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Whether you’re working towards that punk rock aesthetic or a sultry slept-in vibe, smudged black eyeliner is the trend to take you there. Here are all the answers to your questions on who can pull it off, where to sport it, and how to get the look.
Dare you try this lived-in look? Anyone can rock smudged black eyeliner if they put their mind to it! You can smudge a little or a lot depending on your mood and the feeling you want to evoke. If you’re smudge-shy, you can work your way up to an intense black by starting with gray or brown eyeliner.
You’ve settled on giving the smudgy look a shot, but where should you wear this punk rock trend? While the sky is technically the limit when it comes to pulling off smudged black eyeliner, consider the crowd. At the office, it might be a better idea to wear a more defined line to reflect your professional personality and leave wearing worn-in liner for when you’re letting loose. A smudged out black is the perfect look for a girl’s night out, a hot date, or a boozy brunch.
You don’t have to be a pro makeup artist to get this look! There are quite a few different techniques you can try. But before each one, make sure to prime your lids. Yes, you want to smudge things up, but you don’t want your makeup to transfer to other parts of your face. So, begin by applying a small amount of eye makeup primer to your lids to help create a smooth base and keep everything in place. No primer? No problem! Just dab on a tiny bit of foundation or concealer in a pinch.
1. Pencil eyeliner. It might seem like a no-brainer to achieve a smudged eyeliner look with a pencil, but it’s a classic for a reason. Take the blackest black pencil you can find, and smudge to your heart’s content. Try the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Eyeliner in Black.
2. Liquid eyeliner + eye shadow. While liquid eyeliner is typically used to make sharper lines, you can repurpose your favorite cat-eye creator for smoky eyes, too. Draw a smooth line that will stay all day with the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Paints Eyeliner in Black Party. No need to worry about perfecting your line—it’s about to get smudged, anyway. Instead of attempting to smudge a liquid liner, add an eyeshadow overtop. Use a small brush to go over the liquid liner with the L’Oreal Paris Colour Riche Eyeshadow in Noir Cest Noir. Blend the precise line out using the shadow.
3. Gel eyeliner. This is another prime choice for creating a smudged out black look. With the coordinating brush, messily apply the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H in Blackest Black. Wipe off the brush before using it to help blur the edges of your liner.
The work doesn’t stop there! To full embrace this edgy makeup look, finishing things off by following these two steps.
Step 1: Tightline. For a bolder eye and fuller-looking lashes, create an “invisible eyeliner” effect by tightlining your eyes. Tightlining requires pulling up gently (and we mean gently!) on your eyelid to expose the upper waterline, where the base of your lashes are. Use the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner in Black. Carefully apply the product directly on the base of the lashes, filling in any gaps between individual hairs. Tightlining can also serve as a quick trick for easily lining your lower waterline. After applying liner on the upper waterline, firmly close your eyes right away. One blink and voila, the color will transfer along your bottom lashes for a completed look.
Step 2: Coat your lashes with mascara. Finish your eye makeup with a coat of volumizing mascara. This will tie your smudged black eyeliner look together and act as the perfect finishing touch. Dip the mascara wand into the tube and place at the bottom of your lashes, gently wiggling and pulling upwards to thoroughly cover every hair. Try the L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Feline Noir Mascara.