Beauty Dare: Winged Eyeliner

Winged liner is a staple of glitzy celebs and sulky crooners for good reason: it’s flattering, dramatic, and (surprisingly) easy to master. Depending on how bold you go, it can be retro fab or subtly sexy. Makeup artist Diane da Silva gives us her best tips.

Liner Notes

Not all liners are created equal. If you’re a beginner, start with a gel or cream liner, which will give you more control. As you get more confident, trade up to a liquid liner. See “Birchbox Picks" for our favorites.

Step by Step

Don’t tug at the corner of your eyelid. Simply close the eye and arch that eyebrow like you just heard something veeery interesting — this will pull your eyelid taut and give you a smooth surface to work with. When applying liquid liner, look down into a mirror so that when you blink you don’t smudge the line.

Pick up a little color on the brush. Steady your hand on your cheek and gently press the liner onto the eyelid, as close to your lashes as possible. This makes it easier to get a dark, even line.

Now you have a basic line to work with. Decide how far you want your “wing” to extend and draw a faint guide with the pigment left on your brush.

Add more pigment to your brush and make the line darker. Starting about a quarter of the way from the outer corner of your eyelid, draw a line from your eyelid to the end of your wing, creating a small triangle.

Shade in the triangle to finish your wing!


Don’t forget to look square in the mirror and make sure the liner is going where you want it to go. Correct any mistakes with a little water-based makeup remover and Q-tips.

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