How to Apply Winged Eyeliner

Struggling with applying a sharp winged liner? No worries, friend, I am here to help! I’ve been applying winged liner for a long time now (and oh if you could only see the wing I was rocking on the first day of Junior year in High School 🤦‍♀️😂… I believe my best friend still has a photo of us that morning getting ready together somewhere lol).
I personally have gone through phases where I could apply my liner in one swipe and other phases where maybe I haven’t worn winged liner in a long time and am having trouble keeping my lines straight. No matter what phase or stage of learning you may be going through, don’t worry, these tips and tricks will help beginners to advanced makeup wearers, even if it is just a memory refresh on the topic!

Tips and Tricks

  1. Keep your expectations realistic! We aren’t perfect, our faces aren’t symmetrical, and our work will never be perfectly symmetrical either. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself! With practice, your work will eventually appear symmetrical to the naked eye, and even if it isn’t, who cares! As long as you are happy with your work, rock that makeup! Reminding ourselves of this can help keep any frustration at bay that may occur while applying our winged liner.
  2. Keep your tools thin to get precise, sharp lines. Here are some tips and suggestions based on the different type of product or tool you may be using. If you are using a pencil, make sure you give it a good sharpening before you begin. When you have a sharp point on your eye pencil, it will allow for a more precise application. When using a gel liner, I prefer to use a thin, stiff angled brush. Using a brush that is more on the stiff side and does not have a lot of give will allow for straight, sharp lines as well as allowing you to get as close as possible to your lashline. My product of choice is a liquid liner. I typically use one that comes in a pen form just because I like the convenience of not dipping my brush into the product. I love the tapered brush or felt tip that comes in a pen style liquid liner because with a super fine tip that gets wider as you get closer to the base, it makes it easy to create and apply different components of our winged liner.
  3. That brings us to our third tip… Let your tool do the work! This may seem like a no brainer, but when we fight the shape of our tool, it often leads to mediocre results! Utilize the different thicknesses and angles of your tool to most effectively apply your winged liner. I personally use the fine point of my liquid liner to create the outer edges of my wing and the line along my lash line, then push it down slightly so most of the brush is lying flat on my skin to connect my lines. This helps complete the shape and do most of the filling in work in one step! See the video under the “Application” subheading to get a real time example of what I mean!
  4. When applying your winged liner, keep your eyes open and hands off! Tugging and stretching your skin will distort the finished product and can create gaps – we don’t want that!
  5. Start small, get your shape laid out, and then if you want it to be thicker or longer, add more to it using the lines you already have set in place as a guide to gradually build on.
  6. Keep practicing!


I decided to film a little mini tutorial to add to this blog post because I totally understand being a visual learner! Also, some things can be hard to explain and I am doing my best here, but I want to make sure this is actually useful, informative, and that you learn something from reading my blog post! If the video is having trouble loading on your device, click here to view it!

  1. First, I am using the fine tip of my liquid liner to create an outline of where I want my wing placed. I am starting out a little smaller than what I want to end up with because I know after I refine it later on it willl end up slightly bigger.
  2. Notice that I only bring the wing in onto my lash line about 1/3 of the way. This is because I then use the fine tip starting at my inner corner and will connect the two lines, following the natural curve of my eye. It is important to follow the natural shape of your eye when applying liner onto your eyelid for a more flawless and simple application.
  3. Periodically, I pause and look at my work thus far from different angles to see what needs attention and act accordingly. Slow and steady wins the race, my friend!
  4. Now that I have my outline set, I begin to fill in any empty spaces with liner and build up the opacity of the color to my liking.
  5. Let the final step of refining begin! This is when I will go back over the actual wing of the liner and use the fine tip of the brush to make sure my lines are super straight and sharp, I will also build on it to either lengthen or thicken the wing to my liking. As I glide my liner down toward my lash line, I gently press it against my skin so that the majority of the brush is laying on my skin – this helps me utilize the taper of my brush to refine the angle of my wing while simultaneously filling in any bare spots on my wing.

And my friend, that is it! You have successfully learned to apply winged liner! If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment or get in touch with me for further help if you need it! I am always happy to share anything I know & learn with you. I would love to see your winged liner looks over on Instagram, if you do one after reading this post, please tag me in it so I can see @hellogiarose!
Happy makeup-ing!!

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