5 Tips for a Perfect Cat Eye


Singer and actress Rihanna rocked the cat eye look at the World premier for "Battleship" on April 3, 2012 in Tokyo, Japan.
Singer and actress Rihanna rocked the cat eye look at the World premier for "Battleship" on April 3, 2012 in Tokyo, Japan.
Jun Sato/WireImage/Getty Images

Celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Rihanna and Zooey Deschanel have rocked this look on the red carpet many times. We're talking about the cat eye. Cat eyes give a cheeky nod to the '70s with a sexy, chic sophistication. It's no wonder it's all the rage among celebrities and their makeup artists these days.

But have you ever tried to pull off cat eyes yourself for a night out with your beau or the girls? If you're like a lot of women, you've probably tried this look out in the privacy of your bathroom, and then after failing miserably, vowed to never waste your time on it again, sure that you'll never be able to pull it off. But, maybe all you need is a little coaching to get it right. Check out the following pages for five steps to creating the perfect cat eye, and then give it another shot.

5
Prepping Makes Perfect

Before you take pen to paper, so to speak, you need to get your tools out and your surface prepped. As far as tools go, here's what you'll need:

  • eye makeup primer
  • eyelash curler
  • eye shadow
  • eye shadow brushes
  • eyeliner
  • mascara
  • cotton swabs
  • eye make-up remover

The best eyeliner to use for this look is something soft. This is crucial so it glides easily across your eyelid. Liquid eyeliner is the best, because it's not only very easy to apply, it's also resistant to smudging once it dries. Another way to prevent smudging is to prep the surface with an eyelid primer. Many makeup brands sell eyelid primer, and it helps smooth the surface for applying makeup, and keeps your makeup in place longer. Once the surface is prepped, use the eyelash curler to give your lashes a little boost and flare.

Now the next step may seem a bit out of order. Click to the next page to find out what it is.

4
Shadow Comes First
The first step to create this look is to apply a neutral shadow to give your eye brightness and definition.
The first step to create this look is to apply a neutral shadow to give your eye brightness and definition.
Photodisc/Thinkstock

You might be used to putting your eyeliner on first and blending your eye shadow over top. But, to create the perfect cat eye, you'll need to shake things up a bit and lead off with your shadow. The cat eye look is enough on its own without adding dark or colorful eye shadow to the mix. So why is step two applying shadow? You still need to put on a neutral shadow to give your eye brightness and definition.

Start with a shadow a shade lighter than your skin tone and apply all over your eyelid. Next, use a lighter shade to highlight your eyes, applying it just under your eyebrow line. Finally, finish off with a color slightly darker than your natural shade in the crease of your eye. This will help define your eye and create a bright surface to contrast nicely with your dark cat-eye eyeliner. Now it's time for the eyeliner.

3
It's All About the Flick
Draw a thin line just above your upper lash line using eyeliner.
Draw a thin line just above your upper lash line using eyeliner.
Stockbyte/Thinkstock

Here's where the cotton swabs and eye makeup remover come in. These mistake erasers will be part of the process. Perfecting this look takes practice. Add in the fact that liquid liner is prone to slippage and mistakes, and you could have a makeup applying meltdown on your hands. But before you panic, remember that patience is the secret to accomplishing this look. Make small, steady strokes and keep your mistake erasers close by, and you'll perfect this look in no time.

Use your liquid eyeliner to draw a thin line just above your upper lash line. When this is just how you like it, make a dot with your eyeliner where you want your cat eye wing to end. Start at the dot and work backwards to the corner of your eye, increasing pressure as you go so the line becomes thicker. InStyle magazine suggests using a credit card as a guide. Hold it at a 45-degree angle next to your nose, and use this as a guide for your cat flick. Repeat on the other side for flawless symmetry every time.

2
Another Layer of Shadow

This step is optional. If you want to keep your cat eye bold and classic, you should skip this step. However, the second layer of shadow is key to making this look wearable for most women. If you're all about the drama, skip the extra shadow for sure. You already have the shadow from the second step to help your cat eye stand out. But if you're a little wary of pulling this look off, the second layer of shadow will soften it a bit. Simply go over your cat eye line you've just perfected with a shimmery bronze eye shadow using a small angled eye shadow brush. If you want, you could also use a shimmery bronze eyeliner instead. Whichever one you already have in your drawer will work perfectly. Just make sure it's lighter and softer than the black liner you applied in the previous step. If you're worried about making your eyes look small with this look, you can also line your bottom lid with this same color. This will add to the softness and open if your eyes, giving the illusion of a wider eye.

1
Finishing Touches
The final step to get the perfect cat eye is to apply mascara -- and lots of it.
The final step to get the perfect cat eye is to apply mascara -- and lots of it.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Are you loving your new look so far? Before you bounce out the door to show it off, there's one more step -- mascara and lots of it. You should apply two to three coats of your favorite mascara to complete your perfect the cat eye. This look will draw others to your eyes, so you want to make sure your lashes are perfected as well. Since you already curled them in step one, they're just begging for mascara. Curled and coated, your lashes will help add to the upward motion of this look. As for the rest of your makeup, keep it simple. A more natural look with your blush will help set off the cat eye and bring more attention to all your hard work.

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Sources

  • Cosmopolitan. "Beauty Cheat Sheet: How to Get Seductive Cat Eyes." (Aug. 12, 2012) http://www.cosmopolitan.com/hairstyles-beauty/skin-care-makeup/how-to-get-cat-eyes#slide-1
  • Cruel, Jessica. "Copy Cameron Diaz's Captivating Cat Eye Makeup." US Magazine. May 23, 2012. (Aug. 12, 2012) http://www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-beauty/news/copy-cameron-diazs-captivating-cat-eye-makeup-2012235
  • Gerstein, Suzy. "The Fancy Cay Eye Demystified." Lucky Magazine. April 20, 2012. (Aug. 12, 2012) http://www.luckymag.com/blogs/luckyrightnow/2012/04/Cat-Eye-Demystified
  • InStyle Magazine. "You Can Do Cat Eyes." Pages 164-166. August 2012. Shapouri, Beth. "A Genius Makeup Trick That'll Update Your Cat-Eye Liner Looks." Glamour.com. March 5, 2012. (Aug. 12, 2012) http://www.glamour.com/beauty/blogs/girls-in-the-beauty-department/2012/03/a-genius-makeup-trick-thatll-u.html
  • Temptalia.com. "Tutorial - Cat Eye Liner, Liquid Liner Tips, Neutral Eye." Dec. 23, 2007. (Aug. 12, 2012) http://www.temptalia.com/tutorial-cat-eye-liner-liquid-liner-tips-neutral-eye
  • TotalBeauty.com. "Makeup Tutorial: the Daytime Cat Eye." (Aug. 12, 2012) http://www.totalbeauty.com/content/gallery/cat-eye-makeup