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Winged Eyeliner Issues? No Problem!

Winged Eyeliner Issues? No Problem!

Never ask a girl with winged eyeliner why shes late” – Unknown

Winged eyeliner.

I’ll give you a moment to roll your eyes in frustration.

There are very few people who know how to do winged liner in the right way, every single time. It is the bug-bear of the cosmetic world and something which causes many a sore eye after too many attempts.

Firstly, you need to make peace with the fact that your wings will probably never be completely symmetrical every time, and that they’re probably likely to be different from one day to the next. These are just the realities of the wing.

There is some good news however, you can get a lot better at winged eyeliner, and you can reach the point where you don’t become stressed at the thought, and you don’t poke yourself in the eye with your eyeliner.

Winged eyeliner will:

  • Add drama to your look
  • Help you eye to look more open
  • Lift hooded eyes

Most people use winged eyeliner with false lashes but you don’t have to use falsies if you're not a fan. Many people aren’t, and it’s perfectly acceptable to use a good quality mascara and give your lashes a few coats to make them look super-dramatic.

Despite the fact that winged eyeliner is difficult to master, it will get easier with practice. I’m going to tell you how to do the easiest wing, and once you’ve built up your confidence, you can try slightly more difficult shapes over time.

First things first, you need to choose your eyeliner type. You can go with a liquid eyeliner or you can use gel eyeliner and a brush. Personally I think gel is easier to use because you have the brush and product working together, rather than going straight in with a liquid eyeliner that is extremely easy to smudge. Gel seems to have a little more give and take to it, but it is personal choice If you prefer liquid eyeliner because it’s easier to move, that's the one you should go with. There’s no right or wrong to doing a wing, it’s about technique and what feels easiest for you.

Once you’ve worked out which type of eyeliner you're going to use, take a deep breath, give yourself a quick positive talking to, and grab a mirror.

  • Look straight at the mirror and keep your eye open - if you close your eye and do the flick, you’re not going to be able to see how the flick sits and it might end up moving below your eye or even curving rather than flicking
  • Use your gel brush or liquid liner and make small dots of the outline you want to draw by gently tapping on your eye. The idea is to have a guide to work with, which will help you to draw the shape and fill it in. Start at the middle of your lid and work outwards, moving upwards to the flick
  • Repeat with the other eye so you can check you have symmetry
  • Connect the dots slowly, pausing briefly after you reach each dot
  • Place the brush or liner at the very corner of your eye, and gently draw the line upwards to meet the outer edge of the flick. You will now have an inverted ‘v’ shape which needs to be coloured in
  • Use small movements with the liner or brush to colour in the final flick. Some people find it easier to gently pull the eye skin outwards a little, but be careful not to colour outside of the lines!

Using a guide before you draw the actual flick helps to keep it even but also gives you more confidence. Trying to do a flick freehand is impossible for beginners and even pros struggle with it. You’ll also find it almost impossible to match the other eye and will end up thickening the flick and going further outwards to try and even it out. An outline is by far the best way to go.

Another useful trick is to use tape. If you’re short on time and you just want a very small and fine flick to finish off your day’s look, grab some tape and cut a small amount. Place it at the very corner of your eye, angling it upwards to match the flick you want to create. Again, do this whilst your eye is open so you can see how it’s going to look. Repeat it with your other eye, so you can check for symmetry.

Then, grab your liner or your brush and simply follow the edge of the tape. You might find it useful to use the ‘dotting’ idea I talked about above for the last line part, just to keep things thin and even.

With the perfect flick you’ll feel able to take on the world, but remember, practice definitely makes perfect with this one!

Points to Remember:

  • You will need to keep practicing in order to perfect your winged eyeliner skills
  • Use either a liquid eyeliner pen or gel liner and a brush
  • Use dots to trace the outline of the flick you want to create
  • You can also use tape if you find it easier
  • Keep your eyes open when drawing your eyeliner


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