Eye Makeup Step by Step A Complete Guide for The Everyday Person With Pictures

Learning to put on eye makeup is a rewarding experience. Not only does it give you increased control over your daily look, but it also adds some tricks to your makeup bag. If you’re not an eye makeup master, the easiest way to master the art of eye makeup is to learn it step-by-step. In addition to allowing you to get comfortable with each layer of eye makeup – from primer to liquid eyeliner – moving step-by-step can teach you tricks and hacks you wouldn’t otherwise learn.

How to Apply Eye Makeup Step-by-Step

Whether you’re an eye makeup newbie or an experienced professional looking to enhance your bag of tricks, here are eleven steps to get a beautiful eye look every time.

1. Prepare Your Face

Before you can do anything with your eye makeup, you want to make your skin look beautiful. In addition to making your eye makeup pop, preparing your skin also helps your makeup stay put and helps your look go from day to night.

To prep your skin, wash your face with a cleanser of your choice. Pat dry, and apply moisturizer all over your face and down your neck. Allow this to dry completely before moving onto the next step.

Once your moisturizer has dried, apply makeup primer. Typically a light gel or cream formula, primer helps your makeup glide on flawlessly and ensures it stays put throughout the day. Next, smooth foundation all over your face and slightly down your jaw and neck line.

Keep in mind that the type of foundation you choose for this look will make a big difference in how your eye makeup eventually looks. If you're going for a dramatic eye look, choose a matte, full-coverage foundation.

This will help your skin look flawless an airbrushed, which will set off your eye makeup that much more. Remember that blending your foundation is essential, so you may want to use a foundation brush or an angled sponge to get the coverage you desire. Layer the foundation for additional coverage.

During this step, you’ll also want to contour your face according to your face shape. Here’s a graphic to help you determine which face shape you have, and how to apply highlighter and foundation accordingly:

2. Prime Your Eyes

Next, you'll want to prime your eyes to receive eye makeup. Using a small foundation brush, apply eye primer from your lash line to your brow bone on the upper lid. If you don't have an eye primer, you can use either a concealer or a neutral cream eyeshadow as your base.

No matter what you choose to use, ensure your primer dries completely before you move onto the next phase.

3. Prep and Fill in Your Eyebrows

The next step is to prepare your eyebrows for your look. Like your skin, your eyebrows have a significant impact on how your eye makeup eventually looks, and doing them right can make your style cleaner and more dramatic.

If your brows are well-contained, you might just need to pluck stray hairs here and there to get them looking beautiful.

Then fill in your brows. In addition to making your own makeup look polished, this helps your whole face look cleaned up and fresh. To finish your brows, use an eyebrow gel that matches your hair color.

Using fast, upward strokes, start at the inner corner of your eyebrow and work toward the outer corner. If your brows are already full and dark, you can use a clear gel to simply set them in place and help them hold their shape throughout the day.

While most people think that brows aren't a critical part of an eye look, they act like the icing on the cake. Whereas clean, defined brows can make your face look pulled together, messy brows can drag down your entire look.

4. Sweep on Some Eyeshadow

Next, you want to apply your base eyeshadow. For this, choose a shimmery neutral shade and apply it along your upper lid and into the crease with an eyeshadow brush. Using a sweeping motion, extend the shadow up toward the brow bone.

Next, bring the shadow into the inner corner of your eye, along your nose. This will help catch the light and make you look more awake. It can also help “open up” narrow or small eyes. If you have dark skin, use a brown shade like champagne or tan. Whatever you choose, ensure that it has some shimmer so it reflects light.

5. Add Your Secondary Shade

Next, you'll want to add the second shade of eyeshadow. For a look like this, a color like slate gray is ideal. Using an eyeshadow brush, apply the shade from the inner corner of your eye to the crease and outer corner.

For extra drama, use a lighter gray on the inner corner of the eye and a darker shade as you move out towards the outer edge. This has the added benefit of making small eyes look larger and adding more drama to your look once it’s finished.

6. Add a Coat of Black

Next, use a clean eyeshadow brush to apply some black eyeshadow to the lid. Starting at the midsection of the upper lash line, draw a block of dark shadow up to the crease. Then, using the same brush, blend the black into the gray surrounding it and into the crease. When you're done with the step, the gray and black should mingle for an intense, flattering look.

7. Blend Your Entire Eye

Next, you'll take your blending one step further. Using a clean eyeshadow brush, start in the outer corner of the eye and move your hand and small, tight circles until you reach the inner corner. Using strokes upward, blend the shadow seamlessly up into the crease of your eye and just above it. Move back and forth across the lid until the shadow is blended seamlessly.

The purpose of this is to mingle the grey and black to create an ombre, smoky eye. Instead of blending to change the shape of the eyeshadow you’ve applied, you should simply blend it to mingle the colors and create a sexy shade.

8. Add Liquid Eyeliner

Next, you'll want to start building up the drama of the eye with liquid eyeliner. Using your favorite brand of black eyeliner, draw a line from the inner corner of your upper lid to the outer corner. Follow the lash line closely the whole time and rest your hand on your cheek for a more flawless look. Here are a few tips to ensure your liquid eyeliner comes out beautifully:

• Use an Eyeliner with a Marker Tip.

Today, liquid eyeliner comes in many different forms. Instead of choosing an option that has a brush for application, go for one that offers a marker tip. This is a cleaner and more precise way to use liquid eyeliner, and it will be easier if you're a beginner.

• Start in the Middle of the Lash Line.

If you're nervous about getting your liquid eyeliner to come out correctly, start in the middle of the lash line and use short strokes to draw the line outward. Once you've taken the color to the outer corner of the eye, go back to the middle of the lash line and use the same strokes to draw the line in toward the nose. Think of drawing a dotted line and then connecting the space between the dots. This makes the application more precise and helps make it less intimidating, as well.

• Bring the Tip of the Cat Eye up Toward the Outer Edge of the Eyebrow.

To add some extra drama to your look, bring the edge of the cat eye up and towards the outer edge of your eyebrow. While you don't want to go too far with the tip, taking it up to the line of your eye crease is ideal. If you want a fuller and more dramatic line, draw a triangle in the outer corner of your eye and then fill it in with short, quick strokes of your marker tip.

• For Additional Drama, Line Your Bottom Lashes.

To make your eyes even more seductive, use the same method described above to line your lower lashes. Connect this wingtip with the cat eye on your upper lid.

• Lock Your Liquid Eyeliner in Place.

To make your liquid eyeliner stay put, go over it with a black, waterproof eye pencil or a black powdered eyeshadow. Both will help lock the eyeliner in place and prevent it from wearing off as the day or night goes on.

9. Add False Lashes

Once you've finished your eyeshadow and liquid eyeliner, you'll want to finish the work with some false eyelashes. Although you could just put on mascara, false eyelashes add some extra drama to the eye and help you look more polished. While you can break the bank on false lashes, you don't need to. Falsies are available at most drug stores and come in a selection of lengths and volumes.

For best results, choose some that look natural and match the color of your eyelashes.

Here are some tips to apply them:

• Wait After Applying the Glue.

Most falsies use glue to adhere to your lash line. After applying a thin line of glue to your upper lash line, don't put the lashes on immediately. Instead, wait about half a minute for the glue to get as tacky as possible. Once this has happened, start pressing the base of the lashes firmly into the glue.

• Start at The Inner Corner.

Using a pair of tweezers, place the false lashes as close to your lash line as you can. Starting at the inner corner of the eye, press the lashes down into your lash line, moving toward the outer corner. Be sure to set the lashes back a bit from your tear duct, so you don't accidentally narrow your eyes.

• Trim the Lashes to Fit Your Natural Lashes.

Sometimes, false eyelashes are much longer than your natural lashes. In this situation, you'll want to trim the lashes to fit. Use a pair of small, sharp scissors and move slowly, so as not to trim your natural lashes.

• Curl Your Lashes and Apply Mascara.

Once the falsies have set, use an eyelash curler to curl both your lashes and the fake lashes for 30 seconds. Then, apply a single layer of black mascara to help the lashes stick together.

10. Set Your Face

To ensure that the look you've just worked so hard to create stays put, use a setting spray all over your face. Available at most drug stores, the setting sprays work to hold your makeup on and prevents running, creasing, and fading during the day.

To apply setting spray properly, hold the can about a foot away from your face and spray it in a back-and-forth pattern. Close your eyes and keep your hair off your face as you complete the process. Allow the setting spray to dry for about 30 seconds to a minute before you head out the door!

Easy Eye Makeup Step-by-Step

If you’ve always found eye makeup intimidating, those days are over. Even if you’re a makeup newbie, this step-by-step guide can help you master a beautiful eye look with minimal effort. By walking you through everything from how to prepare your face to how to prime your eyes for easier makeup application, this guide seeks to help you learn the different steps of a beautiful eye look and master it in your own life. As you get more comfortable with this process, you can swap out colors and products for a more unique look.

If you have any questions, feel free to drop a message in the comments section.