We’ve been seeing a lot of quick makeup looks this season — and we aren’t complaining. Emphasizing only one feature with a strong shot of color while leaving the rest of your face natural is an easy way to elevate your look. One trend celebrity makeup artists are especially fond of this spring is underliner, also referred to as upside down eyeliner. They traced models’ lower lash lines with eyeliner at Jill Stuart and Ulla Johnson. Meanwhile, celebrities like Janelle Monáe, Mandy Moore, and Shay Mitchell, have all been seen rocking the reversed look on the red carpet.
“A great coat can make an entire outfit in the fall or winter, but because summer clothes tend to be simpler and show more skin, pops of color via handbags, jewelry, and makeup can really dress up an outfit,” says makeup artist Andrew Sotomayor. One of the other benefits of bold underliner is that it can be played up or down for every occasion. Draw on a subtle line that’s suitable for daytime or elongate the flick at the outer corner for a fierce cat eye. Either way, the reverse liner adds unexpected edge to an otherwise normal look.
To pull it off, make sure the color really pops against your skin tone. “Eyeliner above the eyes creates lift, whereas eyeliner worn only under the eyes pulls the focus downwards,” cautions Sotomayor. So try shades like teal, emerald, amethyst, red (yes, really), or anything metallic to brighten the eye area. Avoid black liner underneath, as it can change the shape of your eyes and make them appear smaller, he says.
Once you’ve selected the color, the look is super-simple to achieve. “Using a soft pencil, like the new ones from Hard Candy, trace your lower lashline and smudge the color with your fingertip or a small brush,” Sotomayor says. Balance out the look by tracing black liner above the eyes, keeping the rest of your lid completely bare, he adds. Finish with a few sweeps of mascara for long and lifted lashes – and voila!