How to: create the perfect winged eyeliner

the perfect winged eyeliner

As Ivy beauties not only do we need to nail the elusive ‘eyebrows on fleek’ look, we also need to nail the ‘eyeliner on point’!

Let me set the scene for you. You’ve flipped through a magazine and scanned through your Instagram feed and now you’re seriously jealous of that perfect cat eye. You think to yourself “Hey, I should give that look a go!” One YouTube tutorial in, and 30 used make-up pads later, you’re ready to bin that eye pencil because no one can make panda eyes look chic. And if it’s not the panda eye, then there’s another common occurrence…

Eyeliner meme

Eyeliner meme


We’ve all been there! But fear not, there are a few simple steps that will help you avoid this situation… “Crap, now my whole eyelid is covered in eyeliner and this wing is so big it’s practically at my hairline”.  Let’s get you on track for creating the perfect winged eyeliner, the first time around! Here we go.

Before you even start trying to master the technique of the winged eyeliner, you need to choose your tools and materials. There are so many different eyeliners on the market these days (pencil, gel or liquid?) let’s have a look at which ones are best to use.

Eye pencil


The eye pencil is best for the bottom lid as it smudges and blends very easily. A pencil isn’t so great for precision or creating bold lines.

Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Eyeliner


A gel can be a teeny bit harder to work with as the product is slightly thicker and will usually come as a pot with a brush for application. Gel eyeliners are fantastic tools for creating those big bold eyes and tend to be make-up artists first preference.

study beauty


Liquid is probably the most used medium for creating that winged eyeliner look. It will glide on easily and usually comes in either a pointed brush, a nib or even a pen form that will allow for precise application.

A step-by-step guide to the technique

Once you’ve decided on your tool, the next step is preparation. Ensure you have a sturdy, flat surface in front of your mirror so that you can rest your elbow. This will help to steady you and reduce those shaky hands (an eyeliners worst enemy)! If you need a bit of extra steadiness when applying your eyeliner, then try resting your pinky finger on your cheek.

Top tip: If you’re planning on wearing any eye shadow to complete your look, then it’s a good idea to apply this prior to your eyeliner. Mascara or false eyelashes should be applied after your eyeliner is finished.

study makeup

So once you’re all prepared and comfortable, you’re ready for the application!

  1. Firstly you want to make sure you don’t have too much product on your applicator, we want it to be coated but not dripping! So just wipe any excess back into the pot, similar to what you would do when using a nail polish.
  2. Next you can apply the eyeliner. Start in the inner corner of your eye and aiming your brush at the top of your lash line, so that you’re almost applying half on your eyelashes and half on your eyelid. Top tip: it is essential to remember to breathe! While it sounds silly, it’s so tempting to hold your breath when applying eyeliner however this will increase your heart rate and cause you to panic even more. Plus, you can’t apply a perfect winged eyeliner if you’re passed out on the floor!
  3. Apply the eyeliner in small, thin brush strokes – moving towards the outer corner of your eye.
  4. As you approach the outer corner of the eye to do the ‘wing’, imagine a line going from the corner of your eye to the end point of your eyebrow – this is angle you want to follow with your eyeliner. You also won’t want to make the wing any longer than the crease of your eyelid, unless of course you’re going for that bigger, bolder look. Use a sweeping motion to draw on the wing and connect it to your top lid liner.
  5. Finally, you can go back and join all the lines together to make one smooth line. Keep the line relatively thin in the inner corner of your eye then gradually get thicker as you move out towards the wing. To have the perfect wing, you want to have it coming to a very fine point and sweeping into your top lid eyeliner.

If you love make-up and all thing beauty why not begin a career in the industry? Ivy College offers flexible online courses in beauty therapy. Click here for more information on the courses, including what you’ll learn.

About the Author: Nicole Schaerer

Nicole Schaerer is Ivy College’s vibrant Social and Content Manager. A young gun with a curious mind, she has over 5 years experience in Marketing. With qualifications in Social Science and Marketing, she is always looking to learn something new. Nicole has a passion for writing and producing great content while also obsessing over TV shows, celebrities and really cute photos of puppies on Instagram.

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