Tuesday, March 8, 2011

French Eye Lining with Kohl

This technique is a bit tricky at first, but once you practice this eye lining a few times it becomes quick and easy. Here is what you need:

1 kohl eyeliner pencil any color
1 eye pencil sharpener

Hands washed and dried, free of lint

Sharpen the kohl pencil
Look straight into a mirror
Hold the kohl pencil straight to the underneath lash area of the upper eyelid (perpendicular)
With opposite hand, lift the top lashes a bit
With the tip of the kohl pencil apply the color into the underneath base of the lashes using short strokes
Repeat on other eye

Even though this technique is dated back to ancient Egypt, the French cosmetic companies have perfected it. When you do your kohl eye lining this way you have a more natural look and it will give more definition to your eyes. You can also line your eyes above the lashes for a more dramatic look. When you blink, some of the kohl liner may transfer to lower lash line...this is great and will look more natural.

Some things to be aware of when you do this eye lining technique:

Hands must always be clean
Always freshly sharpen the pencil before doing this on each eye
ONLY use a kohl pencil - other pencils have too much wax in them and will irritate your eyes over time
If you wear hard contact lenses DO NOT do this technique
If you wear soft contact lenses use your own discretion as to whether this technique is for you
If you have sensitive eyes or any problems with your eyes, this technique may not be for you. Consult your doctor.
As always, work carefully and slowly to avoid poking yourself in the eye.

The key to good eye lining in general is to get it into the lash base.

I was just working with John Fussell, Global Makeup Artist for Chanel yesterday and he showed us how to achieve this technique in a different way:

Line eyes on the lower rim of the eye above the lashes with a clean kohl pencil. Squeeze your eyes shut. The kohl is soft enough that you will transfer the kohl to the upper lash line. You may have to do this a few times to get the effect you want. John indicated they do this backstage at the fashions shows because they have to work quickly.

The difference between the two techniques is that you will have a darker and thicker line on the bottom lashes and it will not look as natural but more dramatic.

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