Underlining Is Back From The Early Aughts And Grungier Than Ever

Switch up your go-to makeup look with the underliner trend. This year is all about having fun with your makeup, and accentuating your eyes is a huge part of that. "Recent makeup trends have been all about bold and dramatic eyes with a natural face," celebrity makeup artist Jillian Dempsey tells Popsugar.

If you're wondering just what underliner is, chances are you're too young to remember the '90s when underliner was a part of almost everyone's makeup routine. Rooted in grunge and punk looks, underliner has found its way into mainstream makeup looks, and today, you can rock it no matter how edgy or glamorous you want your makeup to be. Underliner is essentially pencil or eyeshadow applied to your lower lash line, and while it suits anyone, it's particularly great for those with hooded eyes. If you're looking for some inspiration on how to execute underliner, we've got you covered! From drama and glitter to minimalism and subtlety — there's a perfect underliner look for everyone.

Sharp black underliner

One of the most classic ways to create the underliner look is to use black eyeshadow, or pencil in your waterline as well as your lower lash line and slightly underneath it. Optionally, you can create a tiny wing at the ends of your eyes, and if you have any eyeliner on your upper lashline, connect the wing with it. The key to this look is to keep the edges relatively sharp — you don't want to blend the line at all.

Subtle purple underliner

Purple is one of those colors that looks amazing with any eye color, which makes it a perfect choice for underliner. If black is too harsh, purple will give you the same amount of drama and boldness but with a rich pop of color. To ensure the color remains bright and lasts all day, use a purple pencil, and then set it with some purple eyeshadow.

Classic brown underliner

Even though we love advocating having fun with makeup and trying out bold colors, picking a timeless shade that is safe and looks stunning is totally okay. The one person who needs to be happy with how your makeup looks is you! If you want to only dip your toes in the underliner trend, consider creating the underliner look with your favorite brown eye pencil.

Hot pink underliner

Pink is one of the biggest colors this year, so makeup in any shade is super on-trend. And even though most of us would immediately think of lipstick or blush, playing around with pink eyeshadow isn't as scary as many might think. In fact, creating a pink underliner is much easier than creating a blended pink eyeshadow look.

Cherry red underliner

One color that is even scarier than pink when it comes to eye makeup is red. Since you don't want to look like your waterline is bleeding, avoid applying red to it. Instead, apply red eyeshadow right underneath your lower lashline for a fun and unexpected look. Optional but hella cute: two cherries at the end of your eye.

Vibrant royal blue underliner

Royal blue is a color that looks incredible with brown eyes and deeper skin tones. Of course, this doesn't mean that you can't rock it if you don't have those features. Royal blue underliner is the perfect way to add some color to a regular brown smokey eye and easily elevate it.

Glamorous glittery underliner

Even though underliner has its origin in '80s punk and '90s grunge, that doesn't mean it can't be glamorous and glittery. To recreate this look, use black eyeliner and eyeshadow to enhance your lower lash line, and then dab your favorite glitter onto only the middle part of it.

Bright orange underliner

Bright orange and gold are a color combo that always looks stunning, which is why these colors are the perfect choice for an eye look. Apply a subtle golden eyeshadow all over your lid, and use an orange one to create a dramatic underliner look. To finish off the makeup look, we recommend picking lipstick in the same orange shade.

Smudged black underliner

A smudged black underliner is probably the most classic way to rock this trend. After all, this is the punk and grunge way, and it will make you look like you've just spent hours having fun at a concert. The lower you take the black eyeshadow, the more dramatic the look will be — so if you want to rock this kind of underliner in a more subtle way, keep the smudged line thinner.

Glittery blue underliner

Silver and gold glitter are timeless choices, but if you want to lean into the '80s-inspired disco look that is perfect for a fun night out, we recommend blue glitter. Since blue is opposite orange on the color wheel, adding a dash of orange to your eyelid will perfectly enhance the glittery blue underliner.

Stunning icy blue underliner

Light blue eyeshadow will make you look like an ice princess, which is why this look is a perfect choice for colder weather. But, of course, this rule is meant to be broken. To ensure the blue color pops even more, start out by applying a white pencil to the area underneath your lower lash line, and then go in with the blue on top of it.

Halfway underliner

While applying a dark color underneath your entire lower lash line looks great on some, others look better with adding it just to their outer half. This is different based on your eye and face shape, which is why it's best to test this out by doing it halfway on one eye and all the way on the other — then see what you like.

Edgy neon green underliner

If you have green eyes, consider picking a shade of green that matches them and using it to create the underliner look. If you want to enhance your eyes even more, go for orange eyeshadow on your eyelid, as it will beautifully contrast the green. While you can keep the green just on your lash line — we recommend dragging it out into a dramatic wing.

Eye-catching blue and purple underliner

Using one bold color for the underliner look is great, but using multiple colors is even better. Even though the above example showcases purple and blue, you can recreate this look with any two colors you like. Apply one with a pencil to your waterline and the other with an eyeshadow underneath your lower lash line.

Funky teal underliner

Teal is definitely an underrated color when it comes to makeup — it works well with all eye and skin colors, and it's a stunning shade to rock during summer. Even though you can keep the rest of your makeup simple, you can also pair this look with some coral lipstick and blush.

Dark green underliner

Another way to add a hint of color to your eye makeup without going for super bright shades is to opt for a dark green. Add it you your lower lash line for a sultry and unexpected twist to a classic smokey eye. While you can choose a matte green, picking a glittery one will make your eyes sparkle even more.

Bold inverted liner

A lot of underliner looks combine classic eyeliner on the eyelid with eyeshadow and pencil on your lower lash line. However, you can also opt to make the underliner more dramatic, hence creating an inverted eyeliner look. Make sure you tightline your upper lash line to seamlessly connect the look, but keep your eyelid in a lighter shade. Create a long straight wing, and make sure you add some black pencil to your inner corners for that beautiful fox-eye look.

Dramatic purple underliner

Since purple is a color that suits most people, here's a more dramatic way you can use it to create the underliner look. Start out by adding a black pencil to your waterline, and then blend its edge out with a deep purple eyeshadow. Feel free to make the underliner thicker, especially if you plan on forgoing any eyeshadow on your eyelid.

Brown underliner with a black dot

A subtle but fun way to explore underliner is to pick a neutral color like brown or gray, but then add a dramatic black dot to the center of your lower lash line. This is the perfect example of having fun with makeup up — and it's a super easy look to recreate.

Baby pink and gray underliner

If you're going for a smokey eye but want it to be a bit more unexpected, consider picking pink, gray, and black for it. Use the pink eyeshadow on the inner half and the gray one on the outer half of your lower lash line — and make sure to seamlessly blend the transition between them. To finish it off, use a black pencil to darken your waterline.

Fun rainbow underliner

There are so many fun colors to choose from when it comes to eye makeup, and on some days, making a decision is hard. If you can't pick which color you want to go with, consider doing a fun rainbow underliner look. Make sure you blend the transitions nicely, and you'll be left with a colorful and bold makeup look.

Copper underliner

While you can rock copper eyeshadow no matter what hair color you have, this shade looks particularly good on those with copper hair and blue eyes. Copper is also an easy color to blend, which makes it super easy to apply all over your eyelid and your lower lash line.

Silver underliner

If you love silver eye looks, adding some silver eyeshadow to your lower lash line is a great way to make your eyes sparkle. While you can rock a silver eyeshadow on its own, you can also deepen it with a black one for a more sultry and smoky look.

Vampy coral underliner

If you love leaning into gothic makeup — or going full goth — playing around with orange, coral, and red eyeshadow is a fun way to make your makeup vampier. Ensure that the underliner is well-blended and thick enough so that the eye look is dramatic, and pair it with a darker lip for some balance.

Dark gray underliner

If you find that black tends to look too harsh on your eyes, consider going for a dark or medium gray eyeshadow. An underliner look in this color is just as bold and daring as a black one but slightly softer and more forgiving — especially when blended. Gray is perfect for those who want a softer look but don't want the warmth a brown tends to give.

Soft brown underliner

If all these underliner looks are still too intimidating for you to try, take baby steps by choosing a soft brown eyeshadow that you'll (using a very light hand) add to your lower lash line. If you end up liking the look of soft brown underliner, give some slightly bolder looks a chance to incorporate colorful makeup into your routine.