I absolutely love eyeliner. It’s one of my favourite makeup products. But it might surprise you to hear that I don’t recommend wearing black eyeliner. In fact, I rarely ever apply it on myself, or my clients. Here’s why I suggest you ditch your black eyeliner. And find out what shades are much more flattering for you instead.
What’s So Great About Eyeliner Anyway?
First, if you don’t already wear eyeliner, you’re really missing out on such a great product. Here are just a few reasons why it’s so amazing. And why you’ll want to start introducing it into your makeup routine straight away (or as soon as you’ve finished reading this blog post 😉).
It makes your eyelashes look thicker
This is my favourite reason to wear eyeliner. Even if you’ve got sparse eyelashes, applying a thin layer of eyeliner is going to make them look instantly fuller.
It gives definition to your eyes
Again, even a thin layer of eyeliner will give your eyes real definition and will really enhance them further.
It will open up your eye area
Mascara is great for giving you a more wide awake look and really opening up the eye area. And applying eyeliner as well as mascara can also give the same effect.
Why you need to ditch your black eyeliner
Now we’ve established why wearing eyeliner is so amazing. But you may be wondering why I’m telling you not to wear black eyeliner. Here’s why.
It’s too harsh for a daytime look
Black eyeliner looks much too intense and dramatic for a daytime look. If you do want to wear it, my advice is to save it for an evening look instead.
It can make you look very tired
As I mentioned above, wearing eyeliner can give you a wide awake look and really open up the eye area. However, wearing a black eyeliner can actually have the opposite effect on a lot of people. For example, if you have quite a pale complexion, black eyeliner can look much too harsh against your fair skin. Another contributor to it making you look tired is how you apply your eyeliner. I’ll talk more about that in a moment.
It can make you look older
Black eyeliner can look very ageing, even on younger girls.
It can make your eyes look smaller
If you have small eyes, I’d actually recommend avoiding black eyeliner altogether. In fact, it can make your eyes look smaller no matter what your eye size or shape.
So What Should I Wear Instead of Black Eyeliner?
Just like any makeup product, you want to ensure it’s going to enhance your eyes. Whilst there are some colours that are going to look better on particular eye colours than others, there are a few colours that look universally gorgeous on every eye colour. Let’s take a look at them now.
This is my absolute favourite shade of eyeliner. It’s my go-to shade almost every day. A medium or dark brown eyeliner looks amazing on virtually every eye colour. It gives a much softer look than black and it flatters almost every complexion.The best bit about brown eyeliner is that you can go as subtle or as dramatic as you like with it. Which makes it perfect for both a daytime or an evening look. If you have a very pale complexion or if you’re going for a very soft, natural look, I’d suggest you use a medium brown eyeliner. If you prefer your eyeliner to have a bit more intensity, or if you’re going for an evening look, then choose a dark brown eyeliner. Either way, it’s much more flattering and won’t make you look tired or older like black eyeliner does.
This is another one I love to use on fairer complexions. And it looks really gorgeous on blue eyes. Grey eyeliner won’t give you a very dramatic look. So if that’s what you’re after, stick to a dark brown eyeliner. But if you like a more natural, softer look or a daytime look, grey is a really great option for you.
This is a shade that’s so underrated in my opinion. Yet it’s so beautiful to use as an eyeliner. It gives more of an intense look than grey. But it’s still a lot more flattering than black eyeliner. It looks particularly beautiful on brown or green eyes. And it can even make the whites of your eyes look even whiter. It might be a little too intense for some people for a day look, although it can still be very wearable for daytime. But it’s absolutely perfect for nighttime and if you like smokey eyes, try navy instead of black. Give it a try for yourself and you’ll see just how gorgeous a shade it is and how it enhances your eyes much more than a black eyeliner does.
If you love a bit of colour or want to experiment and try out some new colours, you could try shades like purple or green. Purple is an absolutely stunning shade for green eyes and it will really enhance them beautifully. Green eyeliner looks particularly beautiful on hazel or brown eyes. And shades of plum also look amazing on green, brown and hazel eyes.
If you’re a bit unsure about wearing more colourful shades like these ones, you’ll find my tips on how to wear colourful eye makeup helpful. These are simple and easy to do and are still very suitable for daytime.
How to Make Black Eyeliner More Wearable
If you really can’t bear to tear yourself away from your black eyeliner, there are a couple of things you can do to make it more daytime friendly and to give a softer look.
Use a powder eyeliner
Using a black eyeshadow instead of a liquid or pencil eyeliner will give a much softer and more flattering look. This can be in the form of a loose or pressed eyeshadow. Apply it using a very thin eyeliner brush. An angled brush is great for this.
Soften with an eyeliner brush
If you still want to wear a pencil eyeliner, you can soften the look by smudging it with an eyeliner brush. Apply your pencil eyeliner as usual. Then simply use the eyeliner brush to soften the line. This will give a much nicer, softer effect, especially for a daytime look.
Avoid liquid or pencils eyeliners
Both of these consistencies give the darkest, most intense effect. So try to avoid them, especially for daytime. By the way, both of these are actually the hardest types of eyeliner to apply. So that’s another reason to avoid them if you’re a beginner or if you find it hard to apply eyeliner. I’ll talk in a moment about a much simpler alternative that will make you feel like you’re a pro at applying eyeliner. Yes, it really is possible!
Don’t apply eyeliner to your bottom lash line
This is a very common mistake that I see women making. And it’s one of the main reasons that will cause you to look older and more tired. Applying black eyeliner to this area will give the appearance that the eyes are being dragged down, making you look tired. This will also cause fine lines and wrinkles to appear more prominent. So my advice is to avoid it altogether. With that being said, a little bit of colour under the bottom lash line can look really nice and can really enhance the eye area, when done properly. If you are going to do this, make sure to apply a very soft line by applying eyeshadow instead of pencil or liquid eyeliner. Or soft the line using a very soft eyeliner brush. You could even apply a brown, grey or navy shade on this area instead of black and only apply it about 1/3 or maximum 1/2 way across your lashline.
Tip: I actually love to use all kinds of colour eyeshadows as my eyeliner. It’s a great way to give a pop of colour to the eyes but is still daytime appropriate.
Another advantage of using eyeshadow as an eyeliner is that it’s so quick & easy to apply. Plus it’s very forgiving if you make a mistake, unlike, for example, gel or liquid eyeliner. This is just one of the super quick & easy eye makeup techniques I’ll be teaching you how to do at my upcoming Eye Makeup Made Easy Workshop. I’ll also show you some really easy techniques for applying eyeshadow. Plus I’ll share some tips on how to apply eyeliner in even more flattering ways.
Did you find this post helpful? Or do you perhaps know someone who might find these tips helpful? If so, I’d be absolutely delighted if you’d share it with them. Sharing is caring.
And now I’d love to hear from you. Do you wear black eyeliner? And which one of these eyeliner shade suggestions would you like to try instead of black? Not sure which one you should choose? Just send me a message or write in the comments below and I’d be thrilled to help you choose. xo