When I ask a makeup client which facial feature they would most like to accentuate, 95% choose their eyes. Interestingly, the average makeup client tends to believe that matching eyeshadow to their eye color and/or wearing heavy eyeliner will help the eyes stand out. Unfortunately, the aforementioned makeup steps do the exact opposite of what we are trying to achieve.

Heavy eyeliner

Eyeliner was originally created to aid in making eyelashes look thicker and softly define the eye. To create a natural, clean makeup look the liner should be applied very close to the lash line and softly diffused so no line of demarcation or obvious line where color starts and stops is visible. Using a thick line of liner makes the eyes look smaller and more deep-set. (Color theory – dark colors make things recede)

Many women skip the top lash line and line only the lower lashes, most often with a black or dark brown eyeliner. This trend was very popular in the 80’s but one that I NEVER recommend. By using this dated makeup technique, we are drawing the attention downward which can accentuate existing characteristics such as dark under eye circles, very deep-set eyes or mature eyes that can become a bit hollowed over time. In all of these instances, we want to create a more youthful, well-rested look by drawing the attention upward.

eyeliner tip

Notice how eyes look less downturned in right photo with eyeliner on the top lashline

Color of eyeliner

During the aging process, the limbal ring becomes less saturated, less pronounced thus I recommend selecting an eyeliner in a shade that is no darker than your limbal rings. As you can see in the client image below, the eyes have been subtly defined using an eyeliner in a shade that is no darker than the limbal rings. (the dark rings around the iris of the eye)

eyeliner and limbal-ring

To see more before and after photos, check out my booking page on Styleseat!

Kate Middleton is a beautiful woman and the images below will perfectly illustrate how wearing eyeliner on the lower lashline isn’t the most flattering way to wear eyeliner.


Notice heavy eyeliner under lower lash line and obvious gap of color on the lower watermark.

Now look at the photos of Kate from the May 2016 issue of British Vogue…


Natural beauty, Kate Middleton on the cover of British Vogue May 2016

Natural beauty, Kate Middleton on the cover of British Vogue May 2016


Much softer look to her eyes and overall makeup look; allows her youthful radiance to shine through.


See Kate’s photos from the May 2016 issue of British Vogue online here

Sending peace, love & happiness to all!

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  1. Anonymous November 23, 2020 at 2:19 am Reply

    Good article! Thank you.

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