Eyeliner: To line, or not to line … that is the question

Eyeliner is one of the easiest and most flattering ways to add definition just your eyes, but your entire face. However as we get older (and smarter!) the way to do this needs to change.

For many women, black eyeliner all around the eyes is a go-to look. It’s also a habit that’s as hard to break as coffee! Black can be a little harsh on the face, and a few tweaks can update your look to make it not only more flattering, but also more modern.

As an aside: Zöe Foster Blake, unquestionably the Go To beauty authority in Australia for young women was recently quoted in the Sydney Morning Herald saying the same thing as we say in Beauty Dossier - ditch the black!

So, if you are a black eyeliner addict, on a few days when you are at home, try the following and see how you feel in it. Initially, you might feel naked! After a few days, and a few comments, it will begin to feel like the new you.

  1. The trick to getting eyeliner right is easy. Get as close to the base of the lashes as possible. It’s almost as if you are trying to colour in the base of your lashes. This gives the most natural look and helps to give the illusion of fuller lashes and a more youthful look.

    Janet applying eyeliner

  2. Avoid liquid liners: On a mature eyelid, which is not as taut as it once was, achieving an even line is very difficult. As we age, we don’t want any hard lines in our makeup. Smudged, blended and softened is the way to go.

  3. Use soft pencils, or use an eyeliner brush, wet it, and dip it in your eyeshadow. Not only will this give you a soft line, but when you apply your eyeshadow, it all blends incredibly seamlessly!

  4. For colours, try dark bronze or aubergine if you have blue eyes (avoid lilac and purple as it can make your eyes appear red). If you have green or brown eyes, try either a dark brown or an olive / khaki green. These colours will make your eye colour pop, where black does nothing to highlight your eye colour at all.

  5. For women who are not sure about eyeshadow, this is the perfect option. Use a lid primer to even out, brighten and lighten all over the lid, then apply eyeliner and mascara. Voila! I often do this for a casual look. A little definition without too much effort.

Top Tip

Eyeliner is always the very first colour product I apply. This is because you can get as close to the root of your lashes as possible. If you apply liner after your mascara, it’s more difficult to get into the root of your lashes as you are fighting against lashes that are thickened and stiff with mascara product on them.

Eyeliner Products That I Love

Clinique - Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes
Particularly in Whopping Willow (gorgeous olive colour). Curvaceous Coal if you really can’t give up your black, and Portly Plum is a fabulous aubergine. These are great for women with sensitive eyes. It is also “buildable” which means you can add more over the top until you reach the desired intensity.

Clinique - Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes

Natio - Long Lasting Eye in Graphite and Brown
This one winds up and has a built-in sharpener and also a smudger. No more fumbling around trying to find your sharpener at the bottom of your drawer! It has long wear so is less likely to smudge around your eyes.

Natio - Long Lasting Eye in Graphite and Brown

Rimmel - Stay True Shadow + 24HR Kohl Kajal Liner
This one is waterproof and gives you a liner and coordinated shadow in one pencil. The shade Kissed by a Rose is gorgeous for blue eyes! It’s two products in one which is great value and super convenient.

Rimmel - Stay True Shadow + 24HR Kohl Kajal Liner

Australis - Intensifeye Wet/Dry Eyeshadow Quads
A perfect wet/dry powder that can do double duty. Dip your wet eyeliner brush into the powder and then slide as close to your lashes as you can get. I tend to use just one corner of the pan for my “wet” work keeping the majority dry for use as a coordinated eyeshadow.

Australis - Intensifeye Wet/Dry Eyeshadow Quads


Now, if after all that, you still love your black eyeliner, then stick to it. These are some options for women wanting to update their look. The joy of maturity is that NO ONE gets to dictate anything to us, let alone how we choose to look. Happy blending!


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