The Best Eyeliner Looks And Tips For Your Eye Shape

Many steps in your makeup routine are adapted to highlight or alter the look of your cheekbones, jawline, forehead, and nose. We use products such as contour, blush, and highlighter to accentuate our favorite features and cast a shadow on others. However, this is not the only power of makeup. One product — eyeliner — can make a huge difference depending on how you apply it. In conjunction with your eye shape, you can make your eyes look more open, closer, further apart, sleepier, or sultrier.


The first step in changing the appearance of your eyes is to identify what eye shape you have. Once that's decided, you can choose from a variety of eyeliner styles that suit you and your personal style. Eyeliner application is notoriously difficult, so if you're new to the process, don't be afraid to mess up the first couple of times. Keep some makeup remover and a cotton swab handy and have patience; these eyeliner looks will come more naturally with time.

How to determine your eye shape

Determining your eye shape is a process that many find frustrating. The charts available online can be confusing to decipher, as the differences between eye shapes are minimal. One good place to start is with the position of your eyes. Measure the width of one of your eyeballs and then measure the distance between your eyes. If that distance is less than the width of your eye you have close-set eyes, and if it's more, you have wide-set eyes. For some, the width will be about the same which means you have neither.


Overall, the easiest way we've found to figure out what eye shape we have is to simply take a picture of our eyes. Aim to get just your eyes and a bit of your forehead and nose in the photo. Remember to also relax your eyes and face during the picture. Smiling or using the muscles around your eyes can create misleading results. Then, compare your photo to a chart online. After finding the closest match, you can go on to discover the best eyeliner for your eye shape.

Monolid eyes

You'll know that you have monolid eyes if you have little to no crease on your eyelid when your eyes are open. This eye shape has only some flat lid space above the lash line, and it's on the opposite side of the spectrum from the hooded eye shape. If you have these eyes, you likely already know that many makeup tutorials online won't work well for you. Anything that tells you to blend into your crease or follow your crease as a guide will leave you frustrated.


The eyeliner shape that works best on monolid eyes begins at the outer third of the lash line. Pulling the eyeliner too far toward your inner corner can make your eyes look smaller. On the outer corner, draw your eyeliner out and toward your temple to elongate its shape. Don't be afraid to go big and bold with your liner, as this eye shape can look amazing with a thick wing. Alternatively, you could also try the smokey or gradient liner technique if you don't like the sharp lines of a cat eye.

Hooded eyes

The hooded eye shape is quite common, yet many don't realize they have it until they start using eye makeup. The issue that a lot of people have with their hooded eye shape is that after spending several minutes perfecting their eyeshadow and eyeliner, their work is hidden in their creases when they open their eyes. With hooded eyes, you must keep your eyes open during much of your makeup process to prevent this from happening.


Thankfully for us makeup lovers with hooded eyes, we've learned some great tricks over the years to master the perfect wing that isn't warped or hidden by our eye shape. Lovingly known as the batwing liner technique, @slaybyjess on TikTok explains how and why this method works so well. Starting at the edge of your crease, you draw your wing and connect it to your lash line all while your eye is open. You fill in the wing as normal, and once you close your eye, you'll notice a batwing-like shape, hence the name. You can touch up the lines of the shape you created, but be careful not to make it thicker or change your lines. After your wing is finished, you can thinly line your lashes with your eyeliner, and voila, you have the perfect wing for hooded eyes.


Downturned eyes

One way to tell if you have downturned eyes is to hold something straight and thin across your nose bridge, like an uncooked spaghetti noodle. Use your inner corners as a guide to keep it straight. If the outer corners of your eyes sit below that line, you have a downturned shape. Once you've determined that you have this eye shape, you can decide whether you want to accentuate it with downturned eyeliner or mask them with a thin and upturned cat eye.


On TikTok, @emberjohnsonn shows how she makes her downturned eyes look more open and lifted. She starts by drawing her eyeliner on with a line that points up and a little bit past the end of her eyebrow. Then, she connects it with a second line to create the wing and fills it in. Lastly, the TikToker lines her lash line with a thin coat of eyeliner. Some comments below her video indicate that they prefer to accentuate their downturned eyes. If this sounds like you, try following a tutorial for "puppy dog eyeliner" by @clownmakeupmua. Use your lash line as a guide and draw your eyeliner past the eye to create the top of your wing. Then draw a straight line from your outer corner to finish the wing shape. Fill it in and consider adding more liner to your inner corner or under your eye. From here, decide which technique is your favorite.


Round eyes

Round eyes can also benefit from puppy dog eyeliner. You'll know you have this eye shape if you can see the whites of your eyes below or above your irises when your eyes are open. They have a distinct round shape and are sometimes referred to as doe eyes. Because round eyes are not usually downturned, this eyeliner technique works to elongate the eye instead of dragging it down. This is made apparent on TikTok by @itsalmondmilkhunni.


Most of the time, the classic cat eye doesn't work on this eye shape because it causes the wing to look rounded and less sharp. However, if you prefer not to use the puppy dog eyeliner technique because it makes your eyes look droopy, you can put a twist on it. Start by drawing a line almost straight out from the corner of your eye but slightly pointed up so you can make the triangle shape you need. Connect the line to the outer third of your lash line and fill in the wing. Avoid putting any liner below to keep your eyes from turning downward. The final product should elongate your eye without causing the line to curl up or float down.

Almond eyes

Almond-shaped eyes are the catch-all of eye shapes. Basically, if your eye shape doesn't match any of the other options, you are likely going to be lumped into this somewhat confusing category. No real almonds are exactly the same size or shape, and the same is true for almond eyes. Still, having a variation of this shape is far from a bad thing. The almond eye shape is known for being able to pull off a wide array of makeup looks. The basic definition of this shape is that it has a crease, no whites are showing above or below the iris, and it's longer in width rather than round.


Whether you like the classic cat eye, fun graphic looks, or thick and exaggerated eyeliner on almond eyes, there is a way for you to make it work. User @kamgregory on TikTok explains how she achieves the perfect wing by pulling her liner outward instead of upward. She advises other almond-eyed people to connect this line with another that meets the lash line in the middle of the eye. Don't forget to fill it in. One tip some other beauty gurus use is to map out this look first with small dots to make it easier. Also, consider lining your lash line or even creating a small triangular shape in your inner corner to jazz it up even further.

Round-almond eyes

This shape is a combination of round and almond eyes, and it's an even more versatile eye shape when it comes to eyeliner. Usually, this type benefits from not having a hood that disfigures the wing, as well as a slightly oval shape that elongates the eye. It's great for creating all the viral eyeliner looks such as siren eyes, fox eyes, cat eyes, and puppy dog eyeliner looks depending on the mood you're in.


Before breaking out your eyeliner pen or pencil, first, decide what you want to accentuate. If you want something sultry, try a smokey cat eye or a sharp siren eye. Or, if you want to make your eyes look even more round and doll-like, you can try a smaller wing or downturned eyeliner. The world of eyeliner is your oyster when you have this eye shape. You might even consider lining your upper and lower waterline or smudging your liner beneath your eye for a grungy look.

Upturned eyes

Upturned eyes are essentially the opposite of downturned eyes. With the spaghetti noodle trick we described before, if the outer corners of your eyes come above the line you have upturned eyes. Because many eyeliner techniques aim to lift the eyes upward, they won't work very well with this eye shape. Another challenge with upturned eyes is that they're normally on the smaller side. For this reason, you don't necessarily want to go too heavy with your eyeliner looks, as they can cause your eyes to appear even smaller. It's usually recommended to keep your wings small and your lines fairly thin.


Kendall Jenner is a good example of a person with upturned eyes. She rarely uses eyeliner and tends to stick to cool eyeshadow looks with lighter colors. When she wears eyeliner, she typically only uses it to line her lower waterline. If you have this eye shape, try using brown eyeliner and follow the edge of your lash line to create a small outward flick. Shape it into a wing and see how you feel about the application. Then, if you like it, you may have a newfound tool in your toolkit that will have every other person with upturned eyes jealous.

Wide-set eyes

You can have wide-set eyes that are round, almond, hooded, or monolid. The position of your eyes has little to do with their shape, but everything to do with your eyeliner placement. Normally, wide-set eyes look best with more intense eyeliner looks with darker colors. They can handle more eyeliner, especially across the lash line and in the inner corners. Using techniques like this tends to pull the eyes closer together.


However, those with wide-set eyes can also choose to accentuate them instead of making them look like they aren't as wide as they really are. Keeping your darker eyeshadow colors and eyeliner on the outer third of your eye will keep that distance and extend the outer portion. Try to play around often with popular eyeliner trends to see what you're comfortable with. Thick wings, fun shapes, and lots of colors have no limits when you have naturally wide-set eyes.

Close-set eyes

Close-set eyes, which can be determined by comparing the width of your eyeball to the width between your eyes, are common among people around the world. Usually, makeup professionals recommend that those with this eye shape keep their eyeliner wing on the outer corners of their eyes and brighten the inner corners with a light eyeshadow or highlighter.


Still, you can play around with almost any type of wing shape when you have close-set eyes (depending on your eye shape of course). TikTok influencer @inga_terner shows how to create a large wing without making her eyes look smaller or closer together. She also presents the worst way of completing the look where she uses lots of eyeliner on her lash line. This definitely pulls her eye toward the center of her face, which looks odd compared to the other side where she skipped the application above her lashes.

Deep-set eyes

Deep-set eyes are different from hooded eyes, but the best application of eyeliner is mostly the same. Deep-set eyes can be described as positioned deeper in the skull. Therefore, your forehead — and sometimes your cheekbones — appears more pronounced. Because the eyes are pushed back further, there is typically a natural hood that covers much of the lid space, but this isn't always the case.


Batwing eyeliner pointed toward the temples is often the way to go with deep-set eyes. Always keep your eyes open while applying your eyeliner and avoid dark eyeshadow in your crease unless you want to accentuate the natural sunken look of your eyes. Some people like to make their eyes look even more deeply set with a Tim-Burton-character-esque look, as shown by @zeececilia on TikTok, who has deep-set round eyes that are perfect for this style. Alternatively, you can try to keep the darkest parts of your eye makeup around your lash line. Use a tight-lining technique, plenty of mascara, and a small wing on the outer corners of your eyes to snatch them into place.

Protruding eyes

"Abbott Elementary" creator, writer, and star Quinta Brunson is a great example of a person with a protruding eye shape. On Instagram, most of her eye makeup looks do two things. They highlight the middle and inner corners of her eyes, and they elongate the outer corners with a wing or false lashes. The eyeliner wing is never pointed up toward her eyebrow, which would cause her eyes to look rounder. Instead, it points out toward her temples in a nearly straight line.


Others with protruding eyes can take notes from Brunson, who uses her natural eye shape to her advantage, making them look purposely dramatic and fierce. She draws attention away from the center of her face and pulls the drama into the outer part of her crease, often with a dramatic wing or darkly colored eyeshadow. You can mimic this with a dark smokey eye, a glitter cut crease with a wing, or a shining under-eye inspired by Korean beauty.

Ultimately, no matter your face shape, there are tips and looks that make everyone and every eye shine, so whether you're reaching for a glitter crease, a dramatic wing, or something in between, let this serve you into eye makeup slay-hood.