8 Steps to the perfect cat-eye makeup

Our eyes are arguably what we spend the most time on when applying makeup – after all, it’s probably been a while since you busted out your red lipstick for a day of back-to-back Zoom calls. While you might not go full-on cat eye while working from home either, now more than ever you’ve got lots of time to practise your technique!

Getting the right cat eye look will not only make your eyes look bigger but also give the illusion of an eyelift (no surgery required!) All it takes is a little bit of contour, blending and line work. Follow along and make sure you build up the shape and colour little by little; it’s always easier to add on than take away. Oh, and you can choose to apply foundation before or after the eye makeup - although if you're a beginner you might want to apply it afterwards, so you have an option to cover up any mistakes!

1. Choose a nude eyeshadow for your base
First, curl the eyelashes and use a primer around your eyes and on your eyelids. Then apply a nude eyeshadow with your finger on top of the primer. We used this colour from the THE ONE Makeup pro palette to match the skin tone. Now you´re ready to whip those eyes into shape!

2. Create the cat-eye shape
Take a small fluffy eyeshadow brush with a brown face contour colour and lightly make a line from the end of your eyelashes, angled up and out like a big soft eyeliner wing. Don’t overthink it, just brush it over a couple of times until it’s a nice, soft line. Then lightly brush the same colour backwards, from the end of the wing and into the eye crease and look at that! The shape is made.

3. Sculpt the eye
Now pick up that blending brush and find a light, cool brown shade. Start applying the eyeshadow from the middle of your upper lid, brushing it out all the way over the contour line from step 2 to get that sculpt. You got this!

4. Start the blending
Apply a little touch of the contour colour on a larger fluffy make-up brush and brush (blend) it out over the big, soft wing we created in step 2 and 3, repeat a couple of times. Don’t worry about going too far towards your hairline in this step; you’re supposed to! And remember: blending is an art. It makes your eyeshadows go seamlessly into each other and gives the make-up an effortless look. But it’s more about tenacity and the right make-up tools and products than talent! It’s basically just another word for repeatedly brushing over the same area. So, pretty much anyone can practice and become good enough to pull it off.

5. Wing it!
The success is in the details so let´s get to it. Create a winged eyeliner using a darker brown eye shadow with a small, angled make-up brush. Start at the end of the lower lash line and follow the same angle as your lower lash line outwards. Then complete the wing by drawing the brush from the middle of the top lash line and out into the wing to finish it off. Don´t worry if you have hooded eyes, just look straight into the mirror when making the line, then close your eye and fill in the gap!

Tip! To make the eyeshadow colour more intense, moisten your brush with setting spray and then dip it in the eyeshadow!

6. Blend to satisfaction
More blending! Don´t worry; you´ve been blending (repeatedly brushing over the same area) since we started so you already got this! Take the small fluffy eyeshadow brush you used in the second step (with the leftover contour colour) and brush it lightly over the top of the wing to make it softer. After this, go over everything with the bigger fluffy make-up brush to make sure it’s nice and blended for that refined, effortless look.

7. Define the eye
Now for the main event: defining the eyes and making them look bigger! Take the angled make-up brush and the same eyeshadow colour as with the wing, then make a thin line from just outside the inner eye corner, up along the whole top lash line. Then bring the line from your inner corner into your lower lash line, creating a < -shape. Use a very light pink or nude eyeliner pen inside your lower lash line to brighten and make the eyes look bigger.

Tip! You can use the light eyeliner pen ANYTIME to make your eyes look bigger by creating the illusion of a brighter eye!

8. Take it to the finish line!
Almost there! Now, blend and soften everything to your liking and clean up under the wing with Q-tips and your concealer brush. Finish with mascara and a dab of a shiny eye shadow on your eyelids and VOILA! Your perfect, smokey cat-eye.

Add fake eyelashes and more (or different) eyeshadow colours for a more intense look or keep it light if you want it more au natural.