Now I sometimes think of the look as “Amy Winehouse eyes” — others call it “cat’s eyes.” That heavily exaggerated eyeliner drama is also often associated with Cleopatra and ancient Egyptian beauty — here’s La Liz rocking the look back in 1963. Talk about a makeup muse. These girls nowadays have NOTHING on Liz. Breaking hearts since back in the day. Love her.
A darkly outlined eye is both feminine and fierce, retro and modern. The lined, defined upper lid is a look I go for practically every day, because it’s effortlessly glamorous and really helps to accentuate the shape of my eyes. Of course I don’t go for the full on extended-far-beyond-the-eye look for the workplace. Less is definitely more for daytime in general.
These days I’ve been noticing more and more ladies rocking the subtle cat’s eye for daytime wear. Some go for a slight wing extending from the lashline, my friend Allie brightens hers up with a touch of purple liner.
If you’re looking for the liquid liner look, two words of advice. First — don’t be scared, and second, definitely check out the Makeup Girl’s liquid eyeliner 101. I love Lianne’s tutorials!! Some of the tips might surprise a first timer — before Lianne’s advice, I didn’t realize keeping my eyes open and using a fast stroke was the key to a smooth liquid liner look. She definitely helped me improve my technique.
If you’re not so great with regular liquid liners, check out the Lancome Artliner. It’s a liquid pen with a foam tip that makes application practically foolproof. And it comes in a great range of colors, too! But it costs $27, so if you’re a bella on a budget, that might be out of your league. CoverGirl also has a liquid liner pen for less than $7 on Drugstore.com, but the range of colors is significantly smaller.
Even though I do go for the cat’s eye, I don’t personally use liquid liner every day – I am not such a whiz at it that it takes me mere minutes, so I stick to a thick, slick eye pencil to achieve the look when I’m rushing off to work. I hit the cat’s eye motherlode when I went to the drugstore this weekend and discovered Milani Black Magic Liner and Eye Glimmer – newness so fresh that it isn’t even yet on the what’s new page on the Milani website.
I saw a big display at my neighborhood CVS and I was simply transifixed. It’s a long, fat pencil with points at both ends – one half is a liner, the other, “eye glimmer.” I couldn’t decide between Blackened Teal, Blackened Emerald, or Blackened Pink. I stood there like a deer in headlights for like ten minutes before I went for the teal. I can’t tell you how much I love it. The liner part glides on effortlessly smooth, and is rich and dark with just a gleam of teal for you if you’re conservative with color. I would take a photo for you so you could see the liner/my eyes wearing it… but my husband went to the University of Miami football game at the Orange Bowl with our camera and it was either lost or stolen. D’oh! So there will be no photos of me for a while. You’ll just have to trust me when I say that the liner rocks, I think I paid less than $5 for it (I love you, Milani – don’t ever change), and if you’re a product junkie like me, you’ll dig it too. I’m totally going back for that Blackened Pink.
For those of you who are more visual and need step-by-step guidance on the cat’s eye look, check out this fun turquoise cat’s eye by Ask Me Makeup on YouTube. That’s the kind of look that takes confidence and maybe a little practice — it’s two shades away from Mimi on Drew Carey. But you know how I feel about bright colors on beautiful brown skin — it’s a winning look. So don’t be afraid to go bright.
And in case you didn’t already know, there are some GREAT makeup tutorials on YouTube. If you want to watch a gorgeous sista putting on affordable makeup for women of color, peep the Makeup Maverick’s videos. Check out her dramatic smokey eye to watch her apply liquid liner with a bold touch. That’s a sassy night time look, and I love her commentary — “you can go to the club, you can dance, you can sweat, it doesn’t matter. Your eyeshadow will stay in place.” Hey, is that “Party Like a Rock Star” as the background music? And it mixes into “Beverly Hills” by Weezer? I heart this chick. I am so watching all of her videos and trying these looks out.
Do you rock the Cleopatra cat’s eye look, bella beautiful? What are your favorite liners and tips to achieve the look?