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Plus, all the products you’ll need to recreate them — wings, pencils, gels and all.
Winged. Smudged. On your lids. Under the eye. Along the waterline. These are just some of the many ways to wear eyeliner. Are images of dark black eyeliner floating through your head? If so, allow us to broaden your beauty horizons. Enter: white eyeliner, the underrated makeup weapon you may not have known you needed. With its illuminating capabilities, white eyeliner looks are able to brighten up your face with a single stroke of a pencil or dash of liquid liner. White liner can create a wide-eyed, doll-like appearance. It can bring a makeup artist’s fantasies to life with its infinite design potential. And we’ll let you in on a secret: its transformative powers are not just limited to the eyes.
Is white eyeliner as deserving of a spot in your makeup kit as your beloved black liner? We’ll let you be the judge. Ahead, we break down six white eyeliner looks that even the skeptics will want to try. Plus, we’ve rounded the highly-pigmented products you can shop to help recreate them.
When in doubt, wing it out
A razor-sharp swipe of liquid eyeliner is traditionally done in black, but using a white liner for this look is just as captivating. If black winged liner gives you an edgy look, white liner has an ethereal quality that’s refreshing and flattering on all skin tones. As demonstrated in this TikTok by Alissa Janay, when both liners are layered next to one another the result is a high-contrast look that is sure to turn heads.
When drawing on a wing, the ease of a pointed liquid liner helps to ensure a sharp, precise flick. Urban Decay’s 24/7 Inks Easy Ergonomic Liquid Eyeliner Pen is easy enough for beginners to use and strong enough to last all day long. Just give it a shake, and it glides right on.
In a single swoosh, Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Resist Colour Ink Liquid Eyeliner delivers a highly pigmented slick of colour. Smudgeproof? Check. Waterproof? Check. Safe for contact lens users and sensitive eyes? Double check!
Enlarge the eyes
Looking to create the illusion of larger, wide-awake eyes (even if you’re already several coffees deep and still not wide awake)? White eyeliner is about to become your new best friend. Beloved by makeup artists for as long as we can remember, this classic trick involves using a white eyeliner pencil along the waterline and the inner corner of your eyes. By appearing to extend the natural whites of our eyes, white liner will make your peepers look larger, making you look more awake.
You can never go wrong with a pencil liner! A drugstore pick like this one by Annabelle is the only product you’ll need to recreate this look. Plus, it’s easy on the wallet and the eyes. Literally.
Who said eyeliner could only be used on the eyes? In this TikTok, Toronto-based beauty guru Atosa Aghakhani shows us how a thick white eyeliner pencil can double as a highlighter. Taking the pencil along the inner corners of the eyes as well as the bridge and tip of the nose, this versatile product is able to illuminate the face in just a few strokes. Once blended out, you’ll be left with a subtle, heavenly glow. They’ll never know it’s just eyeliner.
Hailing from YouTube’s prime beauty guru era, the NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in the shade “Milk” is considered the holy grail of white eyeliners. Whether used as an eyeshadow base, along the waterline, or for an instant highlight, this product can do no wrong. And it’s approved by Aghakhani; it’s the same product she uses in her TikTok.
Playful graphic designs
Where experimentation and white eyeliner are concerned, the limit to how creative you can get with these looks does not exist. The versatility of white liner means it can stand alone as its own graphic liner look, or it can be the finishing touch needed to complement a more colourful look. And the great thing about this product is that there truly is no right way to do it. Abstract shapes. Whimsical lines. Bold Designs. The choice is yours, but our current obsession is this look by TikTok creator @garancemurru.
For complete control over your white graphic liner, opt for an eyeliner in a pot that comes to life with a thin detail brush. This way, you can freehand your designs and really get creative. Kat Von D’s Super Pomade in the shade “White Out,” is a one-pot product that can be used as an eyeshadow, brow pomade, and eyeliner — perfectly suited for this look.
Not quite up to the task of painting your eyeliner on with a brush? Cheat crisp lines and intricate designs with a pointed eyeliner pencil like this one by Anastasia Beverly Hills. With up to 8 hours of wear, your hard work will last all night long.
A subtle burst of brightness à la Beyoncé
All eyes have been on Beyoncé since she embarked on her Renaissance World Tour earlier this spring. And if you’ve ever taken a closer look at her glam (guilty!), you’ll notice she kicked the tour off with a subtle dash of white eyeliner to bring her glam together, as confirmed by her makeup artist on the road, Rokael. In an Instagram carousel posted by the MUA, we got a close-up look at Bey’s liner look, which featured a pop of white eyeliner at the outer corner contrasting two sharp lines of black liner. If you’re still on the fence about white eyeliner, take a page out of Bey’s book and give this glam a try.
In order to have your white eyeliner pop in between two strokes of black eyeliner, you’re going to need an ultra-pigmented pencil. Enter Lady Gaga’s Haus Labs Optic Intensity Eco Gel Eyeliner Pencil in the shade “White Onyx Matte.” If white liner has two pop stars’ stamps of approval, it’s got ours too.
Get into “underliner”
As seen on the Dior Couture Spring Summer 2022 runway, the French fashion and beauty house took classic winged liner and gave it an editorial upgrade — and we haven’t stopped thinking about it since. “I took up the theme of signature makeup with an ‘underliner,’ this time in a pure vivid white, sharp line,” shared Peter Phillips, creative and image director for Dior Makeup, with Allure. The look is simpler than you’d think; all you’ll need is a white pencil liner along the waterline and a liquid liner tracing the under-eye and inner corner to get this runway-approved look.
Following Phillips’ advice, you’ll want Dior’s Diorshow On Stage Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in your makeup kit if you plan on “underlining,” any time soon. Its felt tip disperses a vivid blast of colour with a matte finish that won’t budge. No wonder the pros love it.
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