6 Steps to the Perfect Cat Eye Look

The cat eye has become popular for many reasons. It’s sexy, sophisticated, and at the same time, very neutral. But more importantly, it’s timeless, indispensable. Characterized by a sleek, bold eyeliner wing at the outer corner of the eye, it was originally made popular by several 40’s and 50’s pin-up staples, perhaps the most iconic being actress Marilyn Monroe.

Extremely versatile compared to other eye makeup styles, any woman can wear this look whether dressed up or down, night or day. And it’s so easy, making it great for us college students who wake up after a long night of “studying” with minimal prep time before class the next day — or, those who simply don’t want to spend more than five to ten minutes or more on their makeup.

The best way to achieve this look is with liquid or cream eyeliner — those generally allow better control, being applied with a brush or wand. I also think it looks more finished, compared to being done with a black eyeliner pencil, because of the much heavier pigmentation in the liquid liner.

Step 1

Even if bold, this is still generally a nude eye. And although we define “nude” as naked, in the world of beauty a nude eye doesn’t mean there’s nothing there. Prime those eyelids and dust on a sheer or pearlescent eye shadow of choice — preferably something close to your skin tone.

Step 2

Wing it. Starting at the inner corner of your eye, slowly begin to line outwards. The line should start off very thin near the inner tear duct, thicken towards then end. It doesn’t have to be one fluid motion; feel free to use short connecting strokes, whatever works best for you. When you reach the end, draw a wing at the outer corner of your eye by simply dragging your wand or brush up at the end of your line. If you mess up like I have countless times early on in my beauty endeavors, you can always wipe the wing away with a wet Q-tip and start over. It can be as small and cute like Marilyn’s, or as bold as Rihanna’s in the photo below.

Connecting at the inner tear duct, line your lower waterline. I like to apply a bit thicker on my outer lower corner a bit too; that gives it a slightly smoky effect on the bottom.

Step 3

Never ever neglect your lashes, top and bottom. Mascara. Mascara. Mascara. And remember, falsies are always an option but never a necessity; your lashes are perfect the way they are.

Don’t forget to curl!

Step 4

Build those brows! This look is honestly gorgeous with dark, thick (and well-groomed, of course) eyebrows. Fill in any sparse areas with a pencil, or angled brush and brow powder/ appropriate shade of eye shadow.

Step 5

Apply your blush of choice and countour the way you normally would, if any at all. Then, highlight lightly with your shimmer powder of choice, dusting on with the triangle rule in mind: tops of your cheeks (under eye area), the very top of the length of your nose, and center of your forehead. This illuminates these three points, bringing the forehead, nose, and cheeks “forward”. Highlighting the top of your nose — and only the top, anywhere else might look a bit strange — also creates the illusion of a slimmer nose. (An old Marilyn trick, the more you know.)

Step 6

Pair this look with a nude pink or rosy/ rose gold lip if you’re wearing this during the day, or a bold, red lip if going out at night.

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