Winged liner can be one of the most challenging aspects of makeup. It’s taken me ages to get the point that I’m at now and I’m still quite slow at applying it. Nevertheless, I’d rather be slow and get it looking right than quick and have it looking messy. With that in mind I have a system going that I think will be helpful to anyone who’s starting out with winged liner or still finding it to be a struggle. You’ll need 3 things: a black eyeshadow, a black gel liner and a thin angled brush.

Step 1. This is more of a non-stop. Don’t curl your eyelashes or apply mascara before doing your liner. It’s much easier to get in the nooks and crannies without thick, curled lashes in the way.

Step 2. Take a light dusting of black eyeshadow on your angled brush and trace out the shape of your liner. This allows you to really clarify the shape you’re going to be solidifying. Unlike gel, shadow is easy to remove, so just keep playing around with the shadow until you get exactly the right shape.

A couple of points to note here:
a) I used to have trouble with the shape of my liner until I realized part of the problem was I was flicking up too early. Make sure you’re reaching the outer corner of your eye before flicking up.

b) It’s easiest to get a clean shape if you avoid the crease of your eye. If your crease sits quite low, you might find that it looks better to wing more outwards, rather than upwards.

I’ve started my flick too early and winged up quite a bit here. It looks fine when I’m looking down…

…but when I’m looking up you can see it appears slightly disjointed in the way that it’s hitting my crease.

Step 3. Take your same angled brush and dip it in your gel pot. Since you’ve already perfected your shape with powder, all you have to do is trace over what you’ve mapped out.

Another note: If your eyelids are fluttery, try applying your liner with your eyes half open.

Step 4. The previous step may have been easier said that done. If you’ve got any significant wobbles ain’t nothing wrong with grabbing a pointed cotton bud and some micellar water and cleaning up any mistakes. Micellar waters are great for this because they don’t leave any oily residue that can smudge your makeup after.

Step 5. There may be a tiny bit of shakiness left to the shape of your line now. The easiest way to fix that is to go back to your powder. Take your angled brush again (a clean one may be in order at this point), dip it in your black powder and smooth over the edges of your liner. It will just soften everything, making any imperfections in the gel less noticeable.

  • Thanks for the advice. Love your blog!


  • This is such great advice! I've never been able to get my winged liner perfect but I'll have to try your tips when I go for that look next – thank you so much!

    Bethan | Thought from Beth x

  • This is great advice – it took me so long to master the winged look, and even now I occasionally need to tidy it up with a cotton bud. Now, if I could only get them perfectly symmetrical…

    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn

  • These are such good tips, I love using eyeliner but I definitely need to get the wing right!

    Jodie // La Lune Song

  • Haha yeah. I still find that challenging, mostly because my eyes are such different shapes.

  • The third tip has literally changed my eyeliner flicking life! I tried reaching the outer corner of my eyes before flicking up this morning and it made such a massive difference..! Thank you 🙂 I use the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner and it is pretty amazing for creating flicks, I just can't be without it.. Don't know what I'm gonna do when I run out as it's not available where I live! x


  • Wing liner is the bane of my makeup life, i flick too early and then when i look up it doesn't sexy or feline but like I made a mistake, haha….back to the drawing board 😉

    Hanh x | hanhabelle

  • I have quite droopy eyelids too, which is why I have to keep my flick low down. I enjoy people that can flick it wherever they want.

  • I know that feeling. I still sometimes flick up too early and think "dang it, you know better woman!"

  • Awesome!! I really want to try that liner too. I like that it's an actual brush instead of a nib thing. I find those nibs so hard to control.

  • I find that the brush itself makes a massive difference. I picked one of those bent brushes up recently and it's made things SO much easier, especially if your hand or brush handle tends to get in the way of what you can see. You can see it in action in my review here: http://thebeautylocker.com/2014/12/07/review-laura-mercier-angled-eye-liner-brush/

  • Such a useful post- I've struggled for aaages with winged liner, these tips are life saving!
    love love love your blog xx

    rosyannajane.blogspot.co.uk // http://www.bloglovin.com/annatranter

  • You're gawjus darling!

  • This is so helpful, I'm terrible at winged eyeliner but your steps are really good and I can't wait to try this out tomorrow morning x