Eyeliner for beginners (or busy people or lazy people or anyone who’s over winged liner)

Urban Decay 24/7 Eye Pencil; Rimmel Scandaleyes Liner; Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips Liner; MUA Gel Eye Liner; Pixi Lid & Line

Since my last few posts have been longer and a bit more technical, I’m going to try my best to make this one short and snappy. Wish me luck.

Let’s talk about eyeliner today. Now I am definitely, definitely, definitely not polished or advanced with eyelining. I’ve tried my hand several times at winged liner, but I always found it so difficult to achieve a nice, crisp wing on my hooded eyes. The few times I kinda was able to do it, I didn’t particularly care for the drama it brought to my face. Perhaps it’s because I’m not into overly precise makeup in general, but I’m really not too fussed about winged liner anymore.

But I’ve always loved the effect that eyeliner gives you, so I utilize a certain method that completely works with my limited skill set. I call it “lazy” eyeliner (and I mean that in the best possible way), but it’s also great for those starting out with makeup or for those who are busy rushing out the door in the morning to work or school.

What I Do

The whole idea with my “lazy method” is that the liner doesn’t have to be applied evenly or perfectly at all. Why? Because you’re going to blend it into whatever you have on underneath, whether it be another eye shadow or a primer. The effect that this method gives you is depth and definition along the lash line, but with a subtle smokiness due to the blending. I think this is a particularly flattering way to wear eyeliner for most people. The blending is the key here, because it hides any mistakes you may have made during application.

Think about it. Applying eye liner is trying to draw a straight line on a surface that’s not straight. That’s challenging. Let’s take all the short-cuts we can!

So here is what I do. Just two simple steps.

Step 1 – I gently (I mean gently) pull the outer corner of my eye taut to smooth out the skin, and apply the eye liner in very small strokes right as close to my lash line as possible. I usually start in the middle of my eye and work towards the end of my eye, but you can work any way you want of course.

Step 2 – After the eyeliner has been laid down, I then take a little detailer brush or pencil brush and blend it over the liner to make it appear a little less like a line and a little more smudgey and smokey. Voila!

This method gives me the effect that I want from eyeliner (i.e. a darker lash line) but takes away all the difficulty and frustration that can accompany application.

I used a dark powder eye shadow here to achieve this hazy liner effect. I don’t bother to wet the brush but you certainly could to get a more dramatic effect.
A more close up view

If you’d like to see more photos of this method, go over to my previous post about eye shadow application here and scroll down to the three eye shadow looks.

What I Like to Use

I’m completely partial to either eyeliner pencils (retractable ones are the most ideal) or using a dark powder shadow on a small detailer brush and pushing it into the lash line. I lack the steady hand and skill associated with liquid liners, and my brief flirtation with gels ended years ago. For the most part these days I use powders.

But if I’m using a pencil, I prefer a formula that goes on creamy, gives me a little playtime and then sets in place for the day. My top favorites are pictured in the banner image to this post. I’ll quickly touch on each now, from left to right in the photo.

  • Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Pencils have been a staple in my collection for years. I have several colors and I can’t imagine not having them. The color pictured above is Torch.
  • Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Pencil in Taupe has also been in my collection forever. This is slightly waxy formula that goes on smoothly but then sets.
  • Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Eyeliner Trio in Warm Nude Eyes. This set comes with a black, a chocolate brown (pictured above) and a copper liner. I absolutely love them all. They’re retractable (yes!) so extremely easy to use, and the formula is awesome.
  • MUA Professional Intense Color Gel Eye Liner in Emerald is so beautiful! Awesome color payoff, blends like a dream and doesn’t move (at least not on me). What else could you want?
  • Pixi Beauty Lid & Line in Smokey Mink has an entire lining/smudging system built into one product. One end has a waxy pencil to line, the other end has a little sponge to blend with, and then you unscrew the middle of the component to reveal a powder eye shadow for even more smokey effect. So cool!

What are your favorite eyeliners? Do you have any tips or tricks for application? I’d love to know!

xo, Erica


Author: Erica

Hi! I’m Erica, a makeup enthusiast based outside of NYC. I discovered my love of cosmetics back in 2011 when I started watching simple tutorials on YouTube. It was a revelation to me that with just a simple few swipes of mascara or dabs of blush, you could transform into a more enhanced version of yourself. My obsession has not abated over the years, but instead has grown stronger as the beauty industry has gone from strength to strength. After graduating from business school in 2018, I decided to finally share my thoughts and opinions on all things cosmetics and this is where ‘We are glamerus’ was born. I share my musings on a bi-weekly basis on everything from my holy grail products and preferred application techniques, to the latest trends overtaking the beauty world. I hope you enjoy! xo

4 thoughts on “Eyeliner for beginners (or busy people or lazy people or anyone who’s over winged liner)”

  1. Great post ! There is something to be said about a diffused eyeliner, softer and more natural. Having said that I do like a winged liner myself and stick to my Stila black and brown liquid pens. I feel the little lift of a winged liner lifts the eye in a most flattering way. Don’t get me wrong I am not into the overly dramatic super winged out line but just a little flick outward . 🙂

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