Ninja Beauty Secrets — Part 3

| Oct 8, 2007
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A ninja secret is a tidbit of knowledge or a technique that is a heavily guarded secret… until now. In this column, you will learn techniques for creating a look so perfect it’ll be considered razor sharp perfect. This month we focus on eyelining. Proper eyelining can mean the difference from looking absolutely plain to looking absolutely beautiful. Different lining techniques will be discussed that can be applied to different ethnic groups. By continuing to study and apply the techniques that I present, I hope that by using your newfound knowledge on a regular basis, you will become a seriously good makeup ninja.

Ninja Beauty Secrets, part 3

ninja2.jpgRazor Sharp Eyelining

Remember our first column where I emphasized the importance of a razor sharp perfect look? The key to achieving such a look starts with razor sharp perfect (RSP) lines created with perfect technique. Some of you use eyelining pencils that need to be sharpened whenever the points get dull. These are fine for creating RSP lines. Some of you use automatic “self-sharpening” eye liner pencils that give you a new point with a simple twist of the pencil barrel. Some of these pencils now come with built-in sharpeners housed in their pencil caps. I find these built-in sharpeners to be largely useless and unnecessary because you can do better with the following technique:

Kalina’s RSP Eyeliner Technique With Automatic Eyelining Pencils

  • Twist up one-eighth of an inch of eye liner.
  • Hold the pencil point-up between your thumb and index finger and use the other fingers to curl and support the pencil.
  • At a 30 degree angle from the edge of a flat paper towel, gently swipe the tip of the eye liner from one end of the paper towel to the other while rolling the barrel of the pencil in your hand.
  • Repeat the previous step if the tip is not yet sharp.

You should always begin your eyelining with a razor sharp tip using my technique and sharpen again whenever the tip gets dull. There are three basic eye line widths: thin, thick, and some measure in between that I’ll just call medium. Thin eye lines are good for subtlety, when you don’t want to draw too much attention to your eyes and you just want to balance your overall makeup look. Going to the supermarket or clothes shopping or meeting a friend for coffee and donuts are events where subtlety in your makeup is especially important.

Thick eye lines are good for drama, when you want to draw plenty of attention to your eyes and face. The eyes are the first things most people see on a face, so it is important to get your eyes made up perfectly before you leave your house. Going to wild parties, night clubs or lounges where the lighting is dim, or fashion shows and pageants are examples of where dramatic makeup works best.

Before we continue, I have to mention that whenever I ask my clients if they want a natural look or a glamorous look, they always say natural, but many of them end up not being very comfortable wearing a natural look because they feel they look too “man-like” or still “look like their boy selves.” I totally understand this, because it took me a while before I became comfortable with my own natural makeup look. You really have to be totally comfortable with all aspects of yourself and your femininity before you even try to create a natural makeup look for yourself. Makeup can only hide so much and once you accept the fact that your femme self is a part of you and have no problems going out in public by yourself en femme, then and only then can you begin the process of creating a natural makeup look. For this series of articles, all of our RSP techniques will be applicable to any makeup look.

eye lines.jpgThe face pictures I’ve prepared for this month’s column show examples of thin, medium, and thick eye lines. All of these eye lines start from the innermost part of the eye to the outermost part of the eye. I especially like medium and thick eye lines because this is where you can get really creative with how you want your eyes to look. I usually like to extend my eye line beyond the outermost part of my eye to create a swept wing look. For medium eye lines I recommend no more than a one-eighth inch extension and for thick eye lines no more than three-eighths of an inch, but even I break this rule by going as much as a quarter of an inch as you see in the thick eye line picture.

With medium and thick eye lines, it is especially important to master the width of the eye line across the eye. All such eye lines should start thin and RSP at the innermost part of the eye and gradually increase to its thickest width about two-thirds of the way to the outermost part of the eye. If you do swept wings like I do, taper the eye line width back down to the same thin RSP line you started with. If you don’t do swept wings, end the eye line with what I call “mini swept wings.” The best way to describe the look of these is to draw a medium or thick eye line, extend it about one-eighth of an inch keeping it thick at the very end, hold a Q-tip at a 45 degree angle and starting from the outermost edge of the eye, swipe the Q-tip across the eye line in the direction of the Q-tip. Use the Q-tip to wipe away any excess eye liner beyond this erased line. This is a mini swept wing and with a little practice you can draw these in without having to extend the eye line so far like you just did in this description. You can also experiment with the angle because 45 degree angled swept wings don’t look good on everyone.

A thin eye line is a fairly uniform width across the entire length of the eye and because of the thin width of the eye line, there’s really not much need to make swept wings, but you can do them with a little patience and practice. With thin eye lines, it is especially important to get them RSP so you can use a Q-tip to do so, but continue reading for my infallible RSP technique!

Some girls love to line both the top and bottom lids and while that was a great look in the 70s and 80s, it really isn’t used much in today’s looks. A lower lid eye line, if you want one, should be kept as thin as possible and that requires an exceptionally steady hand and RSP technique. The same width rules apply to lower eyelid lines as upper eyelid lines except for the fact that lower eyelid lines should be kept as thin as possible, about one-third as thin as upper eyelid lines. If lower eyelid lines are too thick, you’ll end up with a Cleopatra effect, which is not a good look for anything but going to a Halloween party as Cleopatra.

Rather than lining the lower lid with eye liner, try applying a line of eyeshadow across the lower lid. Choose a color that complements, or works with, your chosen eyeshadow colors. I usually go for a medium to dark eyeshadow to line my lower lids and you can see that the lower eyeshadow line in all of my face pictures is very subtle but there. Remember that the same RSP techniques apply to lining your lower eyelids with eyeshadow as they do with eye liner.

In all of the examples, I’ve drawn my eye lines as close to my eyes as possible. After applying your eye lines, you can use the brush end of a lash and eyebrow comb (will open in a new window) to patch any holes or missed spots in the eye line by spreading the eye liner product across the length of the eye line, soften the look of the eye line, or remove any bumps of stray color along the top edge of the eye line for RSP eye lines. Be especially careful when using the brush as too much pressure can wipe off a lot of eye liner. If you do so, just apply eye liner again and use the brush to finish creating that RSP eye line.

Most Asian girls are particularly blessed with almond-shaped eyes. These types of eyes are particularly suited for swept wing eye lines. You can, of course, fake the look of almond-shaped eyes by incorporating the swept wing look with your eye lines and I highly recommend this over mini swept wings for medium and thick eye lines.

Eyelining is a very important part of your overall look, so the more RSP your eye lines, the more beautiful your eyes will look. If you’re having trouble creating perfect eye lines on yourself, practice drawing lines with your eye liner on a paper towel or, if you want a more realistic practice surface, on a matte breast form or other matte silicone surface (be sure your eye liner is water soluble).

Next month, we’re going to tackle RSP techniques for eyeshadow so what I want you to do is purchase any eyeshadow quad with colors you like. I love Revlon’s ColorStay 12 Hour Eye Shadow Quad (will open in a new window).

We’re going to talk about how to use eyeshadow, how much to use, and even when to use it. In the meantime, keep practicing those RSP techniques for creating RSP eye lines!

For more ninja beauty secrets, purchase “Natural Makeup Techniques” or “Secrets to an Awesome Makeover” from my web site (will open in a new window).

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Category: Transgender How To


About the Author ()

I've been active in the transgender community since 1991 and living as a full-time woman since 2010. My books are internationally recognized as some of the best makeup and transformation books for male-to-female crossdressers and transsexuals. Each book is chock full of good information and some have stories that will inspire you to be the best woman that you can be. More than just makeup and transformation books, they are sources of inspiration and portals into my life as a transgender woman. Over 3,000 women just like you have learned from these books, many of whom have gone on to become beautiful, passable, and successful in whatever they do!

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