It's no secret that lining your eyes especially if you're Asian makes them appear larger. Chicago-based makeup artist Joyce Taft, who has dolled up everyone from Cate Blanchett to Demi Moore and even Bono (that's right!), says applying liquid liner to Asian eyes is especially important because it creates an optical illusion typically, Asian eyelids are smaller, and the eyes are somewhat inset.
Remove and prime: Thoroughly wash and dry your face. Remove any residue from around the eye area. Apply an eye primer, such as F.Y. Eye Nude Primer by Benefit to eyelids. (It provides a smooth base so liner can better adhere.)
Absorb oil: Lightly dust the eyelid with translucent blotting powder to further prime skin, absorb oil, and provide a matte finish.
Line it up: Apply waterproof liquid eyeliner in a thick, continuous line using a mirror with at least 10 times magnification. Cover the whole lid. Extend the line slightly beyond the lid and upward just past the outer corner of the lash line in the evening, but stop the line at the end of the lid during the day. Plum and raisin tones tend to be the most flattering eyeliner colors against Asian skin tones. Taft says, "Never apply a thin line to Asian eyes." She notes, "A thick line actually ends up appearing fine because of the way Asian eyes are shaped."
One size doesn't fit all: There are many ethnicities of Asian women. Understandably, one approach will not work for all. Women with eyes that slant slightly downward should extend eyeliner all the way to the end of the lid and bring it a little upward to open the eye. By contrast, those whose eyes slant upward need only draw the liner to the end of the lid.
Practice makes perfect: Since using liquid eyeliner can be challenging, Taft recommends trying it on the back of your hand several times before moving on to the eye itself. "It's very important to use waterproof eyeliner. Otherwise, it tends to run into the eyebrows of Asian women," Taft says. There is no easy right and wrong answer when it comes to where, exactly, to begin lining Asian eyes. Some women benefit from whole-lid lining, while others need eyeliner at the outer corners only. Experiment to find what works best for you.
Keep the germs away: Hygiene is extremely important in regard to the eye area. It's best to apply eyeliner with a disposable applicator. Liquid eyeliner should be disposed of and replenished every three months even if it has only been used once!
Jennifer Olvera is a Chicago freelance writer covering food, dining, travel, nightlife, entertainment, spa, and lifestyle-related topics for internationally recognized magazines, newspapers, books, and Websites. She's the Chicago nightlife editor for Zagat and the Midwest editor and Chicago dining writer for Gayot.com. Jennifer regularly writes cover stories (and tests recipes) for the Food section of the Chicago Sun-Times while penning pieces about far-flung destinations for the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, and Frommers.com.