell you, the pencil is always more forgiving!

If you've taken the plunge and attempted the liquid liner - well done. If you have stuck with it through trial and error - high five!

There are plenty of women who have tried liquid eyeliner once, failed, and given up.

When I see them in the studio they say: "I love the look of liquid liner but I can't do that."

Sounds like you? Well this is what I tell them - you can, you just need to dedicate some time and practice to it.

The best starting point is a pencil. Get comfortable with this and experiment using different colours.

Typically, we all own a black kohl pencil but why not try something different?

If you have brown eyes, try a chocolate brown pencil, blue eyes try a cool grey and green eyes try a plum pencil. Depending on the look we are going for, black can be a little harsh.

We have so many options when using a pencil:

Here are my tips to using a pencil:

Step 1: Never use the pencil directly on to the eye.

That is unless you are putting the pencil in the water line (the eye rim at the lashes). Colour the pencil on to the back of your hand and, using a sharp- angle brush, pick up the colour and feather it across either the upper or lower lash line.
This will get you into the habit of using a brush, preparing you for the progression into liquid.

Step 2: Always set the pencil with a soft shadow or translucent powder.

The reason most of us find our eyeliner has smudged by the end of the day is because the eye area is one of the oiliest parts of the face and a pencil is a creamy product. The two together often avalanche down the eye. Keep your liner in place all day by setting it with a powder.

Step 3: Do nothing by halves.

Apply the pencil across the entire length of the lash line or three-quarters of the way across. Applying pencil halfway tends to cut the eye in half and will make your eyes look smaller.

Liquid liner is a tricky one to apply yourself but you can do it. I have watched countless women set up for the liquid liner application like this: close one eye and then pull the fragile eyelid out to the side and quickly wipe the liquid liner backwards and forwards.

No!

There are several issues here - firstly, accelerating ageing. Stretching out your eyelids every day to apply liquid eyeliner is only going to give you droopy eyelids faster. Please don't pull your eyelid out to the side! This also prevents the liner from following the natural eyeline itself.

Secondly, how are you supposed to see what you're doing when your eyes are closed?

Applying liquid eyeliner

The best way to apply liquid eyeliner starts with the set-up. Sit in front of the mirror and place your elbows on to the surface of a counter to steady your hands.

Tilt your head back and look down the end of your nose, almost as if the eyelid is closed but, finally, you'll be able to see what you are doing.

Raise up your eyebrows (as if you are totally impressed by how incredible your eyeliner is looking) and this will smooth and stretch out the eyelid naturally.

Keeping your elbows on the counter, lift the brush to your upper lash line. To further steady your hand, place your free hand underneath the hand holding the brush. You can even rest them both on the face if this feels easier.

Make sure when you apply your liquid liner, you use the side of the brush and not the tip. The tip is the weakest point and can often cause the line to look barcoded. The side is stronger and firmer and will give a thin, consistent line.

Remember to feather the liner on - it's almost impossible to get a straight line perfect in one go.

What if you mess it up?

Don't panic. If you do accidently create a barcoded look with your eyeliner, do not remove it as you'll have to redo your entire eye make-up. Instead, smooth the liner out using an angle brush and some soft matt eye shadow.

Everyone has their favourites, I would suggest trying a few before you settle on one brand.

If liner is something new for you - practise this at home one night without any other make-up on other than mascara. Mascara will make it easier to follow the upper lash line. Keep applying and removing, until you feel confident.