How to Apply Liquid Eyeliner Like a Pro?

Liquid eyeliner is a fickle, fickle friend. When applied properly, it looks sophisticated, stylish, and sharp. When it’s not, it can end up looking like a toddler Picasso drank too much tequila and took creative liberties with a Sharpie. The bottom line is that practice makes perfect; no one starts out with make-up-artist-grade liquid liner skills. It’s a tough type of makeup to master, but the results are absolutely worth the effort. We have a few tips and tricks that we’ve picked up along the way that can make your journey to liquid eyeliner nirvana a little easier – keep reading!

Not all tips are created equal

The key to a sharp, bold line is a fine point felt tip. Over time, your eyeliner felt tip might flatten, dull, and begin to distribute the ink liner unevenly. This is one of those few circumstances where a true artist can blame their equipment! Make sure to invest in high-quality eyeliners and replace them often. When the ink begins to thin and the felt tip loses its sharp point, it’s nearly impossible to create a good wing (no matter how skilled you are). Our personal favorite liquid liner? Kat Von D Tattoo Liner. You can always trust an artist (and ink guru) to create a reliable product that’s worth its value.

The tape method

One of amazingly useful tips on how to apply liquid eyeliner like a pro is to use the tape method. Over time, you will learn how to draw a beautiful cat eye wing with only your steady, skilled hands. Until then, why not take a little short cut? We won’t tell. Here’s what you do: rummage through your kitchen drawer, and find some regular old scotch tape. Take a piece, and loosen some of the stickiness on the back of your hand. Now, apply the tape to your lower water line, and outwards towards your temple. The top edge of your tape will be the bottom line of your wing. The next step is the hardest one: draw! Using the tape as a guideline, create your wing. Once you’re satisfied, remove the tape. You’ll be left with a flawlessly sharp wing, and some envious friends – unless you decide to let them in on the secret!

The spoon method

Another one of great tips on how to apply liquid eyeliner is to use the spoon method, which follows the same methodology as the tape method. However, there are two distinct differences. Because the spoon needs to be held in place (and the tape is self-sufficient), this is a liner trick for the more technically advanced. The advantage (and other difference) is that by following the spoon’s natural curve, your liner wing will have a more natural arch. So, how does it work? Basically, hold the spoon against your cheekbone, under the eye, and pointing outwards toward your temple. Adjust as necessary, and use the top curve of the spoon to be the bottom of your wing. Keep practicing until it’s perfect!

Start small (less is more)

When drawing your liquid eyeliner free hand, it is tempting to begin with a bold, thick line and fill it in. This method does work for some of us – your mileage may vary! We often find that once you have created the perfect wing on one eye, it is inevitable that the other line will end up too thick – and the ensuing struggle to create equal lines will result in tears, anger, and destruction/abuse of eyeliners across the world. Try to begin with a thinner line than you’d like to end up with, and build up slowly. This will ensure that as you adjust for uneven squiggles and bumps, your eyeliner will maintain a reasonable thickness on both sides!

Watch tutorials

There’s this thing, and it’s called YouTube. Maybe you’ve heard of it? There are hundreds upon hundreds of tutorial videos on YouTube, and they are an incredible way to learn and practice makeup techniques in the privacy of your own home. These tutorials can be especially helpful for those of us with difficult eye shapes, such as hooded eyes and mono-lids. Some techniques and styles work better for some people than others, and that is why having a wide range of YouTube channels to choose from is so incredibly useful! Grab some snacks, your trusty liner, a handful of Q-Tips and some makeup remover – and start learning.


Here is another simple tip on how to apply liquid eyeliner – breathe! Okay so, this is probably good advice in general. When applying eyeliner, however, this really is a crucial step – so let us explain what we mean. Liquid liner is sensitive to every hand wobble, finger twitch, and especially the dreaded sneeze. Right before you are able to touch the felt tip to your eyelid, take a deep breath in, and then out. This will help to steady your hand, and ensure that you are relaxed enough that your line comes out sleek and smooth, every single time.

Anchor your hand

All right, so even if you breathe deeply, and watch five hours of YouTube tutorials, you may just be unlucky enough to have very shaky hands. For those caffeine-addicted amongst us, this can be a common occurrence. A good way to combat your pumpkin spice latte tremors is to use the base of your wrist and side of your palm as an anchor against your face, while lining. This creates an anchor effect, which will steady the line you draw and ensure an effortlessly straight line, no matter how many shots of espresso.

Practice makes perfect

Next great tip on how to apply liquid eyeliner is to practice, practice, practice. Truly. It doesn’t matter if you consider yourself the worst stick-figure artist in existence, or a Warhol-esque creative prodigy – no one is good at liquid liner in the beginning. While some may need more practice than others, anyone can become an expert at even the sharpest of liquid lines with practice. Allot yourself some extra time every day, and try your hand at a felt-tip wing – even if you have to begrudgingly remove it immediately after. Eventually, all of your hard work will pay off.

Concealer as a magic eraser

Sometimes, even the most skilled of makeup artists and eyeliner experts don’t get the line straight and the wing sharp every single time. Luckily, there is a secret eraser amongst the pros that will save you tons of time (not to mention the effort of removing your whole line to start over). When your wing turns out less than perfect, use concealer with a fine-tipped brush to outline your wing on the top and bottom. Not only does this create a sharper contrast, your concealer will straighten the line. Ta-da!

Prime yo’ self!

Have you ever spent many exhausting minutes creating the perfect liquid wing, only to sneeze or blink and find your eye covered in Dalmatian spots? What is it about difficult-to-remove eye makeup that induces sneezes? It happens to the best of us. While you can’t always prevent a sneeze, using a good primer on your eyelid prior to your liner will help to keep it in place all day. No more transfer, and more sharpness for much longer!

What are your tips on how to apply liquid eyeliner?

Stay beautiful!

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