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When it comes to applying eye makeup, the shape of your lids is an important factor to mind. Let’s be clear: All eye shapes can look striking with any beat, whether you have a round, almond, monolid, or hooded structure. But a few makeup tips can simply accentuate your shape and make it pop—just as how you might have a range of go-to hues to flatter the color of your orbs.
For today’s guide, we’re focusing on hooded eyes. Below, experts offer their seasoned tricks to enhance this eye shape.
How to tell if you have hooded eyes.
If your skin seems to fold down from your brow bone on top of your lash line, you likely have hooded eyes. It can also be a bit difficult to find your natural crease (especially with your eyes closed), as the brow bone tends to hide a portion of the lid real estate. Some eyes have more of a hood than others, either by genetics or over time as the skin naturally folds from aging.
See here for our helpful eye shapes chart, in case you need a visual.
Makeup tips for hooded eyes.
Again, any eye shape can have fun with any makeup look—so think of these tips as little tweaks to help enhance a hooded eye since different eye shapes may require different moves to achieve various looks:
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The bold, dramatic cut crease was practically made for hooded eyes: “If you have a hooded eye, you can create the illusion that you have more of a lid and a separate brow bone,” celebrity makeup artist AJ Crimson previously told mbg. That’s because you’re using shadow to create a stark contrast that literally carves your own crease and offers more definition. “It gives [the eye shape] more of a crease where they wouldn’t have it before,” he adds.
You can find our full cut crease tutorial here, but in the simplest terms: After applying a light matte or shimmer shade across the entire lid, “contour with a medium-matte shade in the crease, and blend up toward the brow bone,” says Crimson.
“Curl your lashes before applying mascara for mega doe eyes,” makeup artist Alexandra Compton, product development manager at Credo, told us about tips for every eye shape. Even if you don’t wear makeup, a gentle squeeze with a lash curler can help open up the eye and make you appear wide-awake. It’s especially helpful if your hooded eyes also have a downturned shape, as those lashes tend to droop without a proper curl.
3. Use smudge-proof mascara.
Because the brow bone has close proximity to the lash line, many with hooded eyes find their mascara transferred onto their brow bone toward the end of the day. If this sounds like you, a good (read: stubborn) waterproof mascara is a must-have. And if you’re worried about plucking off lashes when it’s time to remove your makeup, don’t worry—we have a hack for that, too.
4. Or let your liner smudge.
If you’re one to tightline your top waterline, embrace the natural smokiness that comes with time: “Line inside the rim, and let it smudge and make its way out,” says Crimson. It will give you a sort of lived-in, undone makeup look.
5. Tightline with nude or white eyeliner.
To open up the eyes, tightline your waterline with a nude eyeliner. According to Compton, it’ll make any eye shape appear larger and brighter.
6. Look straight into the mirror when you apply.
Whether you’re applying shadow or liner, you’ll want to make sure to keep your eyes open, looking straight-on at the mirror the entire time. When you apply makeup on closed lids, the hood can smudge your progress once you blink your eyes open, or the makeup will appear smaller once the hood falls over the lash line.
7. When applying liner, use the “batwing” trick.
Liner hacks range far and wide—it’s a notoriously difficult skill to master, so we welcome all the tips and tricks we can get our hands on.
For hooded eyes, allow us to introduce you to what celebrity makeup artist Katie Jane Hughes calls, “batwing liner.” Essentially, you flick your eyeliner right over the fold of skin—when you close your eyes, the pigment swoops in a tad, resembling a tiny batwing. She has multiple TikTok videos explaining the process, but you can find her tips below:
- “Draw a delicate line from the last eyelash, going up to the tail of your brow,” says Hughes. “Go over that skin if it’s there.”
- Work your way back to the lash line and fill in the wing shape.
- With your eye closed, “perfect the edges and points,” Hughes notes. “You can neaten the shape that your eye will have naturally created, but don’t connect the peak to the liner,” she adds. If you fill in the batwing, Hughes notes it can look “quite wonky” with the extra product.
When you open your eyes, the liner looks like a regular cat-eye, the wing sharp and straight. When you close your eyes, however, you should notice a little batwing shape where your fold naturally covers.
8. Use concealer for lift.
To make the eyes pop and appear lifted, a trusty concealer can do no wrong. Just take this viral TikTok trick to make the eyes appear larger (and cover up dark circles, while you’re at it):
- Apply concealer in a vertical line from the corner of the inside of your eye down to about the midshaft of your nose.
- Then add a small dab of concealer on the outer corner of your eye.
- Blend the product out and up toward your eye, as well as up and around the corner of the eye.
9. Use highlighter only under the arch of the brow.
“Do not highlight your entire brow bone,” says makeup artist Janae Lockard over TikTok. “That makes it look so puffy and saggy.” You would typically apply highlighter on places you want to highlight (get it?), as it helps bring forth an area. That’s why when you apply highlighter directly on an already prominent brow bone, it can make it appear bigger.
So don’t highlight the entire brow bone—highlight above it. “Instead, place right under the arch of the brow,” Lockard says, so you help define the area without bringing the entire brow bone forward.
If you’re curious how makeup artists enhance a hooded eye shape, this list is a great place to start. At the end of the day, you can sport any face beat you please (the result will look beautiful on anyone, regardless of eye shape), but accentuating your personal lid structure can help make the look your own.